PITTSBURGH - Midweek news and commentary:
n The Pittsburgh Steelers say they weren't prepared for the noise in the Louisiana Superdome Sunday night.
Huh? Indoor venues always present crowd noise problems. It's a prime-time, nationally televised match-up of the last two Super Bowl winners on Halloween night, and nobody expects the place to be noisy?
If that's the case, coach Mike Tomlin made some critical mistakes long before his two replay snafus and his decision to go for it on fourth-and-four.
n The World Series got record-low TV ratings.
The San Francisco Giants and Texas Rangers were both compelling underdog stories, but they didn't have the star power to catch casual fans.
The other problem is the disconnect most baseball fans feel with games in late October and early November.
The season ends for most teams at the start of October. People get interested in football or hockey, and baseball is off their personal radar.
Teams like the New York Yankees and Boston Red Sox have national followings. The Giants and Rangers don't.
A lot of people who are baseball fans shut things down once their hometown teams were done.
n Pittsburgh Penguins center Jordan Staal broke his hand.
Now he's out another six weeks, after missing the first month of the season because of a foot infection.
Misfortune is raining and pouring on Staal, who hadn't missed a game until this point.
The broken hand came in a fluke practice mishap, which suggests that even an indoor ice rink can have a black cloud.
n The Penguins introduce a special jersey for the Jan. 1 Winter Classic game at Heinz Field.
The Penguins now have four "official" jerseys - home, road, alternate and this one.
They're all available (authentic and replica versions) at your favorite merchandise outlet.
The only surprise is that NHL teams don't have special jerseys for warm-ups.
MLB teams all have separate jerseys and caps that they wear during batting practice.
Different looks keep the cash registers jingling.
n The polls are closed.
The elections have been decided. The TV commercials are over.
You can watch a game without hearing the Corbett-Onorato and Sestak-Toomey sniping on every break.
The trash talk is back on the football field, where it belongs.
Mehno can be reached at: firstname.lastname@example.org. His weblog is at altoonamirror.com