Super Bowl XLVI Sets Boston Ratings Record

The end result wasn’t what Patriots fans were hoping for, but Super Bowl XLVI did give Boston one milestone, a ratings record. According to Nielsen, the local rating for the Big Game between the Patriots and Giants was a 56.7 with an 81 share. That means 56.7% of all Boston homes were watching the game and 81% of homes with a TV had the game on. Boston was the highest rated local market for the game.

This broke the previous high for Super Bowl XXXVI on Fox in 2002 which received a 56.1/78.

Nationally, the game received a 47.0/71 final rating making it the 12th highest rated TV program in history. however, with an average of 111.3 million, it becomes the most watched TV program ever.

New York received a 49.7 rating finishing 18th. Super Bowl host city Indianapolis finished 2nd behind Boston.


Giants Walk The Talk, Break New England Hearts All Over Again

You gotta hand it to the Giants. What a team.

They backed up all their talk and guarantees from the last two weeks and Eli Manning came through once again as the New York Giants won their second Super Bowl in the last four seasons, beating the Patriots 21-17.

There isn’t much more to say. Well, actually there is, plenty of it, just not by me.

Crushing loss leaves Patriots feeling empty – Tom E Curran has the Patriots devastated after this loss.

Patriots get caught in end – Mike Reiss says that the Patriots defensive plan was sound, and working, until Mario Manningham’s miraculous grab.

Much-maligned defense wasn’t the problem – Greg A Bedard agrees that the problems last night were not with the defense. Jeff Howe says this one goes on the offense.

Ten Things We Learned Sunday: With greatness in their grasp, Patriots can’t seal the deal – Christopher Price has a teary-eyed Wes Welker blaming himself for dropping a late pass. Jonathan Comey also cranks out 10 things we learned.

A bad sense of deja blew – Karen Guregian has the Patriots lamenting late drops and mistakes.

Brady wants another shot – Mark Farinella has Tom Brady hoping for more chances to win a Super Bowl.

Plenty to talk about when Patriots meet Giants – Bill Doyle analyzes the job done on the NBC broadcast.

I guess I can’t ignore this one, but I probably should – Not so safety call: Blame Brady for this one – Eric Wilbur’s post, published literally minutes after conclusion of the game, reads more like a drunken fan rant than something crafted by a veteran journalist.

Ryen Russillo, John Dennis Light Up Super Bowl Weekend With Another War of Words

You likely remember the threatening voicemail John Dennis left for Ryen Russillo back in 2005. It still gets referenced on WEEI from time-to-time, and people bring it up to Dennis occasionally on Twitter. It seemed to been put on the back burner after Russillo gained a national name for himself working alongside Scott Van Pelt on ESPN Radio.

Until today.

Around mid-day today, Russillo tweeted the following (All Russillo’s tweets on this matter have since been removed.)

@ryenarussillo Always know, that when you looked in my eyes, you wanted nothing to do with me,you are a liar, and a fake tough guy @JohnDennisWEEI

That was followed by this: [blackbirdpie id=”165918998570082304″]

To which Russillo responded:

@ryenarussillo @JohnDennisWEEI That’s one version, why didn’t you follow through on your promise? You threatened me, had me fired and then backed down.

Russillo is referencing when he was hired to join the Patriots radio network pre and post-game shows, and then was abruptly let go, without explanation.

Dennis responded: [blackbirdpie id=”165945895303655424″]

SVP = Scott Van Pelt. Dennis is saying that Russillo’s co-host apologized for him, and said Russillo was out of line.

There was a final response from Russillo:

@ryenarussillo @JohnDennisWEEI You call me again, or we can get in a ring for charity. You in?

And nothing further from Dennis. Probably wise on his part. Why extend this out any further?

As you expect, BarStoolSports, who was involved from the beginning, is all over this: Ryen Russillo Vs. John Dennis Round II….Ding, Ding, Ding! 

A couple of the major sports blogs have latched onto this story:

ESPN’s Ryen Russillo and WEEI’s John Dennis Nearly Got in a Fight at the ESPN Super Bowl Party – From

John Dennis Says ESPN’s Ryen Russillo Is A “Stumbling Drunk Alcoholic” – From

Here’s an account from David Scott back in 2005, where he calls the original episode a “transparent attempt to gain attention on the part of Russillo.

