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Today doesn’t appear to be a Stupor Bore

by Wally Hall | February 12, 2023 at 2:37 a.m.

When Jerry Izenberg and Jerry Green started covering the Super Bowl, it was called the AFL-NFL Championship.

In its third year, it got the name Super Bowl. Sometimes through the course of history, it has been known as the Stupor Bore.

Today's Super Bowl appears like it could go down as a classic.

The Philadelphia Eagles are run-oriented, strong on defense and have a storied quarterback who most thought didn't have the arm to make it in the NFL.

Jalen Hurts was always a threat to run at Alabama, until he got benched at halftime of the 2018 national championship game against Georgia, who sold out to stop his running. The Crimson Tide trailed 13-0 at intermission.

In came Tua Tagovailoa, who threw for 166 yards and three touchdowns in a 26-23 overtime win.

Hurts played another season for Alabama behind Tagovailoa then transferred to Oklahoma, where he finished runner-up for the Heisman Trophy.

Kansas City is the underdog because its star quarterback Patrick Mahomes allegedly suffered a high ankle sprain three weeks ago against Jacksonville. He not only played the next week against Cincinnati but was the MVP, passing for 259 yards and 2 touchdowns in the 34-31 win.

The Chiefs have a high-speed, run-and-gun offense and if Mahomes, who in his fourth season and playing in his third Super Bowl, is 100%, then Kansas City's odds improve. Mahomes is prematurely being called the next Tom Brady.

There are no Arkansans on either roster. Kansas City has 12 players from the SEC and Philadelphia 10, and Hurts is not considered one of those.

The Super Bowl is one of the most-watched sporting events in the world and has evolved from playing on college campuses, such as Tulane and Rice in the early days, to state-of-the-art NFL arenas.

Tickets for the first three Super Bowls were $12. In the fourth, prices went up to $15 where they stayed until 1975 when they went to $20. That lasted two years and this time they jumped to $30.

By 1988, they were the princely sum of $100. But by 2009 they were up to $1,000 and today prices are more than $8,000 on average.

For those smart enough to watch on television, commercials for the first Super Bowl cost $37,500. Last year's going rate was $6.5 million, so they should be clever and entertaining, although, one thing is different, Budweiser will not be the exclusive beer advertiser this time.

Through it all the most constant thing about the Super Bowl was Izenberg and Green.

Izenberg, 92 and retired outside of Las Vegas, was such a popular sports columnist for the Newark Star-Ledger, when he retired he got a deal that allowed him to continue to cover the Super Bowl and the Kentucky Derby.

After 53 Super Bowls and countless Derbies, Izenberg (who was a tablemate in the Churchill Downs press box for 28 years) laid down his pen and turned off his laptop. The travel got to be too much for him. Izenberg has also written several books and was a regular expert contributor on ESPN.

Green continued to attend as a guest of the NFL through last season, but the 94-year-old actually quit writing five or six years ago.

He was the longtime and wildly popular columnist for the Detroit News.

According to reports, last year was Green's last Super Bowl because of health issues.

Neither men could have known on Jan. 15, 1967, they would become a small part of a game that within three years had been named the Super Bowl and that more than 100 million people are expected to watch it worldwide.

Print Headline: Today doesn’t appear to be a Stupor Bore


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