Oh, That Joe! (No. 30 in a Series) — Biden Riffs on Sports Numbers

By Kate Barrett

Oct 20, 2008 7:15am

The garrulous Sen. Joe Biden, D-Del., walked onstage Sunday at Cheney Stadium, the ballpark of the Seattle Mariners’ Triple-A farm team Tacoma Rainiers, ready to treat the crowd of 11,500 with a few sports references.

"This is as close as I’ve come to playing pro baseball. I was a centerfielder," the Democratic vice presidential nominee said.

"Your coach gave me a jersey, #21," he continued. "Put me in coach, I’m ready to play!"

"And by the way, as we say in the Senate, if you’ll pardon a moment of personal privilege here, 21 reminds me of the most famous number in all of American college sports. It’s #44," said the loquacious Blue Hen.

Huh?

"It was at my alma mater Syracuse, Jimmy Brown wore it," Biden said of the Hall of Fame running back before citing two more legendary 44s.

"Ernie Davis — if you see the movie ‘Express’ — wore it," said the avid sports fan. "And one of your own, right here, who has a car dealership, one of the greatest running backs in the history of college football and pro football, Floyd Little, #44, lives right here, and I know he’s here somewhere. Floyd, you tried to help me make it, I used soft hands but I guess they figured they’d run over me too quickly."

– Jake Tapper and Matt Jaffe

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