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Gearing up for Super Bowl

Super Bowl 50 will be played this evening in Santa Clara, California, in front of 70,000 fans. Approximately 160 million viewers will watch worldwide with over 111 million of those in the United States. The game will be broadcast in 180 countries, and it will be translated into 28 languages.

This game is a matchup between two former Southeastern Conference quarterbacks: Peyton Manning, the 39-year-old former Tennessee Volunteer who will more than likely retire after this game, against 26-year-old Cam Newton, former Auburn quarterback who seems to be most everyone’s favorite player.

Who can forget watching Cam going behind the goalposts and handing the ball to a young fan after he scores a touchdown? This has given so many young kids a memory for a lifetime. Ole Miss’ own Michael Oher is now playing for the Carolina Panthers, giving many residents of our community another reason to cheer for the Panthers.

For many of us, the Super Bowl is a time to watch the last game of the year with friends while eating snacks and enjoying a beverage of choice. The Super Bowl commercials are also a highlight of the party, costing businesses $5 million for a 30-second spot.

My favorite Super Bowl memories are when former Ole Miss Rebel quarterback Eli Manning won games in 2008 and 2012. Only 11 quarterbacks in NFL history have won two or more Super Bowl games. How fitting would it be if Peyton could win this Sunday, giving him his second Super Bowl win?

I was looking at some fun facts about the Super Bowl and how much food and drinks are consumed. Super Bowl Sunday is a close second behind Thanksgiving as the day when Americans consume the most food. Here is a fun list that was compiled regarding Super Bowl facts:

— The National Chicken Council predicts that people will eat 1.25 billion chicken wings during the game.

— Nine out of 10 people prefer to watch the game at their own home. The rest will either watch the game with friends, relatives or venture out to their favorite bar. The average number of people attending any Super Bowl party is 17.

— Beer is still the drink of choice during the game, followed by water and carbonated soda. Who can ever forget the Bud Light commercials for so many years?

— Domino’s Pizza expects to serve over 11 million slices of pizza this Sunday.

— Roman numerals are used for each previous Super Bowl because the football game falls in two calendar years. It was suspended this year for Super Bowl 50.

— There will be more than 72 footballs used during the Super Bowl.

— Approximately 100 million pounds of guacamole will be eaten while 14,500 tons of chips are used to dip the guacamole.

— More people would rather miss the birth of a child, funeral of a loved one, important work function, or the wedding of a close relative than to miss watching the Super Bowl.

Last year, Vicksburg’s Malcolm Butler was the hero of the game for the New England Patriots as he intercepted Seattle quarterback Russell Wilson on the goal line to preserve the win for the Patriots against the Seahawks.

I hope that everyone has a great day today enjoying Super Bowl 50 and all of the surrounding festivities — and that it will be a close and entertaining game.

Tim Phillips is publisher of The Oxford EAGLE. Contact him at tim.phillips@oxfordeagle.com.