Whom are you going to believe: oddsmakers or celebrities?
Defying the Las Vegas bookies who have installed the New England Patriots as 3-point favorites, most of the celebrities in this year's Scripps Howard Celebrity Super Bowl Poll predict the New York Giants will win Sunday's Super Bowl. Of the 115 notable personalities who made predictions, 60 think that the Giants will win, while 50 chose the Patriots. Five celebrities jokingly picked another team or said they couldn't decide. To see all the predictions, go to www.scrippsnews.com/celebritypoll.
Legendary golfer Arnold Palmer picked the Giants to win, 28-17, saying, "Eli Manning is feeling his oats. I think he will have a good game in the Super Bowl."
Rock star Joan Jett thinks New York will win, 38-35. Jett may be onto something. She’s correctly predicted the winners of the last six Super Bowls.
Jett's streak is two short of the Scripps Celebrity Poll record of eight consecutive correct Super Bowl predictions held by actor Haley Joel Osment. Osment, who portrayed a kid who could see dead people in the movie, "The Sixth Sense," can also see Super Bowl winners, as he has picked 11 of the last 12, missing only in 2008, when the Giants beat the Patriots. He's not making that mistake again, picking the Giants to win Sunday, 34-31.
"It's just destined to be won at the last second by a field goal," Osment said. "I still beat myself up over my 2008 pick; I should have never doubted my team! This time they're an even better squad and, in particular, the Patriots defense has no chance against our receivers. Go G-Men!"
If the Giants win, it will be the 18th time in 27 years that a majority of the celebrities have picked the Super Bowl winner. If the Patriots win, it will be the fourth time in the last five years that a majority of the celebrities picked the wrong team.
Many of the celebrities who picked the Patriots did so because of Tom Brady, New England's superstar quarterback.
"I love (Giants quarterback) Eli Manning, but under pressure, I have to go with Tom Brady," said comedian Don Rickles, who picked New England to win, 28-14.
Added former California Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger: "I can't pick against my neighbor, especially when he is playing at such a high level. Tom Brady will be the Super Bowl MVP." Schwarzenegger went with New England to win, 31-24.
Others cited the Patriots' Super Bowl loss to the Giants four years ago.
"Brady will be determined to get revenge for 2008's fluke," said Bob Bryan, half of the world's No. 1-ranked doubles tennis team. He picked New England to win, 35-17.
The other half, Bob's twin brother, Mike, disagrees.
"Eli is in Brady's head and the Giants will play with nothing to lose. There will be another crazy finish!" said Mike Bryan, who picked New York to win, 34-31.
The celebrity who picks the winning team and whose guess at the final score comes the closest to the actual score wins the Scripps Howard Super Sage Award trophy. Last year's winner was the San Diego Chicken, aka Ted Giannoulas, who predicted that Green Bay would beat Pittsburgh, 31-26, just one point off the actual final score of 31-25.
This year the Chicken picked New York to win, 34-26. Since Scripps Howard originated the Celebrity Super Bowl Poll in 1986, tennis legend Martina Navratilova (1998) and actor Dennis Farina (2005) are the only two celebrities out of 2,034 participants to have picked the winning team and guessed the score exactly right.
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