Thursday, January 29, 2009
Behind The Scoreboard
Time for Super Bowl prediction
First, let me say “thanks” for all of your comments on the last few columns. I must apologize to my good friend Richard Darrah. Richard says that he didn’t particularly appreciate my post BCS Bowl remark about the Oklahoma Sooners. Really, Rich, I did not know that you were from Oklahoma.
Anyway, we are pleased whenever we hear from our readers. We can handle the criticism (I think).
Yours truly remarked last week that the big stage has been set. Super Bowl XLIII looms big on the horizon and the two teams doing battle were not the teams with the best records during the regular season. Verily, the Pittsburgh Steelers will be the one with the least amount of losses. At 14-4 the Steelers will be facing the 12-7 Arizona Cardinals. It is a recognizable gap to be sure, but let us not forget a little thing called parity. And, remember too, that the Cardinals have already bucked all sorts of odds to be in SB XLIII.
Arizona has had a rough row to hoe for years now. Not known for their stability at any level, the Cardinals could be termed “nomadic,” having occupied three cities since 1960 and finally ending up in the desert. The current status, if one believes the experts who track such things, is the best the franchise has enjoyed in over 50 years. Some attribute the new found fortunes to Dennis Green, who was hired after being fired by the Minnesota Vikings. Green suffered three losing seasons before being given the old heave-ho. The Cardinals could indeed strike gold in Tampa on February 1.
There is no denying the more than formidable odds that Arizona will face when they leave the dust for the sun. The Steelers are models of stability. They don’t like to change things that quickly. Pittsburgh has had only three head coaching changes since 1969. Some teams change coaches almost as often as they do team menus. And the Steelers is a storied franchise. Should they win on February 1, they would be the only NFL teams with six championship wins.
Neither of these teams has a wide following in these shires. For whatever reason, this is Cowboy country. So, the interest level is not as powerful as it usually is.
The odds are all in favor of Big Ben (Roethelisberger) and the Steelers at a solid seven. For that reason (and the fact that I have picked so many losers already), yours truly is picking Arizona.
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