WASHINGTON -- President Barack Obama will meet with the Baltimore Ravens on Wednesday, giving the Super Bowl champs another opportunity to celebrate their win -- this time, at the White House.
A White House visit has long been a perk of winning the Lombardi Trophy: The Ravens last made the trip in 2001, when they presented President George W. Bush with a signed football and jersey with the letter "W" on the back.
A White House official said the team will also be honored for its work in the community. The visit comes after the president called coach John Harbaugh and general manager Ozzie Newsome in February to offer his congratulations. At the time, Obama noted he and first lady Michelle Obama were moved by the story of O.J. Brigance, the former player whose fight against ALS has inspired the team.
The Ravens beat the San Francisco 49ers 34-31 for the title.
Ravens officials are no doubt hoping for a smoother trip than they experienced in 2001. The team was forced to arrange a caravan of buses that year after train service between Baltimore and Washington was interrupted because of a downed electrical line.
Then, a mini-scandal erupted when several players arrived for their meeting with the president dressed casually. Defensive tackle Tony Siragusa, for instance, wore an untucked black T-shirt that prompted a flood of angry calls to radio talks shows.