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Posted on Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 5:50 a.m.

Why watch Super Bowl XLVII?

By Kyle Mattson

Maybe you use it as an excuse for gorging on every possible combination of food covered in cheese and salt. Or maybe you're just a die-hard Detroit Lions fan trying to envision what it would be like to cheer for a winning team.

One thing is for sure, there's a good chance you'll join the millions huddled around television and computer screens Sunday night watching the Super Bowl. Unless that is, you will be fighting over control of the remote to watch the follow-up to last week's moving episode of Downton Abbey.


San Francisco 49ers players warm up in the Superdome during practice on Saturday, Feb. 2, 2013, in New Orleans.

AP | Mark Humphrey

Despite all the national excitement around the "big game" why even bother spending five hours of your precious weekend staying up late to root for teams you don't even regularly cheer for? (Expats from the San Francisco Bay and Baltimore areas can stop reading here.)

Here are three reasons to tune in tonight, even if just for half the game so you can awake ready for your Monday morning commute:

The Commercials
For consumers, the hype surrounding Super Bowl commercials is borderline maddening. On the other hand, coming from a marketing perspective, I find it incredibly intriguing to watch the buildup of excitement before the game and subsequent debate about which company made the biggest splash with its multi-million dollar spot.

In the last few years, the addition of online efforts has turned the Super Bowl commercial sideshow into a full-out circus with Facebook contests, choose your own endings, and enough hashtags thrown on the screen to create a drinking game.

Obviously every brand spending millions on a spot this year is not trying to appeal to just you. So to avoid fruitless arguments about which advertisement was your personal favorite, I'd suggest trying to take a different approach and pick which company wasted the most money on the Super Bowl.

Don't plan on watching the game, but don't want to be left out on the coffee-break conversation on Monday morning? Not to fret, YouTube is here to lend a hand.


John Harbaugh pictured in the third row, first from left, in the 1978-79 Pioneer High School varsity football team photo.

The Hometown connection
Having a top-tier university in the center of Ann Arbor makes it a high probability each year that at least one player on the field once wore the famed winged U-M helmets. This year, the Ann Arbor connection goes a bit deeper with the Harbaugh brothers, who once played on the same team at Ann Arbor Pioneer High School, facing off in a sibling showdown. Over the past couple of weeks, many of you have shared your memories of the brothers in their younger years and watching them on the sidelines will most likely stir many more recollections of their days here in Ann Arbor.

This is America
Often baseball, apple pie, and automobiles are described as being truly American; however, I'd argue football, television, and Costco are more fitting, and it is Super Bowl Sunday that brings all three of those things together in perfect unity.

Just like standing in line for hours to vote for President, watching the Super Bowl is a sacrifice we all must make for our country. In fact, I wouldn't be surprised if having immigrants set up a fantasy football team and buy a New England Patriots jersey became a requirement for American citizenship. Now say it with me: "I pledge alliance to the national game of the United States of America…"


Bill Wilson

Thu, Feb 7, 2013 : 6:12 a.m.

Living most of the year in Maryland, we watched our home team, the Ravens, knock Goliath off of his feet.... TWICE! New England... and then San Fran. Flacco & the boys stayed cool as a cucumber... and got the job done. Our son is a junior at Towson, and he and the entire school is overjoyed by winning anothe Super Bowl. Having lived in MI for the first 42 years of my life, I can honestly say that it would be nice if one day, MI would get a professional football team.


Mon, Feb 4, 2013 : 5:46 a.m.

I am happy for the Harbaugh family that it went to the last minute and was So Close (3 points!). And even though big brother Jimmy was our Go Blue quarterback (and a Pioneer), I kind of like the fact that "little" brother Johnnie (a Pioneer) Won the Superbowl! There will be more Superbowls in the years ahead and i am Certain that Jimmy will win one!


Mon, Feb 4, 2013 : 2:27 p.m.

John is big brother, Jim is little brother.

Urban Sombrero

Mon, Feb 4, 2013 : 4:35 a.m.

There was a lot of swearing in my house tonight. (Not me! My husband is the 49'ers fan.) He had a horse in this race, I didn't. But, I watch every year, regardless. I love football and this is the last game until pre-season starts late summer. By May I miss it so much, I'm thisclose to going through withdrawl.

Dog Guy

Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 11:35 p.m.

