Ken from Fang’s Bites giving you a whole slew of links for Super Bowl weekend.
Because I was traveling around Southern New England this morning (and believe me, it wasn’t for pleasure), I could not get an early start on the Megalinks. Hopefully, this pattern can change and I can get them up earlier, but right now, I’m stuck in this rut.
I’ll get to the links and there are a lot of them devoted to what? The Super Bowl of course. But before I start linking you across the country, let’s do the Weekend Viewing Picks.
The big event this weekend is the Big Game, Super Bowl XLIII in Tampa, FL pitting the AFC Champion Pittsburgh Steelers against the NFC Champion Arizona (Don’t Call Us the St. Louis) Cardinals. NBC is using Sunday as a promotional platform for the NBC Universal family, this being the first time since 1998 that the Peacock network has aired the Super Bowl. You’ll see ties to NBC News, NBC Entertainment, NBC Universal and its cable networks throughout the day. It’ll be quite sickening. NBC starts its day with a “special” edition of Today starting at 9 a.m., Meet The Press at 11 a.m., the NFL Films-produced “Road to the Super Bowl” at noon, then a record 5 hour pregame show at 1 p.m. By the time the game starts at 6:18 on 7NBC and NBC10, you may already be worn out.
If you don’t want to watch NBC’s promotional parade, ESPN and the NFL Network have their Super Bowl pregame shows starting at 10 and 11 a.m. respectively.
The Super Bowl Viewing and Listening Picks have my recommendations for Sunday including the Westwood One Radio announcing team for the Big Game and Sirius XM channel assignments for its multiple feeds from the US and abroad.
There are other sports going on this weekend.
The Celtics coming off a nice win in Detroit on Friday host the Minnesota Timberwolves at the Garden at 1 p.m. Sunday. Mike Gorman, Tommy Heinsohn and Greg Dickerson will be on hand to call the action on Comcast SportsNet.
The Bruins try to shake off a bad loss to New Jersey on Thursday by taking on two Original Six teams over the weekend. First, the B’s host the Rangers at the Garden, Saturday at 1 p.m. Then on Sunday, Boston heads across the border to Montreal to take on the Canadiens at 2 p.m.
The first Grand Slam tennis tournament concludes in Melbourne, Australia with the women’s final between Dinara Safina and Serena Williams early Saturday morning at 3:30 on ESPN2. The men’s final with Roger Federer and Rafa Nadal squaring off takes place Sunday morning at 3:30 also on ESPN2. Both finals will be replayed at 9 a.m. on their respective days on ESPN2.
The PGA Tour is already into its fourth tournament of the year as the FBR Phoenix Open will be shown on both Golf Channel and CBS during the weekend. Golf Channel starts its coverage at 1 p.m. while CBS picks up the tournament at 3 p.m.
The Weekend Viewing Picks have your sports and entertainment viewing recommendations.
And there’s the College Basketball Viewing Picks as the conferences go into their last month of regular season play.
Now to your links.
USA Today’s Michael Hiestand talks with NBC’s Cris Collinsworth who comes full circle with this Super Bowl.
Bruce Horovitz of USA Today says marketers are feeling pressure to deliver on their Super Bowl ads.
Laura Petrecca of USA Today says the Super Bowl will be a testing ground for 3-D ads.
Also from USA Today, Michael McCarthy and Skip Wood write that the party mood for this year’s Super Bowl is subdued.
Aaron Kuriloff from Bloomberg says Playboy is one of the many companies which canceled parties at the Super Bowl.
CNBC’s Darren Rovell who will be part of NBC’s Super Bowl pregame show writes about Gatorade’s silly “G” ad camapign. Darren says this year’s Milk Super Bowl ad doesn’t make much sense. Darren writes about a late addition to the Super Bowl ad lineup. And Darren says one of the big stories is the falling ticket prices for the Super Bowl as well as Opening Day at the new Yankee Stadium.
Bill Griffith of Sports Illustrated says fans are probably more familiar with NBC’s Al Michaels and John Madden than the players on the field.
Matthew Futterman of the Wall Street Journal writes that Madden has lost a bit off his fast ball.
Jeff Bercovici from Conde Nast’s Portfolio.com feels it’s time for Madden to retire.
However, Jeff Tanklefsky of Broadcasting & Cable loves hearing Madden.
Michael Malone of B&C reports the Pittsburgh NBC affiliate will not air the post-Super Bowl episode of “The Office” until after midnight to cover the postgame aftermath.
Paul J. Gough of the Hollywood Reporter says fans can go to NBC.com or Hulu.com to catch any Super Bowl ads they may have missed.
Diego Vasquez of Media Life Magazine talks with an ad agency official about what works in a Super Bowl commercial and what doesn’t.
Louisa Ada Seltzer of Media Life says despite the economy, people are still expected to watch the Super Bowl in droves.
Deadspin has a story about an incident involving two stations on Radio Row at the Super Bowl.
Now to a non-Super Bowl link, the Big Lead which has been coming through with the big name interviews, has another one with outgoing ESPN Ombudsman Le Anne Scheiber.
The Sports Media Watch says the ratings for the first two weeks of the NBA on ABC are even with last year’s.
