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  Thursday January 29th, 2015    

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The Great American Holiday (01/29/2014)
By Michael Marek

The end is near. It isn’t the end of the world, but it is the end of the best part of the sports season. Soon we will all have to return to life without football. The Super Bowl gives fans a moment to look back on the completed season and celebrate. The Super Bowl is the culmination of 512 regular season games followed by 10 postseason contests.

The Super Bowl has turned into a display of American sporting excess. It has become the pinnacle of American entertainment and culture all conveniently packed into a 3 and half hour performance that is broadcast to the world. A true ode to Americana, the Super Bowl offers a chance for football and non-football fans alike to come together to celebrate one last chance to revel in what is quickly becoming Americans favorite pastime.

Super Bowl parties are for all comers. Some come for the game, others for the commercials, and everyone comes for the atmosphere that comes but once a year. Neighbors, friends, and associates all crowd into rec rooms to enjoy the last gasp of football until August. Kitchens are full of crockpots roasting up cocktail wieners, brewing beer cheese soup, and serving as a dish for buffalo chicken dip.

The Super Bowl is a day that ranks among Americans with Christmas, the Fourth of July, and Thanksgiving as one of the best days of the year. It only seems logical to give this day the true holiday treatment and grant workers the following Monday off. I have personally written a letter to President Obama to see if he would pass this request. Surprisingly, I’m still waiting for a response.

In all seriousness, this year fans will be treated to a game that seems to be a matchup for the ages. For the first time in a long time both top seeds have emerged from their respective conference tournaments to punch a ticket to the big game. The Seattle Seahawks are the representative from the NFC and the Denver Broncos represent the AFC.

Peyton Manning leads a Denver squad that touts the best offense in the league, and maybe in history. They blew through the regular season and the playoffs, outgunning other teams with a high flying offense and bruising running attack. Stars on this team include Minnesota native Eric Decker, who has found a perfect fit within Manning’s offense.

The Seahawks are led by a defense that has been historically good. Richard Sherman has become the face of the “legion of boom” that has wreaked havoc and plagued offenses across the league. The Seahawks offense isn’t as explosive as Denver’s but they have one of the best running backs in the league in Marshawn Lynch, and they are ready to unleash a shifty Percy Harvin in his first meaningful minutes of the year. They have been forced to leave their biggest advantage — the noisy “12th man” fans — at home, but their defense should be a good counter for the offensive attack of the Broncos.

This matchup is proving to be a classic unstoppable force paradox, where the unstoppable force meets an immovable object. In this version, the top offense will attempt to out confound the league’s best defense. I expect the game to be a tightly contested one with scores in the 20’s. Expect the Seahawks to outlast the Broncos by making a defensive stand late in the game. Final score: Seattle 27, Broncos 24. 


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