FanDuel - WFBC

October 26, 2005

Air Force Football Team sucks because they have no black kids: Maybe all their african-american student-athletes are playing baseball

posted by HATER 187 to culture at 11:50 AM - 59 comments

Ha! Now that's funny.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 11:58 AM on October 26

Damn, Hater. You beat me to it.

posted by willthrill72 at 11:59 AM on October 26

Alot of whats in the article is old news. Recruiting for football must be hard. Playing a sport for a service acadmy is not as easy thing.. Why would anybody with a possibility of palying pro ball go to a service academy. People are recruted on more that just an ability to play a sport. I am not saying that blacks cant make the acadamy standards. They can and do--they just dont play football! Its really not a big story..It seems to be a way to bring up some of the "old news"......

posted by daddisamm at 12:03 PM on October 26

They can and do--they just dont play football! Is this your considered opinion after running the numbers?

posted by Uncle Toby at 12:34 PM on October 26

if you know the numbers-i will run them

posted by daddisamm at 12:48 PM on October 26

The sad thing is, this "old news" keeps coming back up because peopleneed to change their thought processes when it comes to race. As a Black man, I feel that the coaches comments were just plain ignorant, and shouldn't be blown too far out of proportion.

posted by supersly26 at 12:53 PM on October 26

supersly26--you wrapped it up in a nutshell--

posted by daddisamm at 12:58 PM on October 26

supersly26, did you ever read Friday Night Lights Besides being a great read about high school football (there's a lot more to it than the movie), there's a lot in the "how they got here" that has to do with how the city's schools were integrated, and the quest for the mythical black running back. The perception is an ignorant one, but apparently still has currency, at least at the Air Force Academy.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 01:00 PM on October 26

Wow, what an idiot. He should lose his job because of it if Howard Cosell lost his MNF job for saying "Look at that monkey run." Its pretty much the same thing only separated by a couple of decades. And Fisher Deberry should have known better than to say such stupid things. Does he need a Chinese kid to do his statistics and a Mexican kid to keep the field nice and green? See, offensive.

posted by fenriq at 01:05 PM on October 26

I don't think he should lose his job. He is right that they probably did lose because TCU has faster players. And some of those faster players probably are black. It wouldn't be a bad thing for him to get the AFA to increase its minority recruiting. I think his statements show more ignorance than anything malicious.

posted by bperk at 01:19 PM on October 26

Fenriq, if you think Howard Cosell was a racist, I suggest you do some research. He used the word "monkey" not as an epithet but as the best way to describe Alvin Garrett's leaping ability and movements. In fact, IICR, Garrett was actually pleased by Cosell's reference. As for DeBerry, perhaps he should have thought twice, but is there any other reason to explain the overwhelming number of black running backs in the NCAA and NFL aside from a possible racial speed advantage? Do white coaches put African-Americans in the backfield not because they have the skills, but because they wish to advance them through more publicity? Why is almost running back in the CFL a black man imported from the United States? lbb, I'm glad you referenced Friday Night Lights the book rather than the movie. But even if we agree the coaches were racist and misguided, would they have sought out black players if they weren't faster than their white counterparts? Wouldn't they have sought white running backs at any cost? I don't even know what to call it, but the suggestion seems to me to be that coaches everywhere have been fooled into believing African-Americans are faster than whites. Is that the case? I guess what I'm saying is, why is it racism to say black men are faster as a whole than white men when nearly every shred of practical evidence we have -- the racial make-up of speed positions in sports, sprint teams in track and field -- points to that being the truth? Someone want to educate me?

posted by wfrazerjr at 01:46 PM on October 26

The perception is an ignorant one, but apparently still has currency, at least at the Air Force Academy. No, just for one ignorant head football coach at the Academy.

posted by smithnyiu at 01:49 PM on October 26

Black....white....who gives a crap??!!

posted by Sasquatch12154 at 01:52 PM on October 26

but is there any other reason to explain the overwhelming number of black running backs in the NCAA and NFL aside from a possible racial speed advantage? Well, then, clearly there's a racial advantage for white people in hockey and skiing, right? Cuz, wow, I just can't think of any other possible reason why they'd be represented in those sports in such overwhelming numbers. lbb, I'm glad you referenced Friday Night Lights the book rather than the movie. But even if we agree the coaches were racist and misguided, would they have sought out black players if they weren't faster than their white counterparts? The "black players" they were seeking out (you did read the book, right) were thirteen years old. I don't recall any indication that they were actually scouted as individuals. The people who wanted to boost Mojo football believed, sight unseen, that there were these fantastic black proto-running backs out there, so when the Odessa schools were forcibly desegregated, the forces that be saw to it that Permian got the black kids.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 02:07 PM on October 26

