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Sports columnists

Take break from Super Bowl news orgy

By From page B1 | January 29, 2013

There’s nothing worse in sports media than the two weeks before the Super Bowl: With all other sports in the doldrums, we’re left with two weeks of blabbering about the same things.

Media members converge on the host city – New Orleans, this time – and overwhelm us with story after story after story. Mostly the same story. (This year? The Harbaugh brothers!)

It’s almost as bad as . . . no, wait, it’s not as bad as ESPN’s coverage of Tim Tebow or of any Yankees-Red Sox series during the baseball season.

So I guess it’s not the worst thing in sports media, just one of the worst.

But at the risk of becoming another voice in the Super Bowl chorus, here’s the main thing you need to know about Sunday’s 49ers-Ravens showdown: Coaching makes a difference.

The 49ers have the best offensive minds in the NFL preparing their offense. With an extra week, offensive coordinator Greg Roman and Jim  Harbaugh will roll out plays and formations that exploit whatever weaknesses they find in the Ravens’ defense – including some areas that we probably don’t yet realize are weaknesses.

Of course the Ravens have John Harbaugh and offensive coordinator Jim Caldwell doing the same, so expect to see the 49ers’ weaknesses exploited.

Whichever staff prepares best will likely lead the winning team. My guess? The 49ers win.

But enough Super Bowl! Let’s move on to the topics du jour . . .

• • •

It was disappointing when Golden State Warriors guard Stephen Curry was left off the All-Star team last week, but hard to get upset.

There are probably 20 Western Conference players having “All-Star quality” seasons this and every year and there are only 12 spots on the team. There are always “worthy” players left off.

If you make the case for Curry, you have to explain who should be left off. And that player would be able to make a good case for being an All-Star.

It’s a numbers game.

• • •

Speaking of numbers, it’s bad news for Sacramento Kings fans that a Seattle group will overpay for the franchise by such an extent that finding local ownership will be difficult.

The Seattle group is offering more than $500 million  – well more than the expected level. Is the fact that no Sacramento team will offer that much the final nail in the coffin? Maybe.

But it’s similar to 1992, when a Tampa Bay group bid $115 million for the San Francisco Giants, only to lose out when Major League Baseball owners decided to force Giants owner Bob Lurie to accept a $100 million offer from a local group.

It’s unlikely the NBA would do that – particularly to drop the price low enough that it make sense for a Sacramento group.

But it’s all the Kings fans have right now. Expect the team to move.

• • •

We are nearly two weeks out on the Manti Te’o girlfriend hoax story and don’t know much more than when Deadspin broke the story.

We probably never will know what happened.

And other than to fill our lurid speculation, does it matter? There are no legal victims in this case, just a strange and sad – messed up – tale of a boy and his fake girlfriend.

• • •

Imagine if Te’o was playing in the Super Bowl. It might get covered as much as Tim Tebow’s training camp!

Reach Brad Stanhope at 427-6958 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/bradstanhope.

Brad Stanhope

Brad Stanhope

Brad Stanhope is a former Daily Republic editor. He began his career at the DR in the last millennium. He spent 24 years as a sports editor, associate editor and news editor before leaving the Daily Republic in 2014. Brad lives in Suisun City with his wife, Mrs. Brad, and two sons. He enjoys cheese.
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