When the Alabama Crimson Tide visited the White House, they met with president Donald Trump and took pictures.
Trump also signed a football, intending to give it to the governor of Alabama — Kay Ivey. However, it appears that ball has never left 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue.
According to a report from Politico, the mystery of the signed football involves former White House staffer Cliff Sims and Chief of Staff John Kelly:
Sims told colleagues he had received sign-off from the White House counsel’s office to have the ball signed and gifted to the Alabama state house, and never handled the ball again after dropping it off. Other staffers said they saw it in Sims’ office after the team left the White House campus.
Either way, the ball eventually ended up on John Kelly’s desk, and the frustrated chief of staff summoned Sims into his office to ask him what the heck was going on with his unexpected presence in the Oval Office, and a signed football floating around the White House. Sims declined to comment.
Obviously, this is a very minor issue, but Governor Ivey probably would like to have the football, especially since Kelly seems to be frustrated by its presence.
However, perhaps the best course of action would be to wait a year, as there’s a chance Alabama could be back at the White House celebrating another title next spring.