The hype is almost over.
The menus are planned.
By the end of Sunday, one team will have won its fourth Super Bowl.
The big game – and big commercials – will be on NBC this year. The New England Patriots and New York Giants kickoff Super Bowl XLVI sometime after 6:30 p.m. – depending on the length of the performance of the Star Spangled Banner.
It’s been 10 years since Tom Brady and the Patriots splashed onto the scene, edging the Rams in the final seconds. And it’s been seven years since their last title – thanks to the Giants’ win four years ago.
NBC also has a new event Saturday at 9 p.m. – NFL Honors dishes out many of the league’s top awards.
The ACC network offers two choices Saturday at 1 p.m. – Virginia plays Florida State, while Wake Forest heads to North Carolina State.
Duke heads to Virginia Tech Thursday at 7 p.m. on ESPN, followed by UCLA-Washington. Saturday starts with Syracuse-St. John’s at noon, then Ohio State plays Wisconsin. Maryland meets North Carolina at 4 p.m. before Kentucky faces South Carolina. The Game Day crew visits Missouri for the 9 p.m. game with Kansas.
Sunday at 2 p.m., Villanova takes on Pittsburgh.
ESPN2 has a trio of games Thursday – Nebraska vs. Northwestern at 7 p.m., then South Carolina against Florida and Gonzaga-BYU. Saturday brings six games, starting at noon with Detroit battling Butler from the Super Bowl city. Temple plays Rhode Island from the Atlantic 10, followed by Middle Tennessee State-Denver. Iowa State meets Oklahoma at 6 p.m., then Mississippi plays Alabama before Indiana State battles Wichita State.
CBS also has two games Saturday at 1 p.m. – Marquette vs. Notre Dame and Vanderbilt at Florida. Sunday at 1 p.m., Michigan faces Michigan State.
James Madison visits Old Dominion Thursday at 7 p.m. on Comcast, and Arizona takes on California at 11 p.m.
Virginia Tech meets Clemson Saturday at 4:30 p.m. on Comcast, and it’s off to the PAC-12 at 11 p.m. for USC-Washington.
The Big South takes the stage on MASN Thursday, with Presbyterian visiting High Point. There’s three Big East games Saturday, starting at noon with Seton Hall at Connecticut. Rutgers visits Louisville at 4 p.m., followed by DePaul-Cincinnati at 7 p.m. The Big South gets in the action at 2 p.m. with Charleston Southern facing Coastal Carolina.
West Virginia takes on Providence Sunday at noon.
Boise State hosts New Mexico on NBC Sports Network Saturday at 4 p.m.
The PGA tour heads to Phoenix Saturday and Sunday at 3 p.m. And don’t forget to take out the trash.
The Capitals have their traditional Super Bowl afternoon game, facing Boston at 12:30 p.m. on NBC Sports Network. The day before, they are in Montreal at 2 p.m. on Comcast.
The Bulls visit New York Thursday at 8 p.m. on TNT, and the Nuggets battle the Clippers in the nightcap. ESPN’s Friday doubleheader features the Knicks at Celtics in the opener at 8 p.m., followed by Lakers-Nuggets.
Comcast shows the Wizards’ game at Toronto Friday at 7 p.m. and Saturday’s contest with the Clippers at 7 p.m.
Cornell faces RPI Friday at 7:30 p.m. in college ice hockey on NBC Sports Network.
Virginia hosts North Carolina in women’s basketball Saturday at noon on Comcast. ACC play continues Sunday at 1 p.m. with Wake Forest meeting Boston College, and at 4 p.m. Washington battles USC.
ESPN2 shows the New Balance Indoor Grand Prix Sunday at 2 p.m.

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