Sunday, April 15, 2007


Today we honor a man who made this world a better place, who shifted his personal agenda aside and took steps to not only integrate a game, a business, but to establish a history and legacy of distinguished elegance and leave an impact, that man is Jackie Robinson.

I've had the opportunity to read, hear and listen to the many anecdotes of why Jackie was so important to the way baseball did business. Today, African-American athletes enjoy spoils far beyond what Robinson might have imagined this day back in 1947. However, Robinson still might chide Major League Baseball for only having two African-American managers, just as he would have to the NFL a few years ago. Robinson firmly believed in expanding opportunities in management and the front offices of the Billion dollar sport & entertainment industries.

Baseball did an excellent job honoring the historich anniversary and I believe we'll hopefully begin to see the numbers of African-Americans playing today rise. (Currently at 8.4%)*

With two drafts quickly approaching that will change the fortunes and tax brackets of many of it's minority participants, I hope for today at least, they realize the gravity of their next few years.

So as I reflect on the changes the NFL needed to make to align it's employees off-field behavior, analyze post-Don Imus situation and think back to the NBA's need for a dress code and tighten it's in game discipline, I wonder where things shifted to drastically. While rights, salaries and opportunities have increased, so has disenfranchisement, moral responsibility and courage. However, it's not happening on a large scale, for the most part, the majority of our athletes don't receive enough credit for the positive contributions they make. I've personally experienced countless examples of athletes either diffusing a negative situation or coming to the aid of someone whom has experienced one. And for that, I'm sure Jackie would be proud.

*Source: ESPN News

Tuesday, April 10, 2007


Hmmm...who's going to be next?

Maybe he's got a timeshare, something to kick his feet up.

Serena is in-out-in-out...she'll get it eventually.

I don't know what Bonzi's plan is, but I hope he holds an off-season workout to play himself into a better contract, because he won't be rocketing into the post-season.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Sad, Sorry & Sick

I find it odd that the FCC is much like a parent, loving all it's children very much the same, but differently. Take for instance, when Janet Jackson suffered the infamous 'wardrobe malfunction' the largest fine in broadcast history was levied. And before Howard Stern migrated to satellite radio, his station producers and managers regularly must have needed soothing lotion for their thumbs to take all the calls for Stern's 'colorful commentary'.

Yet when Don Imus, proceeds to call a group of college, female athletes, "...nappy headed hos" he's fine with an apology and the disclaimer that his views aren't necessarily those of his employer is ludicrous. I'm sure Janet's nipple ring wasn't the choice for the board or that Stern's appetite for sexually charged innuendo was parallel to that of his employer. Yet both felt the pain and public grief, and had to pay for their transgressions.

However, Imus lets some comments fly on a nationally syndicated radio show that mirror Jimmy "The Greek" Snyder and he's let off with a hand slap. So it's ok to degrade others? Is that what we're emphasizing? So often I see athletes taken to task for their actions and being held accountable, yet we don't offer the same standards for those with a bit of celebrity? If Pacman Jones, members of the Cincinnati Bengals and other athletes need help, why not Imus?

Though no one's an angel, ignoring the weakness that the FCC here wields shows me a sad disparity in where our priorities lie. I only hope that it doesn't cost as much to realize it before it's too late.