Three years running, the Super Bowl has set a TV viewership record. CBS is hoping that happens again on Sunday.
Last year, NBC's broadcast hit an average audience of 111.3 million people.
But ratings are a mere point of pride for CBS heading into kickoff. The ads have already been sold (some at more than $4 million a pop), so the network can now only hope to put forth its best broadcast and redirect as much of the Super Bowl glow toward its other programs and its cable sports network.
Telecasters Jim Nantz and Phil Simms will call the game while more than 60 cameras cover the action — with at least one keeping an eye on the parents of 49ers coach Jim Harbaugh and Baltimore Ravens coach John Harbaugh.
— Jake Coyle
NO RG3 IN THE HOUSE
There's only one way Robert Griffin III wants to go to the Super Bowl.
As a player.
The electrifying Washington Redskins quarterback came to New Orleans to pick up The Associated Press 2012 Offensive Rookie of the Year award. But he won't be going to Sunday's game between the Baltimore Ravens and the San Francisco 49ers, planning to watch it with his family instead.
"I'm a firm believer you don't go to the Super Bowl unless you're playing in it," Griffin said.
— Nancy Armour — http://www.twitter.com/nrarmour
HERE COME NINER BETTORS
After heavy betting on the Baltimore Ravens, sports betting professionals and last-minute casual bettors in Las Vegas and around the world are heavily swinging toward San Francisco.
The 49ers were favored by 5 points when betting action started two weeks ago, meaning San Francisco bettors need them to win by at least two field goals to collect. But the spread encouraged lots of bettors to take Baltimore, pushing the line down to 3½. Now, San Francisco supporters have moved the line back up to 4 points in most sports books and 4½ in others, according to gambling expert R.J. Bell of Pregame.com.
Bell says that a few days ago, nearly two-thirds of the bets taken in Las Vegas and online sports books offshore were on the Ravens. It's close to 50-50 now and the 49ers are closing the gap quickly in the hours before the game.
Adjustments to the line are encouraging bettors on the fence to pick sides.
"The moves are taking a lot of money right now," Bell said.
An estimated $10 billion is expected to be wagered on the Super Bowl, with less than 1 percent of that coming from legal sports books in Nevada, Bell says.
— Oskar Garcia — http://twitter.com/oskargarcia
Rodolfo Rodriguez is in New Orleans all the way from Monterrey, Mexico, to cheer on his "Cuervos," the Spanish name for the Baltimore Ravens.
He's predicting a 28-24 Baltimore victory over San Francisco.
Rodriguez spent part of his weekend on Super Bowl Boulevard at Woldenberg Riverfront Park, waving toward a cruise ship arriving on the Mississippi River into the Port of New Orleans near the large Roman numerals for the Super Bowl.
— Julio Cortez — http://twitter.com/juliocortez_ap
LIL WAYNE ROOTING AGAINST SF
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