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NFL notebook: Power company takes blame for outage

| Friday, Feb. 8, 2013, 9:18 p.m.
REUTERS
The Superdome field is covered in partial darkness during a power outage in the third quarter in the NFL Super Bowl XLVII football game between the San Francisco 49ers and Baltimore Ravens in New Orleans, Louisiana, in this February 3, 2013, file photo. U.S. power company Entergy Corp said Februray 8, 2013, it has traced the cause of Sunday's Super Bowl power outage to an electrical relay device. REUTERS/Jonathan Bachman/Files (UNITED STATES - Tags: SPORT FOOTBALL)

The company that supplied electricity to the Super Bowl took blame Friday for the power outage that brought the game to a halt, explaining that a device designed to prevent a blackout failed and plunged the game into darkness for more than half an hour.

The device called a relay had been installed to protect the Superdome from problems in the cable that links the company's incoming power line with the lines that run into the stadium.

Officials from Entergy New Orleans said the relay functioned with no problems during January's Sugar Bowl and other earlier events. It has been removed and will be replaced.

All systems at the Superdome now are working, and the dome was to host a major Mardi Gras event Saturday night, said Doug Thornton, an executive with SMG, the company that manages the stadium for the state.

Not long after Friday's announcement, the manufacturer of the relay, Chicago-based S&C Electric Co., released a statement saying the blackout occurred because system operators had put the device's so-called trip setting too low to allow the device to handle the incoming electric load.

The statement did not name the operators, but the equipment was owned and installed by Entergy New Orleans, a subsidiary of New Orleans-based Entergy Corp.

Brown to coach Dallas RBs

The Cowboys are set to hire Browns running backs coach Gary Brown for the same job in Dallas.

The team's website reported Friday that the addition of Brown was expected to be completed next week. He would replace Skip Peete, who was the first coach fired in an offseason overhaul of coach Jason Garrett's staff.

Brown spent the past four seasons with the Browns, his first NFL job.

A former NFL back, Brown has college coaching experience with Lycoming, Susquehanna and Rutgers.

Tax for Panthers' stadium backed

Charlotte's City Council is backing a plan to give the Panthers nearly $144 million from a food and beverage tax hike to pay for upgrades to its downtown stadium.

The tentative deal announced Friday by Charlotte Mayor Anthony Foxx would require approval from the N.C. General Assembly for the city to increase its prepared food and beverage tax by one cent. That part of the deal hasn't been settled.

Players in gun control ad

NFL greats Emmitt Smith, Deion Sanders, Michael Irvin, LaDainian Tomlinson and Marshall Faulk are appearing in a public service announcement in favor of gun law reforms.

The spot released Friday is paid for by Mayors Against Illegal Guns, which was founded by New York City's Michael Bloomberg and Boston's Thomas Menino.

Saints interview Ryan

Former Cowboys assistant Rob Ryan interviewed the Saints for their vacant defensive coordinator job. Coach Sean Payton fired defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo and announced he wanted to switch to a 3-4 defense.

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