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Tribune Editorial: Who will win Super Bowl LII on Sunday?

With the pain of the Vikings' recent NFL Championship loss subsiding and the excitement of the Super Bowl LII in Minneapolis growing daily, Minnesotans are ready for game day.

Crew 52’s 10,000-plus volunteers have descended upon the Twin Cities ready to show New England, Philadelphia and football fans from around the world what Minnesota Nice is truly about.

Mother Nature has joined the welcoming campaign just in time with a bit of snow and a cold front with temperatures hovering near zero, combined with a wind chill of -15 for good measure.

Welcome to the Bold North, Super Bowl fans.

Hey, a visitor can even purchase a hand-packed Minnesota snowball for $1 from vending machines. How cool is that?

Super Bowl LII will be quite a show, and we’re not talking about the game on the field.

Sting was in town performing for the NFL team owners in St. Paul and the Imagine Dragons were rocking the Minneapolis Armory.

The main act - Justin Timberlake - will be performing in the Super Bowl LII’s Halftime Show on Sunday. Make note - no Janet Jackson or a malfunctioning wardrobe is on the program.

There are many events scheduled for Saturday, then a multi-hour long pregame show planned Sunday before the big game finally begins about 5:30 p.m. Sunday.

Now about that game: Neither team is a fan favorite, especially in Minnesota.

The Patriots has been a perennial winner - with 10 appearances and five wins in the Super Bowl . Not everyone loves a winner after too much success.

The Eagles - a perennial heartbreaker - have not won a Super Bowl, but are now making their third appearance. The team’s last NFL championship was in 1960, when they beat Green Bay. That earns the team a little credit.

Traditionally, the Eagles might be considered the underdogs due to New England’s successful record in recent years. Most betting books showed New England as the early favorite, but the line was narrowing a bit Friday.

The fan favorite among Minnesotans remains to be seen.

The cowardly and thuggish behavior of many Eagles fans during the NFC Championship game in Philadelphia toward Vikings fans was discriminatory, intolerant and in many cases, darn right abusive and dangerous. Philadelphia during an Eagles game is not the ”City of Brotherly Love.”

Vikings fans, however, will show Eagles fans how it should be done with a little Minnesota Nice. There will not be a wrath of criticism or beer thrown at Philadelphia fans as they arrive in Minnesota.

The Vikings fans, like Willmar’s Rollie Nissen, will be part of the many Crew 52 members extending a welcome hand in the airport, hotels and all around the Twin Cities. Other Crew 52 members - like Sara Maher of Olivia - handed out winter necessities like lip balm and hand warmers earlier this week.

Law enforcement officials from around Minnesota, like Lac qui Parle County Sheriff’s Deputy Nicholas Vorvick, have been in the Twin Cities helping provide assistance and security, along with more Minnesota Nice.

So who is going to win Super Bowl LII?

Well, we are a Minnesota newspaper with many Vikings fans among our subscribers and staff members. Most were raised with Minnesota Nice.

Yes, we like the Eagles’ quarterback Carson Wentz. He plays with Midwest moxie, but he is on injured reserve with a torn ACL.

Then there's a quarterback with Minnesota grandparents named Johnson and a mother raised on a farm near Highway 71 in the Bold North, who is still called “Little Tommy” by his Todd County cousins in Browerville.

One cannot get much more Minnesotan than that.

So, here’s our Bold North prediction --  #GoPatriots.

This editorial is the opinion of the West Central Tribune’s Editorial Board of publisher Steve Ammermann and editor Kelly Boldan.