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Mixed review on minority front
By TIMES WIRES
Published September 22, 2006
A leading group of black football coaches is pleased Division I schools are considering more minorities for coaching jobs, but it says improvement is too slow and applying civil rights laws might be a way to speed progress.
"I think we'll have to put a magnifying glass on searches," said Floyd Keith, executive director of the Black Coaches Association. "Change is not something that has been as quick as we'd like to see it."
There are 11 minority head coaches among the more than 200 NCAA Division I-A and I-AA schools that are not historically black institutions.
The BCA, in a report card released Thursday, says universities must appoint more minority coaches and more diverse search committees.
If that means applying Title VII of the 1964 Civil Rights Act, which makes it illegal for employers to discriminate on the basis of race, so be it, Keith said.
The third annual report card showed mixed results. While 12 of the 26 Division I-A and I-AA schools that hired head coaches received overall grades of A, six schools also received F's, including five who received the failing marks for not reporting to the BCA on what steps they took to consider minority coaches. They included I-A schools Wisconsin, Rice and Boise State. No Florida schools were involved in the grading.
Among 414 coaching vacancies in Division I-A since 1982, 21 blacks have been hired, a huge disparity given the number of minority athletes on the playing fields, the BCA said.
Schools received automatic F's in categories they did not report on. In some cases, Keith said, the attitude among those schools was one of "Well, we'll just take the F."
"You still have people that are resistant to the process," Keith said.