The biographical movie on Cosell starring John Turturro claimed that he used "monkey" as a term of endearment for his grandchild and innocently employed it on a black player.

posted by rcade at 02:08 PM on October 26

The evidence you are looking to indicate that black men are faster than white men is to look at only the premiere athletes and then conclude that the rest must fall in that group. If we agree that the premiere black athletes are faster than the premiere white athletes, why does that mean that the rest of the class must follow suit? Couldn't it just be that social factors are reinforcing these stereotypes by directing black boys to sports as a way to make their mark. "Be like Mike." It encourages the idea that since blacks are better suited to athletics, then that is where their efforts are best spent. Additionally, if you follow that logic, then white men are smarter than black men because any measure that we used to define intelligence (test scores, academic success, or whatever), the premiere white men achieve higher than black men. These sorts of stereotypes are useful tools in making sure that white people remain in jobs that require intelligence and black people remain in more physical jobs.

posted by bperk at 02:19 PM on October 26

Numbers do not lie, the best running backs in NFL history were black men, but they were not great running backs because they were black but because they were dedicated to perfecting their craft. I feel some natural athleticism is genetically predetermined but it cannot be the only factor. Maybe african-americans felt they had more to prove because of the segregation that went on and it was reason for them to work harder. I don't know we can go at this all day.

posted by HATER 187 at 02:21 PM on October 26

Black....white....who gives a crap??!! Skrewdriver's still sellin tickets, far as I know. Somebody cares.

posted by yerfatma at 02:21 PM on October 26

Excellence in sports, across racial cultures, has much less to do with skin color and much more to do with economic class. Baseball teams in the early 20th century were filled with the sons of European immigrants. Nowadays, the best ballplayers come from the most destitute countries in Latin America. In my opine. I have no data to back this up!

posted by Venicemenace at 02:24 PM on October 26

Why are we holding the coach of one of the service academies responsible for recruiting at all? Service acadamies require a Congressional nomination to attend, (unless you qualify under certain military-service related methods). Now, I do not think that anyone should have said what he did publically, but it may just be that he was frustrated at not being able to recruit the type/caliber of player that any other D1 school can. Remember, his players have to be nominated by their Senator/Representative, each of these people can have a maximum of 5 nominees attending any one academy at a time, and to even GET a nomination, the cendidate, BY LAW, has to meet the stringent admission requirements academically. Then the hard part begins, since for each slot availabe there are about 10 nominees, some athletes, some not, ALL qualifed. It is no wonder if a coach in this position may feel that he is not getting a chance at a mythical "proto-type" RB. Again, what he said was not well considered, but dang, can you blame him for maybe wanting to recruit the best ballplayer availabe rather than the one with the highest moral character, leadership ability and classroom smarts? Wait a minute....maybe we should have all the OTHER coaches in the country have to be handicapped like this.

posted by elovrich at 02:31 PM on October 26

>They can and do--they just dont play football! >>Is this your considered opinion after running the numbers? >if you know the numbers-i will run them I'm not the one making blanket statements about what certain groups can/can't/do/don't do. You're suggesting that African-American players who fit the Academy's standards don't play football. Is that notion based on anecdotes, data, or what?

posted by Uncle Toby at 02:32 PM on October 26

I am not making blanket statemnts--There are Balcks and other minorities at the Academy. Base on what the coach is saying they aint playing football!

posted by daddisamm at 02:36 PM on October 26

I'm white, and I'm slow as hell. I could blame my lack of speed on the half-dozen surgeries on my right knee, but I was pretty damn slow before I ever went under the knife.

posted by The_Black_Hand at 02:37 PM on October 26

bperk's last post pretty much summed it up. I definately will say that there are plenty of skilled young that could play any sport they want to. I live in a college town and I play with all sorts of races. I have known plenty of short and scrawny guys that can ball their asses off. Anyway the fast white kids dont like football, they like soccer. In highschool we had several awesome white atheletes that I wanted/ pleaded with to be on the football team, but they didnt want to play with us. I went to a mostly white school and we had about 10 white players out of 50 on the team and they were all lineman, I think that says it all.

