MARLBORO, NY – While a sports item has been on my mind since Black Monday, or the day after the end of the NFL regular season – when head coaches are removed of their duties. Myy MTM colleague, Junoir Blaber, rehashed the notion with one of his talking points yesterday.
Rather than turn this column into the old SNL skit “Point Counterpoint“, I will tastefully disagree with Junoir about teams circumventing The Rooney Rule, which applies to the interviewing of African-American head coaching candidates. I will stop short of yelling “Junoir, you ignorant slut!” because there is one major flaw in the Rooney Rule that most pundits overlook.
There are 254 teams comprising the Football Championship and Football Bowl Subdivisions in the NFL’s minor leagues also known as Division 1 College Football. This is the arena where professional football finds it’s athletic superstars that appear on your television screens on Sundays in autumn. Logic should prevail in thinking if the college ranks are developing tomorrow’s professional players then head coaches of color should be groomed here as well. Simply put, the Rooney Rule needs to be expanded to include the NFL’s amateur league.
Consider this, there are only 13 black head coaches of the 128 Football Bowl Subdivision or roughly ten percent. Ahead of the news of Brian Flores‘ hire by the Miami Dolphins, there were only two minority NFL head coaches but with Flores that makes three or approximately ten percent. Numbers are facts and this hammers home my point that the major colleges need to institute some kind of Rooney Rule if you will and as I’m quick to jump down the NFL’s throat about things they do incorrectly, the league is not to blame here–it’s the money grubbing colleges across the football landscape.
So get used to the recycling of head coaching dreck like Adam Gase. It also seems to me that white college coaches who employ gimmick offenses (spread formation and the like) are always bandied about due in large part to having better paid (ahem!) athletes than most of their opponents. State colleges and universities are supposed to follow our nation’s equal employment opportunities in the hiring of these prospective minority head coaches who are after all interviewing to become state employees first and football coaches, secondly. Our colleges are largely failing in their employment practices so let’s not be quick to crucify the NFL on this one.
What’s your opinion? We’d like to know. And remember… jugs are nice, too!