Rumor: NFL considering changes to 'Rooney Rule' after no minority hires

Changes are being weighed after a rule requiring mandatory interviews of minorities doesn't seem to be working.

CONFIRMED: The NFL is considering revisions to the "Rooney Rule," which mandates that teams must interview at least one minority candidate for front office and head coaching jobs, The Associated Press is reporting in a story.

"We have already started the process of developing a plan for additional steps that will better ensure more diversity and inclusion on a regular basis in our hiring results," said Robert Gulliver, the NFL's executive vice president of human resources, in a statement. "We look forward to discussing these steps with our advisers to ensure that our employment, development and equal opportunity programs are both robust and successful."

Possible changes

The league, reportedly, is hoping to add team president, assistant head coaches and both offensive and defensive coordinators to the list of positions that will require a minority candidate to be interviewed. In addition, the league is hoping to restart its annual coaching and management symposium program to help train assistant coaches and staff members (both minority and nonminority) on the duties that go with head coaching and general manager positions.

"Rooney Rule" background

NBC Sports explains that a decade ago, Johnnie Cochran and Cyrus Mehri rattled the litigation sword regarding the stunning absence of minority NFL head coaches. The NFL responded promptly with the "Rooney Rule," which initially required at least one minority candidate to be interviewed for every head coaching job and now also requires at least one minority candidate to be interviewed for all senior football operation positions.

When the rule was established, there were two minority head coaches. Today, there are four out of 32.

This offseason, eight new head coaches and seven general manager positions were filled. None of those jobs went to a minority.

The rule was named for Dan Rooney, owner of the Pittsburgh Steelers, who was chairman of the league's diversity committee when the rule was established.

Sources: The Associated Press, Sports Illustrated, ABC News, the Washington Post, FOX Sports, Bing

 

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