Bengals give governor a workout

Posted Jun 11, 2014

Ohio governor John Kasich advises Adam Jones on his golf swing after Wednesday's practice.

John Kasich’s bill-signing ceremony at Paul Brown Stadium Wednesday turned into a mini Olympics with the Bengals for the Ohio governor during their mandatory minicamp.

After addressing the team following practice at the invitation of head coach Marvin Lewis, Kasich gave cornerback Adam Jones an impromptu golf lesson in the end zone.

He then went inside, donned a gray Bengals T-shirt, and joined several players in the gym during their daily game of shooting baskets. In a H-O-R-S-E-like competition, three-time Pro Bowler A.J. Green and cornerback Leon Hall led the way before Kasich exited.

“He was pretty good inside the three-point line,’ said cornerback Terence Newman. “Hey, he’s the governor. For me he gets a double thumbs-up like The Fonz.”

Kasich guarded his golfing handicap worthy of the Bengals starting cornerbacks. After he and Jones struck up a conversation about grip, Kasich wouldn’t reveal the number.

“There are some things that are private. My handicap is one of them,” Kasich said. “They tried to get that out of me when we played with Obama. They never got it.”

Then when Jones emerged with a 54-degree wedge and a plastic golf ball from the locker room so the lesson could continue, Kasich’s eyes lit up.

“OK, let me see that,’ he said before addressing the ball and Jones.

“You’ve got to get on the balls of your feet, not your heels,” Kasich said as hit his shot. “Butt out.  Elbow (in) right side, okay? You have to turn your chest. This way to this way. Let’s see the grip. I like that.”

Then Kasich let Jones take a shot, but only before asking Lewis, “I want to make sure it’s OK. I don’t want him to get hurt.”

“Be an athlete,’ he advised the former first-round pick  after seeing a practice swing.

He gave some better tips when he talked to the group.

“First of all I asked the Lord to please keep them healthy,” Kasich said. “Secondly, to make Cincinnati proud. You’re a professional athlete. People admire you. Thirdly, if you don’t make the team, keep at it. Then when you make an interception and run for a touchdown, look over at Marvin Lewis. ‘Hey, you missed me.’”

Earlier in the day at PBS, which is adjacent to the Brent Spence Bridge,  Kasich signed a bill that allows tolls on a new bridge over the Ohio River that will replace an overpass.


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