President Donald Trump stands on the field for the National Anthem before the start of the NCAA National Championship game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium between Georgia and Alabama, Monday, Jan. 8, 2018, in Atlanta. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Trump gets a national anthem moment at football game

Most of the college football players remained in their locker rooms during the anthem

President Donald Trump got his own national anthem moment Monday when he took the field before Alabama and Georgia faced off in the College Football Playoff National Championship.

Months after wading into the culture war over protests during the anthem, the president was greeted by tens of thousands in Atlanta with cheers and a smattering of boos. After ROTC members escorted him onto the field, the president stood with his hand over his heart and an American flag pin on his lapel. He sang a few words as Georgia’s Zac Brown Band and a gospel choir performed the anthem.

Trump has criticized professional football players who kneel during the anthem to protest racial injustice, as well as the NFL itself for allowing it.

Related: Trump’s still criticizing NFL

“We want our flag respected,” Trump said earlier Monday during a speech in Nashville, Tennessee, “and we want our national anthem respected also.”

Most of the college players remained in their locker rooms during the anthem.

The president watched the game from a private box overlooking the Alabama sideline, flanked by ROTC students. The Tuscaloosa News had reported that he would appear on the Alabama radio broadcast during the game, but that didn’t happen. ESPN also unsuccessfully sought an interview.

Trump departed the stadium during halftime as Georgia led Alabama 13-0. Rapper Kendrick Lamar, who has been a critic of the president, performed during the break.

Related: Trump puts NFL players on notice: Stand for national anthem

Minutes after Trump returned to the Washington area, Alabama won in overtime 26-23.

A few dozen protesters gathered near the stadium before the game, shouting anti-Trump slogans. But more fans seemed upset by the long lines to get into the event amid increased security.

Zeke Miller, The Associated Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.


President Donald Trump smiles while watching the NCAA National Championship game at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, Monday, Jan. 8, 2018, in Atlanta, between Alabama and Georgia. (AP Photo/Andrew Harnik)

Just Posted

COACH’S CORNER: Vancouver Giants resting up for playoffs

Once playoff action starts Friday, it’s going to be a hectic time, says head coach Jason McKee.

Langley spreads some love and happineess

Kids and adults alike noted how they’ll make the world better during International Day of Happiness.

Fraser Highway B-Line to start in 2019

New bus from Langley Centre to Surrey Central expected to be 20 per cent faster than current service

Langley-based rabbit rescue pleads for foster homes

The Aldergrove-centred Small Animal Rescue Society needs foster families to take new bunnies.

WHAT’S IN STORE: Eco-friendly Walnut Grove students vie for technology prize

In this week’s business column, there’s a lot of talk about booze and food.

Vancouver Aquarium’s resident octopus released into ocean

Staff let the Giant Pacific octopus go into the waters near Bowen Island so she can reproduce

Canucks find scoring touch in 5-2 win over Blackhawks

Four Vancouver skaters have two points apiece in victory over Chicago

‘Not well thought out:’ Arizona family slams B.C. speculation tax

American family spends half the year in vacation home on Vancouver Island

Family of B.C. wildfire victim wants better emergency preparedness for vulnerable people

Williams Lake’s David Jeff “fell through the cracks”

Senate backs bill to legalize recreational marijuana

Justin Trudeau reminded senators that his government was elected on a promise to legalize pot

Where Canadians buy real estate abroad: report

Hot Spots: Top 30 home-buying destinations for Canadians in the Americas

Ban on grizzly bear hunt, new rules take effect April 1

Taxidermists, tanners will have to report on any grizzly bears or parts brought to them

Ontario father grief stricken over murder of ex-wife and children

‘No words to explain,’ grieving father of slain teens says in statement

Russian Embassy calls Trudeau’s criticism of Putin unproductive

The Russian Embassy is firing back at Trudeau for criticizing President Vladimir Putin

Most Read