President Barack Obama has never been short of opinions when it comes to the world of sports. With the Olympics in session, baseball season in full stride, and football just around the corner, this time is no different.
Obama says he disagrees with LeBron James and Kobe Bryant that they could beat the original Dream Team, and that he’s told them that. He also has a few concerns about how the situation with Tim Tebow is going to work now that he’s with the New York Jets.
President Barack Obama joined WNBS in Columbus with The Common Man and The Torg to discuss being a White Sox fan, going to baseball games, this year’s Olympic men’s basketball team’s comments about the Dream Team, the women’s gymnastics team winning gold, the Penn State scandal and Tim Tebow in New York.
On being a fan of the White Sox:
“There are two kinds of Sox fans. There are folks who just root for the Sox, and then there are folks who hate the Cubs. And I’m in the former category. I’m not a Cubs hater. In fact, I feel bad that it’s been a hundred and something years. … I will say Wrigley is a great park. There’s nothing better than a summer afternoon, having a beer, watching a game at Wrigley.”
When you go to a game, do you have to have like 20 people sip your beer before you can drink it?:
“No, the truth is that when I go to a game these days, it’s not that bad. The only games I’ve gone to are Nationals games and usually they have to put me in a box just for security. Other than that, I can pretty much do whatever I want.”
What did you think about LeBron James and Kobe Bryant thinking this Olympics team could beat the Dream Team?:
“I’ve got to tell you, I disagree with them on this, and I’ve told them this. There are two reasons for it. One is, they don’t have big guys inside. That original Dream Team, you had Barkley, you had Ewing, you had David Robinson, you had Karl Malone. I don’t know who it is that’s guarding those guys down low. The other thing is, the nature of basketball worldwide has just changed, so there’s no way that those guys can be as dominant. … The separation between us and the other countries was so great back then.”
On the women’s gymnastics team that won gold:
“I don’t know anything about gymnastics, but when I watch these 15- and 16-year-old girls, I can’t even walk across that balance beam and they’re doing backflips and this and that. I don’t know how any human does it. They’re just amazing. And the mental toughness that they have, if they slip, they’re out. In basketball, if you miss five shots, you might get hot and make the next five.”
Did the punishment fit the crime for the Penn State scandal?:
“I think it does. I have been a big admirer of Penn State football. Obviously Joe Paterno was a great football coach, but there are some things that are just more important than sports. And making sure our kids are safe is more important than sports. I think it was appropriate to send that message that we have bigger priorities here.”
What do you think about Tim Tebow and his situation now with the Jets?:
“I’ve got to tell you, I don’t like the idea of a quarterback controversy at the start of a season. If I were a Jets fan, I’d be pretty nervous. Sanchez is not Tom Brady yet, but he led them to the playoffs two years in a row. I think Tim Tebow seems to be a wonderful young man and he’s got just a great, winning attitude … but there’s going to be a lot of tension in that situation.”