By Kevin Kirkland, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
Bill Cowher's Steelers ice bucket wasn't shattered on Cincinnati television -- not yet anyway -- but it did rack up $550 in a household auction last weekend at Dargate Auction Galleries.
All 134 lots sold during the auction, which drew about 30 percent more bidders, both in person and online, than a typical household auction, said David Arnold, Dargate's consignment manager. But the bids generally weren't any higher than if they had been for your sofa, dining room set or king-sized bed with upholstered headboard and footboard ($130).
The 8 1/2-inch-high crystal ice bucket etched with the Steelers logo drew lots of interest, including that of some Bengals fans who wanted to buy it, then break it live on TV.
Those poor sports apparently lost out to an eBay bidder from Louisiana, who paid several times the $100 to $200 pre-sale estimate. The Bengals fans consoled themselves by buying some furniture instead, Mr. Arnold said. No word on whether they'll break it on TV.
The other Steelers item, a desk clock, went for $120, while the 8-foot Olhausen Remington pool table went for $1,500 to a local woman who planned to give it to her husband as a birthday gift, Mr. Arnold said.
That price was at the low end of the pre-sale estimate, as were the prices for the dining room set, which was collectively expected to bring the highest amount. A Henredon china cabinet brought in $1,600, a Regency-style table $800, four Chippendale chairs $700 and a server $475.
The biggest difference between the Cowhers' auction and others?
"More the media frenzy than anything," said Mr. Arnold, who was interviewed by a Sports Illustrated writer this week.
A small article in the current issue includes a photo of a ceramic monkey planter ($275) and teases the Steelers' former head coach for having an "eye for patio furniture." Several patio sets collectively brought in about $1,000 -- almost enough for two ice buckets, assuming they belonged to a Steeler.