When it comes to covering the Super Bowl in the age of Twitter and live blogging, no rock goes unturned in reporting the news – even if it isn’t true.
All this week football fans have been titillated by compelling yarns about the game’s key quarterbacking matchup featuring Tom Brady of the New England Patriots and Eli Manning of the New York Giants.
Tons of newspaper ink has also been spilled commenting on the personality makeover of Bill Belichick, the normally frosty New England coach whose sudden conversion to joviality is putting Regis Philbin to shame.
Then there’s been the almost hourly updates on the injured ankle of Patriots’ tight end Rob Gronkowski: will he or won’t he be able to play?
Not since Curt Schilling’s infamous “bloody sock” performance for the Boston Red Sox in the 2004 World Series pitching with a torn tendon sheath in his right ankle has that body part received so much scrutiny at a major sporting event.
All have been worthy Super Bowl storylines leading up to the big game which will finally – thankfully – be played out on Sunday in Indianapolis.
One item that received widespread media attention earlier in the week – before being shot down as bogus – concerned disgraced 1970s glam rock star Gary Glitter and his inane anthem hit, Rock and Roll Part II.
The story first picked up steam when British tabloid the Daily Mail reported that Glitter stood to earn “thousands of pounds” in royalties during Sunday’s game as the song is the one the Patriots like to play in celebration when they score a touchdown.
At issue is that Glitter – whose real name is Paul Gadd – was convicted of possession of child pornography in the United Kingdom in 1999 and later found guilty for committing obscene acts with minors in Vietnam.
The story was pounced upon by other news outlets, including a blogger for the New Jersey Star Ledger who urged readers to sign a petition to force the NFL to ban Glitter’s song from assailing ear drums at Super Bowl XLVI.
Trouble is, the story has no basis in fact.
The Patriots haven’t used the song – in any form – for years and there was never any intention by the NFL to include it in Sunday’s Super Bowl playlist.
Bravo for the Patriots and the NFL for trying to raise the Super Bowl’s moral standards to a higher ground, an issue they have struggled with in the past.
Who will ever forget Janet Jackson’s infamous wardrobe malfunction during her halftime performance in 2004?
And although the Rolling Stones have piled up a few misdemeanors in their day, they were the featured halftime act at the 2006 Super Bowl in Detroit.
Here’s hoping that Madonna, that former beacon of moral turpitude who will provide the lip-syncing in Indianapolis on Sunday, gets the message.
Isn’t this the entertainer who use to wear her undergarments on the outside of her clothing? And didn’t she once date Alex Rodriguez?
And while we’re on the topic of sporting event songs, isn’t it about time that practice was put to bed as well?
Or at least find some better songs.
The first song that should be banned from all future sporting events should be We Are The Champions by Queen. Talk about hoary.
Eye Of The Tiger by Survivor would be another recommendation followed by Nah Nah Hey Hey by Steam.
And anything by Nickelback.