Sports Leagues Should Establish This Controversial List

Sports Leagues

Sports Leagues Should Establish This Controversial List | Sports Takes & News | TooAthletic.com

It would appear that when it comes to certain violations, sports leagues still doesn’t allow for second chances when it comes to coaches and players. The latest example is Chris Doyle, who was employed by Urban Meyer and the Jacksonville Jaguars for one day last week before public pressure forced his resignation hours after the head coach defended his decision to hire him. The move to hire Doyle was more questionable for most people than his decision to quit; however, the entire two-day odyssey had me wondering: Should sports leagues have a public list of blackballed players and coaches to avoid any future issues of this happening again?

Chris Doyle worked at the University of Iowa until last June before accusations of racial discrimination were levied against former football coach Kirk Ferentz as well as Doyle, which is what led to the school buying out his contract. Urban Meyer, a friend of twenty years of Doyle, hired him as a strength and conditioning coach for the Jacksonville Jaguars, but after the press release went out announcing the new addition to his coaching staff, the public recalled Doyle’s recent past. Thus, forcing Doyle to quit his job after only one day and just hours after Meyer defended his friend and the hiring in a press release.  

Of course, it would be illegal for any sports league as a whole to have an official list of blackballed players and coaches, perhaps because the teams themselves normally have enough common sense to know who is too toxic to be hired, so there’s no need to have anything made official. With that said, perhaps it would be easier if every league had a list of coaches and players who were on some kind of probation list, unable to get a job in their sport for a certain amount of time based upon their most recent transgression.

As weird as that might sound at first, for me, there is some merit for it since sports are, first and foremost, an entertainment industry where everyone’s salaries are known and hiring as otherwise meaningless as a spotter like Chris Doyle warrants a press release. 

My whole point is simply this: What if after a player or coach was fired or released, a sport league announced that for a set period of time they were ineligible to be hired, such as when the NCAA places a “show cause” order on a coach who shows they are unable to handle things in their job. Wouldn’t that have been easier than having Chris Doyle think he had a job or Urban Meyer thinking he could hire his friend, just to find out that in the public’s mind he should not be allowed to work anymore? 

Another example is Colin Kaepernick, who was clearly blackballed from the NFL for kneeling during the national anthem without knowing it, leading to lawsuits and accusations of racism against him. Now, of course, Kaepernick is better off without the league and they are now following his lead in many social justice reform ideas.

When a criminal is convicted of a crime, they know how long their jail time will last and if they will be able to get out early for good behavior. In the sports world, however, those who commit mistakes as bad as Chris Doyle don’t know if or when they will be able to get a second chance. This puts them in a place where teams don’t know what to do, as do the coaches and players in the same position, unsure if this is the right time for them to look for another job in their chosen career. 

Perhaps the time has come to make it clear for new coaches like Urban Meyer, older coaches, and front office personnel who is and isn’t able to be hired based upon past actions. That way there are no more embarrassing moments for teams or potential hires, keeping everything out in the open for all to see and allowing the public to see that character matters on and off the field as much as performance. Because at the end of the day, people like Urban Meyer often need to be protected from themselves when they put loyalty over public perception, and an official blackball list will ensure he and others won’t do what he did last week. 

 


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Sports Leagues Should Establish This Controversial List | TooAthletic.com

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