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South Carolina Women's Basketball Team Declines White House Invite To "Focus On The Season Ahead"

SC women's basketball coach Dawn Staley says her team will not be able to go to an event at the White House Friday honoring college sports champions.

All nine members of the Bearcats' title-winning squad were joined by head coach Shannon O'Keefe, director of bowling Bryan O'Keefe, graduate assistant coach Matt Farber, and director of athletics Chuck Brueggemann.

SC won its first national championship last April with a win over Mississippi State in the title game. It marked the first NCAA national championship for McKendree in any sport. Chatting with the Ohio State men's volleyball team, he popped a colorful volleyball into the air.

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It's tradition for championship teams to visit the president every year, but since Trump took office a number of teams and players have refused the invitation.

"We haven't gotten an invitation yet and that in itself speaks volumes", Staley said, per Doug Feinberg of the Associated Press.

You may remember the drama around the president, Steph Curry, and the National Basketball Association champion Golden State Warriors back in September. The feud erupted as Trump was lambasting NFL athletes for kneeling in protest during the national anthem.

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Though an invitation was eventually extended, Staley's team will be sitting this one out.

"I've got practice tomorrow", Staley said after the game.

"That in itself speaks volumes", Staley said, according to an October 4 report by The State. "All of our focus is on the season ahead". "The only invitation we are thinking about is to the 2018 NCAA Tournament". The teams will be honored at the White House for their achievements, and then spend the rest of the day sightseeing.

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