However this ends up, it was a nice diversion the night before the Super Bowl.

The Super Bowl Weekend Megalinks

Let’s do some linkage on this Super Bowl Weekend.

The Weekend Viewing Picks have my sports and entertainment suggestions.

Time for your links. As you can imagine, many of the stories will deal with Sunday’s Super Bowl.


Michael Hiestand of USA Today talks with NBC’s Bob Costas about his past experiences in hosing a Super Bowl pregame show.

The Nielsen Wire Blog has a look at the 10 Most Liked Super Bowl ads in the last five years.

Daisy Whitney at MediaPost says a large portion of viewers go online to look up information about a Super Bowl ad.

Wayne Friedman of MediaPost writes that the Super Bowl is reaching almost half of all female viewers.

Peter Pachal of Mashable says NBC will hold a Google+ hangout to after the Super Bowl to discuss the ads.

Marisa Guthrie of the Hollywood Reporter talks with NBC Sports Group Fearless Leader Mark Lazarus about the Super Bowl, winning the Olympics and losing Wimbledon to ESPN.

John Eggerton in Broadcasting & Cable writes that a fan lobbying group hopes the FCC will call for the elimination of the NFL’s antiquated TV blackout rules.

John says a Michigan man has been charged with illegally streaming NFL games online.

Thomas Umstead from Multichannel News says Saturday’s UFC pay per view event will be available in 3-D for the first time.

Todd Spangler of Multichannel looks at Verizon’s streaming of Sunday’s Super Bowl on select mobile devices.

Adweek talks with Sports Illustrated/NBC’s Peter King.

Tim Nudd from Adweek notes the return of the E*Trade baby to the Super Bowl.

The International Olympic Committee has awarded the Japanese rights for the 2014/16 Games at a much lower rate than the US rights paid by NBC.

Robert Livingston at Games Bid says the 2014 Olympics in Sochi will be the first to be produced in 3-D TV.

André Lowe of the Jamaica (yes the country) Gleaner says ESPN has gathered some former NFL players in a cruise ship for the Super Bowl at Sea. I’m not making this up.

Sports Illustrated’s Richard Deitsch talks with The Big Lead’s Jason McIntyre about his recent profile of ESPN Radio Hack Colin Cowherd.

Allison Stoneberg at ESPN’s Front Row discusses how the network’s producers book guests for the studio and radio shows during Super Bowl Week.

Jack Dickey at Deadspin explains how the New York Times really messed up the story of former Yale quarterback Patrick Witt.

Dylan Stableford at Yahoo’s The Cutline explains why the Puppy Bowl has become so popular on Super Bowl Sunday.

Sports Media Watch delves into the expanded NFL Network Thursday Night Football schedule.

SMW has a few ratings news and notes including one on the Winter X Games.

Ken Kerschbaumer of Sports Video Group goes behind the scenes with NBC’s Super Bowl production crew.

Jason Dachman of SVG goes into NBC’s first-ever online streaming of the Super Bowl.

And Dan Daily from SVG writes about this year’s Super Bowl World Feed.

Steve Lepore at Puck The Media says Wednesday night NHL games are doing well for NBC Sports Network.

Northeast & Mid-Atlantic

Chad Finn of the Boston Globe speaks with NBC’s Rodney Harrison on the unspoken revenge factor for the Patriots in this year’s Super Bowl.

Bill Doyle of the Worcester Telegram & Gazette has NBC’s Cris Collinsworth talking about the Super Bowl.

Richard Sandomir of the New York Times says one of the Mets’ TV partners may help to bail out the team from its financial troubles.

Judy Battista of the Times reports on the expanded Thursday Night Football schedule.

Stuart Elliot of the Times says the Shazam mobile app will play a prominent role during many Super Bowl ads.

A rare appearance by Bob Raissman of the New York Daily News in the links. He has his Top 5 Super Bowl announcing teams of all-time.

Phil Mushnick from the New York Post has some Super Bowl storylines the media has missed.

Ken Schott at the Schenectady Gazette looks at the NFL Network announcement of five more games added to Thursday Night Football.

