Joe Montana

Joe Montana denies involvement in college admissions bribery scheme

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USATSI

Joe Montana denies involvement in college admissions bribery scheme

Former 49ers quarterback Joe Montana denied any role in a college bribery scheme amid links to its recently convicted mastermind. 

Palo Alto Weekly reported Wednesday that William Singer, who pled guilty to racketeering and conspiracy charges Tuesday for orchestrating a scam designed to get students from wealthy families admitted into prestigious universities, listed Montana as one of his clients in a 2014 Facebook post.

Montana was not one of the 50 people indicted in federal court Tuesday, and tweeted Thursday that Singer's company, The Key, "provided nothing more than minimal consulting services to our family ... with the college application process."

The Hall of Fame QB, along with his wife Jennifer, have four children. His two sons, Nate and Nick, played college football and finished their careers at West Virginia Wesleyan and Tulane, respectively. 

[RELATED: 'Speed and violence' made 49ers add Alexander and Ford]

U.S. attorneys said Singer was paid around $25 million since 2011 in order to bribe college officials and coaches to secure enrollment for their children at top schools like Stanford, USC and Yale. College coaches at those aforementioned schools, as well as Georgetown, Texas and UCLA, have been charged in the scheme. Court documents also revealed that parents paid Singer up to $75,000 in order to have someone take the SAT or ACT for their children. 

Super Bowl 53: Joe Montana depicted in unrealistic way during commercial

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AP

Super Bowl 53: Joe Montana depicted in unrealistic way during commercial

The NFL kicked off the commemoration of its upcoming 100th season in fine fashion Sunday with a commercial that celebrated many of the game’s great players at a fictitious gala.

But the script made one major, inexcusable mistake.

After all, everybody should know that Joe Montana never throws an interception on Super Bowl Sunday.

But there it is, 35 seconds into the spot, after Marshawn Lynch dislodges the football from the top of a triple-layered cake to set the chaos into full Animal House cafeteria mode.

Montana reaches down to pick up the loose ball. Michael Irvin yells to Montana that he’s open.

“No can do, Cowboy,” Montana says.

Then, of course, Montana looks toward Jerry Rice in his progression.

But what comes next was more unbelievable than the high-powered Los Angeles Rams offense being held to a meager three points over 60 minutes.

Deion Sanders, obviously channeling his non-49ers days, steps in front of Rice to make the interception.

[RELATED: Updated NFL draft order following Patriots' Super Bowl win]

In case anyone needs reminding, here are Joe Montana’s statistics in his four Super Bowl starts for the 49ers in the 1980s:

Attempts: 122
Completions: 83
Yards passing: 1,142
Touchdowns: 11
Interceptions: 0
Passer rating: 127.8

And nothing that happened Sunday during the widely acclaimed commercial can ever change that for the three-time Super Bowl MVP.

Super Bowl 53: Have Patriots surpassed 49ers as NFL's best dynasty?

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USATSI

Super Bowl 53: Have Patriots surpassed 49ers as NFL's best dynasty?

Tom Brady has a lot on the line in Super Bowl LIII. 

It'll be the New England Patriots quarterback's ninth appearance in the game, which is already the most in NFL history. A win would be Brady's sixth, giving him more rings than any other player. 

He'd also surpass his boyhood team. 

Brady, a San Mateo native, grew up rooting for the 49ers. In a span of 14 seasons, San Francisco won five Super Bowls. Brady was four when the 49ers won their first in 1982, and a senior at Junipero Serra High School when they won their fifth in 1995. 

[RELATED: How to watch Super Bowl LIII, full of Bay Area storylines]

With a victory over the Los Angeles Rams on Sunday, the Patriots would win their sixth championship in 18 seasons. They'd tie the Pittsburgh Steelers for the most Super Bowl wins in league history, but in a much tighter span than the 34 years that separate Pittsburgh's first and sixth titles.

That spread, spanning practically the entirety of Brady's career, is a big reason why one could argue Brady's Patriots dynasty would eclipse the 49ers. That is, if they haven't already. 

The Patriots have turned over the roster quite a bit since Brady took over as the team's starting QB in the 2001 season. He and coach Bill Belichick are the only on-field constants who have been there every step of the way, which was not the case with the 49ers.

Joe Montana won four of the 49ers' five Super Bowls, and longtime backup Steve Young got the monkey off his back with their fifth. Bill Walsh coached San Francisco to three, and George Seifert to two. Jerry Rice, the true bridge between the Montana and Young iterations of the 49ers, has three rings. 

Whether or not they beat the Rams on Sunday, Brady and Belichick already exceed them all. No head coach has more Super Bowl appearances than Belichick, either. 

[RELATED: 49ers Super Bowl records Patriots or Rams could break]

In addition to having more kicks at the can, the Patriots have also been in position to do so more than the 49ers. During those aforementioned 14 seasons, San Francisco appeared in a conference championship game nine times. New England has played in one 13 times, and has made it past the Divisional Round every season since Brady turned 34.

That regularity in the game's most important weekends is unprecedented, and has raised the bar that the 49ers themselves raised from the 1980s through the mid 1990s. One more win on Sunday would satiate the Count The Rings crowd, and put Brady and the Patriots into rarefied air in terms of championships. But the Patriots really already occupy their own echelon in the league's history, and a victory in Super Bowl LII would just be running up the score. 

The good news for 49ers fans is they can root for another Bay Area quarterback who grew up cheering for San Francisco. The bad news? Jared Goff plays for their biggest rivals, and that would open up its own can of worms for The Faithful.