Super Bowl XLIII

Christy Rosati

Super Bowl Sunday is America’s favorite game day. This year NBC will broadcast the much-anticipated game for the first time since 1998. It is expected that 90 to 100 million viewers will tune in, exceeding the estimated 38 million viewers who watched President Obama’s inauguration.

Sports fans or not, Americans treat Super Bowl Sunday like a national holiday. They will spend $55 million on food and will imbibe 10.5 million barrels of beer during the game. More parties at home happen on this day than on any other day of the year.

For those who love football, it’s going to be a year for a new record, no matter which team wins. Villanova students are evenly split on which side they will support.

“I’m a disgruntled fan of a team not in the Super Bowl, so I am not rooting for either team,” sophomore Dan Love says. “I will tune in to watch an exciting and hopefully high-scoring game.”

The Arizona Cardinals will play in their first ever Super Bowl on Sunday. They hope to join teams like the San Francisco 49ers and the Green Bay Packers on the list of teams who were victorious in their first Super Bowl appearance.

The Pittsburgh Steelers are no strangers to the Super Bowl. This will be the seventh Super Bowl appearance in team history. If they triumph on Sunday, they will become the NFL’s winningest franchise. They are currently tied at five Super Bowl wins with the 49ers and Cowboys.

Vegas odds have the Steelers winning by a touchdown. This should come as no surprise since most of the current Steelers team was on the roster three years ago when they won the Super Bowl and the Arizona Cardinals have been perpetual underdogs this postseason.

However, Cardinal fans are apt to disagree. Arizona, led by veteran quarterback Kurt Warner and wide receiver Larry Fitzgerald, may just be the team that can finally break through the Steel Curtain defense.

On the other hand, the Steelers, with the No. 1 defense in the NFL, have stopped their share of potent offenses this season. And a mediocre Arizona defense may be no match for Willie Parker, Ben Roethlisberger and the Steelers offense. Sophomore Jackie Zizwarek thinks that “Polamalu will pick off Larry Fitzgerald’s passes all day, and the Steelers will win.”

An interesting storyline of this year’s Super Bowl involves the coaches of the two teams. Two years ago, Ken Whisenhunt was the offensive coordinator for the Steelers, and left to become the head coach in Arizona after getting passed up for the Pittsburgh head coaching job. Mike Tomlin, the current Steelers coach, is the one who got the job instead. Each coach has led his team to the Super Bowl in just his second season as head coach, a feat that is not to be taken lightly.

Whether or not your favorite team made it to the championship game, it’s a safe bet to say you’ll at least tune in for the new commercials and Halftime Show with Bruce Springsteen and the E Street Band. The national anthem will be sung by Jennifer Hudson and Faith Hill will sing “God Bless America.” Once again, the Super Bowl committee selected a modest and family-friendly musical performance.

However, the commercials promise to contain some controversial or racy material. Beverage companies are the most frequent buyers of commercial advertising for the big game. Anheuser-Busch, Miller and Coors market their products regardless of constant controversy over whether alcohol advertisements target minors as well as adults.

Pepsi and Coca-Cola will go head to head once again. Pepsi’s fresh new product redesign will no doubt be accompanied by flashy new ads. Coke will battle back with second half ads featuring a new theme as well. Villanova’s recent switch to Coca-Cola products is just one example of the cola wars.

One big ticket item always featured in Super Bowl ads is cars. This year, only three auto manufacturers will run ads: Hyundai, Audi and Toyota. General Motors’ recent bailout caused the company to refrain from purchasing ad space. Despite a struggling economy, automakers still hope to profit from Super Bowl ads.

Danica Patrick hits screens again in ads for, an Internet domain registrar and web hosting company. Last year’s ads featuring the famous female racecar driver were deemed as racy, but she will return amid the controversy.

After the always-profitable holiday movie season, the big Hollywood studios hope to continue to attract movie-goers with new Super Bowl ads. “Monsters v. Aliens,” “Angels and Demons” (the Da Vinci Code sequel) and “Wolverine” are just some of the film previews you can expect to see.

The Super Bowl will undoubtedly garner just as much attention as it has in years past and affect the lives of sports fans, consumers, and those betting on the final outcome. It will be another game for the books. Enjoy those chips and guacamole.