That Super Bowl went from boring to instant classic real quick, like 0-100 real quick. To be honest, I was even one of those people flirting with turning the game off when the Patriots had to settle for a field goal at the end of the half. I could be more happy that I didn’t.
Naturally by blowing a 25 point lead, or the Patriots making an epic comeback, it has the sport world debating “Did the Patriots win it or did the Falcons Lose it?”
Okay yes, the Patriots won it. Brady’s receivers stopped dropping the ball. LeGarrette Blunt’s last real big play of the game was that fumble he had, which meant James White was relied on and he had a historic game. White finished with 3 touchdowns on the night, one of which was a receiving touch down. All in all, the Patriots overcame only having a mere 1% chance of winning at the end of the 3rd quarter per ESPN.
A look at the dramatic turn in win probability in the Patriots’ Super Bowl win. pic.twitter.com/tfBpu81zLm
— ESPN Stats & Info (@ESPNStatsInfo) February 6, 2017
Atlanta? They just flat out lost the game. You could argue that looking at the numbers, they really weren’t playing THAT well. Julio Jones had 2 remarkable, highlight reel catches. That is what he will be remembered for. But he was only targeted 2 other times, 2. They say hindsight is 20/20, but the Falcons might be beating themselves up for not trying to look for Jones more often.
Matt Ryan, the reigning MVP, only had 23 pass attempts, 23 the whole game. Despite being up by 25 at one point, their total time of possession was 23 minutes and 27 seconds. Atlanta simply didn’t have the ball long enough. Coupled with not having the ball, they only converted one third down the entire game. Converting third downs is key to killing the clock, for obvious reasons. But the Patriots’ defense, which had been great at stopping teams on third down all season, really stepped up.
So there it is. Now people expect you to sit here and debate who really won or lost the game. Honestly, the correct answer? Most people would probably say there isn’t one.
You want the correct answer? Barstool won it.
I’d argue that it’s impossible these days not to know who Barstool is or be familiar with some stoolies. But for those who don’t, Barstool is an unfiltered, hilarious (more often than not) sports blog, that has really changed the face of what real time sports blogging is and can be. They have been known in the past for being somewhat controversial, but overall I’d like to think that in the flighty nature of the internet, their humor transcends to most audiences.
Leading up to the Super Bowl, Barstool has made a string of moves to win the Super Bowl, starting with the Brady Four. You could argue that getting arrested in 2015 probably was not a calculated move, but I’d say that Stool Presidente, Dave Portnoy, doesn’t do anything but think of the next move. Flash forward to 2016, Barstool gets sold to media and technology firm The Chernin Group. Huge move. Being sold legitimized them as more than just a stoolie website. It put them on a much larger map, gave them the backing to do a lot more with their website and their segment productions. Now here we are, 2017, Patriots are in the Super Bowl and Barstool lands a gig with Comedy Central. How’d they do? Here’s an example.
First Take: 450K
Barstool Rundown: 310K
— Sports TV Ratings (@SportsTVRatings) January 31, 2017
All signs would point to that they did exactly what they were hoping to do. They got to dump on Skip Bayless. They got huge ratings for being on at 12am . They are growing their brand. They also made huge headlines where pro football player, Pat McAfee, announced his retirement. His retirement plan? Write and produce for Barstool. He gets to save his knees, made plenty of money, gets to make people laugh and say whatever he wants, and join Barstool as the ball gets rolling towards owning the moon. Not a bad set up.
Along with some hard work put into the Rundown on Comedy Central, Barstool also gained a ton of free publicity when they were banned from Super Bowl media week. How did they respond to that? In several ways:
- Got their friends involved. ProFootballTalk is good friends (it would seem at least) with some of the Barstool guys, their football guys, Pardon My Take. Naturally, he asked about the ban to the commissioner himself. Naturally, Goodell denied even knowing who Barstool was. Yeah, sure okay Roger. 4 guys got arrested for their favorite sports team right outside of your door which made national news. Not sure how you can avoid hearing about them, but okay.
- They snuck in anyway (and made a mockery of NFL’s security team). If you’re going to ban someone, you might as well actually make sure they don’t get in. Being an award winning listener of Pardon My Take, PFT and Big Cat, walked us through how they did it. They got barcodes from a cereal box, used a little photoshop, and rocked some Hawaiian shirts and naturally, got into Media Row. Mocking NFL’s security team probably was not the main mission on hand, but it most certainly was a bonus.
Whoose Da Bad Guy pic.twitter.com/MvGAU1JON1
— Pardon My Take (@PardonMyTake) February 3, 2017
— Pardon My Take (@PardonMyTake) February 3, 2017
Okay so far we have gotten: free publicity from Roger Goodell and embarrassing the NFL by sneaking into Radio Row. Sunday, the big game. Patriots have an epic comeback, which then gives us the feel good story of the Brady Four getting to celebrate the Revenge Tour with their beloved TB12.
“God, won’t these Barstool guys just go away?”
The answer? No. Going back to point number 1, “got their friends involved,” Matt Patricia, Patriots defensive Coordinator, is seen wearing a Barstool Shirt (you can buy it here) coming off the plane.
Looks like Matt Patricia is wearing a Goodell clown shirt as the team arrives back in Boston pic.twitter.com/YK8OPZ4Hoh
— Nick Emmons TV (@nicknbcboston) February 6, 2017
Naturally, this set fire in the sports media world all talking about whether it was appropriate or not blah blah blah. But it also made them all talk about and acknowledge Barstool. Now reports officially are stating that Goodell was not happy about the shirt. Wonder if he also caught the Fire Goodell hat sported at the Patriots Parade.
— Dave Portnoy (@stoolpresidente) February 7, 2017
Round out their Super Bowl Experience, Pardon My Take continued their tour of National TV on Scott Van Pelt’s Sportscenter segment.
— SportsCenter (@SportsCenter) February 8, 2017
Coupled with national news coverage about their gear, two appearances on national TV for their sports takes directly, and plenty of partners jumping at the bit to work with them; Barstool won the Super Bowl. If you didn’t know them before the Super Bowl, there is no way you have not seen or head something Barstool related since. If I had to guess, the moon will most definitely not be enough for Portnoy and the gang.
With a whole lot of loyal readers, elated partners, and a successful eCommerce business to boot— Barstool may get all they want and more.
Not bad for a bunch of smut bloggers.