Remember the article on Auburn and the Opiate of America? Consider this the basketball version of that piece.
The U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan has inadvertently shown the Disingenuous White Liberal (DWL) hand and, worse, illustrated that impeding any part of the United States’ sprint to ruin will be greeted with howls of protest.
Yesterday we illustrated the gross disparity between white and Black basketball players in graduation rates for NCAA Tournament teams. Knowing that more than 60 percent of the NCAA rosters are Black and that these players are recruited in spite of their academic abilities, it is becoming increasingly clear that any attempt to reform college athletics in favor of athletes actually being students first is an impossibility.
Unless you lower the qualifications for earning a degree at colleges and universities, Black athlete-students will continue to weigh down the graduation rates prompting Richard Lapchick to continue documenting Black failure while blaming the nurturing of these students, dismissing the nature argument as ‘racist.’
In 2009 Jeremy Fowler of The Orlando Sentinel showed that recent Final Four teams lack white players, while Lapchick’s research continues to show that it is these few white players that help prop up graduation rates.
Why is it that white players, who make up only 35 percent of major NCAA teams, have graduation rates far exceeding – by 32 percentage point in the most recent data – those of Black players? They both receive the same amount of tutoring and access to multi-million dollar athletic centers?
Yet it is the token few white players – many who ride the bench – at major colleges in the NCAA Tournament that make the graduation rates appear acceptable at all in many of the teams cases.
And so we come to what Mr. Duncan said should transpire for those teams whose Academic Progress Rate is below 925 (meaning they graduate less than half their players):
U.S. Secretary of Education Arne Duncan says schools not on track to graduate at least half of their basketball players should not be allowed to compete in the NCAA men’s and women’s tournaments.
If such a standard were in place now, three women’s teams and 10 men’s teams, including traditional powers Syracuse and Purdue, would not be in the tournaments.
Duncan said in an interview with USA TODAY that the NCAA should use its own Academic Progress Rate as the metric to measure tournament teams. He proposes bans for teams with a score lower than 925, which predicts a graduation rate of roughly 50% of a team’s players.
“The math on this is not complicated,” Duncan said. “If you can’t graduate one in two of your student-athletes, I just question the institutional commitment to academics. And I think if the NCAA were to draw a line in the sand, you’d see this behavior change very rapidly.”
The NCAA believes that figure is no more than 20%, vice president of communications Bob Williams said.
“Money talks,” Duncan said. “So right now there is an absolute perverse incentive. Folks follow the money, and the money says, ‘We don’t care about academic outcomes.’
“If the NCAA stepped up and said, ‘Well, we actually do care about academic outcomes’ (by banning teams with low rates) I guarantee you behavior would change very, very rapidly. This is eminently solvable.”
This makes sense. Punish those schools that rely on “one and done” style players — read the Fab Five mentality— while promoting teams that rely on basketball players who will actually utilize the scholarship their athletic ability earned them to attain a degree (see Duke University).
The problem: the schools that will be punished primarily utilize Black athlete-students that come from a community with students performing at a level far below that of every other racial group.
Duncan, like Lapchick, is a Disingenuous White Liberal and his proposal goes against the rules of Black Run America (BRA) so they cannot be taken seriously. Punishing teams that rely on Black athlete-students will be seen as racist (like Prop 48 and 42 were) and denying these schools the opportunity to play in the NCAA tournament will prompt Lapchick to publish a study blasting the NCAA for instituting Jim Crow-style laws to keep Black players from showcasing their athletic skills, all because their academic ability is less than proficient.
Take a quick look at the 10 NCAA schools that Duncan would have banned from the tournament because they have APR scores below 925. One of the schools is Alabama State, a Historically Black College and University (HBCU) primarily known for that awesome cafeteria brawl. HBCU’s are already known for producing graduates of little value to employers, and the ASU graduation rate is 71 percent (they have no white players) or a APR of 907.
The University of Alabama Birmingham has an APR score of 825 and a Black graduation rate of 18 percent. The white graduation rate is 100.
Texas-San Antonio has an APR score of 885 and a Black graduation rate of 50 percent. The white graduation rate is 100.
UC-Santa Barbara has an APR score of 902 and a Black graduation rate of 33 percent. The white graduation rate is 100.
Morehead State has an APR score of 906 and a Black graduation rate of 33 percent. The white graduation rate is 50 percent.
Syracuse has an APR score of 912 and a Black graduation rate of 44 percent. The white graduation rate is 75 percent.
Purdue has an APR score of 919 and a Black graduation rate of 50 percent. The white graduation rate is 83 percent.
Kansas State has an APR score of 924 and a Black graduation rate of 14 percent. The white graduation rate is 100.
All of these schools would be punished in spite of their white athletes, who graduate. They represent individuals whose ability in the classroom off-sets the inability of Black athlete-students to get the job done in that same environment.
In fact, if you look at the graduation rates of the schools that have an APR rating over 925, the vast majority of them rely on the high white graduation rates to off-set the poor Black graduation rates.
How many more teams would graduate less than half of their roster if they had more Black players and less white players improving the graduation rate average? Michigan, Michigan State, Georgia, Florida, Arizona, Kentucky, Washington and UNLV all have white graduation rates of 100 percent and Black graduation rates of under 40 percent (Washington is 17 percent; Arizona is 14 percent).
Duncan’s idea to bounce low-grade teams would negatively impact teams with low Black graduation rates, thus it will be disregarded without a moments hesitation. In Black Run America (BRA), Black people can never be portrayed as a problem. All solutions to fixing problem must center around improving Black people’s inability to perform at levels that their white counterparts routinely exceed (not to mention Asians).
