Aug 15, 2020 - Sports

Trump says he talked to Clemson QB Trevor Lawrence about fall play

Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence on June 13.
Clemson quarterback Trevor Lawrence on June 13. Photo: Maddie Meyer/Getty Images

President Trump told reporters at a Saturday press conference that Clemson star quarterback Trevor Lawrence called him about the upcoming college football season.

What they're saying: “...I want college football to come back. These are strong, healthy, incredible people. These are people that want to play football very badly," Trump said Saturday evening. "A great, great talented quarterback Trevor Lawrence called me two days ago; I spoke to him a couple times."

  • "He said, 'Sir, I want to just tell you we want it back, we want to play.' He's an incredible quarterback from an incredible school, Clemson. And he's going to have a very good future in the NFL."
  • "He made the statement that he feels he's safer on the field than he is outside of the field."

A Clemson football spokesman told Axios that according to Lawrence, the White House reached out and provided him a number to call.

Driving the news: Lawrence is among several high-profile players who voiced their desire to play the fall season, Axios' Kendall Baker writes.

  • "Football is a safe haven for so many people," Lawrence tweeted last Sunday. "We are more likely to get the virus in everyday life than playing football."
  • Following Lawrence's tweets, a dozen players from all five major NCAA conferences released a joint statement, expressing their desire to play the 2020 season, while laying out their plans to form a players' association in the future.

The big picture: The Big Ten and Pac-12 announced this week they've voted to postpone their 2020 fall sports seasons, including football, due to risks posed by the coronavirus pandemic, hoping instead to play next spring.

  • Trump has repeatedly pushed for college football to return this fall.
  • The president's effort to resume football is "elevating the emotionally charged cultural debate as part of his push to reopen the country amid the coronavirus pandemic," the Washington Post writes.
Go deeper