Saturday, February 11, 2012

Spaz needs to hire an African American assistant ASAP

Quotas are messy and controversial. As I said during the Lively controversy, I don't think BC or any of its leaders are racists and leveling that charge is a cheapshot. But now that Jeff Comissiong also left for Rutgers, BC football is without any African American staffers. Spaz needs to hire an African American replacement soon. It is not about quotas. It's about combating negative recruiting. Every school uses negative recruiting and the race card is often played against BC. Other programs say Boston is a racist city and that the school is full of rich, white kids. Now those other coaches will throw in "they don't even have a black coach." Most recruits and their families see through the negative BS, but it will hurt. And the timing stinks. As Spaz just told Ivan Maisel, recruiting during the "Junior Days" period is critical. BC is talking to future targets right now. They need staffers quickly and they need diversity to combat any negative perceptions.


As much as I thought the departures of Sirmans, Day and Brock were losses, from a coaching standpoint Jeff Comissiong's departure is addition by subtraction. Comissiong had been on the hot seat at various times during his tenure at BC. He was never considered a great recruiter nor a solid position coach. Ironically he interviewed at Rutgers a few years ago and Schiano passed. This should be an opportunity for Spaz to upgrade.


Fortunately there are multiple, young African American BC grads in coaching. Doug Goodwin and Al Washington are two that come to mind. Spaz will fill these openings. As I said in my earlier posts about the staff changes, I hope he uses this as an opportunity to bring a new energy to the program. That way BC can change the perception to outsiders and the reality to the players.

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17 Comments:

At 12:53 AM, Blogger Bob B. said...

Commisiong didn't generate very much buzz around the program during his tenure. This loss won't hurt the program, and with all of the openings on the staff, it won't be hard to find a young black coach. Hopefully Spaz will go after a guy who wants to climb the ladder and become head coach or at least defensive coordinator one day. Let's find a black GA at a big time program and give him a chance. I'd love to see a fiery black coach, who the players love, calling the shots on the defense one day. It would completely change the program's perception and help us in the post-Spaz era. Clearly, Commisiong wasn't that guy.

 
At 9:55 AM, Blogger Erik said...

Al Washington deserves a job just for going after Brad Butler. That's the Protect This House type of attitude UA keeps promoting in our stadium.

Whatever happened to Goodwin's Dad? Did he overcome those health issues or did he pass away? Such a sad story.

I definitely favor getting BC guys on our staff, including Paul Peterson previously mentioned and contacting Brian Flores of the Pats.

 
At 10:11 AM, Blogger BlockParty said...

i love al washington. get him back to the heights!

 
At 10:47 AM, Blogger bcoakhill said...

I agree about the importance of getting the best assistant coaches, but I don't agree about the rest of the comments. Let me ask these questions: Was it a cheap shot for GDF or someone in the Athletic Department to create the "lazy" story about Skinner and feed it to the Globe's Bob Ryan who published it and perpetuated it. Was it a cheap shot for Jack Dunn and the Board of Trustees to label Lively unstable and lacking in"judgement" and to publish those defamations of character? Why did they single out an African-American alumnus for their vile and ugly response to legitimate criticism. Why did they veil their response in feigned concerned for Lively's well being. If they were concerned they wouldn't smear and splatter his reputation in public. Is B.C. suspect for having a business relation with Bob Ryan through the Fenway Group, considering Ryan's checkered racial history? BC is not racist, but among the old guard there are a few bigots, with blind spots about race. When was the last white coach to be called lazy, or the last white alumnus to be publicly defamed in writing by the administration? Can anyone defend GDF or the Athletic Department or Dunn's conduct? Remember at the press conference after GDF fired Skinner, he again implicitly defamed him, by saying he wanted a team that "hustled after loose balls", as if Skinner's teams were sluggish, inept or lazy themselves.

 
At 11:08 AM, Blogger JBQ said...

There is still some innuendo floating around about the issue with LeGrande and Okoroha. It is obvious that they were disciplined and cut from the squad. There may very well have been legotimate concerns. However, there should have been a lot more said about the discipline involved. Within recent memory, there was a case against a defensive end by the name of Smith which resulted in criminal charges. This incident appears to be one of two boys partying on a Friday night and something got out of hand. However, this issue needs to be more forthcoming especially in light of Okoroha being Nigerian and coming from a very stable Christian family. The discipline may have been legitimate. However, more needs to be said then let's go on. Spaziani doesn't have a lot of tact.

