January 9, 2008

White tailback wrap-up

LSU won the BCS national championship in college football, defeating Ohio State 38-24, with a white runner as its primary ballcarrier. Is this the first time in the history of the BCS? Jacob Hester had a standard Jacob Hester game against #1 ranked Ohio St., rushing for 86 yards on 21 carriers, finishing with over 1100 yards for the season. LSU dominated the game because it converted on 12 of 19 third or fourth down attempts versus 5 of 16 for the Buckeyes.

This guy isn't going to dominate the NFL, but you'd be crazy not to want him on your team. How many other star tailbacks play on special teams? This is guy who rushed for almost 1600 yards as a junior in high school, then switched to fullback and didn't reach 900 as a senior because that's what the team, with future USC star John David Booty as QB, needed. Heck, he played nose guard for awhile in high school. Hester was only a two star recruit (out of five maximum) coming out college, so when he signed with mighty LSU, their average recruit ranking dropped. It took Hester four years to emerge as the main running back at LSU, but he played regularly in various roles for all four years. And he's done a good job keeping all the faster black backs on the Tigers, who aren't getting big stats because Hester gets the ball the most, reasonably happy and focused on supporting the team. Hester's wife cooks dinner for all the running backs at their place two nights before each game.

How many colleges and pro teams have shot themselves in the foot by assembling too many black chiefs and not enough white Indians? USC, for example, started the year ranked #1 in part because they had 10 running backs (all black, of course) who had been superstars in high school, but that's just asking for trouble among black players raised on gangsta rap, with its message of "Get Rich or Die Trying."

My published articles are archived at iSteve.com -- Steve Sailer


Anonymous said...

The Redskins had several star players that did teams. Sean Taylor was on all teams. Granted CP was not. A lot of star college players have to do teams in the pros of course...

Anonymous said...

perhaps steve should seek to make money as an independent consultant to football teams. basically, since there are no sabermetrics in football (among other reasons), the game appears to be quite inefficient.

Anonymous said...

The Giants had a guy like this briefly, a Princeton alumnus named Keith Elias.

Anonymous said...

Steve, your last paragraph, I think, tells the real story.

Black men are being reared with a chip on their shoulder. They are being told constantly that they have a right to racial revenge. The attitude that they develop, and the free flowing testosterone this attitude releases, is the real reason for their dominance in football. White men, on the other hand, are being reared to be apologetic pussies.

Hester will be a great pro running back, if he is given the change.

Steve, I keep insisting that you don't understand the importance of intelligence in athletics. The racial caste system of football has been broken at LSU by Les Miles, and you've failed to see that this resulted in a national championship.

The message every college coach should take from the LSU-Ohio State game is that reserving the supposedly "athletic" positions for blacks is a good way to lose. It will, however, take a few years for this message to sink in. Once that message does sink in, the notion that blacks are "athletic" and that whites are not will disappear.

If you ever get the chance, try to watch the high school football games of Brian Cushing, a white guy who plays linebacker for USC. Cushing was one of the greatest running backs in the history of New Jersey, playing for a football factory, Don Bosco High School. (His great games are constantly re-run on cable in northern New Jersey.) Cushing has tremendous speed. He was relegated to linebacker in college because of the mythology of the racial caste system. He would have been a great star at running back at USC and in the NFL, but he was never given the opportunity.

How long will it be before some pro coach has the courage to break the racial caste system? I'll bet that coach is rewarded with the Super Bowl victory.

Anonymous said...

jacob hester will have a nice NFL career blocking for black players that are smaller, slower, and weaker than him.

brian leonard rushed for 100 yards in a game for the rams this year. they responded by moving him down the depth chart. standard operating procedure for the hopelessly racist NFL.

let's not even get into what the morons in the NFL could possibly be thinking by wanting tim tebow to play fullback.

Steve Sailer said...

USC finished #2 to LSU, but they would have been #1 instead of LSU if they had brought Hester along with John David Booty from Evangel High in Louisiana.

Anonymous said...

I keep insisting that you don't understand the importance of intelligence in athletics

maybe the nfl sports agents are telling the talented white running back prospects the simple truth: the running back position in the nfl has the shortest average career span, and therefore the least average career salary take as calibrated for great athletes. nfl running backs are ground down into retirement in an average of 2.5 seasons? maybe it's 3 seasons. perhaps white guys with smaller chips on their shoulders than blacks and higher average iq scores are more likely to see the wisdom of this line of thinking: be the ball carrier for 3 seasons or be a breadwinner for 10 seasons.

Anonymous said...

You guys are overstating the white RB discrimination just as some blacks overstate the lack of black coaches. Gm's want to win and will take the best regardless of race. I covered Hester this year- he is a great college RB but does lack the breakaway speed of an NFL RB- he will be used as a fullback and get 5-10 carries a game but will not be drafted in the first three rounds...and not due to discrimination. Brian Leoneard was a big dissapointment this year- so that is evidence against your point. LSU didn't break any barriers to win the title- they lost twice and if West Virginia didn't gag against Pitt they would be in the Sugar Bowl and not playing for the title. The NFL is not racist in any form and to think it is exemplifies a racialized view of the world.

