Writers of Pro Football Prospectus 2008

04 Aug 2006

White Wide Receivers Fight Discrimination

Somewhere, Brian Stablein is crying tears of joy. Finally, someone understands his pain.

Posted by: Aaron Schatz on 04 Aug 2006

109 comments, Last at 05 Sep 2007, 1:48pm by r h scurlock

Comments

1
by Peter (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 10:48am

This is potentially the greatest article I have ever read. Where's the love for the greatest excluded class: white cornerbacks?

2
by Eric (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 10:53am

I think Bill Simmons recognized this phenomenon a couple years ago when talking about Drew Bennett. The quote was to the effect of:
"When broadcasters say that Drew Bennett has 'deceptive speed,' doesn't that basically mean he's white?"

3
by Kachunk (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 10:53am

I wasn't sure that was on the level until I got to "slow ass...cracker."

It is sort of funny though, how white guys are allowed to play QB, O and D Line, tight end, and occasionally linebacker. But that's about it. I can't think of one white running back. Only three or four white receivers.

4
by karl (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 10:54am

They have to exist to qualify as a class...that experiment ended when Jason Sehorn decided that Angie Harmon was the better play. Just be happy you've got Adam Archuleta repping you in the D backfield at all.

5
by Tom Kelso (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 10:58am

Acutally, Jason lost his status basically by letting Brandon Stokley eat him alive in Super Bowl XXXV.

Funny thing is, Sehorn later said he thought Stokley was deceptively fast.

6
by Parker (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 11:04am

"Where have you gone, Steve Largent,
Slow white guys turn their lonely eyes to you,
Woo woo woo

7
by PackMan (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 11:04am

There are white running backs, they are called fullbacks. And there are a few safeties too. But I can't remember seeing a white cornerback.

8
by cjfarls (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 11:28am

The funniest part of that article was the comment by some poster who thinks Jurevicious is a HoF receiver... almost fell out of my chair. That and the "slow ass... cracker zombie."

9
by Will Allen (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 11:37am

No Justice, No Peace!!!!!!

10
by dryheat (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 11:38am

My favorite part of the phenomenon is that white receivers can only be compared to other white receivers. When a guy like Mike Hass comes out of college, the scouts all say he could be the next Wayne Chrebet or Ricky Proehl, even if his game is nothing like theirs.

Matt Jones could be the Jags #1 WR this season. When's the last time that happened? Cris Collinsworth?

11
by Eric (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 11:43am

I think the Jurevicius post said that he would go into the "slow white receiver Hall of Fame," not the actual Hall of Fame.

12
by Steve Sandvik (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 11:49am

#6: Although I'm a Seahawks fan, I have to point out that 'Fred Biletnikoff' fits the meter of the song much better than 'Steve Largent'.

Just saying.

13
by Andrew (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 12:45pm

Kachunk #3:

How have you never heard of Mike Alstott? Before he was a fullback, he was Tampa Bay's featured running back in 1999 and 2001.

14
by PackMan (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 12:46pm

Don Bebe anyone?

15
by Andrew (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 12:52pm

I'm surprised the article misses my favorite code term for a white football player - "Fan Favorite". I always found it funny that the only "Fan Favorites" ever mentioned were the Jon Ritchie's, Mike Alstott's, Hank Fraley's, and John Lynch's of the world. Apparently, black players cannot be "Fan Favorites" just like they can't have "Deceptive Speed".

16
by Andrew (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 12:57pm

On the topic of white football players ... I just found this by Googling "white cornerback"

http://www.castefootball.us

Apparently, the Giants rostered one of these rare critters in 2001 according to one article on the site.

http://www.castefootball.us/viewarticle.asp?sportID=1&teamID=26&ID=22230

17
by Andrew (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 1:18pm

A friend of mine was a white running back for Carnegie Mellon University from 1991 to 1995. Highly intelligent, athletic, big, and agile, he broke the school records for rushing, but couldn't even get a glimpse from an NFL team.

18
by Peter (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 1:18pm

Nah, there are fan favorites who are black... Rod Smart for instance (I'm still pissed the Panthers let him go... enjoy, Raiders fans).

The Cracker Zombie line actually made me laugh out loud... and I feel Aaron should start tracking castefootball for extra points from now on.

19
by PackMan (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 1:21pm

Brock Forsey was a white running back who started for the bears a few years ago and the announce team couldn't believe it (I think he was a rookie at the time too).

20
by Matt Weiner (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 1:31pm

re: 17

That's probably more to do with Carnegie-Mellon than with being white. According to the link, no CMU player has played in the NFL since 1941. And having walked by the football stadium many times while they're playing, I can see why.

21
by Matt Weiner (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 1:38pm

Incidentally since FO likes to keep politics off the discussion I'm guessing they won't want to touch castefootball. From their front page they are affiliated with the American Nationalist Union.

22
by Isaac Newton (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 1:54pm

So who's keeping the white recievers/cornerbacks down? White college coaches (how many black coaches are there at the college level?! 1%?), white broadcast personnel, white marketing gurus, white fans?

Regarding the castefootball site, please note that it is sponsored by the American Nationalist Union -- their website is banned by my workplace... Just saying'.

Not exactly an objective source of info. They (castefootball) argue, for example, that whites are better athletes b/c they win 90% of summer & winter olympic medals -- nevermind resource/govt investment differences between white/non-white nations. Anyone know how many blacks vs. whites win medals on the American summer olympic team? That would be a more appropriate assessment of who's faster on average, don't you think?

