Column: This is a Super Bowl LII preview

FILE - In this Saturday, Jan. 13, 2018, file photo, New England Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski, right, catches a pass in front of Tennessee Titans linebacker Wesley Woodyard (59) during the second half of an NFL divisional playoff football game in Foxborough, Mass. The Patriots and the Philadelphia Eagles are set to meet in Super Bowl 52 on Sunday, Feb. 4, 2018, in Minneapolis. (AP Photo/Charles Krupa, File)

This Sunday, Super Bowl LII will pit the New England Patriots against the Philadelphia Eagles in Minneapolis to decide this season’s NFL champion. Here is an incomplete list of things that will happen on that day.

1. Pregame coverage will explain to you, at length, the hard road Nick Foles traveled to make it to this Super Bowl. Comparisons to Jeff Hostetler and Doug Williams will be made. Foles’ 2013 season (27 touchdowns, two interceptions) will be a major talking point.

2. NBC will awkwardly shoehorn in promotion for the upcoming Winter Olympics, potentially with a segment showing that, believe it or not, some U.S. cross-country skier roots for the Eagles.

3. Despite the best efforts of hometown Vikings fans to sell their tickets to Patriots fans, the Eagles will still enjoy greater fan support.

4. Think of the worst parody sports account on Twitter. That account will tweet some form of Foles Napoleon Dynamite joke that has been made hundreds of times and get four thousand retweets and nine thousand likes.

5. The Eagles’ first drive will end in a field goal, after a pair of 14-yard runs from Jay Ajayi and one tough sideline catch from Alshon Jeffery.

6. The Patriots’ first drive will end in a touchdown, as Tom Brady quickly powers down the field on his usual diet of short passes, short passes and more short passes.

7. The “Dilly Dilly” meme will die a horrible, self-inflicted death.

8. The Eagles will be the benefactors of a very questionable call by the officials, flipping the script after many fans felt the Patriots were the benefactors of poor officiating in the AFC Championship Game.

9. Bill Simmons, whose level of entitlement is beginning to make Gwyneth Paltrow look like a humble, self-effacing human being, will complain about the call.

10. New England cornerback Stephon Gilmore will intercept a Foles deep ball, which was a smart decision by the backup quarterback, but simply an inaccurate throw.

11. Cris Collinsworth will say six things that are more insightful than the most interesting comment Troy Aikman has ever made. People will still yearn for Tony Romo.

12. NBC’s graphics department will put together a very cool graphic comparing the similarities between the Patriots’ first run of Super Bowls, and their second run, which could be completed with a win Sunday.

13. Foles will whip his team down the field in six plays for a field goal right before the halftime gun.

14. Halftime act Justin Timberlake will wear a suit and tie as he brings the sexy back to a nation that spent the past 90 minutes watching the Eagles and the Patriots. YouTube searches for “Janet Jackson wardrobe malfunction” will skyrocket to all-time levels.

15. The Eagles will counter the Patriots’ typical special teams brilliance by blocking the first punt of the second half.

16. Brady and the Patriots will go three-and-out for the third time early in the second half.

17. There will be a commercial for “Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom,” because if at first your incredibly dangerous theme park featuring genetically-bred dinosaurs does not succeed, try, try again. Such is the creative machine of Hollywood. I’m not complaining though.

18. You will lose your score pool.

19. With the game ticking closer to the final seconds, Al Michaels will say something that vaguely refers to the Vegas line.

20. The Eagles’ defensive line will get their first sack of the game early in the fourth quarter, on first down, before Brady converts on third-and-long anyway.

21. Coming back from a commercial break, Super Bowl LI highlights will unfortunately remind us all that it wasn’t a dream.

22. New England receiver Danny Amendola will reach 132 receiving yards and put himself in the Super Bowl MVP conversation with a 68-yard touchdown catch with 7:41 remaining in the game.

23. Philadelphia receiver Nelson Agholor will respond on the ensuing possession with a 67-yard touchdown catch of his own.

24. The game will be decided in the final minute, either giving New England its sixth Super Bowl or Philadelphia its first.

25. The Liberty Bell will be cracked a second time.


Tyler Keating is the sports editor for The Daily Campus, covering men’s basketball. He can be reached via email at tyler.keating@uconn.edu. He tweets @tylerskeating.