Anonymous said...

@ Shouting Thomas:

I'm not sure how you can claim that Steve doesn't understand the importance of IQ in athletics; quite to the contrary, Steve's posts over the years have demonstrated that he understands the IQ importance very well.

I agree with your 'black men chip on shoulder, white men pussies' comment, though. I would add, white American men. I think Euro players in the NBA have by and large demonstrated that they have no qualms about playing rough against oponent black players when the game demands it--they haven't been raised to feel guilty about being white either.

Anonymous said...

i was a DI athlete, i've been watching and playing sports for 20 years, my brother is a professional coach and even makes trips to the olympic training center in colorado, so i can say with some authority:

in the NFL, discrimination against white players is widespread. it is not true at all that every manager and coach puts the best available players on the field, nor do they always play to win. many managers and coaches are hopelessly racist, and they literally, LITERALLY, prefer losing over using white players at certain positions.

it is actually wide receiver, and not running back or cornerback, where the NFL is currently at it's worst and most racist.

the NFL stands in sharp contrast with the NBA, where there is not much discrimination.

Anonymous said...

Two names...

Mike Haas
David Ball

If you think the NFL is playing
the best available talent all
the time
(or even giving them a chance
in terms of playing time, you
aren't paying attention).

Also, keep in mind that in Philadelphia an explosive receiver
like Kevin Curtis who has given
McNabb his best yardage this
seasons is getting less than a
star's treatment by the drunk
white fans (DWF) in Phillie.

Also, keep in mind that black
commentators (all commentators
really keep crediting Wes Welker's
great season to playing along w/
Randy Moss. However, they don't
realize that Welker has opened
the field up for Moss moreso
than the former)


Anonymous said...

Did anyone else notice that the NFL co-leader for receptions was the pasty Wes Welker of the Patriots?

Funniest thing from the last NFL weekend was the hapless Bengals, the poster boys for ebonic bad behavior, trying their hardest to get Housmanzadeh, one of their premier punks, enough catches to pass Welker. Of course he dropped the pass that would have allowed him to pass Welker; it was a little swing route that Welker would have caught and taken for 10-12 yards!

Anonymous said...


I believe that the statistics kept on receivers greatly benefits wide receivers. While watching the Michiga-Ohio State game this year, I was amazed at how many times Mario Manningham was hit in the hands by the ball but failed to catch it. Yet, in looking at his statistics at ESPN, there is not easily found statistic on dropped balls, busted routs, or misreads. Yet, the fast black receivers benefits from having yards after catch as an important stat.

On the other hand, slow, white, receivers require a more accurate quarterback since they cannot get separation from black defensive blacks. A really accurate throwers (like Tom Brady) can make a white wide receivers look like an all pro. However, a hard throwing but inaccurate throwers makes the white receivers invisible since they go not get the same separation on their routes.

Anonymous said...

the NFL stands in sharp contrast with the NBA, where there is not much discrimination

Wouldn't the lack of white American players in the NBA make it very difficult to draw any conclusions about discrimination?

Anonymous said...

One day last month I was flipping through the television channels and I came across an odd site for 2007 -- a high school football game featuring completely white teams.

It was the Oregon 6A state championship game between Sheldon and Tualatin.

My wife walked through the living room and I asked her to glance at the game and tell me if she noticed anything odd. It took her about a minute before she said, "Is this from the 1950s?"

There was plenty of athletic talent on that field ... white running backs, receivers, defensive backs, etc. I bet few if any will be playing in college.

Anonymous said...

Jody- Racism against whites is so blatant in the NFL that coaches (apparently white ones) would rather hold down whitey than win with a better white player? You sound like a pathetic race hustler ie. Al Sharpton. If you played D1 football I'm assuming you'd know how difficult it is to get open under press coverage from athletic defensive backs- Wes Welker and kevin Curtis have that ability but not many other whites do. Largent got by on precision routes but now athleticism is at a premium and most WR's run good routes or they will be relegated to backup. To think an NFL coach would rather lose with black players and be fired in the cut throat NFL than give better white players a chance is staggeringly ignorant. I do agree that white backups may foster a better team environment (Patriots) but the victimization complex you espouse is embarassing. Dan

Anonymous said...

With coaches constantly in the hot seat, there must be a CYA (cover your arse) strategy also at work here I'm sure.

No one ever got fired for buying IBM, even if it's a rip-off and/or crap. Similarly, anyone using whites in traditionally black dominated positions is going to get doubly criticized when hard times come for "poor judgement" in going against the conventional sterotype.

Funny, how PC the sports industry is so the criticisms don't run the other way. Say, discussing flashy black quarterbacks who don't consistently produce on field.

Truth said...

"Hester will be a great pro running back, if he is given the change."

That's highly doubtful, considering that he wasn't a great college running back. I've seen him play at least 8 times, and not once, ONCE, did he ever make a move on a defender. His style is to run straight into the hole put his head down and try to bulldoze the linebacker. If he's a primary ball carrier in the NFL, he will be knocked out with knee injuries or concussions within 3 years. Payton Hillis is a FAR superior player.

