The media has two weeks to fill newspaper and broadcast space with coverage of two NFL teams. Every nuance of each player on both teams now becomes a critical human-interest story. Other insignificant issues being covered, such as Americans dying in Iraq
and the sluggish economy, understandably take a backseat to the riveting question that haunts every American: who has the best
Dont get me wrong, I am a lifelong sports fan and played quite a bit of football in a previous life. For me, the NFL playoff games leading up to the Super Bowl can be compelling viewing. It is the Super Bowl, itself, that makes my stomach turn.
Quickly, tell me what you remember about last years Super Bowl game. For 90% of you, Janet Jacksons wardrobe malfunction is the only thing that comes to mind. Therein lies the problem. These games are mostly forgettable.
During the regular season, more than half of NFL games are decided by a touchdown or less. Yet, only 8 of 38 Super Bowls in history have been decided by less than seven points. Eleven Super Bowls have been blowouts - determined by more than 20 points. The reason for lopsided games: the players are not ready to perform which is reflected in the quality of play and the final score.
Lets face it - these guys arent really athletes in the first place. Typically, a starting NFL player might play five minutes during the course of a 60-minute game. Since the clock is usually running during the huddles and football players never play both offense and defense, it is difficult for them to work up a sweat. Throw in a two-week period of pre-Super Bowl partying between games
and you end up with two teams more physically unfit than usual and out of sync from not playing.
Why are we subjected to over-the-top hype from this sub-par event? Obviously, some folks stand to make a great deal of money if we are all conned into making a big deal out of a lousy football game. Fox Sports Network is anticipating the largest viewing audience for any program in history: more than 140 million TV zombies for Super Bowl XXXIX on February 6th. If you are a business interested in placing an ad on Fox, expect to pay a mere $2.4 million for every 30-second slot if there is any more time available.
If you, too, are upset by the prospect of watching this game, let me recommend almost any activity other than plopping down on the sofa to endure still another Stuper Bowl. Why not grab a friend or spouse and go out to dinner? How about a vigorous snowshoe or ski outing in beautiful Northern Michigan? If that type of activity is of interest, you might even check out the Womens Ski Tour near Traverse City held on Super Bowl Sunday (see ad elsewhere within this issue). Clean your house anything else is more productive than staring at the Super Bowl fiasco.
One year, I watched several hours of The Andy Griffith Show on TV reruns during a 24-hour fest of Andy, Barney, Gomer, and Aunt Bea. Believe me, the old Mayberry gang is much funnier than Terry Bradshaw, Howie Long, James Brown and their buddies on Fox.