23
by Travis (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 1:58pm

Before Jason Sehorn, there was Scott Case, cornerback for the Falcons in the late 80's-early 90's. (I swear I didn't make this up) Deion Sanders nicknamed him Vanilla Ice.

24
by Theo (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 2:08pm

Oh say can you see,
by the dawn's early light,
what so proudly we hailed,
at the twilight's last gleaming?

Whose broad stripes and bright stars,
through the perilous fight,
o'er the ramparts we watched,
were so gallantly streaming.

And the rocket's red glare,
the bombs bursting in air,
gave proof through the night,
that our flag was still there.

Oh say does that star spangled banner yet wave,
O'er the land of the free,
and the home of the brave.

I've said it before, and I'll say it again.
Your country is a myth.

25
by tighthead (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 2:21pm

Scott "Head" Case was a real headhunter - in the Cowboys last Superbowl win Switzer had him at nickelback and all he did was go for scalps.

Brad Munster and Merril Hoge were almost RBs - fullbacks who could rush the ball and operate out of a one back set.

Even when Alstott was an RB, he kept being called a FB, and making the probowl as a FB. Why - because he was white and "gritty".

Phil McConkey was a classic fan favourite. There is a good line in North Dallas 40 where they are talking about the depth chart, and somebody says to the main character something along the lines of "you won't get cut, you are pencilled in #1 at white receiver".

26
by Sophandros (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 2:31pm

Tom Waddle anyone?

27
by tighthead (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 2:54pm

#26 - is there a correlation between white guys and the early All-Madden selections?

28
by Richie (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 3:01pm

White RB's who have rushed for 1,000 yards in a season (since 1970):

Craig James, 1985
John Riggins, 1984
John Riggins, 1983
John Riggins, 1979
Mark Van Eeghen, 1978
John Riggins, 1978
Mark Van Eeghen, 1977
Rocky Bleier, 1976
Mark Van Eeghen, 1976
John Riggins, 1975
Larry Csonka, 1973
Marv Hubbard, 1972
Larry Csonka, 1971

(I am not classifying Franco Harris as white.)

Then there are these guys, who I don't know if they are white or not, but they rushed for 1,000+ yards:
Curtis Dickey, 1983
Terry Miller, 1978
Tony Reed, 1978
Mike Thomas, 1976
Jim Otis, 1975
Dave Hampton, 1975
Don Woods, 1974
John Brockington, 1973
Ron Johnson, 1972
John Brockington, 1972
John Brockington, 1971
Steve Owens, 1971 (pretty sure he's white)
Willie Ellison, 1971

29
by The Ninjalectual (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 3:36pm

Who here remembers Fisher DeBerry, the coach for Air Force? "It was very obvious to me the other day that the other team (TCU) had a lot more African-American players than we did and they ran a lot faster than we did," DeBerry said Tuesday. "It just seems to be that way. African-American kids can run very well. That doesn't mean that Caucasian kids and other descents can't run, but it's very obvious to me that they run extremely well.

"Their (TCU's) defense had 11 African-American kids on their team and they were a very good defensive football team."

30
by Dennis (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 3:51pm

Re #10: How about Chrebet? He led the Jets in receptions in 2000.

31
by Joe Pisarcik Magnet (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 3:57pm

Whither Phil McConkey?

32
by Travis (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 4:15pm

Re: 28

Of the players on the "not sure" list, only Jim Otis and Steve Owens are white.

33
by Travis (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 4:17pm

The link for Jim Otis is here.

34
by Ted (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 4:21pm

What about "Old School". Watch any sport, and 90% of the people to whom they refer as "Old School" are white. Most likely white guys playing traditionally black sports or positions. See: Thomas, Zach or Lynch, John.

35
by dryheat (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 4:27pm

Middle Linebacker is a traditionally black position?

36
by MJB (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 4:27pm

RE: #26

Ah, Tom Waddle...all I remember about him was thinking that he ran like his name. And that once he caught a short slant and out ran Deion Sanders (who was covering him) for a 20 yard TD. "Deceptive Speed" indeed.

37
by Money (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 4:34pm

The article also made no mention of route running. Apparantly all white wide recievers are good route runners.

38
by Jamie T. (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 4:43pm

Although he never started and had his playing career cut short due to injuries, Jeff Fisher was a CB for the Bears in the mid 80s.

39
by morganja (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 4:56pm

On a serious note. I have noticed this racism in sports go all the way to little 8 year olds where the coach gives the ball to the black kid on every play because he must be fast. By definition. I was on a team playing corner when I was replaced one practice into the summer seesion by a black kid because, according to the coach "We need the fastest players at corner." I ran the forty about nine seconds quicker than this guy. It took about another month of practices before the coach realized the guy couldn't keep up with a glaciar. But at almost every level, coaches make judgements on players' abilities based on their ethnicity. Obviously black people can play sports at the best level. But how many of them are pigeonholed into positions that aren't even their best? How many white, asian and hispanic kids never get to see the field when they are 8 and drop out of sports?

40
by Mark (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 5:01pm

re: Andrew #17
What was his name?

41
by Vince (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 5:35pm

My favorite part of the phenomenon is that white receivers can only be compared to other white receivers. When a guy like Mike Hass comes out of college, the scouts all say he could be the next Wayne Chrebet or Ricky Proehl, even if his game is nothing like theirs.

