Tuesday, February 9, 2010

I think I am starting to dislike the Super Bowl

As I have gotten older, I think I am starting to like the Super Bowl less and less.

This was a good game this year, there is no doubt about it. You have to hand it to the Saints, they played a good game and are the champions. It was an entertaining game, but not the best this season. There were a lot of better games this year.

The main problem I have with the Super Bowl is it seems it is the one day out of the year people who are not football fans can pretend they are. They will go to parties and discuss why they know the Colts are going to win based on the extensive knowledge they learned from Tony Dungy.

I don’t need to get excited about the Super Bowl to prove I am a football fan. I think that was taken care of at some point during the last 20 Sunday’s when I was on my couch in front of my TV while 80 percent of the 106 million Super Bowl viewers were shopping, eating, jogging or whatever else it is that non-football fans do on any given Sunday.

You can always tell who the non-football/sports fans are by the questions they ask in the days before and after the Super Bowl:

The first, who do you have winning the game? I hate when I get asked that question. They don’t care who I think is going to win, they just want me to know they are aware there is a game that society tells them they are supposed to be interested in.

Do you have any money on it? Again, another question I hate. First off, no, according to NCAA rules, I can’t have money on it. But the reason for the question is basically so they can then tell me about the great pool their cousin got them in that is paying out $1,000 per quarter plus it has these new bonuses that are unique to their pool only and last year they almost won $2,500 if it wouldn’t have been for that catch by that one guy at the end of the game.

When I tell them I really don’t have a rooting interest, (and I really got asked this question this year), do you think you would be a little more excited if the Cowboys were playing in it? Well no shit, obviously. What tipped you off, the Romo jersey I wear every Sunday or the Cowboy polo I wear to work every Monday after a Dallas victory?

Then the questions on Monday after the game:

Did you watch the game? Of course I watched the game. I always watch the game. And I am not just talking about the Super Bowl. I am talking about nearly every game that comes on TV here. I am a football fan. That is what I do.

What did you think of the game? I thought it was a good game. Not really sure what you want here.

Did you go to a party? No I watched the game. I thought we covered this already.

Can you believe they intercepted Peyton Manning and returned it for a touchdown? (substitute any big play from any Super Bowl here – can you believe that big guy ran all that way and no one tackled him; can you believe that guy caught the ball on his helmet; can you believe they kicked to Hester; can you believe Brady was drafted in the sixth round, I bet every other team feels stupid now; can you believe the Titans almost scored at the end; can you believe Elway dove like that and got spun around; can you believe they threw the ball directly to Larry Brown, twice; can you believe Lett had the ball knocked out of his hand at the goal line; can you believe that field goal went wide right; can you believe the 49ers scored on that last drive; can you believe the Fridge scored a touchdown; can you believe Swann made that catch; can you believe how cold it was at that game; can you believe they finished the year undefeated; can you believe the MVP was from the losing team; can you believe Namath guaranteed they would win and then they did; can you believe Max McGee had seven catches?) Yeah, I can.

I think the hyperbole that surrounds the Super Bowl actually takes something away from the game. The Super Bowl is becoming bigger than the sport. It is becoming its own event that is not about football anymore. Because of the hype, the media feels the need to then try to make this bigger than it should be.

The funny thing is, the players and coaches get it. On more than one occasion, a player came out and said they are going to treat this like any other game and everyone thought it was lip service. The fact is, it is just like any other game.

Yes, the stakes are higher and a championship is on the line. For that reason, there doesn’t need to be any added drama. The game is its own dramatic moment and nothing artificial needs to be built in to it. Just let it play out like we did for 99 percent of the other games played this season (Brett Favre and the Packers reunion excluded).

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