Nashville Mayor John Cooper at least says he’ll be rooting for the Tennessee Titans in their playoff game on Saturday against the New England Patriots. But his rooting interests are complicated — and there’s evidence of Patriots fandom in the mayor’s household.
The mayor has a Boston connection, having attended Harvard University, and there are unconfirmed reports he’s had Patriots logos on his cars in the past. Maybe a license plate frame; perhaps a tire cover. Emphasis on “unconfirmed.”
And his whole family — decked out in Pats gear — was photographed at a recent game in Foxborough, Mass.
When asked who he’ll pull for, a statement from Cooper was characteristically nuanced.
“When it comes to professional football, the mayor’s household is a divided one as many Nashville families can likely sympathize with,” it says.
The mayor’s office says his middle son has been a diehard Patriots fan since grade school.
“As for the mayor, he will be cheering for the Titans on Saturday — and consoling a child on Sunday.”
Cooper did extend a friendly wager to the mayor of Boston, Marty Walsh. He offered a six-pack of the recent, award-winning wheat beer by East Nashville Beer Works, plus a meal at Slim & Husky’s Pizza Beeria the next time Walsh visits.
But Boston’s mayor long ago swore off making these kinds of sports bets, saying his teams have been on a hot streak since he stopped.
“I’m not going to put any jinx on the Patriots or any of our Boston teams,” Walsh told the mayor’s office, prompting one more zing from Mayor Cooper. He called Walsh’s refusal to wager “an unqualified hedge.”