This is also true in basketball. When Luke Ridnour was coming out, they said he could be the next John Stockton, or at least Mark Price. When Keith Van Horn came out, they said he could be the next Larry Bird, or at least Chris Mullin. I always think, in the whole damn NBA, there's not ONE black guy who plays like Van Horn (or whoever)?

Didn't Carolina have a white RB last year? Or am I insane?

Seattle had a white cornerback years ago named Brian Davis. And Rod Woodson, of course, is half-white.

42
by Joe Pisarcik Magnet (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 5:40pm

Didn’t Carolina have a white RB last year? Or am I insane?

Brad Hoover

43
by Andrew (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 5:42pm

Mark #40:

First name was Jason. Last name is escaping me right now. Civil Engineering, 1995.

And my Yearbooks are at the In-Law's in Pittsburgh. Rats.

He was a big bruising guy, dirty blonde hair - must have been close to 250 lbs. Very Mike Alstott-ish.

44
by Andrew (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 5:54pm

Brad Hoover has been with Carolina since 2000.

Of course he was:

1) Leading rusher in North Carolina in High School
2) 2nd in all-time yardage at his college (Western Carolina)
3) Undrafted free agent as a rookie (despite obviously being one of the best potential rookie running backs in the nation given his prior production).
4) Changed over to a Fullback as an NFL player.
5) Has performed admirably in the handful of games when given a significant number of touches, including one 99 yard and one 117 yard outing.

One wonders why white players like Brad Hoover and Heath Evans can barely get a sniff at Tailback, while the Ron Dayne's of the world are given chance after chance after chance.

Surely there is at least one white running back out there today who could play in the NFL like Larry Csonka or John Riggins if just given the chance.

45
by Andrew (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 6:05pm

Its funny that two white guys - Mike Vrabel and Ricky Proehl, are tied with Keenan McCardell and David Givens for the most TD's in Super Bowl's since 1999.

46
by Mark (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 6:15pm

re: 43 found it, Jason Grusky. Didn't know him, but then I didn't get there until 1996. Going from CMU to the NFL is a bit of a stretch.

47
by Pat F. (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 6:44pm

White running back: Travis Jervey! Only got to start one year, wasn't that good, but I recall him being considered one of the fastest guys in the NFL back in the day...(?)

48
by mattman (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 6:56pm

FO's April Fool's article about Mike Hass was funnier than this. It's still a phenomenon that entertains me to no end. I remember a broadaster comparing Michigan's Samarzdja to Ricky Proehl (come on guys, at least compare him to another tall guy like Joey J). Earlier this year Jason Whitlock said Byron Leftwich and David Garrard were similar mobile quarterbacks. It never ends. Oh, and my favorite unconcious adjective is 'throwback'. People use that all the time to describe the Jeremy Shockeys and David Ecksteins of the world, never pausing to think about the uncomfortable reason those white guys seem to evoke a certain bygone era.

49
by Kibbles (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 7:00pm

Re #10: Eddie McCaffrey didn't always finish #1 in receptions or yards, but he was Denver's #1 receiver every year until he broke his leg in 2001.

Man, I loved Easy Eddie. He was such a fan favorite. He played with so much heart, and he really had deceptive speed. Plus he ran amazing routes. And man... he could block like nobody's business.

It's funny, because all of that is actually true. Legend has it that McCaffrey used to wear the lightest pads allowed and to get his uniforms custom-made without the seams to make them less air-resistant (maybe that's why he was so deceptively fast?). Plus, he was probably the most devastating blocker in the NFL, the consummate route-runner and possession receiver. And he's still one of the most-beloved Broncos of all time (probably second behind only Elway). I don't think anybody has ever embodied white receivership as much as Easy Eddie McCaffrey.

50
by Ben (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 7:14pm

Nick Goings looks kinda white.
Then again, Nick Goings is awful.

51
by Marko (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 7:16pm

#25: It's Brad Muster, not Brad Munster.

#38: Jeff Fisher also was a good punt returner. White punt returners also are rare. Jeremy Bloom might be one this year. Well, he'll definitely be white, but will he be the Eagles' punt returner? He also will be a white wide receiver.

#41: Add Adam Morrison and Dirk Nowitzki to the list of white guys who have been compared to Larry Bird.

52
by MarkV (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 7:39pm

RE 49
Thats hilarious because that is exactly what I was thinking. Although back when Eddie Mac played we used to refer to him as "the fan favorite who wasn't afraid to run routes that ended with him getting 12 yard catch and brutalized by multiple linebackers."

It should be noted on a different note that almost everyone forgot to mention that whites can also still play kicker and punter, as well as O-line, D-line (although rapidly fading), QB, TE,and occasionally LB, S, FB

53
by Kachunk (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 7:40pm

"A friend of mine was a white running back for Carnegie Mellon University from 1991 to 1995. Highly intelligent, athletic, big, and agile, he broke the school records for rushing, but couldn’t even get a glimpse from an NFL team."

Uh....maybe because he went to/played for CARNEGIE FRICKIN MELLON?? Yeah yeah...20 "non-losing" seasons IN D III football against other TINY nerd schools. Believe me I play in the band...CMU football is fairly pathetic.

54
by mattman (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 7:42pm

Speaking of Jeremy Bloom, who do I usually hear him compared to? Tim Dwight, of course.

55
by Independent George (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 8:09pm

You know what else is really, really funny? You could use almost the exact same words to describe Jerry Rice.

