Obama’s Election Day Basketball Ritual

By Lee Speigel

Feb 11, 2008 4:09pm

ABC News’ Sunlen Miller reports: It’s turned into an unofficial ritual and, perhaps, superstition of Sen. Barack Obama, D-Ill.: playing basketball on Election Day.

He played basketball the day of the Iowa caucus, and South Carolina primary, and won both contests.

He did not play the day of the New Hampshire primary, and Nevada caucus, and lost.

He recently said on “60 Minutes” that playing basketball is an Election Day “rule” now.

At College Park, Md., home of the Maryland Terrapins, Obama almost caught basketball fever a day too early, as Tuesday is Election Day in Maryland, Virginia, and D.C.

Seeing some members of the women’s Terrapin team in the crowd, who won the 2006 title, Obama gave them a shout out and a little challenge: “If I had brought my sneakers, I’d suit up. I’d play a little bit against ya, I still got game,” Obama joked. “I’ll bring down some jumpers out there.”

The lady Terrapins are 25-2 this season, and a contender for a national championship.

As Obama heads into the Potomac Primary on Tuesday, himself looking for a national win, he reminded the crowd of his toughness, on and off the court.

“Sen. Clinton says, ‘well, you gotta elect me, because I’ve been around a long time, so, I can go after the Republicans and I’m tough.’ Well, let me tell you something. I may be skinny, but I’m tough, too. I’m looking forward to mixing it up with John McCain.”

The campaign says basketball is not on the schedule for Tuesday … yet. But be advised that there’s always room for basketball on Election Day.

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