What do you call 40 men watching the Super Bowl on a jumbo screen? Detroit Lions. Forward down the field, A charging team that will not yield, And when the Blue and Silver wave, Stand and cheer the brave! Rah! Rah! Rah! Go hard win this game! With honor you will keep your fame! Down the field and gain, A Lion victory!

An Arborigine

Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 7:51 p.m.

Rumor has it the opposing coaches are actually brothers, as in siblings, with an AA connection. Imagine that?

ms 2013

Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 6:03 p.m.

i am watching the super bowl cause i luv men in tight pants and i luv football and i love the 49 ers colors lets go 49 ersssssssssssssssssssss


Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 5:23 p.m.



Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 4:38 p.m.

I make it a point to take my wife dancing every year. Much better return on investment than sitting in front of the TV.

Mulberry Bank

Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 4:35 p.m.

My husband, who has to work on Monday morning, will strive to watch. Me, when I get tired, I go to bed. Why is the Super Bowl so late at night?! Eliminates lunches before, or dinners after. Guess we are not the demographic they are looking for. Could be a fun game, but -for sure- I will not make-it until the end. Enjoy.

Mulberry Bank

Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 5:51 p.m.

Thank You, Kyle, we will enjoy the game this year, after-all.

Kyle Mattson

Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 4:52 p.m.

Mulberry, the game actually is not that late this year kick off is at 6:30 with the halftime show around 8 and the trophy presentation around 10 p.m.-ish. I'm actually surprise it's not starting later around 8:30 due to the large SF fan base on the West Coast.

Nicholas Urfe

Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 3:41 p.m.

The Puppy Bowl is surprisingly entertaining. I'm surprised the nfl hasn't sued the puppies.


Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 6:35 p.m.

I would love to see the HS and ASPCA being sued by theNFL. O what a rift that wold make.

Katrease Stafford

Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 2:53 p.m.

Another pretty popular event on this day? The Puppy Bowl. Who plans on checking that out?


Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 6:34 p.m.

Me. I can't wait to see the half time as well. I heard the kitty entertainment is controversial. Otherwise, Hulu has all the commercials and I just finished watching them. There are two that are cute and the rest? So so.

Nicholas Urfe

Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 2:17 p.m.

The commercials in recent years have been really lousy. The event is over-promoted. None of the teams I can manage to care about are in. The overly litigious NFL sues anyone who uses the word "bowl". I thought I might get a cease and desist for saying the toilet bowl needed scrubbing. I rarely watch live tv anymore and I don't think I'll be bothering. However, I will be eating unhealthy food.

Macabre Sunset

Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 12:20 p.m.

Of course I'm watching. The Super Bowl is an international event - irrespective of the silly commercials (nice that they give us a 45-minute dinner break at halftime now). Because of the rule preventing telecast of home games for teams that don't sell out, I've never really been into the Lions - I just watched what was on when I was growing up. But I think the NFL has the perfect balance between a meaningful regular season and a playoff season that build to the big game. The NFL is wall-to-wall action leading to a great event involving two of the best teams. Major League Baseball, in contrast, is a marathon where you've lost interest by the time the playoffs begin if the local team isn't involved. The World Series drew high ratings here last year because of the Tigers. Elsewhere, it drew like a mid-range sitcom because MLB doesn't have the right balance between season and playoffs. The Super Bowl will deliver top ratings everywhere.

Macabre Sunset

Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 5:10 p.m.

The problem with hockey is that goal-scoring is too mundane. The goalies are so good that unless you're on a breakaway, you won't beat them with a shot, so you need a Holmstrom to block the goalie's view, and so many goals are dependent on muscle in front of the net and/or the randomness of a power play. I like the sport, but I wasn't heart-broken without it. Also, the season doesn't really start until April. Any half-decent team is in the playoffs, and the rest aren't worth watching. There's no suspense until it's best-of-7.

Kyle Mattson

Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 4:49 p.m.

Good breakdown Macabre, although I'd have to agree with WalkingJoe in regards to the personal preference of hockey when looking for just 'action'. That as well as soccer are probably the only two sports that can capture my attention for continuous periods of time where as sports like football, baseball, and golf usually just serve as an occasional distraction while I'm working on something else.


Sun, Feb 3, 2013 : 12:59 p.m.

I have to agree that football is more action packed than baseball but if I want action I turn to hockey. You skating and puck handling skills and the hits are every bit as hard as football. I was really glad when the players and the NHL got over their idiocy and got back to playing. As far as today's Super Bowl I can't get real enthused, neither team really draws my attention. I may watch some but I have said it before I will watch a favorite movie most of the time.