WASHINGTON - The Seattle Seahawks visited the White House on Wednesday to meet with President Obama in honor of winning Super Bowl XLVIII.
President Obama addressed the team's underdog status. He mentioned their win over the 49ers to reach the Super Bowl, to their win over Denver in the big game. The Seahawks dominated one of the best offenses in the NFL despite a roster of players who were drafted in the fifth round or later working alongside undrafted players.
"So let me just say, as a guy who was elected president named Barack Obama, I root for the underdogs. And so seeing folks overcome the odds excites me. But it also excites me when you see the whole being greater than the sum of its parts. And that's what team is all about. And this is a team," the president said.
Obama received a banner from "Legion of Boom" member Cornerback Richard Sherman representing the team's 12th man.
"So we can't talk about the Seahawks without talking about the 12th Man. Last season, "the twelves" set a record not once, but twice, for the loudest crowd noise in history. Now, history is a long time, so that's really loud. So loud on multiple occasions, they've actually created minor earthquakes, which is disturbing," the president quipped.
Obama thanked the team for it's charitable contributions including Quarterback Russell Wilson who spends every Tuesday, even during the season, visiting sick children at Seattle Children's Hospital. He noted Coach Pete Carroll's A Better Seattle and A Better LA organizations, which work to keep at-risk youth from drugs and violence.
He also mentioned owner Paul Allen's Family Foundation, which has given millions of dollars for medical research into traumatic brain injuries. And the team is raising more than $700,000 this year for causes like supporting U.S. troops and strengthening schools, the president added.
Visiting the White House for Super Bowl champion teams began after the New York Jets defeated the Baltimore Colts in Super Bowl III. The Seahawks' visit continued President Obama's tradition to recognize sports teams' efforts to give back to their communities.
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