SOMEWHERE IN NORTH TEXAS - After one day here in the week leading up to the Super Bowl, you would think the Cowboys were playing in the game instead of the Pittsburgh Steelers and Green Bay Packers.
You can't walk 10 feet down a street in Dallas without tripping over a Cowboy -- Roger Staubach, Tony Dorsett, Everson Walls. And the topic for local sports talk radio here is matchups -- between the Cowboys and either the Steelers or Packers.
Here's how those matchups would break down -- a dysfunctional 6-10 team against two organizations that represent the best the NFL has to offer. No need for analysis there.
Thankfully, we were all spared the reality of having the Cowboys actually play in the first Super Bowl held at Jerry World.
Could you imagine how insufferable it would have been had the Cowboys somehow won the NFC championship? Super Bowl Sunday would have turned into a front-runners convention.
As it already is, the atmosphere surrounding Super Bowl XLV early in the week is a little queasy. This celebration of excess in a state that proudly boasts of excess is, well, a little excessive.
Given the hard economic times, something doesn't quite feel right about Diddy holding a "Super Bowl Fantasy Party" with tickets reportedly going as high as $25,000.
Given that the NFL is on the brink of labor Armageddon, with rich owners threatening to lock out rich players -- and putting many people out of work who aren't rich owners or rich players -- something doesn't quite feel right about the North Texas Super Bowl Host Committee picking up the tab for $10 million to cover the anticipated bill for ticket tax.
Something seems to have gotten out of hand when the indoor facility made available to the Packers is a state-of-the-art complex for the Highland Park High School football team. Yes, Redskins fans, a Texas high school has an indoor practice facility. Your NFL franchise does not. And the Packers likely will need it if the weather prediction of freezing rain and ice for Tuesday is accurate.
All that may put a little damper on the excess, as the Dallas area historically does not handle ice well unless it's in a glass.
Aren't we all looking forward to the 2014 Super Bowl in open-air Giants Stadium in New York? (Actually, East Rutherford.)
Location has become a prime source of debate for this game. Cowboys Stadium is located in Arlington, and city officials there are frustrated by the lack of attention Arlington is getting -- especially since the city gave Jerry Jones nearly $250 million to help build this palace.
All you hear, though, is Dallas this and Dallas that. The only attention Arlington will get is on gameday during the broadcast (perhaps) and in datelines -- the origin of a story -- from writers.
So since everything is up for sale at this celebration of excess -- tickets are $200 to watch the game on big screen televisions in the parking lot -- I am putting my dateline up for bid between Dallas and Arlington. The city that delivers me a ticket to Diddy's party gets my next one.
Examiner columnist Thom Loverro is the co-host of "The Sports Fix" from noon to 2 p.m. Monday through Friday on ESPN980 and espn980.com. Contact him at firstname.lastname@example.org.