By Matt Spiegel-
(CBS) Official results are here for this year’s Living Room Over/Unders and we hope your party was enriched by playing along.
Most thought on Friday that the over would come in on most or all of them, but that was not the case. The house would have made plenty of money. At my sister’s house, where I lurked behind the velvet ropes, brother in law Tom McGillicuddy got an impressive eight correct (with two QB’s for #10) and won a random assortment of re-gifted Score swag. A solid citizen, he distributed the loot to the under 18 set in the room.
All categories, unless otherwise noted, are for the game itself from kickoff to final gun; no pre-game, studio halftime, or post-game included. A broadcast “reference,” as stated in the following categories, includes any commercial, video bumper, broadcaster mention, or wordless on-screen graphic. Spreads and over/unders are set at “1/2″ increments to insure a winner and a loser.
1. Of the total commercials in the first half of play, which will be represented more, beer or cars? Four years ago, this was an even split (4-4), then two years of 5-3, and last year 11-3 in favor of cars. Surprising development. So, we set a line. The spread is Cars – 3.5.
CARS. This was Cars 7-3, so they cover. That does not count a GE spot which ended up confusingly being for beer, nor does it count the Cars.com spot. That’s a website, not a car. Still, the car dominance continues, two years running.
2. Predict the total verbal or image references during the game for an all new episode of THE VOICE, coming up on NBC right after the game. The over/under is 6.5.
UNDER. The actual total was four. As always, the first half was filled with promos for the halftime show, and then the other station promos picked up after that. Not enough though.
3. Predict the total verbal or image references during the game for the series debut of SMASH, on Monday night right there on NBC. Same rules as above. The over/under is 7.5.
UNDER. The actual total was just three. Way under expectations.
4. Predict the total number of camera shots of Patriots owner Bob Kraft in the first three quarters of the game. If the Pats are winning late, there could be several, so we’ll remove the fourth quarter. The over/under is 1.5.
5. Predict the total number of camera shots of Peyton Manning in his seat or suite, also in the first three quarters of the game. His town, his future, brother Eli… lots of reasons to possibly show Peyton. The over/under is 1.5.
UNDER. The actual total was zero. Zip, zilch, nada. There was a shot of the Manning suite, but no Peyton. To my knowledge, he was never on camera, even during the celebration. Surprising.
6. Any mention of the word “ankle”, in reference to Rob Gronkowski’s. Each mention of the word by Al Michaels, Chris Collinsworth, or a sideline reporter counts. The over/under is 4.5.
UNDER. The actual total was four. It sat there, just below the hook, for almost two full quarters. There never was a sideline report, during which the “ankle bomb” that a commenter predicted Friday may have happened. Three targets meant little reason to bring him up, and when the injury was discussed it was often without the word ankle.
7. How many replay reviews will there be? How many times will referee John Parry (referee #132) go under the hood? The over/under is 2.5.
UNDER. The actual total was one.
8. Still images or video of the David Tyree catch from the Giants-Patriots in Super Bowl XLII. Will they show it at all? The over/under is 0.5.
UNDER. The actual total was zero. Tyree was mentioned, he was even shown on the sidelines wearing a very wide tie, but the play was not shown. It was shown just after the game, but the stipulation was clearly for during.
9. Total number of verbal or image references to Bill Parcells, either as the previous boss of both coaches or as a Super Bowl coach himself. The over/under is 2.5.
UNDER. The actual total was one. No mentor references at all actually. Another surprise.
10. Name three former Super Bowl winning quarterbacks who will be mentioned by name. This tally will exclude both Eli and Peyton Manning, as well as Tom Brady. This can be in the form of a comparison, or a statistical record, or in any other context. Last year, there were five named during the game. ________________, __________________ and __________________.
QB’s named: Jeff Hostetler (for giving up a safety like Brady), Joe Montana and Bart Starr (both in context of playoff wins with their coaches), Phil Simms (for his completion % record), and Aaron Rodgers (for his QB rating this season).
So what did we learn? You could argue that the under coming in this much means that NBC has a rather lean, no-nonsense broadcast in which the frills are often eschewed. You could, and I will, also argue that what feels omnipresent in theory often is not the reality in context. The angles and stories that irritate us are usually the product of pre-game, and not of mid-game.
Now, to tweak these for Bulls-Heat and Canucks-Blackhawks. Hmmmmmm.
The results were also tweeted just after the game, find me there at @mattspiegel670.