President Donald Trump was in attendance for Monday night’s National Championship game between the Georgia Bulldogs and Alabama Crimson Tide, and somebody wanted to send a message for everybody to see.
Outside of Mercedes-Benz Stadium, “F*** Trump” was being projected onto Atlanta’s mammoth of a stadium:
The effect this had wasn’t so great for ESPN:
FYI they can't show the stadium on tv because someone has FUCK TRUMP projected on it. Ha.— RICHARD WADE HOW BOUT THEM DAWGS MORGAN (@studiowade) January 9, 2018
Trump walked onto the field before the game, as fans were on their feet waiting for the playing of the national anthem. The anthem was performed by Zac Brown Band, as Carly Ortega, a 12-year-old from Gwinnett County, Georgia, performed the anthem in sign language alongside.
Trump’s status as a controversial figure within sports circles grew after he made comments at a rally in Alabama about players in the NFL who were kneeling during the national anthem:
“Wouldn’t you love to see one of these NFL owners, when somebody disrespects our flag, to say, ‘Get that son of a bitch off the field right now, out, he’s fired!’ You know, some owner is going to do that. He’s gonna say, ‘That guy disrespects our flag, he’s fired.’ And that owner, they don’t know it. They don’t know it. They’re friends of mine, many of them. They don’t know it. They’ll be the most popular person, for a week. They’ll be the most popular person in the country.”
It led to a wave of NFL players demonstrating during the national anthem early in the season. Some took knees, some sat, and many more linked arms.