56
by Harris (not verified) :: Fri, 08/04/2006 - 10:49pm

Whither Chuck Cecil?

57
by sidereal (not verified) :: Sat, 08/05/2006 - 12:51am

I'm just glad the conversation's gone on this long without featuring the words 'mulatto' or 'octoroon'.

The White Guys Can Only Be Compared To White Guys Rule bugs me to no end. How many white guys 'remind me of Larry Bird'. How many black guys have ever reminded an announcer of Larry Bird? The over/under is 0.

58
by Rob (not verified) :: Sat, 08/05/2006 - 1:36am

Remember Gill Fenerty from the early 90's Saints? And there was a white rb from duke around the same time who was drafted by the Steelers. Colbert?

It's ROBO-PUNTER who I feel sorry for. The only silver athlete in the league.

59
by Rob (not verified) :: Sat, 08/05/2006 - 1:39am

It's Randy Cuthbert. Pretty sad that I can remember two obscure rb's from 15-ish years ago purely because they're white.

60
by Jamie T. (not verified) :: Sat, 08/05/2006 - 3:46am

#51

That reminds me of an interesting story from early on in last year's season. Pacman had just come into camp and he was trying to get into the punt return position. He kept dropping balls, you'll remember. Well, Fisher finally had had enough and held Pac over one day in the dome away from the press. He worked with Pac and afterward, Pac was asked about it by the press. So, Pac tells them how Fisher was catching punts BEHIND HIS BACK! Pac was impressed and so was everyone else in Nashville after the story broke. After the first few games in which some punts were dropped, the boards were clamoring for Fisher to put some pads on so we could at least catch the damn things. Of course, Pac got way better towards the end of the season.

61
by Paging Roger Cossack (not verified) :: Sat, 08/05/2006 - 4:03am

Hey hey, a recent white running back, NOT a fullback. A guy named Walter Williams had a few carries for the Packers I think two years ago, I believe against the Houston Texans. He carried 6 times for 42 yards, if I remember correctly, before he went out with a season-ending ankle injury. He was pretty definitively white, I think. I'm not sure what team picked him up last year, if any.

62
by dryheat (not verified) :: Sat, 08/05/2006 - 10:06am

Walter Williams is a light-skinned black man. He was signed out of Grambling by Belichick and went through a few Pats training camps before winding up in Green Bay.

The guy from Carnegie Mellon reminds me of the guy from Grove City CC who set the NCAA record for rushing yards. I think he spent some time with the Steelers as a FB. I'm going to say RJ Bowers, but I'm not sure.

63
by Sophandros (not verified) :: Sat, 08/05/2006 - 10:57am

Luke Staley out of BYU was another good one who had issues because of a broken leg. But dude was incredible.

58: Gil was awesome at The High School (New Orleanians know which school that is), and part of why he was a fan favorite in NOLA was because he was a local kid. The Saints have also had Brett Bech, another local (and white) kid, who played WR for Ditka.

But on the serious note with this topic, and following up on #39 and a few others, I mentioned these things to someone on a message board and they contended that blacks and whites have different athletic ability, and they then followed it up by saying that whites are better at blacks in positions like QB and OL. Again, the vestiges of racism linger with us still. Like in your case, we still have black kids given chances at just about every position, but they are often only allowed to play QB in systems that employ the option, etc. at early ages, while the white kids are moved from WR and CB to TE or safety. Now, I got called out for playing the "race card" when I mentioned this and examples similar to #39's, but that's what happens. People, whether conciously or subconsciously, tend to make these assumptions about an athlete based on what they look like.

In my experience, however, I've played with and against some excellent athletes from every background and from every continent. In high school, we had a 4x100m team that had three white guys and one black guy. They finished very high in the state meet, and in the district meet beat two other teams that had four black sprinters. And our black guy wasn't the anchor. Some of the fastest players I currently compete against are white guys, and I think that the reason that many of them did not play football longer was because of the color of their skin. But in the American rugby world, another phenomenon takes place, and it's very similar to the race branding of football. When any dude with a foreign accent takes the pitch, a lot of players assume that he's a good player or that he knows what he's talking about. Often, this is not the case, but some coaches don't see beyond the external. I guess that it's a fact of life that people are stupid in that regard, but hopefully discussions like this will help to change things. Parody is sometimes the best way to get a point across.

Sorry for the long post, BTW.

64
by Catholic Samurai (not verified) :: Sat, 08/05/2006 - 11:18am

We didn't land on 3rd and 7 with a 10 yard completion over the middle, 3rd and 7 landed on us!

65
by Israel (not verified) :: Sat, 08/05/2006 - 3:00pm

Whisenhunt was quoted today saying that Nate Washington, who is black, has deceptive speed.

66
by Peremptor (not verified) :: Sat, 08/05/2006 - 3:20pm

re: #16

Was checking out that Caste Football site. It's freaking hilarious in a crazy white supremacist way. Like this juicy quote-

"Kyle Boller is another quarterback who was written off by the Caste System's army of know-nothing "experts" yet he has been brilliant the past two games."

It don't take a expert to know Boller sucks :p

"Steve McNair continued to suffer new injuries every week, but continued to play for the Titans, mostly poorly."

The team played poorly, McNair played above average overall.

"Eli Manning still makes mistakes, but in his second year in the league has played well and gives every indication that he will be a star for years to come.Byron Leftwich continued his mediocre play then suffered a season ending injury."

