Title

How the Door Was Opened for More NFL Minority Head Coaches

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

February 2011

Abstract

Advancing the Ball chronicles the campaign of former Cleveland Browns offensive lineman John Wooten to right this wrong and undo decades of discriminatory head coach hiring practices–an initiative that finally bore fruit when he joined forces with attorneys Cyrus Mehri and Johnnie Cochran. Together with a few allies, the triumvirate galvanized the NFL’s African American assistant coaches to stand together for equal opportunity and convinced the league to enact the “Rooney Rule,” which stipulates that every team must interview at least one minority candidate when searching for a new head coach. In doing so, they spurred a movement that would substantially impact the NFL and, potentially, the nation.

Share

COinS