The Game, the G.O.A.T.s and the Guacamole

by Bob Sparrow

Young G.O.A.T. and Old G.O.A.T.

I’m writing this before ‘the game’, with the exception of a few comments (in red) that I will squeeze in on Sunday night (assuming I’m relatively sober) or early Monday morning (assuming I’m not too hung over).  For me the Super Bowl is a bitter-sweet occasion, as it’s the best two teams in football squaring off, yet it marks the end of this football season. In January, colleges ended their season with the College Football Playoff National Championship and now this . . . it’s over and I don’t have my Covid-19 or my ‘Football’s Gone’ vaccine – I don’t know if I have the virus, but I am feely depressed.  Perhaps Pfizer can work on a vaccine for that!

So, here’s my preview and review of the events from Sunday’s Super Bowl LV (That’s 55 for those that don’t speak Roman)  Either the young G.O.A.T. (Greatest Of All Time), 25 year old, Patrick Mahomes or the old G.O.A.T., 43 year old, Tom Brady, won the game.  (the old G.O.A.T. was the clear winner!) With my 49ers watching at home, I was ambivalent about the outcome, but rather hoping for a good game, whoever wins.  Another reason for hoping that the game was at least a close, good one (which it wasn’t), was that, for me, much of what surrounds the game is the usual pseudo-hype and frivolous fluff.

I had reviewed all the game’s advertisements on line last week and found them to be lacking in creativity, humor and impact, but they were diverse.  Prior to the National Anthem being sung, America the Beautiful was performed by Gabriella Wilson, who goes by the name H.E.R. (An acronym for Having Everything Revealed.  I’m hoping that it didn’t get to the point of Janet Jackson’s ‘wardrobe malfunction’ during the 2004 Super Bowl halftime show).  The National Anthem was sung by R & B singer, Jazmine Sullivan and country western singer Eric Church – I hope it was recognizable and that everyone stood at attention with their hand over their heart.  OK, I can hear you now, “What century were you born in, Bob?!!!”

The Guac

The halftime show featured The Weeknd, (yes, that’s how you spell it), a three-time Grammy winner, who is known for his graphic music videos and performances featuring blood and violence, but the three-time Grammy winner said he will tone down his act during this show – let’s hope he did; there was probably enough blood and violence during the game.

If you’re feeling like that New Year’s resolution diet just got blown up, it probably did, as Super Bowl is the second most glutenous day of the year, trailing only Thanksgiving.  Like the turkey at Thanksgiving, the avocado is an endangered species during Super Bowls as over 100 million pounds of guacamole were consumed on Sunday. Avocado growers refer to the Super Bowl as the ‘Guacamole Bowl’.

Too late for you now, but I’ll make a few ‘prop bets’ – promise I won’t change them after the game:

  • What color Gatorade will douse the winning coach? And if you’re really into this one you can also make a bet as to whether an offensive or defensive player will be the one dousing. (Orange is the favorite color, I’d bet defensive). (Gatorade was blue and I don’t know who poured it, but it was probably an offensive player)
  • The easiest bet is the coin flip – it’s never landed on its side, so it’s a 50-50 proposition, but because the head side tends to be heavier, I’ll take tails. (it was heads) 
  • Will the first score be a field goal or a touchdown? Better odds on the field goal, but better payout on the touchdown.  With these two teams I’m going with the touchdown. (it was a field goal)
  • How many times will Gisele Bundchen be shown and How many times will Roger Goodell be shown? I’m betting on and hoping it was Gisele! (Unfortunately Goodell got much more screen time)

This is feeling more like my last trip to Vegas!!!

Just in case you were wondering, there were 25,000 real Tampa Bay hometown fans at the game and 30,000 cardboard cutouts – not sure where they were from.

I’m going to have to face the facts that football is over . . . for now, but the vaccine is on its way, isn’t it?  There are rumors that college football may begin in the Spring.  But I’m not going to bet on it!

 

 

Super Bowl: The Ads, the Half-Time Show, the Bets and Oh Yeah . . . the Game

by Bob Sparrow

The Million Dollar Backfield

Before the Game

I’ve started writing this blog several days before the Super Bowl, so I’m still full of optimism for a team that I’ve rooted for since 1952 when I attended my first 49er game at the old Kezar Stadium in Golden Gate Park – 49ers lost 20-17 to the Chicago Bears!  Those were the days of the 49ers ‘Million Dollar Backfield’ of Y.A. Tittle, Joe Perry, Hugh McElhenny and John Henry Johnson, all Hall of Famers today.  The reality is that even though they were know as the ‘Million Dollar Backfield’ their four combined salaries didn’t even add up to a million dollars! As a point of reference, current 49er quarterback, Jimmy Garoppolo makes about $1.7 million PER GAME!  While I’ve enjoyed the many Super Bowl years of 49ers past, particularly the two won by my former college coach, George Siefert, it’s been a little lean in terms of wins in recent years; so I’m really looking forward to this game in spite of it being played against, in my opinion, the best player in the game today, Kansas City Chief quarterback, Patrick Mahomes.

I’ve concluded that people watch the Super Bowl for three main reasons: 1) they like football, 2) they are mostly watching the ads (which cost about $5.25 million per 30-second ad) and the half-time show, or 3) they like to bet.  I guess there is a fourth reason, they just like to party, but they are probably not watching much of the game or the ads!  So while I can’t comment now on the game, the ads, the half-time show or the party you attended, I can comment on the betting. OMG!

Mahomes & Garoppolo

Of course you can make the two most common bets, the outcome of the game with odds (giving or getting points) and total points scored (the over-under), but the ‘fun’ bets are called the proposition bets or ‘prop bets’.  Here’s just a few, and even though it’s after the game, you can still pretend to bet on these and see how you’d have done:

  • Will Alex Rodriguez be shown during the halftime show, where fiancee Jennifer Lopez is performing, and how many wardrobe changes will Lopez make?
  • Will Demi Lovato omit any words when singing the National Anthem, and will she perform the anthem in under 2 minutes or over 2 minutes?
  • Will the Golden Gate Bridge be shown at any time during the telecast? (the game is in Miami)
  • Will the coin flip come up heads or tails? (Tip: to date more people have bet on heads, but more money has been bet on tails)  Sorry not much of a tip was it?
  • Will there be more points scored in the 2nd quarter or the 4th quarter?
  • If you are a hockey fan who wants to combine a hockey bet with a Super Bowl bet, you can actually bet if Pittsburgh Penguin players, Sidney Crosby and Evgeni Malkin are going to score more points than the number of times that Mahomes will be sacked. (Answers below)

And so many more!  The estimate of total money on all bets on this Super Bowl is $6.8 billion!

Winning Chief Head Coach Andy Reid

After the Game

Well, as one might suspect from this die-hard Niner fan, I was happy with the game up until the 4th quarter, but then, not so much.  I can take solace in the 49ers loss in that they are a young team, but then again, Mahomes is only 24 years old!

Answers to above bets:  Alex was shown, Lopez had 3 wardrobe changes, Lovato sang all the words to the Anthem in just under 2 minutes, the Golden Gate Bridge was not shown, Coin toss – tails, more points in the 4th quarter, Crosby and Malkin got 2 points and Mahomes was sacked four times.

Wait ’til next year!