Leftwich had a better season than Manning so how is he mediocre and Manning is the next coming of his brother?

Heres the link -

http://www.castefootball.us/viewarticle.asp?sportID=9&teamID=0&ID=22880

67
by Andrew (not verified) :: Sat, 08/05/2006 - 9:59pm

Mark #46:

Grusky! That's right!

Yes, it was a stretch to think of him in the NFL, but you had to see him play. He was awesome, and just outclassed everyone on the field time and again, which is how he racked up so many yards and TD's.

I think part of the reason he didn't get anywhere though was his own attitude towards the situation, where he felt he had no chance. Myself, I thought he should have gotten an agent to sell him to teams, even if just as an undrafted free agent.

68
by Andrew (not verified) :: Sat, 08/05/2006 - 10:06pm

Premptor #66:

Agreed. I also read through some of the articles too once I discovered the site. Abso-frickin-lutely hilarious in their tenditiousness and obtuseness in favoring any slightly good play by a white player not given many chances as evidence of systemic racism.

I think my favorite was the grading of teams by how white-friendly they were in their roster.

69
by Peter (not verified) :: Sat, 08/05/2006 - 11:51pm

Yeah, um, just to be clear, since some people are taking it seriously: I consider castefootball amusing for its bias, not legitimate by any stretch... I like their articles for humor value.

Nick Goings looks like he's white, I actually thought he was myself for a while, but he apparently isn't. Hoover is a fullback, although we did play him at RB and run him since we lost our first 3 options (Davis, Foster, Smart).

70
by Peremptor (not verified) :: Sun, 08/06/2006 - 2:02am

re #68

Yeah those NBA and MLB season previews are something else.

select quotes-

"Utah Jazz — How about the Jazz!! Four white starters, and a roster comprised of 9 whites out of 14 players! Now there's a team to root for! The white starters are point guard Carlos Arroyo (currently injured), shooting guard Gordon Giricek, small forward Andrei Kirilenko, and center Mehmet Okur."

I like how in Baseball they don't count white looking latino players as white but in Basketball there a little more lenient in their categorization as in Carlos Arroyo's case. BTW thats a 2004 preview guess they only do them on leap years or something.

"Seattle Supersonics — This is another team to root for, with three white starters, two of them young Americans who were superstars in college, and three white backups."

White+American and these guys go wacko over you.

"Phoenix Suns — Another solid team, with two white starters and five reserves. The big name here is of course point guard Steve Nash, the Canadian superstar who moved to the Suns from Dallas over the offseason. Nash is a great all-around player who is now in his ninth season. He is helping to keep alive the tradition of great white guards following the retirement last year of John Stockton, while young ones like Kirk Hinrich are on the way."

Good to see the torch being passed down generation to generation xD

"Dallas Mavericks — Even many racially unaware basketball fans couldn't help but notice that the Mavericks regularly started 3 and 4 whites over the past few years, and were the league's highest scoring team while doing so."

I think hes trying to count Shawn Bradley as a 'starter' :)

"The Eastern Conference is still predominantly black. The West plays a more uptempo, exciting game, while the East is characterized by low-scoring snoozefests marked by poor fundamentals and indifferent play."

It's all black and white for this prognosticator.

"Major League Baseball is about 60 percent white, 30 percent hispanic, 9 percent American Negro, and 1 percent Asian. The black percentage is only one-third what it was 30 years ago, but relatively few sports fan have noticed, so well trained are they by the media to see "black supremacy" in sports everywhere."

On a serious note, what's the deal with so few black pitchers? And if memory serves no black pitcher has even been close to making the Hall of Fame correct? It's kinda unreal how certain position's seem to be dominated by folk of a 'certain' skin tone.

71
by Ben (not verified) :: Sun, 08/06/2006 - 2:30am

Phoenix Suns- One white player
Have you ever seen Raja Bell?
I guess having the two-time defending MVP makes up for it.
I am now fully perplexed by the racial breakdowns in basketball and baseball.
The only notable black pitchers I can think of are Dwight Gooden and Flash Gordon.
The only black catcher I can think of at all is Tony Eusabio.
Wow, why do I know who Tony Eusabio is?

72
by Marko (not verified) :: Sun, 08/06/2006 - 2:59am

There are at least three black pitchers in the Hall of Fame (not including the recent inductees from the Negro leagues): Satchel Paige, Bob Gibson and Ferguson Jenkins.

As far as notable black catchers, how about Roy Campanella? He is in the Hall of Fame and was a three-time MVP. More recently, Charles Johnson comes to mind.

73
by mattman (not verified) :: Sun, 08/06/2006 - 7:32am

It's true that there's an almost stunning lack of African-American pitchers in the majors. There may be fewer than a dozen in all of MLB. In fact, the percentage of black players in baseball has dropped from about 30% in the 70's to 8.5% this year. But pitchers in particular are a rare breed these days.

74
by Joe Pisarcik Magnet (not verified) :: Sun, 08/06/2006 - 11:27am

Ray King, Arthur Rhodes, Flash Gordon, and Dontrelle Willis are African American pitchers off the top of my head. Some of the Latin hurlers aren't white either.

There have been a few pitchers who also were basketball forwards and centers. Mark Hendrickson is a current incarnation, but before him came Tim Stoddard, Ron Reed, Dave DeBuscherre (yeah, he pitched in the majors), and Gene Conley. Scott Burrell pitched in the Toronto farm system while he was at UConn.

