Neil Best leaves no stone unturned in the world of sports media.

Kansas City enjoys the Super Bowl most of all cities

(Credit: Watchdog)

My Super Bowl roundup (see post below) barely scratched the surface of the story ideas that have been pouring into SportsWatch / WatchDog headquarters this week.

For example, I haven't even gotten around to writing about the soft secondary market for tickets to the big game this year, even with the rabid Steelers fan base involved.

Click below to read some items I sent for the viewer guide that ended up on the cutting room floor in Melville, including interesting stuff for ratings geeks direct from Nielsen.

Most importantly, read the stuff Glauber and Boland are reporting from the site of the big game.


In case the official six-hour pregame show is not enough for you Sunday, NBC will offer a two-hour “Today’’ show from Tampa starting at 9 a.m.

“Highlights’’ include a “VIP tour’’ of Raymond James Stadium conducted by the Buccaneers’ Ronde Barber for NBC’s Tiki Barber, who coincidentally is his identical twin brother.

A strange thing about NBC’s news release: It calls the “Today’’ cast “America’s first family."

Whoa! Perhaps Matt Lauer and Barack Obama can discuss which of them has rights to that claim when they sit down for an interview at the White House on game day.


Faith Hill sings “America the Beautiful’’ pregame and Bruce Springsteen will perform at the half – the latest in a series of baby boomer-vintage acts since Janet Jackson’s wardrobe malfunction in 2004.

But the most dramatic performance should come when Jennifer Hudson sings the National Anthem, her first public appearance since her mother, brother and nephew were shot to death in October.


The Chiefs have not been to the Super Bowl since 1970, but over the past 10 years the Kansas City market has ranked No. 1 in average rating for the game at 49.5 percent of households.

That is only one bit of ratings-geek trivia Nielsen was nice enough to send. Some others:

In the past 10 years, the highest rating in any market for any game was 58.9 for Jacksonville in Super Bowl XXXIX. The Jaguars weren’t in the game, but the game was in Jacksonville.

Among the 56 major markets Nielsen measures, Phoenix is the 12th largest with 1.86 million homes; Pittsburgh ranks 23rd with 1.16 million.

The Pittsburgh market is the most passionate in the nation. During the ‘08 regular season, it accounted for nine of the 10 highest-rated local telecasts, peaking at 49.1 for the Patriots game Nov. 30.

The highest rating in Phoenix for a Cardinals game was a mere 23.4 against the Giants Nov. 23.

Super Bowl ratings are affected by the closeness of a game. Last year’s numbers were due in part to the thrilling finish. In the final minute, viewership peaked at 112 million.

Over the past four years, the halftime show has averaged a 40.6 rating, with the best figure recorded by Prince with a 41.7 in 2007.

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