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Are you ready for some Super Bowl?

No, Terry Bradshaw won’t interview Barack Obama on Super Bowl Sunday.

Bradshaw and 10 other Fox folks will chat with everyone else on Sunday’s 6-hour pregame show, while Fox News host Bill O’Reilly talks live with the president.

Fox plans an 11-hour marathon around football’s biggest game – and TV’s most-watched program each year.

Coverage starts at noon and ends with a special “Glee” performance of Michael Jackson’s “Thriller.”

Here’s what you’ll see:

Road to the Super Bowl (noon): NFL Films’ replays the best moments from Week 1 through the playoffs, with audio from 100 players and coaches wired for sound.

Inside the Rings with Troy Aikman (1 p.m.): Drew Brees, Jerome Bettis and Kurt Warner talk about their Super Bowl memories.

Super Bowl Sunday Pregame Show (2 p.m.): Bradshaw, Howie Long, Jimmy Johnson, Pam Oliver, Chris Myers, Curt Menefee and comedian Frank Caliendo broadcast live from outside Cowboys Stadium. Maria Menounos from “Access Hollywood” and Michael Strahan cover celebrities arriving for the game and introduce performances by Maroon 5 and Keith Urban. Viewers also will hear a dozen NFL greats past and present – including Anthony Munoz – read the Declaration of Independence. The Fox pregame tradition began at Super Bowl XXXVI in 2002, after the 9/11 terrorist attacks.

Super Bowl XLV (6 p.m.): Joe Buck and Aikman take the air a half-hour before kickoff. Fox will use 50 cameras to cover the game. The Black Eyed Peas perform at half-time.

Postgame Show: Fox analysts dissect the game while Bradshaw gets ready to present the Vince Lombardi trophy to the winners on the field.

“Glee” (scheduled for 10:30 p.m.): Will the Michael Jackson tribute be more thrilling than the game? Or more entertaining than the Super Bowl commercials?

Collinsworth’s new gig

Cris Collinsworth begins a new offseason job tonight when he hosts “Inside the Vault” (10:30 p.m., WGN America).

NBC’s Emmy-winning “Sunday Night Football” analyst from Fort Thomas stars in the

10-week nationally syndicated show for men. Topics include gadgets, travel, fitness, food, and sports.

Jill Wagner (“Wipeout”) and Alonzo Bodden (“Last Comic Standing”) will join him, along with editors from Wired, Motor Trend, GQ and other magazines.

WGN America moves “Inside the Vault” to 6 p.m. Sunday on Feb. 13.

Cable update

Good news and bad news for area cable customers:

Time Warner has added the New England Sports Network (NESN) National to its “sports pass” tier (Channel 342). It carries Red Sox and Bruins pregame and postgame shows – but no games.

The bad news: Still no NFL Network for Time Warner.

Here’s the sad news for Insight customers who get the NFL Network, but not the MLB Network.

“We don’t currently have plans to add the MLB Network,” says spokesman Jason Keller.

Insight wants to put MLB on a sports tier, he says, but MLB wants total coverage, as its has with Time Warner.

McCann heads to Dallas

Sports reporter-anchor Rontina McCann quit her part-time job Tuesday at Channel 19 so she could be in Dallas for Super Bowl XLV.

She’s found full-time work at Dallas NBC station KXAS-TV.

Fox 19 is looking for a part-time sports person, says news director Matt Miller. The station cut its second on-air sports position to part-time last summer after Zach Wells was let go.

Catching the Bearcats

University of Cincinnati basketball fans will find Saturday’s 6 p.m. Big East game against Pitt on the main Fox Sports Ohio standard definition channel, Cincinnati Bell Fioptics (261), DirecTV (685) and Dish (478).

The 7 p.m. Blue Jackets-Oilers hockey game will be on FSO’s HD channel.

Continue reading here: Are you ready for some Super Bowl?

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Streamageddon: The US Government Shuts Down 10 Illegal Streaming Websites – Fighters.com

I’ve been looking to bust out that title picture for some time, and now it appears that I have ample reason to. We’re only a few days away from UFC 126 “Silva vs. Belfort”, which is quickly shaping up to be a must-watch UFC event and one of the UFC’s strongest shows of 2011. We’re also only a few days away from the Super Bowl, which is generally regarded as the one can’t-miss sports event all US sport fans just have to make time for each and every year. And in order to help stop the pirated broadcast of all sports, including the UFC, agents of the US government’s ICE organization recently seized ten websites for illegally streaming broadcast sporting events. Here are all the details.