Maybe some MLB team should take a flyer on Jai Lewis.

75
by Melish (not verified) :: Sun, 08/06/2006 - 1:01pm

I saw a thing on this topic in regards to Willis. His mom was sitting in the stands with a lot of the other pitchers' moms and they started asking her who was her son's pitching coach growing up, and she was confused. As it turns out, many outstanding pitchers get personal pitching trainers in high school. It tends to be white families who can afford this luxury, and so it tends to be white pitchers who dominate the MLB.

76
by toxikfetus (not verified) :: Sun, 08/06/2006 - 1:30pm

Who was Reggie Roby compared to? And what would be the comparison if there was a black kicker? *crickets chirping*

77
by Sid (not verified) :: Sun, 08/06/2006 - 1:35pm

There's a lot of discrimination against white players, especially cornerbacks.

78
by Travis (not verified) :: Sun, 08/06/2006 - 1:40pm

Re: 75

While I don't deny Willis's mom's story, I seriously doubt that 25% (and I'm being generous) of major league pitchers had "personal pitching trainers" in high school. Barry Zito comes to mind as one who did.

"Personal pitching trainers" seems like a modern phenomenon, and for whatever reason, there has always been a paucity of black pitchers in baseball, not just in recent years. I'm not entirely sure why.

79
by dryheat (not verified) :: Sun, 08/06/2006 - 6:22pm

I remember a Ralph Wiley column maybe 5 years ago bemoaning the migration of African Americans away from baseball. It seems that the Oakland area is the great exception. For whatever reason (probably a kick-ass youth program), a disproportionate amount of black MLBers come from the Bay area. I think Dontrelle fits.

80
by EG (not verified) :: Sun, 08/06/2006 - 7:19pm

Watching game footage from the '60s and '70s on NFL Films DVDs, one can see white players at halfback and receiver and in the defensive backfield as well. The sport was integrated then, so why are white players at those positions so rare today? I think it's mental--everyone just concedes those positions to black players now. Maybe white players need to try harder but there's no physical reason they can't perform as running backs or corners.

81
by Peremptor (not verified) :: Sun, 08/06/2006 - 7:29pm

#77 Theres a lot of discrimination going on for all the skin shades under the sun. But let's just step back a minute and admit that the 'Whites' aren't the one's getting by far the short end of the stick overall, despite the suffering of all the indoeuropean rbs, wrs, and cbs out there.

Its a unfair world with the unfairness being doled out unfairly in a unjust manner.

82
by JRM (not verified) :: Sun, 08/06/2006 - 7:57pm

About 15 years ago Arthur Rhodes was a top pitching prospect who was constantly compared to Vida Blue.

I'll bet you can guess the race of each player.

83
by Peremptor (not verified) :: Sun, 08/06/2006 - 10:02pm

I take it it will be cold day in hell before we hear a white basketball player being compared to MJ :)

84
by Guy Le Douche (not verified) :: Mon, 08/07/2006 - 12:00am

If you haven't read Malcolm Gladwell on this issue, you probably should. A fantastic read, and very enlightening.

http://www.gladwell.com/1997/1997_05_19_a_sports.htm

85
by Peremptor (not verified) :: Mon, 08/07/2006 - 12:15am

Here's something interesting too. A Scoop Jackson column on the other side of the discrimination equation

http://sports.espn.go.com/espn/page2/story?page=jackson/060713

re 84#

Read a bit fascinating so far. Good stuff thanks for bringing it to our attention.

86
by Peremptor (not verified) :: Mon, 08/07/2006 - 12:48am

re 84#

Wow that article should be required reading for all athletes and sports fans. Just goes to show that the quote "90% of athletic ability is mental" should be 99.9%.

87
by Grouchy Bills Fan (not verified) :: Mon, 08/07/2006 - 1:50am

Regarding the coaches discouraging white athletes by not giving them good spots. Don't forget that it's a lot easier to quit sports when you're white, because you have better career options to choose from. If you're black and feel like society doesn't give a crap unless you can dance or play a sport, you're more motivated to go back and try harder.

Of course school kids aren't thinking specifically (or realistically) about their careers, but they pick up on these messages. They get the message "sports is your only hope" so they work harder at it. White kids get a very different message.

88
by Eric (not verified) :: Mon, 08/07/2006 - 10:33am

I'll be interested to see if Matt Jones ever starts suffering from this phenomenon. He seems to be exempt so far, probably because of his amazing combine performance and the fact that it's hard to call a converted QB a "good route runner" in his first year. What's the over-under on these terms applying to Jones?

89
by Sophandros (not verified) :: Mon, 08/07/2006 - 11:34am

70: Did he really say "American Negro"? Wow. I glanced at that site last week and disregarded it as racist, white supremist trash. I can see laughing at it in the same manner that one can laugh at the klansmen on the Jerry Springer show; that is, we laugh to hide our tears of pity for them.

87: You hit the point spot on. Linked in my name is the NCAA's table for probability of competing in pro sports. Yes, kids have a better expected gain by taking out a loan and going to college than they do by striving to play a professional sport (not to discourage a dream). However, many Black kids (particularly in poor areas) believe that just because other guys made it out of the hood via sports, they can as well, so they tend not to focus on the academic side of things. Add to this the societal pressure, particularly on Black males, that tells them that they aren't academically inclined or that doing well in school is "acting white", and you have a pretty major problem.

