In keeping with tradition, President Donald Trump hosted multiple NCAA sports teams at the White House on Friday, declaring them “great athletes” and posing for pictures. As Trump smiled alongside a group of girls for photographers to capture their snapshots, the visiting athletes suddenly turned and gave the president an incredible gift. You’ll love this!
A total of 18 teams attended the White House event on Friday, which traditionally honors athletes who have made great achievements with a special trip to the executive residence and an audience with the president. Among those included were championship women from Texas A&M equestrian, Penn State Rugby, and the University of Washington rowing teams.
President Donald Trump welcomed a wide-array of NCAA champion sports teams to the White House on Friday and posed for photos with athletes — including one picture that saw Trump in a wrestling pose with the Penn State men’s wrestling team.
“A lot of great athletes,” Trump told reporters in the middle of the visit.
In a joking mood during the exchanges with teams, Trump was seen making several athletes laugh as teams were scattered throughout various parts of the White House to meet Trump before they got tours of the Oval Office. While interacting with the Ohio State men’s volleyball team, Trump was seen jokingly smacking a volleyball in the air.
In an exchange with the Washington women’s rowing team, one of the team members made a joke to Trump about being surrounded by women. The president’s response to the joke was not immediately reported. [Source: USA Today]
As Trump posed for pictures with the NCAA champs in the Rose Garden, they unexpectedly turned and gave him an incredible gift: a jersey which said “Mr. President” and had the number 45 printed on the back. Trump was all smiles as he accepted the generous gift from the female champions.
However, not all teams were quite so gracious. The South Carolina women’s basketball team declined Trump’s invitation to visit the White House in a move which appeared to be purely political.
President Donald Trump will host college sports championship teams at the White House on Friday, although the South Carolina women’s basketball team declined the invitation. The White House says 18 NCAA teams will attend a reception at the executive mansion. [Source: Fox Sports]
“We did hear from the White House about attending [Friday’s] event, but we will not be able to attend,” South Carolina coach Dawn Staley said in a statement on Thursday night. “As I’ve been saying since our practices for this season started, all of our focus is on the season ahead. The only invitation we are thinking about is to the 2018 NCAA Tournament.”
However, Staley sang a different tune back in April, after her team won the NCAA title. At that time, the South Carolina coach said the girls would go to the White House if invited because “it’s what it stands for. It’s what national champions do.”
But in September, she told the Associated Press that she hadn’t received an invite and “that spoke volumes.” This turned out to be a blatant lie; South Carolina was, indeed, invited to attend the White House event, as Staley admitted in her statement on Thursday. She just declined the offer.
It’s sad that those on Staley’s team will miss the opportunity to meet the President of the United States simply because she cannot get passed her political biases. Of course, when Barack Obama was in office, no one would have dreamed of declining his invitation to visit the White House, despite the fact that he was probably the most progressive leader we have ever had. The double-standard is overwhelming.