By Patrick Murphy

Thank goodness for sports.

It sure is nice to have something to take our minds off just about everything.

I know sports, from youth leagues to the pros, are impacted by the coronavirus, but once the games start it’s a wonderful diversion.

When I’m watching a game on television or in a local gym I am completely enthralled with what is going on.

Nothing else matters at that time than what I am seeing in front of me.

It’s great to watch sports, talk sports and read sports and for that time not to have to worry about what else is going on around the world.

I know the number of fans allowed in gyms and stadiums is limited anywhere from none to family and needed personnel, so the atmosphere is not quite the same, but none of that matters during the games.

I still get caught up in the action enough that the lack of a crowd noise does not ruin the experience for me.

Sports is so important to us; our emotions rise and fall on whether “our” teams win or lose.

In less than two weeks the Kansas City Chiefs and Tampa Bay Buccaneers will line up to play in the Super Bowl.

The Chiefs will be going for the second in a row, and Tampa Bay will be trying to win their second, and quarterback Tom Brady will be trying to win his seventh.

The world will stop to watch this game. Few things capture our attention like the Super Bowl. Everyone stops to watch, whether it’s for the game, the commercials or the halftime show.

At our house my daughter and son-in-law come to our house for a small get-together, even though I’m the only real football fan. No one else even watches football during the regular season, but for the big game, we scarf down pizza and junk food and settle in for the next four hours.  

The build up for the game started five minutes after we learned who was playing, and it must be may age, but I have no interest in all the talk.

I don’t listen to all the talking heads analyzing the game, the key players, coaches and trying to predict who will win and why.

The pregame show on Super Bowl Sunday last hours longer than the game, and I never tune-in. I just want to watch the game.

But the good thing about all the talk about the big game or any game, is that it is good for us.

Any and all diversions are welcome these days, and sports offers it on a daily basis.

Yes, there are still health concerns that impact sports, but once the game kicks off, tips off or the first pitch is thrown, that is all that matters.

It is such a great feeling to have my emotions elevated or deflated by a touchdown pass or a game-winning shot and to get so wrapped up in a game that when it ends I realize that for at least a few hours I wasn’t worried about real problems.

Patrick Murphy, editor-publisher of the Humphrey Democrat and Newman Grove Reporter in Nebraska, is a former assistant managing editor at The Telegram.