posted by Drallig9399 at 02:38 PM on October 26

I think that the academies need to get rid of their football programs. First of all they suck. Second that is a lot of long days for those boys, if you want to be a soldier prepare for that, if you want to be a football player go to a regular school. If McCants thought UNC was like jail he aint seen Academy life, very very regimented.

posted by Drallig9399 at 02:43 PM on October 26

It's usually pretty hard getting admitted to an Academy with a felony conviction.

posted by JIM W. at 02:57 PM on October 26

What the Coach said, if examined without kneejerk racial reactions, amounted to the fact that he wanted some black athletes to help compensate for his slower team. He noted that player for player, team to team, it seemed to him that the black players were faster, the ones with speed. Well? Take every major school football team in the country, cut out the ten fastest players from each team, line 'em all up and see what color they are. If they are predominately black, the coach's comments were accurate. If not, then he was wrong. It's as simple as black and white.

posted by Straightup at 03:04 PM on October 26

Interesting choice of words, straightup, since it is apparent from this entire discussion that nothing involving black and white is truly simple.

posted by elovrich at 03:08 PM on October 26

The "accuracy" of the coach's comments (assuming we ignore all the comments made in this thread that point to just some of the possible causitive factors other that race-based biology) are irrelevant. He's a football coach and he wants a better football team, but as people have been pointing out, he's at a service academy. Forget race, he's not going to get the best players. So why babble on with a bunch of foolish talk about how, if he could just get some black players, everything would be better? Of course it wouldn't be -- the fast, capable players of any color are going to go elsewhere.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 03:08 PM on October 26

I had hoped to have someone explain to me why it's taboo to even discuss the possibility of racial advantages, but instead I got the snarky response I expected. I'll bow out now.

posted by wfrazerjr at 03:16 PM on October 26

we have bigger dongs too!!! LOL!!! just kidding, uh wait no im not.

posted by Big Dookie at 03:51 PM on October 26

I think that the academies need to get rid of their football programs. First of all they suck. You don't seem to recognize the cyclic nature of college football. Compare the records of IA teams over the past 20 years. Look at who's in 27th place. By your reckoning, everyone below Air Force would have to eliminate their football program. Hell, look at Army in 49th place -- you'd be getting rid of Texas Tech, Missouri, Oregon State. (OK, maybe I'll give you Navy.)

posted by joaquim at 03:51 PM on October 26

Race has little or nothing to do with this. There are fast Blacks, Whites, Reds, Yellows, etc. The reason you find more minorities in sports is it's there best way out of their economic situation. In other words there are more poor minorities and sports is the best(or at least most legal) way they can escape their situation. Every race has it's intelligent members and dummies. The problems minorities have is the ones that make the 6 o'clock news are the ones people tend to equate with their race. For all the capacity the human race has for intelligent output why do we always seem to choose the dummest ones? If we would not jump to assumptions, pride ourselves on education, and give others the same consideration we give ourselves this would be a much better and longer lasting world. Have a nice day you'all.

posted by hayesml47 at 03:59 PM on October 26

I find the idea of racial advantages predominantly myths anyway. I have heard that black people have muscle fibres that are stronger, and tendons that are stronger - but since no can say what the hell a black person is anyway (not visually, but quite literally geneologically) I find the whole thing to be moot. There is so little actually homogeny anymore that to extrapolate this onto the idea of actual race - not just what we percieve as race (which is why we call all dark skinned pople black, and claim that Jews aren't the same as Arabs) - then get back to me.

posted by WeedyMcSmokey at 04:06 PM on October 26

If this coach thinks a black guy as RB would be the thing to help him out then I guess he didn't watch a recent episode of Everybody Hates Chris where he (Chris) was sucked into playing for the school basketball team because he was black only to prove himself to be lousy at basketball. I love that show.

posted by gspm at 04:07 PM on October 26

Hey Fraze, what the hell is a "snarky"?

