As the sun sets on Donald Trump’s presidency, he plans to award New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick the Presidential Medal of Freedom this Thursday, a White House official told Politico.
Other sports figures who have received the Medal of Freedom from Donald Trump include Babe Ruth, Roger Staubach, Bob Cousy, Mariano Rivera, Jerry West, Tiger Woods, Lou Holtz, Gary Player, and Annika Sorenstam.
When Donald Trump defeated Hillary Clinton in 2016, Belichick wrote him this letter, which Trump later read aloud:
“Congratulations on a tremendous campaign. You have dealt with an unbelievable slanted and negative media, and have come out beautifully – beautifully. You’ve proved to be the ultimate competitor and fighter. Your leadership is amazing. I have always had tremendous respect for you, but the toughness and perseverance you have displayed over the past year is remarkable. Hopefully tomorrow’s election results will give the opportunity to make America great again. Best wishes for great results tomorrow. Bill”
“I’ve received a number of inquiries relative to a note I wrote to Donald on Monday,” Belichick said of the letter when asked by reporters. “Our friendship goes back many years. I think anybody that spends more than five minutes with me knows I’m not a political person. My comments are not politically motivated.”