White House visit excites Steelers


By Teresa Varley

Today will be one Steelers players will remember for a lifetime when they visit the White House as guests of President Barack Obama.

It has become a tradition that the teams that win sports championships are given the honor and it is the Steelers turn for their victory in Super Bowl XLIII.

"I am looking forward to it," said linebacker James Farrior. "It's always an honor to go visit the White House and see the President. I enjoyed it last time. It was a lot of fun. It was my first chance being at the White House so I got to see a little bit of the house and met the President. This time it will be different. We have seen the White House, but this time we have a new President."

Fellow linebacker Patrick Bailey, who just completed his rookie year, wasn't with the team when they visited the White House after Super Bowl XL so he is thrilled to be a first-time guest.

"It will be a great experience," said Bailey. "Not many people get to do it. It's a great experience to have. It will be memorable."

Ike Taylor will be making his second visit and hopes to walk away from it with a special memento.

"Everyone doesn't get to shake the President's hand," said Taylor. "Hopefully I can get an individual picture and put it up in the house. Not many people get to shake the hand of a person that powerful. It's exciting."

The visit will be especially significant for running back Mewelde Moore. His grandfather, M.C. Moore, fought for civil rights in Louisiana as late as the 1990s and was instrumental in having a law passed in Hammond, Louisiana that requires each school in the Tangipahoa Parish School system to have one African-American head coach at each school, with no sport specified. The law was passed after Moore died in the mid-90s, but his contribution lives on, with a road even being named after him in Hammond.

"With my family background and the things I knew my grandpa did as far as the Civil Rights Movement and President Obama being the leader and inspiration to an individual like myself, it's just overwhelming," said Moore. "It's going to be an honor. If I get to say anything to him the first thing I would say is you are doing a heck of a job and we appreciate your hard work and efforts and continue to be a great role model and inspiration to us all."

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