posted by Desert Dog at 04:48 PM on October 26

I had hoped to have someone explain to me why it's taboo to even discuss the possibility of racial advantages, but instead I got the snarky response I expected. The possibility has been discussed many times over the past few hundred years -- never, as far as I know, above the level of shabby pseudoscience. Any subject that is so wilfully tarnished by its most fervent supporters is going to have something of a credibility problem. What you call a "taboo" really only extends to civilized and rational society: there are plenty of whackjobs out there who will enthusiastically discuss racial differences until the cows come home. The rest of us, I suspect, are going to want to see some real science first before we let this one back into the parlor.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 05:49 PM on October 26

Well, then, clearly there's a racial advantage for white people in hockey and skiing, right? Cuz, wow, I just can't think of any other possible reason why they'd be represented in those sports in such overwhelming numbers. That's snarky.

posted by wfrazerjr at 05:54 PM on October 26

Excellence in sports, across racial cultures, has much less to do with skin color and much more to do with economic class. Ding ding ding. Remember much of the racial divisiveness we suffer through is just The Man trying to keep the lower classes fighting. I think that the academies need to get rid of their football programs. First of all they suck. I forgot the point of sport was winning, not striving. That's a message I would prefer you not spread to America's military academies. Alternatively: stay out of my foxhole.

posted by yerfatma at 05:58 PM on October 26

An interesting parallel -- Is the South faster than the North?

posted by wfrazerjr at 05:59 PM on October 26

On preview/ review: fraze, none of the snark should stop you from digging up some links and posting them. My Med Phys teacher in high school told us black athletes had a higher percentage of fast-twich muscle fiber, whites low-twitch, but I wonder how much of that was hard science (he was a bright guy) and how much of it was Chemistry Homework, i.e., making the proof fit the answer.

posted by yerfatma at 06:01 PM on October 26

while I agree that the context of the coach's comment may have been off base I wonder why it would be such a bad idea to have more players of color at our service academy programs. They would recieve a top notch education as well as training to last them the rest of their lives. I wonder if there isn't something else going on here is the reason that we have lower minority enrollment at service academies in general is a wish by some to exclude minorities from leadership positions?

posted by fade2244 at 06:33 PM on October 26

wfrazerjr said: but is there any other reason to explain the overwhelming number of black running backs in the NCAA and NFL aside from a possible racial speed advantage? To which I replied: Well, then, clearly there's a racial advantage for white people in hockey and skiing, right? Cuz, wow, I just can't think of any other possible reason why they'd be represented in those sports in such overwhelming numbers. ..and then wfrazerjr commented: That's snarky. No, that's sarcasm. If the presence of an "overwhelming majority" of black running backs in the NCAA and NFL suggests to you some kind of racially-based biological factor as the most obvious explanation, then gosh, shouldn't we be explaining any other similar correlation the same way? A race-based biological advantage is an explanation that fits the available facts. That doesn't make it the truth: correlation isn't causation.

posted by lil_brown_bat at 06:50 PM on October 26

anyone care to comment on my earlier post?

posted by fade2244 at 06:55 PM on October 26

lbb, I don't think your comparison holds: skiing and hockey are both expensive sports. Football and basketball are more readily available to all and, as such, see a more integrated racial participation. And yet all NFL running backs and cornerbacks are black. fade, I think the lack of minority enrollment in service academies (if such a gap exists) is attributable to the need for a congressional appointment.

posted by yerfatma at 07:02 PM on October 26

I understand the appointment angle but is that part of the "old boy network" or something else

posted by fade2244 at 07:26 PM on October 26

Well, there's x # of appointments per senator or something. How many black kids have a connection to a senator in general? How many in Idaho, Maine, etc. in particular?

posted by yerfatma at 07:29 PM on October 26

good point maybe some need to amend that policy considering we are facing a troop shortage?

posted by fade2244 at 07:41 PM on October 26

After doing some nosing about this afternoon, here's some interesting stuff I found, even if it is shabby pseudoscience -- an AOL-hosted chat and debate with two of the preeminent authors on the subject. If it interests you, click right here. On preview: doesn't it look like preeminent should have a hyphen?

