NFL fails to apply equality in hiring coaches

The NFL no longer stands for the National Football League. It stands for No Fair League!

Are the San Francisco 49ers actually serious about hiring Dennis Erickson as their head coach? This is the same Erickson who never won more than eight games in one season as coach of the Seattle Seahawks.

If anything, the 49ers hired the wrong Dennis. Dennis Green should have been hired as Steve Mariucci’s replacement. Green spent 10 successful seasons as the coach of the Minnesota Vikings, winning four division championships and making two conference championship game appearances. Erickson on the other hand, went 31-33 in his four seasons as a head coach. The only difference between Dennis E. and Dennis G. is that Dennis G. is black.

San Francisco owner John York and general manager Terry Donahue told the media that Erickson’s previous coaching experience won him the job over defensive coordinators, Jim Mora Jr., Ted Cottrell and Greg Blanche. Cottrell and Blanche are black.

Are they serious! If they were going to hire based on coaching experience, Green would have been the obvious choice.

The only reason Green does not have a head coaching position in the No Fair League is, he is a strong-willed, opinionated black man. So what if he wanted some input on personnel decisions on his team. If he is responsible for winning games it is only logical that he has the players he wants on the field.

San Francisco, and more particularly York, could learn a lesson or two from their neighbors across the bay in Oakland. As much as the No Fair League dislikes the Raiders and their owner Al Davis, the Raiders were the first team to hire a head coach with Hispanic descent, Tom Flores. They were also the first franchise to hire an African-American head coach, Art Shell. As much criticism as Davis took for both of those hires, Flores won a Super Bowl and Shell consistently led the Raiders to the playoffs in the early 90’s.

Until teams interview black applicants for head coach positions in the same manner as white applicants, NFL will continue to stand for No Fair League.

-Will Brown, 18, is a freshman broadcast journalism student from Rockledge. He is an assistant sports editor for The Famuan. He can be reached at