Eva Longoria has confirmed that she is dating New York Jets quarterback Mark Sanchez, following weeks of rumors and more than a year after she divorced NBA player Tony Parker.
Host Mario Lopez asked the 37-year-old about her new flame on the TV show "Extra," referencing a recent New York Post cover story about the two, which had followed several other dating reports. In early September, the newspaper published a photo of the "Desperate Housewives" actress and Sanchez, 25, dining with several friends at a Donald Trump National Golf Club in New Jersey.
"You're an (expletive)," Longoria told Lopez, laughing. "No, Mark and I are, you know, fine. We're happy. We're just ... dating."
"You know what, I'm a big fan of the Jets because they have the best center in the NFL - Nick Mangold," she added.
Sanchez has not commented about their relationship. The magazine In Touch had reported on July 2 that the two were spotted together in early June, shopping together at a New Jersey supermarket and having dinner with friends at a New York hotel.
Longoria, best known for playing feisty Gabrielle Solis on ABC's "Desperate Housewives," was married to Parker, a 30-year-old player for the San Antonio Spurs basketball team, for more than three years. Their divorce was finalized in January 2011. She was previously married to actor Tyler Christopher from 2002 to 2004. The actress has no children.
Sanchez was born in Long Beach, near Los Angeles, and grew up in the Orange Cou nty area of California. He studied and played football at the University of Southern California before he was drafted by the Jets in 2009.
The New York Post also described several of his and Longoria's reported dates - it said they once had dinner at a steakhouse and on a different night, dined at a Japanese restaurant and attended a performance of the Broadway musical "Rock of Ages."
Sanchez had appeared on stage at the 2010 Tony Awards to introduce the cast of "Memphis" and declared: "I've become a huge fan of musicals since I've come to New York and I've taken some heat from guys on the team, believe me."
Longoria was also asked by Lopez about a possible run for political office. She told him: "No, I think the power is in the citizen."
The actress had recently given a speech at the Democratic National Convention on September 6, as did Scarlett Johnasson and Kerry Washington (watch videos of their speeches).
Longoria is an avid supporter of President Barack Obama. She participated in an Obama For America Women's Summit event at Miami Dade College on August 4. She also serves as a national co-chair of Obama's reelection campaign. She also supported Obama in 2008.
(Pictured above: Eva Longoria speaks at an Obama For America Women's Summit event at Miami Dade College on Aug. 4, 2012 in Miami , Florida. / New York Jets quarterbacks Mark Sanchez, left, and Tim Tebow meet on the sidelines in the second half of a preseason NFL football game against the Philadelphia Eagles on Aug. 30, 2012, in Philadelphia. AP Photos / Jeff Daly / Invision / Matt Rourke)