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Pat McAfee thought USC coach Lincoln Riley died because of President Biden's State of the Union address

After President Biden appeared to refer to Laken Riley as "Lincoln," Pat McAfee thought Lincoln Riley, the USC football coach, had died.

President Biden was urged to "say her name" Thursday night during his State of the Union address, a reference to Laken Riley, the Georgia college student allegedly killed by an illegal immigrant last month.

When Biden did mention her, it sounded like he botched Riley's first name and said "Lincoln" instead.

Naturally, "Lincoln Riley" trended on X, formerly Twitter, but the social media platform isn't always perfect.


X described the trend as a "sports" topic. Of course, that wasn't correct, but it makes sense.

Lincoln Riley is a real person, the head football coach at USC.

For those who were not watching the speech, it may have been a surprise to see the coach's name top the trending lists on social media out of nowhere. And, sometimes, it's unfortunately not good news.

Pat McAfee, host of "The Pat McAfee Show," spotted the trend and thought the worst had happened to the coach.

"I saw somebody with a microphone last night addressing the entire nation. He made an announcement that Lincoln Riley was dead," McAfee said on his show Friday. "I get on my phone after this event that we’re at, and it’s Lincoln Riley, and he’s trending all over. I click – ‘he’s dead.’ Lincoln Riley’s dead? Wait a second, who said that? The president? Lincoln Riley’s dead? How is this happening?


"I saw his name trending, [so] I’m like, ‘Wait, he was just on the show.’ I was like, ‘What did Lincoln Riley do?'"

Biden was shredded for the apparent mishap, most notably by Laken's mother, Allyson Phillips.

"Biden does not even KNOW my child’s name – it’s pathetic! If you are going to say her name (even when forced to do so) at least say the right name!" she wrote on Facebook.

"Joe Biden just confused Laken Riley, a college student killed by an illegal immigrant, with USC football coach Lincoln Riley. This just happened. The man’s brain is mush. Incredibly disrespectful," Outkick founder Clay Travis said.

Actor James Woods, a noted conservative in Hollywood, posted, "'Lincoln' Riley? Just appalling."

On "Hannity," House Judiciary Committee Chairman Jim Jordan, R-Ohio, also weighed in.

"It is Laken Riley, not Lincoln," Jordan said. "And we should remember that because it's [Biden's] policies that led to this tragedy that happened in Georgia to this young lady and what her family is now having to deal with."

Fox News' Charles Creitz and Brie Stimson contributed to this report.

Follow Fox News Digital’s sports coverage on X, and subscribe to the Fox News Sports Huddle newsletter.

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