First it was San Antonio Spurs coach Gregg Popovich. Then it was Golden State Warriors coach Steve Kerr.
Then it was Pistons coach Stan Van Gundy. And NASCAR driver Dale Earnhardt Jr. And Toronto Raptors point guard Kyle Lowry.
Each day, the list of coaches and athletes offering political opinions grows longer.
On Sunday, former Tigers outfielder Aubrey Huff chastised anti-Donald Trump protesters through Twitter.
“Time for something called a job,” he told them.
(Which is interesting, because Huff did little more than strike out and sit on the bench during his short stint in Detroit.)
On Monday, Earnhardt used Twitter to support the idea of immigration. New England Patriots tight end Martellus Bennett said he’d skip the White House ceremony if his team won Sunday’s Super Bowl.
Call it the merging of politics and sports, where athletes and coaches and the journalists who cover them have stepped into a roiling new world.
Because it’s ugly out there. Which might be the only point most of us can agree on at the moment. Which also means you’d better get used to it.
Get used to hearing coaches condemn immigration policy. Get used to hearing players standing up for what they think is justice. Get used to seeing political references in the Twitter feeds of your favorite sports writers and bloggers.
Old demarcations are falling quickly. Sports no longer are played in an escapist bubble.
Not that they ever fully were. It was just easier to pretend.