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The musings of a Detroit-area sportswriter in the digital age.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Is it only OK to celebrate with the fans?

(My follow up to the James Harrison story buried on B5 in Tuesday's edition between Michael Vick and an update on the ever-popular "Monday Night Football")

One of the coolest things about winning a professional sports championship is going to the White House to schmooze with the current president. I must have been too quick to assume everyone felt the same way.
Steelers linebacker James Harrison apparently disagrees. The reigning NFL Defensive Player of the Year will be skipping the team's trek to Washington D.C Thursday, telling The Associated Press "I don't feel like it's that big a deal to me."
You might think he's just not that into the White House because the Steelers just went three years ago. But Harrison abstained during the second Bush term, also.
He added that had the Cardinals kept the lead from their amazing Super Bowl XLIII comeback, President Obama would have been inviting Larry Fitzgerald and the Cardinals.
Come on, we're not talking about skipping out on an All-Star contest to rest an injury. How often are you going to get to go and visit with the President of the United States?
Obviously, this guy's an easy target and I would assume other athletes have bailed before, but when you're a big name in the NFL, you've got an image to uphold for a league routinely getting punched in the face by the "professionals" it employs.

In this Feb. 3, 2009, file photo, Pittsburgh Steelers linebacker James Harrison holds the Vince Lombardi trophy during the NFL football team's Super Bowl victory parade in Pittsburgh. Harrison plans to pass on another trip to the White House with the Steelers.


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