Pete Dougherty of the Albany Times Union has NFL Commish Roger Goodell shooting down rumors of more Monday Night Football doubleheaders.

Pete says Commissioner Goodell is firing a warning shot at Time Warner Cable.

Pete reviews the 11 men who have called a Super Bowl on network television.

The Crossing Broad blog says the Philadelphia Daily News and Inquirer may be on a slow death march to oblivion.

Keith Groller of the Allentown (PA) Morning Call discusses NBC’s coverage of Super Bowl XLVI.


David Barron from the Houston Chronicle notes that NBC’s Rodney Harrison may be an ex-New England Patriots, but he says he can remain fair.

David says NFL Network gets a beefed up schedule next season.

Mel Bracht of the Daily Oklahoman says NBC’s Cris Collinsworth gets to call his second Super Bowl on TV.

Mel notes that College GameDay will be covering the Big 12 on Saturday.


John Kiesewetter of the Cincinnati Enquirer notes that one local radio show will be on radio row in Indianapolis today.

Scott Olson of the Indianapolis Business Journal says ESPN is very happy about choosing Pan Am Plaza as its Super Bowl headquarters this week.

The Indianapolis Star has what journalists are saying about the city as a Super Bowl host.

Bob Wolfley in the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel says two participants in last year’s Big Game will be on NBC’s Super Bowl pregame show.

Dan Caesar of the St. Louis Post-Dispatch says Cardinals TV voice Dan McLaughlin will return to call games this season.

Steve Walentik of the Columbia (MO) Tribune calls ESPN’s Jay Bilas, “College Hoops’ Deepest Thinker.” Ok.


John Maffei of the North County Times says Al Michaels still loves calling Super Bowls.

Jim Carlisle of the Ventura County Star says Michaels is hoping for overtime.

Jim has NBC’s Rodney Harrison keeping the David Tyree catch from Super Bowl XLVII in proper perspective.

Richard Varrier of the Los Angeles Times looks at the Fed crackdown on websites that were illegally streaming NFL games.

Tom Hoffarth of the Los Angeles Daily News talks with former Lakers voice Paul Sunderland and lists the 20 best play-by-play men in Southern California.

Tom has more about Paul in his blog and adds a couple of media notes.


Susan Krashinsky of the Toronto Globe and Mail explains why Canada can’t see the U.S. Super Bowl ads in real time.

The Canadian Sports Media Blog has NBC’s Super Bowl production by the numbers.

And that’s going to do it for the links. Enjoy the Big Game.

Super Bowl Week Drawing To A Close

By this point, most of the storylines are set, the trash talk is done with (more on that later) and the silliness sets in. Whether it is reporting that a rhinoceros has picked the Giants to win, or a caller telling Dennis and Callahan that through extensive film study he’s determined that 90% of the time that Tom Brady licks his fingers, he’s going to throw the ball.

There’s a few good solid features out there this morning, finding them in all the noise is a chore.

Sweet James aims to please – Marty Dobrow on ESPN Boston tells you everything you could possible need or want to know about James Ihedigbo.

Greatest debate – Michael Whitmer looks at Bill Belichick’s place in history.

Belichick and the Patriots: A love story – Jonathan Comey says that when talking with Bill Belichick’s players, the word “love” comes up a lot.

Joe Montana lauds Brady’s accomplishments – Ian Rapoport has Tom Brady’s boyhood idol speaking admiringly of the New England quarterback.

Ferentz has found home with Patriots – Michael Vega has a look at Patriots tight ends coach Brian Ferentz, who many have tagged as a future coaching stat this week.

Injury-free Spikes is doing a bang-up job – Paul Kenyon has a healthy Brandon Spikes making a big impact on the Patriots defense.

Wilfork has grown into his role – Jackie MacMullan looks at how the Patriots defensive captain has grown and matured over the course of his career.

Follow the leader – Mark Farinella with a look at the other captain, Jerod Mayo.

Stop all the Tom foolery – Gerry Callahan steps outside his radio persona for a strong column on the Patriots QB.

Gronkowski back at practice – Shalise Manza Young’s notebook has the tight end back at practice yesterday. The Herald notebook from Ian R. Rapoport has Sterling Moore still anonymous to many. The Patriots Journal has Mark Anderson hoping for a better result in his second Super Bowl appearance.