90
by OMO (not verified) :: Mon, 08/07/2006 - 1:35pm

Are white WRs owed 40 (golf course) yards and a (My Little) pony?

Wait for it...wait for it...nope...nothing.

91
by Peremptor (not verified) :: Mon, 08/07/2006 - 5:31pm

re #89,

If it's in quotes they said it.

re #87,89

This ties very well into #84 link. White Athletes in general think they owe their prowess in sports dominated by black athletes due to sheer effort and force of will not talent. So when a 'overachiever' in college football thinks about the NFL he disccounts his chances due to already having 'maxed out' his abilities due to his hard work while a black athlete thinks the sky is the limit with his abilities. I'm simplifying :) just read the Gladwell artice.

92
by Sophandros (not verified) :: Mon, 08/07/2006 - 5:44pm

91: If it weren't from that site, I'd be shocked to see that term. Then again, I recently saw someone post that there are only three races on the planet, so nothing surprises me anymore when it comes to ignorant people.

93
by Peremptor (not verified) :: Mon, 08/07/2006 - 9:15pm

92# 3 Races? White, Black and Mocha? The hilariously stupid stuff humans say eh?

94
by Mr Shush (not verified) :: Tue, 08/08/2006 - 10:51am

87 - I think you're right, and I also think that that could in part explain why there might be some reason beyond racial stereotyping for the "gritty overachiever" type appelations. If it's easier for white kids not to play football (especially middle class white kids), then the ones who do end up in the pros are presumably more likely to be there because they really want to play football, not because they felt they had no other way out of a crappy environment.

Gross simplification and generalisation, of course, and clearly there are black gritty overachievers too - Troy Brown being the first example that springs to mind.

95
by Sophandros (not verified) :: Tue, 08/08/2006 - 1:16pm

93:

This guy wrote, "Causasoid, Mongoloid, and Negroid."

Welcome back to the 19th Century!

96
by dryheat (not verified) :: Tue, 08/08/2006 - 1:59pm

Those are correct anthropological terms, no?

97
by Tom Kelso (not verified) :: Tue, 08/08/2006 - 2:23pm

No, they are not -- those terms have been abandoned for years.

I might be showing my age here, but back in the '70's, Washington had a CB/PR name of Eddie Brown. Eddie was actually a Pro Bowler, IIRC, and I was absolutely stunned to see him on MNF once, after a good return.

That was because they showed his picture -- and he was white. Even at 11 years old, growing up in a politically liberal house, I had been conditioned already to the point where I assumed a fast man named Brown had to be black. Nothing has changed that much at all, it seems.

And whoever said MLB is a black position should be locked in a room with Willie Lanier -- one of the three best MLB's in history, and the only one of three who wasn't a Bear.

98
by dryheat (not verified) :: Tue, 08/08/2006 - 2:30pm

Ah...I learned something today.

Yeah, Eddie Brown was definitly a charter member of the Reggie Cleveland all-stars.

Does anybody know Eric Parker's racial/ethnical background?

99
by Andrew (not verified) :: Tue, 08/08/2006 - 8:01pm

Heath evans rushed for 192 yards in 6 games last year for the Pats playing mainly as a fullback. He played some HB, but the team didn't have another good FB so he gained those yards without having somebody blocking for him.

Also, Kyle Eckel was the star of the pre-season last year but he got cut and had since been signed to the dolphins practice squad.

Belichick is not afraid of signing white kids!

100
by Lobolafcadio (not verified) :: Fri, 08/11/2006 - 11:05am

Drew Bennett was the number one WR for the Titans last year and is still this year (I know it's not a big deal with all the TE they have, just to say Jones is not th first since a while).
Interestingly, Jones and Bennett are two converted QB.
It seems it would have been better for them to play WR earlier instead to stay QB in college.
I can be wrong but I know only three converted QB to hit the top of the depth chart as WR :
Ward, Bennett and Jones.
And what I find hilarious is Bennett receiving passes from McNair and now Young, and Jones (a former dual-threat QB) receiving passes from Byron "the Statue" Leftwich.
IMO, Leftwich (6'5" - 245 pds) is the new Bledsoe (6'5" - 238 pds). They have the same size, the same rocketed arm and the same ironed feet.

101
by Norm (not verified) :: Sun, 08/13/2006 - 11:18pm

RE: 81

Well, every effort is made not to give the short stick to blacks at any position, including front office positions. I'd say whites are the ones who get discriminated against the most in today's day and age.

