Super Bowl frenzy hits climax in Eagle County
What: Super Bowl 50 — Carolina Panthers (15-1) vs. Denver Broncos (12-4)
When: 4:30 p.m., Sunday.
Where: Levi’s Stadium, San Francisco.
What channel: CBS.
Spread: As of Saturday afternoon, the Panthers were favored by six points, with an over/under of 44 points.
Matchup predictor: As of Saturday afternoon, 55.7 percent of fans think Carolina will win the Super Bowl, according to ESPN’s Football Power Index.
EAGLE COUNTY — Broncos fans are uniting in orange one last time this season, as Denver squares off against the Carolina Panthers today in Super Bowl 50.
The game features storylines about the top defense of Denver facing the top offense of Carolina, Peyton Manning’s last hurrah and the now infamous dab dance by Cam Newton.
“All I gotta say is, ‘Here, kitty, kitty,’” said John Pallaoro, a Colorado native who was snowboarding at Beaver Creek on Friday. “The defense is coming for you, kitty.”
In past Super Bowls, the top defensive units in the NFL have won the championship three of the past 18 years, whereas one leading offense has won in the past 15 years (New Orleans Saints, 2009).
The only time the top offense met the top defense in the Super Bowl — well, that was just two years ago.
“What are you talking about? I don’t remember that,” Pallaoro said of the 43-8 stomping the Seattle Seahawks handed the Broncos two years ago.
Nicole Maude, of London, has been going to school in Boulder for four years now, and she is loving American football, and the Broncos.
“If they win, I don’t think anyone’s going to be in class on Monday,” Maude said.
Broncos Nation will be out in full force today, but some are looking for a more relaxed setting.
Local die-hard Broncos fan Tony Morrow, of KZYR, will watch at his own home, in solitude, because he remembers watching his first Super Bowl, when the Broncos played the Cowboys, and ever since then he prefers watching the big games alone.
‘THIS ONE’S FOR PEYTON’
Ty Cobb IV, of Charlotte, North Carolina, is at Beaver Creek this weekend with his father. He was on the slopes Friday wearing his No. 59 Luke Kuechly jersey.
Cobb is looking forward to some of Newton’s playful antics, as well as a good game. He also know’s the sheriff is in town, and he’s still a threat to the Panthers.
“He’s one of the greatest out there,” Cobb said of Manning. “I’m not going to knock him because he’s on the Broncos. He’s still got mad skills.”
The game is shaping up to be a good one, with six of the past nine Super Bowls being determined by fewer than seven points. (In the other three games, the winning team won by 20 points on average, and Manning started all three of those games, winning one.)
“I definitely think they can do it,” Maude said. “For Peyton Manning, right?”
“We will march on,” Pallaoro said. “This one’s for Peyton.”
Reporter Ross Leonhart can be reached at 970-748-2915 and firstname.lastname@example.org. Follow him on Instagram at colorado_livin_on_the_hill.
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Jeff Shiffrin, with his wife, Eileen, made the Vail area their home decades ago, and together raised Mikaela and Taylor Shiffrin, who was a member of the two-time NCAA Champion University of Denver Ski Team.