 
At 11:14 AM, Blogger Big Jack Krack said...

I noted a year or two ago that we needed African American coaches - and some took me to task.

If Spaziani now hires 4 new caucasian assistants, Boston College has a problem. While I am not in the counting game, it makes absolutely no sense to have an all-white staff.

That sends a strong message, whether intended or not. We are much better than this, and the AD and HC are in the spotlight yet again.

Let's go BC - we have a chance to turn this thing around. The college football world is watching.

 
At 12:54 PM, Blogger Mike said...

Okoroha is back; he'll be playing again next season.

 
At 12:57 PM, Blogger Brett said...

No, no one is watching. No one cares. Our program is a non-factor to anyone who is not an alum.

 
At 1:02 PM, Blogger mod34b said...

Did some one say we need a real, credible wide receivers coach? Well there is a guy coaching at tufts who was one of BC's best WR ever: Rich Gunnell

I hope BC is talking to Rich,

 
At 2:21 PM, Blogger Walter said...

I'm not sure how I feel about this.

On one hand, BC deserves its reputation as a relatively non-diverse place, and the city of Boston, despite its actual diversity, is quite intolerant. Or to be fair, there are older people (but existing through their current families) who tolerate racism to a far greater degree than other parts of the country.

So yes, it's bad for us to not have any black members on the staff.

However, being this transparent in a call to hire a diverse staff member smacks to me as window-dressing. It also seems to undercut any diverse staff member we do hire: X only got the job because he's race Y. It's an unfair stereotype to overcome - and a double injustice since society makes it harder for diverse people to succeed in the first place.

The football team is often seem as a microcosm of the university, for better or for worse. Token gestures shouldn't be praised, but at the same time, change has to start somewhere at BC.

 
At 2:57 PM, Blogger Big Jack Krack said...

Law of averages.

 
At 3:39 PM, Blogger Lenny Sienko said...

Show some "loyalty". Hire BC grads who played football and are in the coaching ranks. They will know what they are coming to and, if they played under Spaz as De-corrdinator, what they are getting into.

Diversity is an appropriate and admirable goal. It appears we can achieve that goal and our football objectives if we hire Maroon & Gold!

Al Washington-Doug Goodwin--Paul Peterson--Rich Gunnell sound like a great start to our "nation-wide search".

 
At 7:18 PM, Blogger eagle1331 said...

I have my thoughts on Spaz and the color issue but I don't think it's fair for any of us to speculate on such a serious topic...

I would love to see some guys that played at BC come to coach here. They'd be able to recruit with a unique perspective, have some real fire to see BC get back to where it was and improve, and it would give us a new selling point to kids that BC about how we treat our football family alumni...

It be awesome to see all the mentions names back, but I'd prefer Rich get more seasoning before he gets thrown into the fire of this coaching staff's turmoil...

 
At 7:55 PM, Blogger EasyRider said...

Another name I'll throw out who's coaching locally. Former Eagle WR Tony Gonzalez is coaching at Hopkinton, I think.

 
At 8:11 PM, Blogger Big Jack Krack said...

Easy - his game winning TD catch at Notre Dame in 2004 I think was one of my all time favorites - from Paul Peterson.

 
At 9:05 PM, Blogger JBQ said...

For some unfathomable reason, I am really grateful for the information on Okoroha from "Mike". "mod34b" gave me info on Rich Gunnell. He was the one who put Jimmie Clausen in his place on national tv. He also had the "heart of a lion". Too bad the Chiefs didn't think so! Finally, "Big Jack Krack" drove a stake once again through the heart of the vampire. He likes Tony Gonzalez and Paul Peterson. This is a subtle reminder that "heart overcomes all". Peterson couldn't win a bowl game with a broken leg but he tried. Gonzalez reminds us that there are many different minorities that make up the rainbow. I would look for someone to consider Gunnell, Gonzalez, and Peterson for a more advanced role in the BC family. It's not all "doom and gloom". There is a rainbow just behind the darkest clouds. The light in the tunnel is not really an oncoming train. Gerard Phalen still has not dropped "the pass". The kick of the left footed Jewish kid, David Gordon, still hasn't gone "wide right" and right into the bread basket of "Touchdown Jesus".

 
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