Former Buccaneers and Colts head trainer Tony Dungy heard for years he did not interview smartly for head training positions. Now he is within the Corridor of Status. (Photograph: Kirby Lee, USA TODAY Sports activities)

Tony Dungy, now within the Corridor of Status, recalls going via interviews for head training positions, and the way later on he’d pay attention that the interview went poorly.

“For years, that used to be mentioned about me,” Dungy defined to USA TODAY Sports activities. “What is at the back of this is a cool animated film of what a head trainer will have to be. In my case, I used to be calm. I did not curse at other folks. Some homeowners believed that until you jumped up and down on a desk, you are now not an actual trainer.”

Dungy recalls interviewing with one proprietor and the landlord informed him: “I love a large number of issues about you, however you are so cushy spoken, you do not curse. How will you keep an eye on a locker room?”

“I might do what I have performed my whole occupation,” Dungy says he informed the landlord, “which is earn the consider and admire of the gamers via interesting to their mind, their professionalism.”

“I simply do not assume it will paintings,” mentioned the landlord.

“That,” Dungy says now, “used to be a ‘deficient interview.’ “

Dungy would cross directly to win a Tremendous Bowl with the Indianapolis Colts and turn into one of the vital largest defensive minds within the historical past of the sport. However he did not get that task as a result of he did not exhibit in an interview that he may just curse so much if he had to.

Why is that this related? For the reason that poorly interviewing Black trainer narrative is occurring once more, this time with Kansas Town offensive coordinator Eric Bieniemy. Like a hockey-masked villain in a horror film, it is baaaaaaack.

There is not any want to repeat the foundation of the Bieniemy rumor however it become a factor (once more) not too long ago. Ultimate 12 months, there have been other folks within the NFL quietly spreading the similar rumor about Bieniemy. I used to be particularly informed via a number of staff executives that this narrative used to be circulating. The rumor is, via all accounts, false.

The interview has lengthy been a land mine for Black coaches, a few of them have informed me for years. They may be able to every now and then be of significant receive advantages as Mike Tomlin’s interview with proprietor Dan Rooney helped him get the task.

The interview will also be used as a weapon. Black coaches say privately that if an proprietor or common supervisor by no means sought after to rent a Black trainer within the first position, they’re going to say the trainer interviewed poorly.

It is not that white applicants are not accused of getting deficient interviews, it is that Black ones face this narrative such a lot, it is turn into virtually a working funny story with Black coaches.

“What bothers me,” mentioned Dungy, “is you hardly pay attention about younger white applicants having unhealthy interviews. Each time I pay attention about deficient interviews, it is virtually at all times about Black applicants. My antenna is going up after I pay attention about Black applicants now not interviewing smartly. It strikes a chord in my memory of my very own revel in prior to now.”

Or, the interview might be utilized by an proprietor to mention he felt extra ok with any other candidate.

“I’ve been in interviews and requested later, ‘Why did you rent him as an alternative of me?’ “ mentioned former Washington assistant Ray Horton to The Washington Put up ultimate 12 months. “They usually’ve mentioned they felt extra ok with the fellow. How do you quantify that? Why did they really feel extra ok with him?”

“Mike Tomlin wasn’t meant to get the Pittsburgh task, however he were given it within the interview,” one offensive trainer informed the Put up. “So there’s hope you’ll be able to cross in and win the room. On the similar time, there comes some extent once they begin to assume you’re a dumb n—– only for going. I’ve felt that, being there as a token, the place you realize you haven’t any shot.”

Bieniemy to this point has interviewed with the Lions, Falcons, Jaguars, Chargers and Jets. Bieniemy is usually a sturdy candidate in Philadelphia because the Eagles simply fired trainer Doug Pederson. He is additionally a candidate in Houston.

The percentages stay prime Bieniemy gets a head training task. However the truth coaches nonetheless need to handle this delusion stays irritating.

“We want to transfer previous this sort of stuff,” Dungy mentioned.

Dungy used to be requested if he ever noticed that proprietor who mentioned he did not assume he’d be a just right trainer.

“Years later I noticed him,” Dungy mentioned, “He informed me, ‘I used to be improper about you.’ “


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