President Joe Biden is the latest to weigh in on the glaring void of Black head coaches in the National Football league.
During an interview with NBC’s Lester Holt, Biden reiterated the points that have been made many times in recent years. The league has not implemented the spirit of the Rooney Rule to promote interviewing qualified Black candidates that should lead to more hiring.
“The commissioner pointed out, they haven’t lived up to what they committed to and lived up to being open about hiring more minorities to run teams,” Biden said. “The whole idea that a league that is made up of so many athletes of color, as well as so diverse, that there’s not enough African American qualified coaches ‘to manage these NFL teams,’ it just seems to me that it’s a standard that they’d want to live up to.”
Approximately 73 percent of the league is comprised of non-White players, yet at the end of the 2021-22 regular season, there was only one Black head coach, Pittsburgh Steelers field leader Mike Tomlin. Biden said that common human decency and fairness should prompt the nearly all-White ownership to give qualified Black candidates a fair shot.
“It’s not a requirement of law, but it’s a requirement, I think, of just some generic decency,” he siad.
After former Miami Dolphins head coach Brian Flores filed a class-action lawsuit against the NFL, the league quickly hired two Black coaches — Lovie Smith by the Houston Texans and Mike McDaniel by the Dolphins.
The only other head coach of color is Ron Rivera of the Washington Commanders. The rest of the 28 head coaches in the NFL are White.