|BCA chief disappointed Ole Miss, Texas A&M did not interview black candidates|
|Written by Admin|
|Friday, 30 November 2007 00:33|
M did not interview minority candidates before making high-profile hires this week.|
M hired Mike Sherman and Ole Miss brought in Houston Nutt.
M,'' Keith said. ``There's not much difference. It just concerns me that this practice seems to continue and we're not seemingly getting any closer to a diverse or an inclusive search for football.''
Ole Miss athletic director Pete Boone said he regretted not going through the BCA's suggested interview process, but felt Nutt's presence on the open market after he resigned from Arkansas on Monday merited swift action.
``I think it's important to have a person like Houston Nutt, a proven success,'' said Boone, who fired Ed Orgeron after three seasons. ``This time we have to get it right, so when that came about we had to move very fast.''
While Keith was disappointed with Ole Miss' decision, he said he was buoyed by Southern Miss' choice to follow it's suggested process and interview minority candidates.
``We are going to put an emphasis on that,'' Southern Miss Athletic Director Richard Giannini said.
When a school announces an opening, the BCA contacts its athletic director and president to offer assistance in the search and to suggest candidates.
``We were contacted by Southern Miss almost simultaneously on the day that we sent information to them, so they did reach out to us,'' Keith said.
The school's list of candidates includes 33 black assistant coaches the organization feels would be successful head coaches.
Among the most notable are Florida co-defensive coordinator Charlie Strong, UCLA offensive coordinator Jay Norvell, West Virginia offensive coordinator Calvin Magee, Virginia defensive coordinator Mike London and South Carolina defensive coordinator Tyrone Nix.
Nix, 35, is among the coaches Giannini is expected to consider as he replaces Jeff Bower. Bower's former player and defensive coordinator joined Steve Spurrier in South Carolina in 2005. He did not return a phone message left Thursday.
``We have not even interviewed anyone yet,'' spokesman Jack Duggan said when asked about Nix.
Six of 119 major college football programs have black head coaches. They are Buffalo's Turner Gill, who would not comment Thursday about his interest in the Nebraska opening, Mississippi State's Sylvester Croom, UCLA's Karl Dorrell, Washington's Tyrone Willingham, Kansas State's Ron Prince and Miami's Randy Shannon.
Shannon was the only black coach and one of two minorities hired to fill 23 vacancies at Football Bowl Subdivision schools after last season. The other was Florida International's Mario Cristobal, who is Hispanic.
Shannon was long considered a top job candidate before he was promoted following Larry Coker's firing, but was interviewed just once, by Ole Miss, which eventually hired Orgeron in 2004.
When the BCA released it's ``Football Hiring Report Card'' last month, Keith said he was considering a civil rights lawsuit to force the hiring of more minorities in what the organization calls the most segregated college sport.
Shannon said he felt like he got a fair shake when Boone interviewed him in 2004. Keith said that's all the BCA can ask.
``There's some great talent out there,'' he said. ``Take the time to talk to them, that's all.''
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