Garth Brooks Fans Mistake Barry Sanders for Bernie Sanders on Jersey

Tim Daniels@TimDanielsBRFeatured ColumnistFebruary 28, 2020

ANAHEIM, CALIFORNIA - JANUARY 17:  Garth Brooks speaks onstage at The 2020 NAMM Show on January 17, 2020 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Jesse Grant/Getty Images for NAMM)
Jesse Grant/Getty Images

Country singer Garth Brooks paid tribute to legendary Detroit Lions running back Barry Sanders by wearing his No. 20 jersey for a concert at Ford Field in Detroit on Saturday night. The act was lost in translation when he posted a picture on Instagram, though.

Brooks' photo wearing Sanders' jersey was misinterpreted by some people in the comments as an endorsement of Democratic presidential candidate Bernie Sanders in the 2020 race.

"Detroit. You carried me all night long. But you always have," Brooks wrote. "I'm in love with you!"

He made a similar post on Twitter, but the Sanders name wasn't featured:

Sanders and the Lions jokingly replied to a tweet about the mix-up on Twitter: 

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Brian Manzullo of the Detroit Free Press provided some notable replies to the Instagram post Friday:

  • "Love you, hate the shirt. Trump2020"
  • "Weird. That a millionaire would like a socialist. Hey Garth are you going to distribute your millions?"
  • "I had no idea you were a big freaking liberal socialist! I've listened to your songs for the last time!"

Not all of the feedback was negative:

  • "YESSSSSSSSSS, SANDERS FOR PRESIDENT, YOU THE BEST GARTH."

More than 70,000 fans attended the concert at Ford Field, but it wasn't until the social-media post that the act led to confusion and anger.

"You guys got the greatest player in NFL history, in my opinion," the two-time Grammy Award winner said during the concert.

Brooks took an apolitical stance in 2017 when asked about not performing at President Donald Trump's inauguration ceremony, saying he couldn't commit to doing so with his tour dates unconfirmed. He added: "We can't thank the Obamas enough for serving this country. And may God hold Trump's hand in the decisions that he makes in this country's name as well."