Blood Brothers: CBS Hopes Unique Family Element Helps Draw Viewers To Super Bowl
Super Bowl XLVII is "filled with obvious selling points for CBS," including it being the final game in the career of Ravens LB Ray Lewis, but "even better, the Harbaugh Super Bowl sibling rivalry is unprecedented," according to Michael Hiestand of USA TODAY. That story lines should give CBS "insurance in keeping viewers from tuning out in case the game isn't particularly competitive," especially how the 49ers' Jim Harbaugh and the Ravens' John Harbaugh will "react at the end." CBS' Jim Nantz, who will be calling his third Super Bowl, said, "The ultimate shot of the game will be the one (Harbaugh) winner and the one loser" (USA TODAY, 2/1). CBS' NFL Lead Game Dir Mike Arnold said that there will be "individual cameras target on each coach." CBS' Phil Simms said that he and Nantz will "stick initially to how each Harbaugh is managing the game." Simms: "I have some stories about both brothers that nobody knows through experiences I've had with them, and experiences they've had with people that I know real well. Maybe we'll get into a couple of those but so many of those stories will depend on the pace of the game and the plays being made" (SI.com, 1/31).
PARENTAL ADVISORY: The AP's David Bauder noted Jack and Jackie Harbaugh, the parents of the two coaches, will "be watched closely" during the game, and their reactions will be a "fascinating sidebar to CBS' coverage of the game." CBS Sports Chair Sean McManus said that there will be "a pregame feature about the familial battle," but added that the net "would try not to let it dominate its coverage of the game" (AP, 1/27). ESPN's Tony Reali set an over/under for the number of times Jack and Jackie will be shown during CBS' game broadcast at eight, prompting Tony Kornheiser to say, "This is during the game. It does not count the pregame, where they will be shown, it doesn't count the postgame where they will be shown." Kornheiser: "You're going to open the game with them, obviously. At the end, you're going to go to them, so I need at least six more during the game. I'm not sure that you're going to go back to the stands six different times, especially if it's a blowout. You're not going back six different times, so I'm going to go under." Michael Wilbon said, "I'm going to go over and tell you this: They're going to get to eight early in the third quarter. Just after halftime they'll be at eight. Every time a Harbaugh throws a red flag out there, they'll be talking about them, and if Jim goes crazy ... they're going to go three times just on that. Way over" ("PTI," ESPN, 1/30).
NO EXPIRATION DATE: NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport said critics entered Super Bowl week "thinking that we’d get tired of talking about the Harbaugh brothers." He said, "But I think what we’ve found is this has to be one of the more endearing families and endearing stories that really I can remember covering.” Rapoport added he was “surprised” how Jim Harbaugh has “warmed to this media spotlight." Rapoport: "He has not been like that all year, but he’s really brought his A-game with John on the set too.” NFL Network’s Steve Wyche said of Jim Harbaugh “warming to the media” this week, “Don’t get used to it” (NFL Network, 2/1).
SOUNDING BOARD: Last night’s Top Ten list was “Top Ten Words That Kind of Sound Like ‘Harbaugh.’” CBS' David Letterman said, “On Sunday, the Harbaugh brothers will be coaching against each other in Super Bowl XLVII in New Orleans. I don’t think this has ever happened. Has this ever happened? Wait a minute, Vince and Larry Lombardi. They coached against each other didn’t they?” (“Late Show,” CBS, 1/31).
5) “Raw bar.”
2) “Sup, bro?”