John Kasich says he's rooting for the New England Patriots against the Denver Broncos in Sunday's AFC Championship campaign. He says he is, even though he is from Pittsburgh.
"I'm actually from Pittsburgh, but I'm still rooting for the Pats," Kasich said Saturday in New Hampshire.
The Pittsburgh Steelers are an AFC rival to the Patriots. Kasich, who is fourth in the Washington Examiner's presidential power rankings, is also the governor of Ohio, a state that features two other NFL teams, the Cincinnati Bengals and Cleveland Browns.
Kasich's rooting interests likely have something to do with the upcoming New Hampshire primary; the local Patriots are intensely popular.
Carly Fiorina has been criticized for similar apparent sports pandering in the past — rooting for Iowa in a college bowl game against her alma mater, Stanford.
Likewise, Jeb Bush pitched his support for Clemson against Alabama in the national college football championship game.
Neither were good luck charms, though, both teams lost — Iowa disastrously so. The scale of the Hawkeyes' defeat prompted some on social media to talk of a "#CarlyCurse."
Though surging in some polls in the state, Kasich still trails front-runner Donald Trump, however, who has the added benefit of some support from Patriots quarterback Tom Brady.
Brady's locker has been spotted with a "Make America Great Again" hat, and Brady himself has cited his friendship with the businessman, and commented that his election to the presidency "would be great."
Brady has since said he'd like to stay out of it and his comments fall short of an official endorsement.