Grantland's Bill Simmons traveled to the White House last week to record a sports related podcast with President Obama, including conversation about Jeremy Lin, the Chicago Bulls, and a college football playoff.
Here are a few of Obama's best quotes from the sports podcast with Simmons:
On Jeremy Lin: And I knew about Jeremy before you did, or everybody else did, because Arne Duncan, my Secretary of Education, was captain of the Harvard team. And so way back when, Arne and I were playing and he said, I'm telling you, we've got this terrific guard named Jeremy Lin at Harvard. And then one of my best friends, his son is a freshman at Harvard, and so when he went for a recruiting trip he saw Lin in action. So I've been on the Jeremy Lin bandwagon for a while.
On the NBA Lockout: I just had to assume that at some point they'd work it out. My whole theory - it's the same way with the NFL lockout. If you've got billionaires on one side and millionaires on another, you guys can figure out how to divide some money up. And ultimately they did. And it was the right thing to do. And what's been encouraging is to see how fast the sport has bounced back. And with Jeremy Lin and the Heat and all the unbelievable young players that are out here right now, I think this sport is as popular as it's ever been.
On Playing Basketball: No, because I'm always getting knocked around. I don't know what people are talking about. Reggie Love, my former aide who played at Duke and he's now getting his MBA, he answered anybody who said that people took it easy on me when they played with me. He said, nobody takes it easy on Obama because if he beats them, they won't hear the end of it. [Laughter.] And it's true. I will talk about folks just to make sure that they don't take it easy on me.
On a College Football Playoff: Well, I'd rather see it eight teams, but four is a good place to start. I think that gets us on the right trend. Nothing is more frustrating than at the end of the season, nobody knows who won. And what, there is some poll? Coaches make a decision? Nobody knows what that means. Because part of what makes sports great, part of what makes March Madness great, the NFL playoffs great, is every once in a while something happens during the playoffs that shows the character of a team.
Look at the Giants this year. Nobody would have picked them. They wouldn't have been crowned as champions if you had a coaches' poll at the end of the year. But they made the plays when it counted.
On the Best Wire Character: It's got to be Omar, right? I mean, that guy is unbelievable, right? He's got to be the no. 1 seed. I mean, what a combination. And that was one of the best shows of all time.