A last minute blown call that might have changed the team representing the NFC. A controversy stemming from three years ago causing another controversy today. A super star notorious for the way he achieved some of his past successes. And the polar vortex messing up travel plans.
All of these things surround this year’s Super Bowl, an event that typically gathers the highest ratings of the year and generates millions of dollars in ad revenue.
A downfield pass where the cornerback hits the receiver long before he even has a chance to catch the ball. The definition of a pass interference call, yet the refs failed to call it. Even the NFL has issued a statement that confirms the penalty should have been called. DSU student Darius Ross believes if it were called, the Saints would have won the game, but also says, “The Saints have the best offense in the league and they started with the ball in overtime. They had the chance to win that game.” NOLA.com has since published an article titled “How properly to boycott Super Bowl LIE, from a ratings standpoint,” in answer to the lack of a penalty call, and dubbing this year’s Super Bowl LIII, Super Bowl LIE.
Famous rapper Cardi B has been pushed to the front of vocal musicians boycotting and urging others to boycott the Super Bowl after stating she declined an offer for her to perform during the Super Bowl halftime show in protest of the NFL’s handling of Colin Kaepernick. At least one student will be joining in the boycott, Freeman Randolph, who said, “I think the whole Kaepernick situation is stupid anyway. In a free country, I don’t think you should be fired for not standing for the pledge. I think it’s super petty.” Another student, Sean Riley, disagrees, and said “He’s a bad quarterback.”
But Cardi B has also made the decision to appear in a Pepsi commercial that is set to run during the Super Bowl. DSU student Austin Williams felt rather strongly about her actions, saying “She’s contradicting herself. I respect her standpoint for other artists to not perform, but you gotta pull outta that deal and return that money, or you shut up and let Travis Scott perform.” Travis Scott is one of the artists set to perform during the halftime show.
Tom Brady has had the most Super Bowl appearances out of any quarterback in NFL history, but his legacy has been tainted by his team, the Patriots, cheating. While he personally might be able to avoid the blame for “spygate,” in which the team was fined for recording the Jets defensive coaching staff to learn their defensive signals, Brady was named in “deflategate,” in which footballs were deflated in the 2015 AFC championship game, allegedly an order given by Brady so that he would have an easier time throwing the ball. Even if you do not count the Super Bowl appearances the years his team was caught cheating, Brady still would have the most Super Bowl appearances.
Sean Riley may not boycott the Super Bowl for Colin Kaepernick, but he did say he’ll boycott the Super Bowl because he “hates the patriots”. This is the Patriot’s 4th appearance in the past 5 Super Bowls. Their record is 2-1 in the 3 games the team has already played.
The polar vortex is causing record low temperatures and nightmare travel conditions. According to AJC.com, Mercedes-Benz stadium, the designated stadium for the Super Bowl, can only hold 75,000 people, but the projected number of Super Bowl visitors is 150,000. That projection was made back in July, long before the polar vortex froze over most of the country, causing record low temperatures in 9 states, according to AccuWeather, and also causing thousands of cancelled flights, just days before the Super Bowl is set to kick-off. Road conditions are also hazardous, as traditional salt has been reported ineffective in such cold weather.
Boycotts for and from quarterbacks and teams and cold weather might not deter people who just watch the Super Bowl for the ads from the comfort of their homes, though. Some non-football fans like DSU student Brandon Lee, watch just to enjoy the commercials. “I like watching the super bowl commercials because I like to see what exactly is out there, like new products and the skits.”
Last year’s Super Bowl had the lowest ratings of any Super Bowl since 2009. With as many issues as this Super Bowl is having, it might have even lower ratings.
The game is set to kickoff this Sunday, February 2nd, at 6:30 EST.