102
by Carl (not verified) :: Fri, 09/08/2006 - 10:44pm

This article definitley points out the truth. Kevin Kasper who ran a 4.5 40 yd. dash and is tall and lanky was considered only a possesion receiver by the NFL . He’s now out of the league. Larry Fitgerald and Keshawn Johnson Mike Williams and Plaxico Burress run 4.6 and were early 1st round picks. Anquan Bolden runs in the 4.7 range: 2nd round. Heck even Jerry Rice was barely sub 4.6 and he’s the best ever. Look at the case of Mike Hass who ran a 4.61 40 yd. (slow yes) but he was unbelievably productive in college even against good competition. Jason Avant was taken in the 4th round and is a possesion receiver who isn’t much more athletic and may someday become a number two receiver and Hass currently is on the bears Practice squad. Despite winning the award as colleges best WR he was cut by the saints. There were also more than a handful of other black Wr’s this draft who ran in the 4.6 range who were drafted and still have NFL jobs. So, basically unless your Matt Jones and are 6′6 and run a 4.37, at the combine on a slow track, (Randy Moss attributes) you simply will never become a teams # 1 WR in the NFL if your white. I bet even he has faced some discrimination. Some college coaches for Top Div. 1 programs have actually admitted being worried about unfairly being called racists for bringing in a white WR, RB, or CB w/ a scholarship. Thats why almost all the “fast” white guys from those positions play at small schools or are walkons at group 1 . There are only 2 other starting white WR’s in the league Drew Bennett who runs a 4.5 and is 6′5 and Joe Jurevicious who is 6′4 who runs a 4.6 and was a bench warmer or 3rd wr before finally given a chance. Here’s some other guys who should/ could be starters. Kevin Curtis runs a 4.3 but is “only” 5′11 and is almost 28 and still sits behind Issac Bruce who is past his prime and a lesser player than Curtis at this point. Tim Dwight runs a 4.3 and is agile as hell and great after the catch but would never be given a chance to become a Santana Moss type player as he is only 5′9. If anyone wants to debate this I’ll name names at WR, CB or RB that are white but somehow managed to get into the NFL despite playing for small schools or in a weak conferece Div 1 who were snubbed. I’ll give more reasons why this happens also. -Carl

103
by Johnny Ikovichsky (not verified) :: Mon, 09/18/2006 - 9:36pm

If there is any racism in sports, its against non-whites and non-blacks. Over years of playing and watching sports, I've always noticed umpires or referees giving more calls to white and black athletes than others. Asians are especially discriminated, as are Latinos. I couldn't bear to watch last night's Red Sox-Yankees game with Chien-Ming Wang pitching as he couldn't get any of the corner strikes that Josh Beckett was getting. In America, its obviously easier to discriminate against Hispanics and Asians than blacks or whites as they don't have the racism paranoia that blacks have, and don't get the automatic favoritism that whites get.

104
by Joe (not verified) :: Wed, 09/20/2006 - 3:19am

Carl I'm not sure where your getting your facts from. Although the correct data may prove your point even stronger. I'm sure some of those players did run those times in college where they are hand timed by coaches as I've seen lots of lists of 40 times before the combine. However the only valid tests that NFL scouts use are the Combine results and the Pro day workouts (I subscribe to Nfldraftscout.com). I stand to correct your Data from a list on their website. Comparing Slow black receivers to slow white ones in the last 2 years I do agree that white WR's are held to a higher standard. Here are the Combine results.
Jason Avant 6'1 (mid 4th rd.) only ran at Pro Day 40 yd- 4.62. Maurice Stovall 6'4 (Late 3rd rd. -4.57
Mike Williams 6'4(Early 1st rd.) -4.56 Larry Fitgerald ran 4.63 in college 4.5 Pro Day. Michael Clayton 6'3 (mid 1st) 4.6 Keary Colbert 6'1 (Late 2nd rd) -4.6
Marques Hagans 5'10 (mid 5th rd.)-4.67 (former QB) prospect at either WR or RB. -now thats a joke, when Eric Crouch who was almost as productive as Vick running the ball in college isn't allowed to be a RB only a WR and runs a 4.47 and an elite shuttle time.
-Very slow black WR's from other years Anquan Bolden 6'1 (mid 2nd) -4.72 in college
Ernest Wilford 6'4 (mid 4th rd.) -4.76 -PRO Day, Brandon Lloyd -4.62

-Now the caucasian guys. Mike Hass 6'1 the winner of the Bietkoff award for the nations most productive DIV I WR (early 6th) -(now Bears practice squad) -4.59, Combine -4.58, PRO Day and had a ridiculously fast cone drill time at PRO Day as well as an average vertical 36 1/2 but did not perform well at the combine.
John Standeford One of the top WR's in Purdue history 6'3 (undrafted) -4.56
Here's two fast white college standouts from Iowa that were "blackballed" out of the league drafted in 2001- Kevin Kasper 6'0 (Late 6th) -4.42 A Verical of 43 1/2 a top 9 time in the last 7 years also had an elite shuttle time and an elite 3 cone time. Broad jumped -10'6!
Matt Jones broad jumped -10'9! not 10'6. Tim Dwight is 5'8 not 5'9 and Jurevicious is 6'5 not 6'4 so very little of your information is correct although the correct data may prove your point even stronger!

105
by Richard (not verified) :: Wed, 09/20/2006 - 4:25am

103: That could be more due to Beckett being a more established pitcher than Wang.

106
by Richard (not verified) :: Wed, 09/20/2006 - 4:25am

That castefootball site is hilarious.

107
by kyle (not verified) :: Sat, 02/10/2007 - 3:09am

i think the castefootball site is certainly very extreme but if you read carefully they do actually bring up some good points..you just have to be a careful reader and try and ignore some of the bs that gets posted

108
by Ryan (not verified) :: Sun, 04/01/2007 - 6:40pm

why is it such a big deal that there aren't many successful black qb's? nobody seems to talk about how there are never white corners or running backs. The argument for this seems to be that white athletes aren't as fast, agile or strong. So would it be safe to say that the reason for there being few decent black QB's lays in the fact that black athletes are dumb (vince young). I mean I don't see the difference in the statements....

109
by r h scurlock (not verified) :: Wed, 09/05/2007 - 1:48pm

please forward me the article about the white wide receivers. I read it awhile back and want to pass is on to friends. Thank you.