posted by wfrazerjr at 08:02 PM on October 26

lbb, I don't think your comparison holds: skiing and hockey are both expensive sports. Football and basketball are more readily available to all and, as such, see a more integrated racial participation. And yet all NFL running backs and cornerbacks are black. That's a valid point (although it's not so much money as location that determines whether a kid will be able to do anything in skiing, and probably hockey too -- but I digress). I think, though, that before considering biology as the only likely connection, there are other factors that seem like they could play a role too. For instance, what I've seen around here is that city schools seem to have some challenges when it comes to keeping a football program going (the Friday night game ban in Boston, the Pop Warner issue that cropped up there recently, and some struggles that the Springfield schools have in finding playing space -- all definitely urban issues).

posted by lil_brown_bat at 08:51 PM on October 26

While he is trying to get fast black running backs, Coach DeBerry should try and get a few big 300-lb tackles to shore up his run defense. They don't have to be black, there are white guys out there who could do it. Deberry's comment could also be examined from a perspective on race in the military's elite,and how difficult. Here in the Navy, you don't find many black Nuclear Engineers. Not a racist thing at all, but if a 18 year-old black kid is smart enough to go nuc, with the bonuses given to intelligent minorities by most universities these days (which I am not criticizing, for the record), he's got college scholarships awaiting him, and he'll go for those. Likewise, if an athletic black kid meets the academic requirements to get into an academy, he can pretty much write his ticket anywhere he wants to, without having to sell 8 years of his life away afterward. It's a tricky problem getting minorities to the academies, even without bringing sports into the mix.

posted by Bonkers at 09:10 PM on October 26

Good point about the location issue, lbb. We're in agreement here, I just didn't think the comparison was 1:1.

posted by yerfatma at 06:13 AM on October 27

this is the same thing as the thread about there not being many black baseball players anymore. Black kids arent playing baseball, and white kids arent trying to play the skill postitions in football. Thats why the numbers look like they do, there are plenty of uber athletic white guys they just dont want to play football. I cant say that soccer players are worse athletes, baseball players dont impress me though. I have known some guys that could definately play corner, but they dont. They have a different kind of fire in em.

posted by Drallig9399 at 08:49 AM on October 27

Speaking about the service academies shutting down the fb program. I would rather be nonexistent than be irrelevant. If I wanted to play for a crappy team and waste my time I could have but I would rather concetrate on school and making money. Some people obviously love the game a lot more than me. But if I couldnt play in the ACC, I wouldnt play. Losing is worse than not playing.

posted by Drallig9399 at 08:53 AM on October 27

Losing is worse than not playing. Gross.

posted by yerfatma at 09:39 AM on October 27

The more I read about this, the more I feel that the caoch is getting a raw deal. What he said wasnt mean, wasnt said in anger. He stated, what more or less, is true. If a Balck coach had said the same thing noting would have been said. I am posting this after hearing and reading the reactions of Black Americans--many have come out in support of the Coach..... My fav college team ISU played Army this year. I was amazed when I read about how your average service acadamy footplayer pre pares for the season. They practice after there regular summer service program is done for the day. They supplement their diets with MRE's so they dont loose wieght. They may not the best teams around-but hey I say let them play-many of thsoe guys will soon be defending our country. By the way 5.8% of the Air Force Acadamy Student body is Afro American.. Like I said before, this is a non story. We are way too sensitive on the race issue...

posted by daddisamm at 11:26 AM on October 27

gross? Mind you I am not talking about a pick up game of basketball. I'm talking about working your ass off and not even being in the top 50, I would rather be a regular student who got a academic scholarship, which I did by the way, and not even be hassled by it. But if thats gross yerfatmama than so be it.

posted by Drallig9399 at 01:15 PM on October 27

Another (in)politically-correct issue. Whatever happened to Freedom of Speech?

posted by lenescobar at 02:55 PM on October 27

I would rather be a regular student who got a academic scholarship, which I did by the way, and not even be hassled by it.

'Tis not too late to seek a newer world. Push off, and sitting well in order smite The sounding furrows; for my purpose holds To sail beyond the sunset, and the baths Of all the western stars, until I die. It may be that the gulfs will wash us down: It may be we shall touch the Happy Isles, And see the great Achilles, whom we knew. Tho' much is taken, much abides; and tho' We are not now that strength which in old days Moved earth and heaven, that which we are, we are; One equal temper of heroic hearts, Made weak by time and fate, but strong in will To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.

posted by yerfatma at 03:07 PM on October 27

You're not logged in. Please log in or register.