If his first week in office is any guide, Donald Trump is going to set a presidential record for sports mentions.
Already, the names of Tom Brady and Bernhard Langer have come up and, in an interview with ABC News’ David Muir, the president mentioned Peyton Manning when Muir asked when he’ll stop focusing on things like crowd sizes and the enthusiasm with which he is greeted at rallies.
“That speech was a home run,” Trump said of his remarks at the CIA, choosing to open his first major TV interview since the inauguration with a baseball analogy. “See what Fox said. They said it was one of the great speeches. They showed the people applauding and screaming. … I got a standing ovation. In fact, they said it was the biggest standing ovation since Peyton Manning had won the Super Bowl, and they said it was equal. I got a standing ovation. It lasted for a long period of time.”
Given the lack of measuring devices (that we know of) at the CIA and the Super Bowl, it’s impossible to quantify other than to say that the audience at the CIA fell short of Super Bowl 50’s official attendance of 71,088, not all of whom were Denver Broncos or Manning fans in Levi’s Stadium in Santa Clara, Calif. And Manning wasn’t the story of Super Bowl 50; the Broncos rode their defense to that title, with Von Miller the game’s MVP. You can watch both videos and judge for yourself.
The president and the future Hall of Famer will get the chance to take each other’s measure Thursday, when both will participate in the GOP’s congressional retreat in Philadelphia. Manning is no stranger to Republican causes, even though he initially backed a candidate not named Donald Trump. Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush outed him as a donor to his presidential campaign a year ago, telling a crowd he rooted for Manning’s Denver Broncos in Super Bowl 50 “because Peyton Manning wrote me a check.” Manning and Donald Trump Jr. ran into each other on the campaign trail last summer in Mississippi and there seemed to be no hard feelings about the past.