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By Jeremy Schiffres, Daily and Sunday Freeman, Kingston, N.Y.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Monday morning quarterbacking

Well, Monday evening, actually, but you get the point.

* The Arizona Cardinals have no one to blame but themselves for losing Super Bowl XLIII. They missed countless opportunities on offense in the first three quarters, gave up a 100-yard interception return for a touchdown just before halftime, allowed themselves to get into a 10-point hole early in the game and a 13-point hole early in the third quarter and committed a mind-numbing 11 penalties (for 106 yards). But none of that changes the fact that they were flat-out robbed on their last offensive play of the game when an incomplete pass by quarterback Kurt Warner was ruled a fumble ... and the officials didn't even bother to review the call (despite having reviewed, and overturned, an almost identical Warner "fumble" call earlier in the game). There's no guarantee the final score would have been different if the refs hadn't blown the call, but the Cardinals at least would have had one last shot at a touchdown - from the Steelers' 30 yard line, no less - and could have pulled off the miracle finish. Too bad we'll never know.

* Why is it that the sports commentators, on the Monday morning after the big game, refer to almost every Super Bowl as "the best one ever played"? Yes, Sunday's game was a thriller. But better than last year's, with the Giants' miracle finish? Better than the Patriots' two wins earlier this decade on last-second field goals? Better than the 2000 game, when the Titans fell 1 yard short of the game-tying touchdown as time expired? Better than the Giants-Bills nail-biter in 1991 that came down to the infamous "wide right" field goal try at the end of the fourth quarter? No. No, no. No. And no. Analysts, bloggers and other self-appointed (and self-important) pundits should wait until a few days - or weeks or months - after any major sporting event before trying to put it in historical perspective. Doing so as soon as the game ends almost always results in ridiculous overstatements.

* Is it just my imagination, or are the Super Bowl commercials getting worse every year? The only one from Sunday's game that's getting any real buzz is the Doritos spot in which a snow globe is thrown through the glass window of an office vending machine and then at the boss' crotch. This is what passes for funny and creative these days? Yikes.

* Bruce Spirngsteen and the E Street Band put on a decent show at halftime on Sunday, but having to cram four songs - including the not-very-short "Tenth Avenue Freeze-Out" and "Born to Run" - into a 12-minute span meant dropping verses, shortening instrumental interludes and ending songs more abruptly than at a regular concert. Bruce made it all fit the format, but what you saw on Sunday didn't come close to the true Springsteen concert experience. If you want to see the real deal, Bruce and the E Streeters will be in Albany, New Jersey and Uniondale (on Long Island) in May. Try to catch them.

And on a few non-football subjects

* Former Sen. Tom Daschle, President Barack Obama's nominee to be heath and human services secretary, says he's "deeply embarrassed and disappointed" about failing to pay $128,203 in taxes from 2005 to 2007. I think what Daschle means is he's "deeply embarrassed and disappointed" about getting caught. And Obama should be deeply embarrassed and disappointed about continuing to go to bat for this guy. Tax cheats have no place in the Cabinet, and Obama should show Daschle the door.

* Olympic swimming superstar Michael Phelps, photographed smoking pot recently, has apologized for his behavior, saying it was a mistake and that it won't happen again. He uttered almost the exact same words after being busted for drunken driving in 2004. Forgive me, Mike, if I choose not to believe you this time.

* The price of crude oil is roughly unchanged from where it was one and two months ago, demand for energy products has fallen during that period, and U.S. gasoline supplies have risen. Why, then, has the price at the pump increased about 40 cents since mid-December? Can someone explain this to me? Anyone? PLEASE?



Anonymous Anonymous said...

First comment, while I am a Steeler fan, I do think I can argue objectively. The final fumble of the game was truly a fumble. If you watch the video closely, the ball twists in Warner's hand just before his arm moves forward, due to being struck by the steeler defender. Therefore he did not have control and the play is correctly called a fumble. Now, should it have been reviewed? I was totally surprised it wasn't, especially since just about every important play was. But what I see from the NFL is it was reviewed by the ref in the replay booth, and he deemed it a good call, therefore not calling down to the field for review. See

Is this saving face or true, who knows who we can believe in sports these days??

Was it the best super bowl ever? I agree you cannot make that call until after the emotions of the game have settled, and how do you really compare such things, but it sure does rank up there! And as a Steeler fan, it may be #6 but it still feels great!!

And superbowl commercials...amen, they are awful. And the only ones that even come close are from ".coms", not established businesses.

Price of crude.....we know the answer to that....they raise the prices, because they can!!

February 11, 2009 at 6:24 AM 

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