CBS wins big from Super 'Bro Bowl'

The brother-against-brother storyline will captivate even casual fans of the game.

By Jonathan Berr Jan 21, 2013 1:53PM
San Francisco 49ers head coach Jim Harbaugh, left, in Atlanta, and Baltimore Ravens head coach John Harbaugh in Foxborough, Mass., during their NFL football conference championship games ( Mark Humphrey, Matt Slocum/AP Photo)When CBS (CBS), News Corp. (NWS.A) and Comcast (CMCSA) signed a multibillion-dollar 11-year extension to secure the National Football League's broadcast rights in 2011, they couldn't have imagined a better Super Bowl story line than the one emerging this year with the Harbaugh brothers.

This year's championship features Jim Harbaugh's San Francisco 49ers, who edged the Atlanta Falcons to capture the NFC title, against older brother John Harbaugh's Baltimore Ravens, who upset the New England Patriots to become AFC champions. The media are dubbing the contest the "Bro Bowl" and "Harbowl." For CBS, it's all money.

The added element of family drama may entice casual fans to tune into the NFL championship game scheduled for Feb. 3. Even better, this Super Bowl, unlike many others, may turn out to be a good game. Las Vegas odds makers have the 49ers favored by 4.5 points, according to The Associated Press.  

If the predictions prove accurate, that means viewers will stay glued to their sets and watch commercials that reportedly have cost advertisers more than $4 million. Local television stations get a piece of the action as well. CBS' New York affiliate, WCBS, sold a local Super Bowl spot for $1 million, according to Media Post. 

CBS CEO Les Moonves had already predicted big things for the Super Bowl. In February 2012, he told analysts that his sales force would get record prices for commercial spots, according to Adweek. This underscores the popularity of the NFL, which is the most watched of any professional sport. Annual revenue for the league reportedly tops $9 billion.

Indeed, the last three Super Bowls were the most watched in television history. Odds are that the big game will set a record for a fourth year.

Jonathan Berr owns a small position in CBS. Follow him on Twitter @jdberr.

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Tags: Sports
Jan 21, 2013 6:05PM
Our friends/family in the Bay/region area have been peeing their panties for almost 24 hours now..
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