This Frees Up Your Sunday Afternoon


Why do they need to play the Super Bowl?

PlayStation 2 has already played it on “Madden NFL 2003” and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers defeated the Oakland Raiders, 14-6. Keenan McCardell, Tampa Bay wide receiver, made the key play in the third quarter when he made a great catch in double coverage in what looked like it might have been a Brad Johnson interception.

McCardell also caught two third-down passes that led to Michael Pittman scoring from the six-yard line to give the Bucs a 14-6 lead.

The Raiders also need be warned, says USA Today Weekly, that it might be wise to not use Tim Brown on punt returns. In the simulated game, in which the computer played itself, Brown was injured in the fourth quarter and was unavailable for the Raiders’ final and futile drive.


Trivia time: Pro football’s premier game was not called the Super Bowl until its third renewal. What was the original name of the game?

Good grief: If you can believe Michael Davis of the Washington Post, “These are the days that define us as Americans: Independence Day, Mother’s Day, Thanksgiving Day. And, of course, Super Bowl Sunday.”

Better than lottery: Lea Tibbets, 81, a Slidell, La., grandmother, was shocked when she received two Super Bowl tickets in the mail. There was no note. She told the New Orleans Times-Picayune that they probably came from two football players she met on a recent trip to Europe, but she is not going to spend much effort trying to find out.

“I don’t want them to change their mind,” she said. “I’ve got these tickets and I’m really going.”

Iranian Title IX: A long-standing ban has been lifted in Iran to allow women to attend handball, volleyball, basketball and tennis events at next month’s annual national sports tournament. No swimming or wrestling, though.

Iranian officials have ordered that Tehran’s Azadi Stadium set aside 10,000 seats, with separate entrances, for the female fans.


Making a difference: When New York Yankee Manager Joe Torre greeted Japan’s latest export, Hideki Matsui, to the big leagues, he noted that the influx of talent from Japan, such as Matsui and Seattle’s Ichiro Suzuki, is improving the level of play.

“The game got better in 1947, too, when a guy named Jackie Robinson started changing things,” Torre said.

No kidding: After Eddie Hill was inducted into the Motorsports Hall of Fame, the drag racing champion said, “It’s so much more satisfying to get this award now than posthumously.”

Trivia answer: The AFL-NFL World Championship Game.

And finally: Newsday’s Shaun Powell apparently isn’t too impressed with San Diego. There for the Super Bowl, he wrote:

“The NFL would rather have this contest at the Rose Bowl and hold all the parties in Hollywood. Instead, they must use an outdated and amenity-free stadium, plus try to have fun in a city that would be Fresno if it weren’t for a constant 67 degrees and the ocean.”