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  • the optimist in me says things will get better, but there's been no evidence in the recent cycles to back that up without evidence.

  • All we have is hope.

  • We just haven't been able to move the needle.

  • And he added that the enemy has yet to matriculate to the next level that that's a real head scratcher to him.

  • Obviously, we know how successful the enemy has been.

  • Stephen A.

  • Do you think?

  • Star players.

  • So we've heard from coaches.

  • Do you think star players need to be more vocal about the lack of black head coaches in the NFL?

  • Hell, yes.

  • It should have been the case.

  • Uh, and I'm not gonna call out names or whatever, because I don't know, uh, you know the folks who may have done so or those who are doing it behind the scenes, more power to them.

  • But when you talk about giving a voice to the voiceless, which is something that has been popularized throughout American history when it comes to discrimination or racial product or racist practices, the fact of the matter is that being silent or just operating behind the scenes, although that can be productive, you have to speak out at some point.

  • At least, somebody does.

  • And the reality is that when it comes to black coaches in the NFL as well as in the National Basketball Association, they're few and far between, Um Avery Bradley and Kyrie Irving the guys that I'd like to give credit to, uh, in the off season before bubble play, because they were trying to bring attention to the paucity of black coaches in the National Basketball Association because the numbers were dwindling before our very eyes and we didn't hear anything.

  • That's always been the case in the National Football League.

  • As of right now, the years 2000 and 21.

  • Excuse me.

  • There are three black head coaches.

  • Three.

  • That's it.

  • Mike Tomlin, Brian Flores in Miami and, of course, David Cully, who is the new head coach for the Houston Texans who has been in the league for 27 years before he got a head coaching job.

  • Robert Saleh for the Jets.

  • You know, he came over as a defensive coordinator from the San Francisco 40 Niners to get the head coaching job.

  • Born in Michigan, raised of Lebanese descent.

  • Lebanese parents, What have you uh, not African American, but nevertheless, it's a minority high.

  • Of course.

  • The previous year, Ron Rivera, well respected and recognized, got hired in the nation's capital by the by the Washington football team.

  • Uh, but he was the only minority hired a year before that.

  • The league is 70% back black.

  • It's a multibillion dollar establishment.

  • They're talking about how this lead could generate in excess of 25 year, at least before the pandemic that they that's what they were talking.

  • And yet, considering how popular this league is, nothing has happened and no player says anything about it.

  • The millions upon millions of dollars that they're making, the way they're set in their generations are set somehow, some way.

  • Nobody has the courage to open their damn mouth to speak out about it.

  • If you remember Max, I brought this up when it came to even Colin Kaepernick when Colin Kaepernick took a knee OK, everybody was in an uproar, coming to his defense because he had been marginalized because he had been essentially blackball.

  • Well, guess what?

  • I got a slew of a black coaches that could say this has been happening to them for decades, but no player said anything and my last point.

  • Max.

  • Mike Tomlin has been in the National Football League for 14 years as a head coach.

  • His record is 1 45 78 1.

  • He's 1 65% of his games.

  • Max Kellerman.

  • Are you aware of any of the assistance of his assistants?

  • Have been hired, But But But But But Sean Payton got a tree and Andy Reid got a tree and show.

  • And you know, I mean, the list goes on and on.

  • I mean, I'm Sean McVeigh.

  • I mean, they got trees.

  • They, you know, they got proteges.

  • They got folks sprinkled throughout the league getting jobs.

  • Zach Taylor, No disrespect.

  • Wish him nothing but the best in Cincinnati.

  • He got a job there.

  • Okay, where you come from, All I'm just saying is, you just look at it and it's like the unfairness is so flagrant.

  • It's disgusting.

  • And and and black players should be speaking up.

  • Yes, a long time ago.

  • Well, I agree.

  • I think players black and white should be taking the lead here, as LeBron James and Chris Paul and others have done in the NBA.

  • Let's keep in mind what we're dealing with in the NFL, though.

  • Stephen A.

  • Colin, Kaepernick and I mentioned this years ago while it was going on.

  • Remember we did the show in LA with Snoop and Magic.

  • Colin Kaepernick was kneeling broadly.

  • I mean, narrowly, it's it's, you know, injustice in terms of law enforcement interactions with communities of color.

  • But broadly, it's about systemic racism, right?

  • And he hasn't had a job since then.

  • He's been drummed out of the league, unjustly, has, doesn't have anything to do with his play, right, so that's what the NFL does.

  • If you make too much noise about that issue now, you might argue.

  • Well, the way Kaepernick went about it, he he he touched the third rail, at least in terms of the NFL in their business.

  • And there are ways of doing it without burning everything down.

  • We could argue about that, but okay, let's say I concede that point.

  • Yes, players should take the lead, but the power structure is completely imbalanced.

  • I mean, the reason I think primarily that we see this is there's virtually no minority ownership in the NFL and is that because the NFL is systematically kind of excluding or rejecting the attempts of minorities to own teams?

  • Or is that because of our country's original sin, you know you really want it.

  • There's enormous economic inequity in this country based on the fact that black people were once slaves.

  • And not only have there never been reparations made, but in which they are.

  • Do you know which African Americans are due?

  • In my view and would be better for us societally.

  • But in addition to that post slavery, they were also systemically, um, you know, excluded from the economy in many ways.

  • And so at least the parts of the economy you want to be involved in.

  • And so that's really what we're talking about.

  • The NFL is a reflection of the country in generally, but more specifically, even when you factor that in three African American head coach is in a league that 70% African American.

  • Yes, I think that the league should make this one of its priorities.

  • Stephen A.

  • You know, along with making money, obviously that's always going to be their priority, um, and player health, because that could be something that could affect their business long term.

  • I think this issue can also affect their business because it's beyond the pale at this point.

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  • Subscribe to ESPN plus.

the optimist in me says things will get better, but there's been no evidence in the recent cycles to back that up without evidence.

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Stephen A. on Mike Tomlin's comments about the lack of black head coaches in the NFL | First Take

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    林宜悉 posted on 2021/03/02
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