Trump Takes Unwarranted Victory Lap for Return of Big 10 Football
Shortly after the Big 10 conference announced Wednesday that it will, after all, go forward with football this fall, Donald Trump dropped everything on his busy morning schedule to try to take credit for the development.
“It is my great honor to have helped!!!,” he crowed.
Great News: BIG TEN FOOTBALL IS BACK. All teams to participate. Thank you to the players, coaches, parents, and all school representatives. Have a FANTASTIC SEASON! It is my great honor to have helped!!!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) September 16, 2020
The only problem is that Trump’s had absolutely nothing to do with the conference’s unanimous vote to reverse last month’s decision not to play.
The president of one Big Ten university told NBC News: “President Trump had nothing to do with our decision and did not impact the deliberations. In fact, when his name came up, it was a negative because no one wanted this to be political.”
The conference said its reversal on playing had to do with improving conditions, particularly as it relates to new medical information and rapid testing possibilities presented to them this past weekend.
The Big Ten Council of Presidents and Chancellors (COP/C) adopted significant medical protocols and has voted unanimously to resume the football season starting the weekend of October 23-24, 2020: https://t.co/b5yHShGb1D
— Big Ten Conference (@bigten) September 16, 2020
Trump has been on a bit of rant specifically about Big 10 football getting back on the field, tweeting last month:
Disgraceful that Big Ten is not playing football. Let them PLAY!
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) August 29, 2020
He even brought up the subject at Tuesday night’s ABC News Town Hall, stating: “I’m pushing very hard for Big 10, I want to see Big 10 open — let the football games — let them play sports.”
The likely motivation for his focus on that particular conference? Several Big 10 schools are in pivotal swing states, including Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Wisconsin. Trump’s campaign advisers have impressed upon him the need for sports’ return to action as an indicator that life is returning to normal ahead of the Nov. 3 election.