Tuesday, May 25, 2010
Obama to host U.S. soccer, Duke teams
ESPN.com news services
The U.S. World Cup team and the Duke men's basketball team will visit the White House on Thursday.
U.S. soccer president Sunil Gulati says the entire team and former President Bill Clinton, the honorary chairman of the nation's bid for the 2018 and 2022 World Cups, will attend. Gulati called it "a unique experience" to have two presidents, Clinton and President Barack Obama, and the team for a photo together.
Coach Bob Bradley will cut seven players on Wednesday, bringing the roster down to the 23 required by FIFA. The Americans open the tournament in South Africa against England on June 12, when Vice President Joseph Biden is expected to attend.
Gulati says Clinton will go to several matches in South Africa. Obama has said he might attend if the team reaches the latter stages of the World Cup.
The Blue Devils beat Butler in one of the more memorable final games in Final Four history for the men's national title last month in Indianapolis.
The team is expected to meet Obama mid-morning and if weather permitting would be given a South Lawn welcoming.
Obama picked Duke to lose to Villanova in the Elite Eight in the South Regional in his bracket on ESPN.com.
Obama's personal assistant, Reggie Love, played for Duke and coach Mike Krzyzewski and was a member of the 2001 national championship Blue Devils.
The women's national champion Connecticut made its visit to the White House earlier this month.
Information from ESPN.com's Andy Katz and The Associated Press was used in this report.