Media Roundup: Boston, New York Media Differ Greatly On Patriots, Giants Coverage – My SB Nation Boston media column looks at the cheerleading of NY vs the cynicism of Boston.

Chris Collinsworth joins Al Michaels in Super Bowl TV booth – Bill Doyle looks at the NBC broadcasting crew for Sunday.

Harrison has revenge on his mind – Chad Finn has Rodney Harrison dismissing the idea that the Patriots aren’t looking for revenge. Finn also has an update on CSNNE sideline reporter Greg Dickerson, who suffered two seizures in the early going of this season, but is glad to be back on the job. My best wishes go out to Greg, who is one of the good guys.

Sports radio station takes aim at legal system with bogus info – MassLawyersWeekly has Dennis and Callahan a little, confused, recently.

Check back in a little bit for more from this week.

Felger and Mazz Reverse Course, Now Support Patriots

I guess Felger and Mazz are finding that it is impossible to be both a contrarian AND say that the Giants are going to roll, since everyone seems to be saying the Giants will win.

They’ve now changed course and are talking like the Patriots might actually have a chance in this one. It’s  easy to be a popular radio host in Boston apparently – just figure out what most people are are thinking, and go the opposite way.

With the last full-team media sessions today, things should settle down a bit in the trash-talk and guarantee department.

I have limited access today, so here are some of the top stories from this morning:

‘Scar’ runs deep – Greg A Bedard with a feature on Dante Scarnecchia, maybe the best yet.

Brandon Spikes proves hometown not a dead end – Ian Rapoport has the Patriots second-year linebacker overcoming his childhood environment to make it to the Super Bowl.

Matt Light doesn’t get too serious – Mike Reiss says that the offensive lineman’s job is simple – keep Tom Brady safe and his teammates laughing.

What we learned Wednesday: Led by Wilfork, the Pats’ defensive line is playing its best football of the year – Christopher Price looks at what we can take from Wednesday’s activities.

Getting the word from Bird – Dan Shaughnessy talks to Larry Legend.

Giants Victory Train Rolls On During Super Bowl Week

Mention that the Patriots seem like underdogs in this Sunday’s Super Bowl, and you’ll be mocked, likely by someone citing the Vegas line that has established the Patriots as favorites.

Meanwhile, look around listen to analysis and predictions from around the country and tell me 75% of “experts” aren’t saying that the Giants are going to win this thing. The Giants themselves have said it multiple times this week.

Based solely on the past two times these teams have met, the Giants should win this game. It would be an upset if they didn’t. There are a lot of other things to consider, however.

Abandon all hope, ye Patriots fans – Jerry Thornton lays out some of those very things. Required reading.

Dispatches from Indy: Media day – Chad Finn recaps yesterday’s activities.

Super Bowl Media Day: Lies, Brady Bashing and Rich Cimini is an Idiot – George Cain also weighs in on media coverage from yesterday.

Mariucci passed on local boy Brady – Bill Burt talks to NFL Network analyst Steve Mariucci about passing on Tom Brady when Mariucci was coaching the 49ers.

What we learned Tuesday: Super Bowl XLVI will be referendum on Pats’ offensive line – Christopher Price looks in details at some of the themes from yesterday.

Dante Scarnecchia always there – Jackie MacMullan with a second fascinating column this week, this time an in-depth look at the offensive line coach, the only member of the organization to participate in all previous six Super Bowl appearances by the team. Karen Guregian also has a piece on Scarnecchia.

Getting a grip on things – Ian Rapoport’s notebook has rookie Stevan Ridley determined to make the most of his chances on Sunday. The Globe notebook from Greg A. Bedard and Michael Whitmer has Sebastian Vollmer expected to play on Sunday. The Patriots Journal has Bill O’Brien keeping focused on his Patriots duties this week.

Bruins scrape off rust and scrape up a win – Kevin Paul Dupont reports on the Bruins comeback win over Ottawa. Douglas Flynn has the Bruins knowing that they can’t keep relying on comebacks.

No boos for Thomas a good thing for all – Joe Haggerty says that moving on is best for everyone.

Celtics win, but nearly blow big lead again – Steve Bulpett has the Celtics barely hanging on after blowing a 21-point lead.