News From Terre Haute, Indiana

January 29, 2012

DAVID HUGHES: Super Bowl odds getting stranger and stranger

David Hughes
The Tribune-Star

TERRE HAUTE — Today’s annual “Super Bowl odds column” feels special to me because I’ve been a diehard NFL fan since 1967 and next Sunday will be the first time the big game takes place in our great state of Indiana.

Longtime readers know the background of this column, but allow me to summarize for you newcomers:

It stems from the Tribune-Star running “America’s Line” semi-regularly on its Scoreboard Page for several years. That’s where you can find point spreads and odds for upcoming college and professional sporting events.

When Super Bowl time rolls around each year, “America’s Line” goes crazy with odds that people supposedly wager on, although I find it hard to believe anyone will put down a G on Jake Ballard’s 50-1 shot at being named Most Valuable Player. (Tom Brady is favored at 3-2.)

Other real odds provided by “America’s Line” include 3-1 that the highest-rated television commercial will be Bud Light and 5-1 that there will be a combined total of six touchdowns scored by both teams.

My response to “America’s Line” is this column, where I offer even more bizarre odds that should be taken as amusement only.

After all, the Tribune-Star does not promote gambling.

Here we go:

• 100-1 that a smiling Peyton Manning and Jim Irsay will sit next to each other in a horseshoe-shaped suite for the entire game.

• 5-1 that Peyton Manning will be shown more often on TV than Eli Manning, who’s actually playing in the game.

• 75-1 that Archie Manning will get more air time than any of the running backs for either team.

• 1-1 that Irsay will tweet something controversial during the game.

• 1-2 that an assortment of Indianapolis Colts players, ranging from Reggie Wayne to Jeff Saturday, will be sitting somewhere in Lucas Oil Stadium thinking “What if…”

• 1,000-1 that Tom Brady will emerge from the stadium tunnel wearing ladies undergarments (a reference to the photoshopped picture of him going around Facebook last week).

• 10-1 that super-serious Bill Belichick will smile at least once during the game.

• 10,000,000-1 that Belichick will shake the hand of every Colts fan he sees inside and outside the stadium next Sunday.

• 1,000,000-1 that I’ll be able to purchase a Super Bowl ticket at an affordable cost if I drive up to Indy around noon next Sunday. (I may give it a shot anyway.)

• 2-1 that Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels will find a way to appear on the TV broadcast.

• 20-1 that O.J. Simpson will be NBC’s halftime guest.

• 200-1 that Madonna will experience a “wardrobe malfunction” during her halftime performance. (Odds would be lower, but she’s in her 50s now.)

• 50-1 that if New England emerges victorious, Brady will salute the city of Indianapolis with his middle finger as a tribute to the longtime rivalry between the Patriots and Colts.

• 15-1 that my group of friends and I will see at least one famous rock singer, actor or professional athlete out partying in Indy this week.

• 12-1 that after NFL owners suffer through a week of frigid Midwest weather, they’ll vow to keep the Super Bowl out of Indianapolis for the rest of our lifetimes, although the forecast for the early part of this week looks good.

Seriously, enjoy the Super Bowl atmosphere while you can. It may not come back soon.

Happy viewing.

David Hughes can be reached by phone at 1-800-783-8742, Option 4, or at (812) 231-4276; by e-mail at; or by fax at (812) 231-4321.