It's Super Bowl Sunday and here are my Super Thoughts about it:
Pre-game Show: Actually, if I my pre-game was the same relative to the actual coverage of the Super Bowl it would be four times longer than the game itself and I would have had to start it yesterday. The NFL Network will be begin live, pre-game coverage at 6:00 AM our time. That is 11-and-a-half hours of pre-game programing live from Arizona! I don't think Admiral Yamamoto spent that much time plotting the attack on Pearl Harbor. NBC is taking a "light" approach to pre-game programming. They won't start the Today Show from the Super Bowl until 7:00 AM.
First Quarter: One of the hot topics during the two weeks leading up to the game has been "What will the New England Patriots' legacy be with the multiple 'cheating scandals' that have marred their long run of success?" All of the talking heads want to draw the comparison to the records set by the steroid-fueled sluggers of Major League Baseball in the 1990's--and that the Pats will be treated the same way. But here is how we will remember the Patriots: Not At All. Honestly, when was the last time you "debated" the legacy of the 1970's Pittsburgh Steelers, or the San Francisco 49ers of the 1980's and '90's? We likely won't think about "SpyGate and "Deflategate" until ESPN the Ocho does a 30 For 30 documentary on it 25-years from now--and our grandchildren laugh at how the highlights are in 1080p two-dimension broadcast instead of the 10,000p 3-D holographic broadcast that they will be watching.
Second Quarter: I find the public perception of the Seattle Seahawks fascinating. Marshawn Lynch is seen as a "punk" for refusing to talk to the media. Richard Sherman--who never passes up an opportunity to appear on camera and speak into a micro-phone--is considered a "thug" because he talks too much. And then Russelll Wilson--who is always deferential and respectful whenever he is interviewed--is characterized as a "phony"--and allegedly causes a divide among his teammates because he "isn't Black enough". When it comes to being an African-American athlete in the spotlight, you apparently can't win.
Halftime: Nothing exemplifies America's need to have in-your-face-at-all-times entertainment and action better than a Super Bowl Halftime Show. Even though we spent 11&1/2 hours previewing this game, we can't take more than 3 minutes at the break to recap the action and analyze the results--because teenage girls are going to get bored. The MVP of this game will actually be the computer technician that keeps Katy Perry's Auto-tuned, pre-recorded vocal track running properly during the show so that she doesn't actually have to sing into her microphone.
Third Quarter: Remember when you actually had to wait for the Super Bowl to see Super Bowl commercials? There was actually some anticipation heading into each break to see what Madison Avenue was going to use to make us laugh (or sometimes cry). But because we live in an instant gratification society now, every commercial is already available on-line for you to watch as many times as you want before the game starts. For some people, this means they won't even have to watch the game.
Fourth Quarter: So who do I think will win? New England has certainly looked more impressive in the post-season so far--and you can never bet against Bill Belichick and Tom Brady--but there is just something about Russell Wilson that is special and only Bret Bielema's horrible game management ever kept him from winning a big game late. I'll go Seahawks over the Pats 26-24 on a late field goal.
Postgame: I'm really hoping that Marahawn Lynch wins Super Bowl MVP so that Dan Patrick has to conduct the most awkward post-game interview on the podium at mid-field before hundreds of millions on live television.
Enjoy the beer and wings!