We head to the one and only Sherdog for the full story. And to make that long story short: on Tuesday, the Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) branch of the Department of Homeland Security seized and shut down a number of illegal streaming websites that would broadcast live sporting events for free and without permission, including live UFC Pay-Per-Views.

One of the major stories to come out of this already-major story is that HQ-streams.com was one of the sites shut down. If you’ll recall, fans and friends, that’s the name of the site that the UFC filed a temporary restraining order on a whle back.

Here’s what UFC President Dana White had to say on the matter in a press release that was made public yesterday: “The very forceful actions taken by Mr. Bharara, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of New York and Mr. Morton, the Director of ICE, against these parasitic websites is very welcome news. The criminal theft of Pay-Per-View events has resulted in the loss of millions of dollars of revenue to not only the UFC and its fighters, but has also deprived federal, state and local government of their rightful entitlement to significant tax revenue.”

To be completely honest, this bit of news doesn’t really surprise me in the least. This is the inevitable outcome of any and all illegal pirating systems or websites that become popular enough: eventually the lawyers get involved, eventually the federal agents get involved, eventually something gets seized or shut down or something similar, and the government pats itself on the back for shutting down a popular method of pirating while the companies and conglomerates breathe a sigh of relief.

Honestly, I’m glad the UFC and other sporting agencies have put a halt to these major-level streaming sites. I think this is definitely a victory for all involved, and I also think that the UFC is fully within its rights to vigorously protect its trademarks. This is the organization that’s paving the way for the sport of MMA in general, they deserve every dollar they can get and they don’t deserve to be cheated out of any income. So, if you’ll permit me to get on my soapbox for a moment, I encourage all my readers to open their wallets and pay to keep the UFC alive by ordering their Pay-Per-Views whenever they want to see an event and have the money to afford to see the event.

But, as I so often say… you can’t stop the virus, and the virus always finds a way. The nature of piracy on the internet is cyclical: eventually one site will rise above all the rest, only to be torn down. But illegal pirating of copyrighted media never does truly stop, does it? Those who want it will simply find other ways to get it, other avenues to pursue, and eventually they’ll all congregate to the few sites that do it better than the rest, and eventually those sites will begin rising in popularity… and the cycle begins again.

But make no mistake, I applaud all those involved for cracking down on this high-level piracy so close to a major sporting event in MMA and “the” major sporting event of the year, at least in America.

And what about you, fans and friends? Any thoughts on the government dropping the ban-hammer on these illegal sites?

Continue reading here: Streamageddon: The US Government Shuts Down 10 Illegal Streaming Websites – Fighters.com

NFL’s Delightful Surprises: The League’s Best Shocks of 2010

Clearly there are QBs that win with their arm, but what probably gets overlooked are the QBs that win simply by managing the game. Since KC has the best rushing attack in the league, it allowed Cassel the luxury of capitalizing on misdirection with little risk.

It’s safe to say, without fear of argument, that he performed his role very well.  Amongst quarterbacks, Cassel ranked ninth in Sacks per pass attempt, second in Interceptions per pass attempt, and second in Touchdowns per pass attempt. 

Cassel’s improvement from the 2009 season is remarkable.  He improved from a QB rating of 69.9, with 2,924 yards passing, 16 TDs and 16 INTs in 2009 to a QB rating of 93, with 3,116 passing yards, 27 TDs and 7 INTs in 2010.  Most importantly the Chiefs won six more games in 2010 than they had in 2009, to finish at 10-6. 

Although his stats aren’t the most amazing and you could probably think of five QBs off the top of your head that had better stats than Cassel, the reality is, the biggest surprise about Cassel is how much of a leader he has become.  He came back to play against the St Louis Rams this year 11 days after an appendectomy. 

“He was going to be throwing up blood, or he was going to be playing football,” said Brian Waters, a Chiefs teammate. “That’s the kind of guy he is.” 

His leadership, work ethic, and preparation are hugely responsible for the team’s lead in competitiveness and cohesiveness from a year ago.  He does everything he can to be successful at his craft and he is the ultimate team player.  It’s been said that winning begins and ends with the heart. Well Matt Cassel clear has the heart of a Pro Bowl quarterback.

Continue reading here: NFL’s Delightful Surprises: The League’s Best Shocks of 2010


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