Excited for the Harbowl

Derrick Knutson
Derrick Knutson

I’m a football fan, but normally I don’t give a rip about the teams in the Super Bowl. 

Being a Vikings fan makes the possibility of rooting for the home team almost non-existent.

Something about Eli Manning just bothers me.

Cheering for Tom Brady is like rooting for a cocky male model strutting about in football pads.

Ben Roethlisberger is just … well, disgusting.

The Saints are cheaters.

I actually don’t mind the Packers that much, but a large majority of their fans, in my opinion, are insufferable.

Due to my feelings about the aforementioned Super Bowl-winning players and teams, the big game over numerous years has simply been a time to get together with friends, eat way too much not-so-good-for-me food and watch football played at a high level by teams in which I really have no vested interest.

This year, however, is different.

I’m intrigued by the Jim/John Harbaugh matchup.

For those of you who don’t watch much football, Jim Harbaugh is the coach of the NFC champion San Francisco 49ers, and John, his older brother, is the coach of the AFC champion Baltimore Ravens.

Jim is 49 years old; John is just over one year his senior.

This Superbowl will be the first time brothers have coached against one another in the NFL’s biggest game.

I think we may just find out which progeny the Harbaugh parents like better.

Their parents, Jack and Jackie Harbaugh, have claimed to be neutral about rooting for one son over the other, but how can we know if that’s true?

Maybe Jim used to take the family minivan for joy rides growing up, and once dented the heck out of it during an off-road expedition.

Maybe John, as a toddler, swallowed his mom’s wedding ring and she’s never completely forgiven him.

There is the possibility, albeit small, that the cameras will pan over to the Harbaugh parents during the game, and they’ll be madly cheering when a player on one son’s team scores a touchdown, and sitting with deadpan faces when a player on the other son’s team scores.

That would add to the drama, wouldn’t it?

But they’re likely loving parents, so we probably won’t see that proposed scenario.

But what other scenarios could arise after the game has ended, the winning team is hoisting the Lombardi Trophy and confetti is falling from the rafters?

If the 49ers win, maybe little brother Jim will grab a microphone and yell, “I’m going to hang this victory over John’s head for the rest of our lives because of that time he colored in my entire face with black Sharpie marker while I was sleeping!”

If the Ravens win, John might just address the media after the game and say something like, “I really thought I’d be humble about this, but it feels really good to stick it to my little brother. You would not believe how irritating he was growing up.”

In reality, the winning Harbaugh will probably run over to the losing one, give him a handshake and a hug, and then tell the media how it was tough competing against his brother, but it feels great to win a Super Bowl.

They’ll keep it clean for the cameras, but maybe, just maybe at a Thanksgiving dinner years down the line attended by the entire Harbaugh clan, John and Jim will start taking lighthearted verbal jabs at one another.

Everyone will laugh at the quips, that is until one of them says, “Remember that time I outcoached you to win the Super Bowl?”

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