So Duncan’s suggestion for banning teams that lack actual students and instead relying on athlete-students is inherently racist and will not be seriously entertained, even though Lapchick said the Department of Education was needed to fix this situation:
Lapchick continued, “Race remains a continuing academic issue. By itself, the increased 32 percentage point gap between graduation rates for white and African-American student-athletes demonstrates that.
“However, it is equally important to note that African-American male basketball players graduate at a higher rate than African-American males who are not student-athletes. The graduation rate for African-
American male students as a whole is only 38 percent, a full 21percentage points lower than for African-American male basketball student-athletes. Presently, too many of our predominantly white campuses are not fully welcoming places for students of color, whether or not they are athletes. There are lessons that our campuses could learn from athletics. We have to find new ways to narrow this gap and that includes looking at the urban high schools which many of our African-American student-athletes graduate from…answers there must come from schools systems themselves, perhaps with help from the Department of Education.”
The following results from 2011 also are alarming. The GSR data shows:
30 men’s tournament teams (54 percent, an increase from 49 percent in 2010) have a 30 percentage point or greater gap between the graduation rates of their white and African-American basketball student-athletes.
36 men’s tournament teams (64 percent, a decrease from 65 percent in 2010) have a 20 percentage point or greater gap between the graduation rates of their white and African-American basketball student-athletes.
Lapchick concluded, “As always, there are schools that win big enough to be here in March and graduate their student-athletes. If we were to choose a Top 10 for Graduation Success Rates, these schools would be there: Belmont, Notre Dame, Villanova, Wofford, Illinois, BYU, Utah State, Vanderbilt and Arkansas – Little Rock. All of these teams had GSR greater than 92 percent. Seven teams achieved a 100 percent GSR: Belmont, Notre Dame, Villanova, Wofford, Illinois, BYU, and Utah State.”
Those teams with high graduation rates for both white and Black student-athletes are known for being academic rigorous institutions. Notre Dame and BYU are teams that play four and five white players routinely, showing that relying on Black athlete-students is unnecessary.
Teams with players like Jimmer Fredette can succeed, both academically and on the hardwood. I’d also wager that the primary reason Notre Dame’s Ben Hansbrough – the Big East’s Player of the Year – transferred from coal-Black Mississippi State to lily-white Notre Dame was to have the opportunity to play the white style of basketball and not be treated like Pistol Pete.
Duke University’s shunning of Jalen Rose type players — Black thugs– and recruiting, in his words, Uncle Tom’s like Grant Hill, has consistently turned out to be a recipe for winning. Having high IQ Black players utilizing the white-style of play with a plethora of white players (Duke played 4 white players in last year’s run to the championship and have 4 white players contributing heavily on this years team) is an equation that equals victory:
This week in a way to usher in the upcoming NCAA Championship Tournament, ESPN aired a new documentary of Michigan’s victorious teams of the early ’90s titled “The Fab Five”.
Rose had this to say about Duke and Hill in the documentary:
Schools like Duke didn’t recruit players like me. I felt that they only recruited black players that were Uncle Toms. … I was jealous of Grant Hill. He came from a great black family. Congratulations. Your mom went to college and was roommates with Hillary Clinton. Your dad played in the NFL as a very well-spoken and successful man. I was upset and bitter that my mom had to bust her hump for 20-plus years. I was bitter that I had a professional athlete that was my father that I didn’t know. I resented that, moreso than I resented him. I looked at it as they are who the world accepts and we are who the world hates.
Hill was respectful and mature in his response but obviously a tad sensitive when it came to discussing the slur Rose hurled upon him and his teammates.
“In his garbled but sweeping comment that Duke recruits only ‘black players that were “Uncle Toms,”‘ Jalen seems to change the usual meaning of those very vitriolic words into his own meaning, i.e., blacks from two-parent, middle-class families. He leaves us all guessing exactly what he believes today,” Hill wrote Wednesday in a New York Times college basketball blog.
“To hint that those who grew up in a household with a mother and father are somehow less black than those who did not is beyond ridiculous. All of us are extremely proud of the current Duke team, especially Nolan Smith. He was raised by his mother, plays in memory of his late father and carries himself with the pride and confidence that they instilled in him,” Hill wrote.
Black Run America (BRA) cannot be reformed. It must fall apart on its own accord. It is falling apart. DWLs, like Duncan and Lapchick, cannot reform college basketball without relying more on white players to compensate for the intellectually inabilities of Black players.
Since DWLs refuse to acknowledge what every standardized test confirms and since they worship at the altar of BRA, they will be unable to defend rule changes that deny teams with Black players the opportunity to compete in the NCAA Tournament.
The Fab Five created the thug mentality in basketball -as did Sony Vaccaro – and helped ensure that Black players who do graduate are labeled Uncle Tom’s and Acting White . I’d wager 90 – 95 percent of Black people agree with Rose’s analysis of Hill and Duke.
But it is this reliance on Black athlete-students who have no business being at anything called a major college or university that puts schools at the disadvantage.
In virtually every level of American life whether it is academics, politicians, executives of Fortune 500 companies, pastors and clergy, DWL-thinking dominates the decision-making process. How a decision will impact Black people is the number one concern for the government, businesses and universities.
It is for this reason that BRA will ultimately collapse. The sad thing is that almost every facet of American life will be negatively impacted in its demise.
Arne Duncan is to be commended for stating that low-grade teams should be bounced from the NCAA Tournament, but if such a suggestion was implemented that would mean all-Black teams would be impacted the most.
And in BRA, that just can’t happen.