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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Bad times show in TV commericals

NEW YORK — Along with the usual punchlines, cartoonish violence and car chases, the real world of a depressed economy slipped into the showcase of Super Bowl commercials.

‘Boss’ delivers high-energy halftime show

Bruce Springsteen looked into the camera Sunday night and told the people watching at home to “put the chicken fingers down and turn the television all the way up!”

Super Bowl catalyzes two distinct groups

If you need convincing that Super Bowl Sunday has evolved into a national holiday, consider this: It’s now possible to hear arguments about the proper way to observe the occasion. Why, it’s practically Christmas in February. Attend a party and inhale hors d’oeuvres, or stiff-arm the whole shebang and go skiing? Hot wings or contempt?

Time for Super Bowl TV ad trivia

All those years of sitting on the couch and consuming mass quantities of pizza on Super Bowl Sunday are about to pay off. You’ve seen a bazillion ads. You’ve watched scads of superstar halftime shows. Now test your knowledge by taking this trivia quiz.

Rush toward the title

TAMPA, Fla. – For the Arizona Cardinals and Pittsburgh Steelers, today’s Super Bowl is about the rush. For Arizona, it will be rushing the ball to give quarterback Kurt Warner time to find targets like Larry Fitzgerald and Anquan Boldin, the top members of the most dangerous receiving corps in football. For Pittsburgh, it is rushing Warner so he doesn’t have time to throw accurately – the Steelers were second in the NFL this season with 51 sacks.

Title contest features contrasts

TAMPA, Fla. – Dynasty vs. doormat. The Pittsburgh Steelers have signified success in the Super Bowl era with their stable ownership, brilliant coaching and throwback style. A victory today would give them a record sixth Super Bowl title, and they are 6 1/2 -point favorites to get it against the Arizona Cardinals.

Innovator LeBeau never shows his age

TAMPA, Fla. – He is a master of disguise, so perhaps it’s not surprising that Pittsburgh Steelers defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau once was actor Michael Caine’s double in a movie. LeBeau’s Steelers often go out of character, too – showing one look but doing something unconventional after the snap. One of the intriguing games-within-a-game during the Super Bowl on Sunday will be LeBeau’s maneuvering against Arizona Cardinals coach Ken Whisenhunt, the former Steelers offensive coordinator and one of LeBeau’s best friends.

Aches gone, but memories still fresh for Hornung, Sayers

Paul Hornung and Gale Sayers share assorted memories and stories, membership in the Pro Football Hall of Fame, an agent, 40-year-old aches and duties as the featured guests at Sunday’s Super Bowl festivities at the Northern Quest Casino. They also shared a brilliant afternoon of one-upmanship.

Coaches still partners, with less sparring

TEMPE, Ariz. – Arizona Cardinals head coach Ken Whisenhunt and offensive coordinator Todd Haley shared a closet-sized office as assistant coaches with the New York Jets in 2000. They swapped offensive ideas with each other and Jets offensive coordinator Dan Henning. Then they took a break and traded sharp elbows in daily 1-on-1 basketball games. They drove to the court together to blow off steam. One of them would invariably walk back steaming mad.

Troopers watching Super Bowl partiers

State troopers will be keeping an extra eye on Super Bowl XLIII partiers who imbibe then drive in Washington, Idaho and Montana.

Hair-raising tales expected in Tampa

TAMPA, Fla. – Try this in high school or at the mall, and you’d have an all-out brawl. But at the Super Bowl, it’s perfectly OK: Go ahead and grab Larry Fitzgerald or Troy Polamalu by their long hair, then yank ’em down.

Steelers, Cards not above trick plays

TAMPA, Fla. – Trickery has a place at the Super Bowl, and the Steelers and Cardinals aren’t above using it to win. Yes, both teams’ repertoires are spiced with shenanigans. The Steelers prefer to smash opponents into submission, but the biggest play in their most recent Super Bowl victory was an end-around pass for the clinching touchdown.

Local fans offer favorite Super Bowl snacks

Ed Drouin has been a San Francisco 49ers fan ever since 1952, when he entered kindergarten. Bedridden for months with a kidney infection, Drouin lay in the living room in front of the TV his parents bought for him.

Super Bowl has first Australian

TAMPA, Fla. – He will be the first Australian to play in the Super Bowl. A punter with a former life in Australian Rules Football, which could make him a trendsetter of sorts. Ben Graham, 35, soaked in Super Bowl Media Day on Tuesday. He spent most of his time talking about his Australian days, nearly 10 minutes discussing his time with the New York Jets and just a few seconds discussing his favorite music.

Harrison lets play do talking

TAMPA, Fla. – Troy Polamalu looked down from his podium at a 10-deep crush of media. Well, at least some of the questioners were actually reporters. Ben Roethlisberger’s audience was just as deep. Even defensive coordinator Dick LeBeau, seated in the stands of Raymond James Stadium on Tuesday, was difficult to get near.

Cards live Chad’s dream

In James Brooks’ fabulous 1987 film, “Broadcast News,” William Hurt’s character asks, “What do you do when your real life exceeds your dreams?” To which Albert Brooks’ character responds, “Keep it to yourself.” I can’t.