Obama gives Sanchez a shout-out

March, 3, 2011
3/03/11
5:00
PM ET
President Barack Obama got into a discussion about the NFL labor situation Thursday at the White House, Rex Ryan's ultimate destination spot, when he brought Jets QB Mark Sanchez into the conversation.

Obama, in a joint appearance with Mexican president Filipe Calderon, was asked about the potential lockout. Obama gave his two cents, explaining why he hasn't gotten involved in the dispute. Calderon also gave his take, saying "football is very important to many Mexicans" -- namely, his wife, Margarita Zavala.

Obama remembered back to last May, when he held a state dinner in honor of the Mexican president and the First Lady. Sanchez was invited to the dinner at the White House, where he got a chance to schmooze with Zavala, who brought a Sanchez jersey. Sanchez is a third-generation Mexican-American.

When Calderon made his comments about football, it prompted this quip from Obama.

"I will say that at the state dinner the first lady of Mexico seemed quite excited to see Mark Sanchez there," the prez said, prompting laughter. "I don't know if that was of concern for you."

Calderon responded that he was unfazed and noted his wife had participated in a coin flip at a Jets game.

Rich Cimini

ESPN New York Jets reporter

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