Since 1995 - Insightful commentary on the Georgia Bulldogs

Post Hard to say they don’t have a point

Thursday November 29, 2007

We Recycle

I usually treat as noise complaints by the BCA about the lack of minority (read: black) head coaches. But at the risk of sounding like Terence Moore, even I thought these quick, one-man searches at Texas A&M and Ole Miss smelled a little funny. At least the schools could have pretended to go through the motions of a proper search.

To get away from the issue of race, is it wise for these programs to conduct brief “searches” that consisted of a flip through the AD’s Rolodex? Both schools are replacing what turned out to be pretty poor hires. Forget that they didn’t interview minority candidates. How about that it didn’t take either but a few days to dive headfirst into the coaching recycling bin?

Put another way, are Ole Miss and A&M fans convinced that their administrations took enough steps to find the right answer at head coach? There are millions of dollars at stake in these decisions. I don’t deny that even thorough and drawn-out searches can produce some pretty awful results, but processes like these only give groups like the BCA more standing.

2 Responses to 'Hard to say they don’t have a point'

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  • One thing to consider is that both of these positions were talked about at the begining of the season and, were known to be in jepordy. In other words the. AD’s had a long time to think about who they wanted and know who had interest.

  • I guess I’ve never understood the interest the BCA has in making its coaches into tokens that are shuffled around various programs, getting “interviewing experience” when no one really takes them seriously as candidates. This is not to say that there are no good black coaching candidates out there — there are many, and many deserve good jobs.

    The underlying evil with racial prejudice is that it dehumanizes the victim. Rather than viewing the victim as an individual member of human society with unique qualities and accomplishments deserving of individualized appraisal, the racist devolves the victim into a subhuman representative of a stereotype, with inherent limitations that render him/her unworthy of respect or individualized appraisal. In other words, the racist believes that a minority’s identification with their race is the only thing worth mentioning.

    By demanding that black coaches be interviewed before anyone can be hired for a college coaching position, one deconstructs all the gains made by those black coaches on their own merit for the past two decades of their lives and return them to nothing more than a “black coach.” If Charlie Strong, or Dennis Green, or Tyrone Willingham is ever interviewed by a school, they’ll first be seen as fulfilling the “requirement” of a minority interview, then maybe be evaluated as a real candidate for the position. Now, in many cases these folks would have gotten that interview on their own merit — and without a requirement or expectation that a black coach be interviewed, they would be discussed as a serious candidate for an important position. But once the requirement is there, suddenly the qualifications of the individual coach are sublimated — maybe subsumed — by the color of his skin. SHAME ON ANYONE who asks us to take this dramatic step backward as a society — and who asks the impressively-qualified black coaches to become interchangeable horses in a coach-interviewing merry-go-round.

    And let’s face it — do we really believe that college administrators — COLLEGE ADMINISTRATORS — are among those willing to ignore quality college coaching talent to indulge in their racial prejudices?? And if we do, why do we think that forcing them to parade a black candidate through their offices will change their small, pitiful, racist minds?

    Remember, colleges are WAAAY ahead of the rest of the country on coercive diversity. This is the land of ethnically-oriented clubs, affirmative action in college admissions, entire departments dedicated to studying and affirming racial minorities, etc. If anyone is going to judge an employer for failing to include a black coach in his job search process, it’s college presidents, trustees, and faculty. To suggest that this culture is incapable of policing itself every five years or so when a new coach is hired is to assume that no place in America is free of racism, and that nothing short of quotas will ever result in a black coach getting hired. That’s not the America I know, it’s not fair to either the coaches or the administrations, and it ossifies the view that college sports will always need quotas to be free of racism.

    P.S. — do we really think these questions would be raised if the schools in question weren’t in Texas and Mississippi? Is the real prejudice at work here one of regional bias on the part of the accusers, rather than racial?