President Trump to honor NCAA teams Friday; Gamecocks say no to invite


Trump began a series of stops on the South Lawn, then went to the State Floor and Rose Garden on the White House grounds.

SC won its first national championship last April with a win over Mississippi State in the title game. It's customary for the president to host title-winning NCAA teams.

Appearing as the team ended practice for the day, Staley bluntly said why she and the team wasn't at the White House appearing alongside other NCAA Championship teams. "We haven't gotten an invitation yet and that in itself speaks volumes", she told the AP. "The only invitation we are thinking about is to the 2018 NCAA Tournament".

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The fourth-ranked Gamecocks opened their championship defense last week and have won their first three games, including a 66-36 win over Clemson on Thursday ahead of Sunday's home game against Wofford. "We'll go to the White House", she said at the time. "I don't know what else has to happen".

Staley's stance changed over the coming months when Trump invited championship teams from other sports to the White House but did not bestow that same honor on SC. "I got bigger fish to fry than worry about an invitation". The NBA champion Golden State Warriors, meanwhile, were never invited because star point guard Steph Curry said his team doesn't support Trump and his agenda. The North Carolina men's basketball team - whose coach, Roy Williams, has been publicly critical of Trump - begged off, citing a scheduling conflict.

Staley made no mention of politics nor hurt feelings in her statement.