East and Mid-Atlantic
The Boston Globe’s Michael Vega says the Patriots’ Rodney Harrison has a TV career in waiting if he wants when he finally hangs up his spikes.
The New York Times’ Richard Sandomir writes about the NFL athletes who have become successful commercial pitchmen.
Stuart Elliot of the Times says this year’s batch of Super Bowl ads are upbeat, but also sympathetic toward the viewer.
Joe Lapointe of the Times writes that Bruce Springsteen promises a 12 minute party during his halftime set at Super Bowl XLIII.
Newsday’s Neil Best has your Super Bowl viewing guide. Neil has some interesting figures regarding the Super Bowl. Neil had a brief chat with Sid Rosenberg who was on the Imus in the Morning show this week.
Bob Raissman of the New York Daily News says with a cast of eleven, NBC may need more than five hours for its pregame show.
Once again, Phil Mushnick of the New York Post makes no sense.
Pete Dougherty of the Albany Times Union says NBC’s Super Bowl pregame show will be longer than the actual game.
Ken McMillan from the Hudson Valley Times Herald-Record writes that Sam Ryan is the lone sports reporter left standing at WCBS-TV.
Laura Nachman writes that Philly sportscaster Jade McCarthy will give news anchoring a try.
Kim Leonard of the Pittsburgh Tribune-Review says several media companies have rented multiple production trucks from a Western Pennsylvania outfit.
The Baltimore Sun’s Ray Frager talks with talk show host Steve Davis who has laid off from WBAL this week. Ray has Nestor Apricio’s version of what happened between he and a Dallas radio talk show host on Radio Row at the Super Bowl.
Jim Williams of the DC Examiner says there are a lot of good things to watch leading up to the Super Bowl on Sunday.
Roger van der Horst of the Raleigh News & Observer reports that the ratings for the Carolina Hurricanes have declined from last year.
Doug Nye of The State offers his favorite Super Bowl memories.
Barry Jackson of the Miami Herald says the network Super Bowl pregame shows have really expanded this year.
Dave Darling of the Orlando Sentinel wants to play Madden Libs with you.
Jerry Greene of the Sentinel writes that there’s always room for radio at the Super Bowl.
Tony Fabrizio of the Tampa Tribune goes behind the scenes with NBC as it set up for the Big Game at Raymond James Stadium. You can take a look at the pictures that accompany Tony’s story. The Tribune also has a look at Radio Row.
Tom Jones of the St. Petersburg Times looks at NBC’s production of the Super Bowl by the numbers.
Ray Buck in the Fort Worth Star-Telegram writes that a diehard Cowboys fan gets his own Super Bowl ad this Sunday.
David Barron of the Houston Chronicle says former Bengals and current NFL TV analysts Boomer Esiason and Cris Collinsworth still can’t get over the pain of losing Super Bowl XXIII.
Barry Horn of the Dallas Morning News feels Emmit Smith’s time on ESPN is about to end. Barry had a gut feeling regarding the incident involving two sports radio stations on Radio Row at the Super Bowl.
Rick Armon of the Akron Beacon Journal writes that the Pro Football Hall of Fame is advertising locally during the Super Bowl.
Marc Katz of the Dayton Daily News feels there are plenty of reasons to watch NBC on Sunday.
Michael Zuidema from the Grand Rapids Press has some do’s and don’ts for your Super Bowl viewing party.
Bob Wolfley in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel says the Brewers are on a fast track to replace announcer Jim Powell who left to call the Braves.
Ted Cox of the Chicago Daily Herald hopes John Madden sticks around for a while.
Paul Christian of the Rochester (MN) Post-Bulletin is amazed at how National Signing Day has become a big TV event.
Dan Caesar of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch feels NBC’s five hour pregame show is overkill. Dan remembers a St. Louis sportscaster who passed away last week.
Kent Babb of the Kansas City Star writes about former Chiefs coach Herman Edwards joining ESPN.
Scott D. Pierce in the Deseret (UT) News writes that Super Bowl Sunday is a holiday for everyone.
Jay Posner of the San Diego Union-Tribune says Super Bowl Sunday is more like a marathon for NBC.
The North County Times’ John Maffei says a lot has changed since Al Michaels and John Madden first started calling Super Bowls on TV.
Jim Carlisle of the Ventura County Star writes that not even ESPN is not immune from the recession.
John Scheibe of the Los Angeles Times tells us that the Super Bowl is more than a game to NBC. Writing in the Times’ Fabulous Forum blog, Lisa Guerrero says Joe Torre’s book was a topic of conversation during Super Bowl Week.
Tom Hoffarth in the Los Angeles Daily News feels NBC’s five hour pregame show is an exercise in excess. Tom has more on the Super Bowl in his extensive media notes. Tom says there’s another Top 50 Sports Announcer list. And Tom reviews the week in blogging.
John Ryan of the San Jose Mercury News writes that NBC is waging an all-out blitz for the Super Bowl.
William Houston of the Toronto Globe and Mail has Don Cherry respecting the gay community.
Chris Zelkovich of the Toronto Star says Raptors fans are angry being caught in the middle of a dispute between TSN and Rogers Cable.
And that’s going to end the Megalinks. Thanks for reading.