“I remember whenever walking into the facility it would be difficult for black players to walk around the facility and be themselves,” former All-Big Ten defensive back Amani Hooker, now a member of the Tennessee Titans, said on Twitter as the allegations came out. “As if the way you grew up was the wrong way or wasn’t acceptable & that you would be judge by that and it would impact playing time.” These words were spoken when the news broke that former Iowa strength and conditioning coach Chris Doyle, who was hired by Urban Meyer to join his staff with the Jacksonville Jaguars. Doyle, at one time, was the nation’s highest-paid strength coach at $800,000 annually, was separated from the university after numerous former players alleged Doyle disparaged, demeaned and bullied them while in the program.
Last year former defensive back Diauntae Morrow detailed an alleged altercation with the coach that he felt was indicative of the environment the program fostered, in which he and many other black players often felt “alienated.” Morrow told ESPN, “We never felt welcome, most of us, anyway, whether they would openly say it or not openly say it,” Morrow went on to say about other black players. “We would congregate after practice and just talk about how we felt the program was being ran, and how we felt alienated.” And there were many more players who spoke out. Even though the players felt that Doyle was the biggest offender, they felt that it was a program wide problem.
After an external investigation by the Husch Blackwell law firm from last summer, they reported the players felt mistreated and treated harshly. “In sum, the program’s rules perpetuated racial or cultural biases and diminished the value of cultural diversity,” the report said.
“The program over-monitored players to the point that they experienced heightened anxiety and maintained a culture that allowed a small group of coaches to demean players.”So how did the university respond to a coach whose workouts allegedly hospitalized 13 players and who faced numerous allegations of racism and bullying? Did they fire him outright….no? Did they make it to where he couldn’t get another job….no? What they did do was basically reward him for his terrible actions and made sure he will be good. They did a separation that paid Doyle 15 months’ salary, which equates to 1.1 million. And if that wasn’t enough, he and his family will receive benefits from Iowa for 15 months or until he finds another job. Which leads us to today.
You would think that a coach like Urban Meyer would have more sense than to go down this road considering his history with having controversial, no, absolutely horrible people masquerading as coaches in his programs. This latest hire is just another example of not only his but apparently the leagues still apparent tone deafness. The NFL has spent money on commercials , on altering their broadcasts, on their helmets and many other things touting togetherness and racial progress, only to let this guy into the fold so soon after his Iowa separation. It really makes you wonder.
Tyrus Kennedy is a full time content creator for Black With No Chaser and the MFer in charge of Black With No Chaser Sports. He is currently in an entanglement between writing, video content creating and podcasting. Needless to say that he gets around.