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SUPER BOWL XXXII: DENVER BRONCOS VS. GREEN BAY PACKERS;
3:15 P.M., TODAY, TV: CHANNEL 4. RADIO: KNX (1070)

A Fan's Primer

January 25, 1998|T.J. SIMERS | TIMES STAFF WRITER

Denver, 16-3 and wearing blue jerseys, versus Green Bay, 15-3 and wearing white.

Site: Qualcomm Stadium, formerly known as San Diego Jack Murphy Stadium.

Kickoff: 3:24 p.m.

TV: Channel 4

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National anthem sung by 23-year-old San Diego-area resident Jewel. "San Diego was very supportive of me when I was living in my car and playing the coffee shops," said Jewel, born with a last name of Kilcher. Added trivia note: Jewel sang the national anthem before the Baltimore Oriole game in which Cal Ripken broke Lou Gehrig's record for consecutive games played. Tony award winner Phyllis French will sign the national anthem.

Pregame show: "NewsRadio's" Phil Hartman will host the salute to the history of California, which will be highlighted by the singing of the 5th Dimension and Lee Greenwood. "Actually, I don't think Super Bowl pregame shows are meant . . . for one person to watch every minute. If you watch all of the pregame show and then the Super Bowl, you need to get a life," said NBC's Greg Gumbel, the pregame host.

Coin toss: Joe Gibbs and Doug Williams, the coach and quarterback MVP from the Redskins' Super Bowl XXII winning team, which beat Denver in San Diego in 1988, and retired Grambling coach Eddie Robinson.

Halftime show: A celebration of Motown's 40th anniversary, including appearances by the Temptations, Smokey Robinson and the Grambling University Band.

Ticket price: $275. Scalpers' going rate: $2,000.

Ticket distribution: Each team received 17.5% of available Super Bowl tickets, the Chargers as host team received 10%, the remaining 27 NFL teams each received 1.1% and the NFL league office received 25.3%.

Attendance: Although San Diego paid $78 million to expand Qualcomm Stadium to more than 70,000 seats, only 68,500 fans are expected to be admitted because some seats were deemed unacceptable for a Super Bowl.

No shows: El Nino.

Commercials: Your bathroom break is costing advertisers

$1.3 million for a 30-second spot during the Super Bowl. Royal Caribbean Cruises spent $5 million to be the sole sponsor of the halftime show.

A first-timer: This is the first Super Bowl played in a corporate-named stadium.

Lombardi Trophy: Carried around by NFL officials wearing white gloves, it costs $10,000, and is made each year by Tiffany's.

The ring: The NFL pays for up to 90 championship rings at $4,000 per ring. The NFL also pays for 90 loser rings at half the cost of the winners' rings.

The winner's share: A player on a wild-card team (like Denver) that wins the Super Bowl will take home $103,000 for his postseason work, including $48,000 for winning the Super Bowl, a serious pay cut for players like John Elway, who make more than that per regular-season game. A player on a division-winning team (like Green Bay) that wins the Super Bowl will take home $108,000. Players on the losing team in the Super Bowl receive $30,000 each.

Team mascots: He wears a cowboy hat, boots, barrel and well, little else. Tim McKernan, a.k.a. the Barrelman, has gone through 16 barrels and uses at least three sets of suspenders a year as the Broncos' most identifiable mascot. He once was offered $500 to drop the barrel so folks could see what he was wearing underneath, but he said, "I couldn't afford the fine if I did that."

The Packers have a bunch of people willing to put a block of cheese on their heads. A spokesman for Foamation Inc., which makes the Cheeseheads, said the company sold 380 to a wedding party; as a bonus, the wedding party received Cheesehead bow ties.

Last meeting between the teams: Dec. 8, 1996--Green Bay won, 41-6, at Lambeau Field, but the Broncos did not play Elway or seven other starters because they had clinched home-field advantage a week earlier, while the Packers needed to win the game to gain their own home edge.

Lack of pregame hype: "Neither team will provide bulletin-board stuff," Packer safety Eugene Robinson said as the week began. "We don't even own a bulletin board."

Still looking: The NFL made available 167 pages of player quotes from the Broncos and Packers at this week's media sessions.

Take note: Team scoring first has won 23 of 31 Super Bowls.

Coach comparisons: Both are offshoots of the Bill Walsh system, emphasizing discipline, organization and short passing games. Green Bay's Mike Holmgren is 72-35 overall (.673), including 9-3 in the postseason. "I think a win would catapult Mike Holmgren into the Lombardi type of proportion, particularly in Green Bay where everything is Lombardi, Lombardi, Lombardi," Robinson said.

Denver's Mike Shanahan is 43-28 (.603), including 3-1 in the playoffs. "I don't care how much they pay me, I'm not saying 'I'm going to Disney World,' " Shanahan said. He won't have to worry about it.

Denver team owner: Pat Bowlen.

Green Bay team owners: 1,915 fans who paid $25 a share for the team in 1950. The team is currently selling an additional 400,000 shares for $200 each.

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