NFL Concludes Raiders Complied With Rooney Rule On Jon Gruden Hire
NFL Concludes Raiders Complied With Rooney Rule On Jon Gruden Hire
Stan Szeto-USA TODAY Sports
20 January, 2018, 03:31
The Raiders were under investigation amid allegations that team officials hired Jon Gruden to be the franchise's next head coach without interviewing at least one minority candidate for the position, as mandated by the Rooney Rule.
Raiders general manager Reggie McKenzie said that he interviewed two minority candidates before Gruden's hiring on Saturday.
That admission irritated the Fritz Pollard Alliance.
"We believe the facts overwhelmingly point in the other direction", the release read.
The Rooney Rule requires teams to interview at least one minority candidate as part of an open process.
The Fritz Pollard Alliance, which had called for an investigation out of concern that Raiders owner Mark Davis came to an agreement with Gruden before the team interviewed any minority candidates, released a statement saying the National Football League made the wrong call in not penalizing Davis.
The Fritz Pollard Alliance said last week it was "deeply concerned by reports" that Raiders owner Mark Davis had reached an agreement with Gruden before interviewing any minority candidates, which would constitute a violation of the rule, according to the group. The Rooney Rule and all of the League's equal opportunity efforts need to be strengthened. That is, until Davis said at Gruden's introductory press conference that he had been trying to bring Gruden back to the city since the passing of his father, Al Davis, six years earlier.
The NFL has determined the Raiders fully complied with the Rooney Rule in hiring Jon Gruden as head coach, NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy said in an email to the Bay Area News Group on Friday morning.
The Fritz Pollard Alliance doesn't believe the interviews fulfilled the spirit of the rule, however. "The Rooney Rule was never meant to prompt consideration of a candidate of color in the event that a white candidate, who faced no competition, declined an offer".
"Although Tee Martin is an outstanding coach and may one day be a superb National Football League head coach, he has not to date been a serious contender for any National Football League head coach position". It is a process that simply needed to be done in order for Oakland to get Gruden to take over as the next head coach. He led the Buccaneers to the Super Bowl title over Oakland the following season.
He was serving as an ESPN analyst until his hiring by the Raiders.
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