With the NFL's conference championship games going on this weekend, it will soon be time to turn our attention to Super Bowl XLVI.
What follows is a list of what's worth knowing about this year's Super Bowl—including the date, time, broadcast, stadium, odds and more.
As the Ravens vs. Patriots and Giants vs. 49ers games get set to square off to decide the actual opponents, here's what you need to know about this year's football finale.
Date: Sunday, February 5, 2012
Time: 6:30 p.m. ET
Al Michaels and Cris Collinsworth will have the privilege of announcing the Super Bowl for NBC. For the first time in Super Bowl history the game will also be available for free streaming online, both at NFL.com and NBCSports.com, and on some mobile devices.
Lucas Oil Stadium, home to the Indianapolis Colts (who ended up being the worst team in the NFL this season, ironically), will host Super Bowl XLVI.
The Stadium has a capacity exceeding 67,000 when expanded and was the Sports Facility of the Year in 2009 according to Street and Smith's SportsBusiness Journal.
This stadium has some impressive amenities, which include over 1,000 flat screen plasma televisions spread across the stadium, including comfortable walking space throughout. What might be the biggest attraction, though, is the monster retractable roof that gives the facility the feel of an outdoor stadium. So if you're an outdoor stadium fan but don't like rainy or snowy conditions, this is the place for you.
Originally the line for this game was set at -3 in favor of the Patriots, but concerns over a Giants' upset have dropped that number to -2.5, according to Covers.com.
Based on the way these two teams have played throughout the playoffs, it would not be a surprise for the game to end in another 3-point decision.
It's hard to see how any team could hope to stop the Patriots' offense, which thrives on mismatches, but anyone who has bet against the Giants throughout the playoffs have come away disappointed.
Taking that into consideration, we could see one of the best games of the year, and I think this spread is very accurate. The only question is, which team will cover it?
At halftime, fans will be (fill in the blank with "treated" or "tortured") with a performance by famous singer/songwriter/entertainer Madonna, who has sold over 300 million records over a 30 year period.
I, for one, am not particularly excited about the selection, but then again, I'm never very thrilled with the halftime performance.
This year, however, I may be more entertained by Cirque du Soleil, who is partnering with Madonna and Jamie King. I've had the privilege of seeing Cirque du Soleil in person, and I'll be much more interested in their performance than the rest.
Either way, it should be an entertaining show.