March Madness tipped off a little more than two hours ago. We’ve made our picks. President Obama has a bracket. And yesterday, on the eve of the NCAA tournament, Congress held a free-throw contest, sponsored by the U.S. Olympic Committee and its supporters in Congress.
Olympic gold medalists Evan Lysacek, Shawn Johnson, and Christian Laettner (somehow, he was on the Dream Team), along with some Congress members and Paralympic athletes, took part in the competition, which was staged to urge Congress to continue funding the U.S. Olympic Committee’s Paralympic Military Program.
Rep. Joe Baca (D-California) won the competition. He was the only competitor to hit all five of his free throws on the lowered rim.
However, things got a little feisty when Baca and Rep. Joe Crowley (D-New York) played some one-on-one after the contest ended. Crowley towers over Baca and, really, it was kind of embarrassing. Baca’s shifty pump fakes never stood a chance against Crowley’s height advantage. Thankfully neither man changed out of his work attire for the game.
It’s always cool to see politicians doing stuff like this, though. Sure, you can make the cynical “don’t they have something better to do?” argument, but in a country where politicians are only becoming more removed from their constituents, isn’t it good to see these guys fooling around (and for a cause), giving us all something we can relate to?