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Plans already are underway in the NFL office to make Super Bowl 50, which will be held next year in Santa Clara, Calif., at the new home of the San Francisco 49ers, truly memorable.

What would make the event "golden" is for commissioner Roger Goodell to ban Media Day forever.

Once upon a time Media Day truly started out as that — a day for the working media to interview players and coaches. Now, it has turned into Circus Day. Wanna bet at least half of the so-called "media" that showed up this week in Arizona had no clue why the winner gets the Vince Lombardi Trophy?

Media Day at Super Bowl XLIX on Tuesday again showed how utterly silly the spectacle has become. The biggest story turned out to be Seattle halfback Marshawn Lynch saying 25 times, "I'm here so I don't get fined."

Actually, Lynch did throw in an extra word a couple times, muttering, "I'm just here so I don't get fined." Those who noticed got a real scoop, right?

Coaches and selected players are available to real reporters the next three days after Media Day. That should be enough. Does the NFL really need a stage where some questions come from those wearing costumes to promote the biggest sporting event in this country?

This Super Bowl pitting the champion Seahawks against the New England Patriots, which after all the hype finally kicks off at 5:30 p.m. Sunday on NBC, has all the makings of being one of the all-time best.

Unfortunately, it rarely works out that way. However, many wouldn't be shocked to see the first Super Bowl overtime come down to Tom Brady trying to score against the vaunted Seattle defense.

The only dancing we should see from Patriots' tight end Rob Gronkowski is in the end zone of University of Phoenix Stadium — and not at the podium on Media Day.  

Blackhawks games on Channel 59: Those Central Illinois hockey fans who shuttered when Blackhawks games were telecast on WGN in the Chicago area only have been saved.

WAOE (Channel 59, Peoria) has jumped in to fill the void and picked up those WGN games. The Blackhawks' four remaining WGN games will be shown on WAOE on March 12, 14 and 29, and April 11. 

PGA Tour: Phoenix Open (CBS, 2 p.m. Saturday, Sunday): The party at the par-3 16th hole is more reminiscent of being among the hooligans at a European soccer match. Golf needs more holes like this.

College BB: Duke at Virginia (ESPN, 6 p.m. Saturday): Victory No. 1,001 for Coach K is proving difficult after loss to Notre Dame and undefeated Virginia awaiting.

NBA: Bulls at Rockets (Comcast, 7 p.m. Wednesday): It's a good thing Chicago is in the defensive-dominated Eastern Conference or Coach Tom Thibodeau might have a heart attack every night playing teams like Houston.

Contact Jim Benson at



Reporter for Lee Enterprises Central Illinois.

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