"The racial caste system of football has been broken at LSU by Les Miles, and you've failed to see that this resulted in a national championship. "

actually, I believe the team started 14 out of 22 blacks, so what 'racial caste system' was broken?

"jacob hester will have a nice NFL career blocking for black players that are smaller, slower, and weaker than him."

Well, he had a pretty good senior year carrying the ball ahead of blacks that were faster and more explosive, so it isn't beyond the realm of possibility. Exactly how significant is 1100 yards in fourteen games with the best talent in the country? A whopping 80 yards a game. Let's start measuring him for his hall of fame blazer now!

"You guys are overstating the white RB discrimination just as some blacks overstate the lack of black coaches. Gm's want to win and will take the best regardless of race."

Now I personally believe that there is some prejudice against white skill position players in the NFL, but people here as well as on caste football make it sound as though NFL coaches are stovepipe hat wearing scoundrels who time women to railroad tracks and twirl their moustaches.

The bottom line is that coaches want to keep their million-dollar-a-year- jobs. This would generally be accomplished by having their best players on the field.

It has been said the Sam "Bam" Cunningham, an early 1970s fullback for USC did more to intergrate the south than Martin Luther King. He did so by running over, around and through a 'great' yet segregated Crimson Tide defense in a 42-21 blowout of Alabama in 1970. He ran away from cornerbacks who were 20 lbs. lighter quite easily that day and the next year, there were 3 blacks on the field for Alabama. when a white runningback plays like LaDanian Tomlinson, there will be more whites in the position. It's as simple as that.

"many managers and coaches are hopelessly racist,"

The first person who answers me this question will have my sincere appreciation:

How would white coaches, with white neighbors, white wives, white kids in white schools, with white bosses, white administrators, white parents and white assistants be considered "hopelessly racist" against whites?

So, to sum it up, Al Sharpton, You show me a coach who listens to 50 Cent, wears his Ridell shorts falling off his butt and is married to Cicely Tyson, I will be very willing to listen to this Tom Foolery.

Anonymous said...

Let me get this straight. One example of a post-segregation white starting running back is prima facie proof that having white running backs on your team increases your chance of winning a championship. Ignore the fact that virtually every other post-segregation championship team has been led by a black starting running back. The one white example--Jacob Hester--negates the last thirty-five or so consecutive examples of championship-winning black tailbacks.

By the way, there have been more national championship-winning black quarterbacks in post-segregation college football than championship-winning white running backs (Chris Leak, Vince Young, Tee Martin, Tommie Frazier, who won back-to-back titles, Tony Rice, and Homer Jordan). Does this prove that having a black quarterback on your team increases your chance of winning a title? I presume most of you would emphatically reply in the negative. Why don’t some of you apply the same logic to Hester?

Let me also add that I am an alumnus of Clemson University, home of the Tigers. My school's football program won a national title in 1981 with a black quarterback AND a black field goal kicker. Where is the commentary advising teams to recruit more black kickers so as to win national championships?

Anonymous said...

Still waiting on a response from Jody but it's great to hear mention of the great Homer Jordan and Donald Igwebuike. Also, like to know Steve's response to Jody in that i value his opinion. Dan

Anonymous said...

Don't worry, the Patriots will grab Hester in the third round. He will replace the aging Kevin Faulk as the Pats versatile 3rd down back (because of his blocking skills, smarts and good hands) and will instantly become a fan favorite. He will never be an all-pro, but he will be a strong contributor to a number of New England champion teams. Will probably average 500 yds rushing, 40 catches, 5-6 TDs a year. Because of the Pats will have two high profile white guys (Welker and Hester) at skill positions, ESPN will begin occasionally discussing topics like "Are the Patriots racist?"

Anonymous said...


You tell them! I always thought the purpose of this blog was to apply an objective, non-bias view of the world, devoid of tiresome ethnic/racial aggrandizement. If I wanted petty ethnic/racial boosterism, I'd go to a white nationalist or Afrocentric website. These statements are aimed more at those who comment on this blog than at Steve Sailer, who normally does an excellent job at objectively explaining real world social phenomena.

keypusher said...

Let me also add that I am an alumnus of Clemson University, home of the Tigers. My school's football program won a national title in 1981 with a black quarterback AND a black field goal kicker.

Nice post, daj. I thought Steve Fuller quarterbacked that Clemson team (I lived in that area back then) but he was a few years earlier. Scary the tricks memory can play.

Nice post by truth, too. I honestly can't believe this "racism" stuff I am reading on this thread. Do think think MIT is stuffed with Asians because of "racism" too?

Steve Sailer said...

Inductivist ran a study for me for a 2005 VDARE.com article that said that there was no correlation between the race of starters and NFL records in 2003 through early 2005. This implies that there's no racial bias in choosing starters.

However, NFL teams with more white second-stringers won more games over that 2.3 year period, perhaps because whites tend to be less disruptive of team morale when they aren't starting, or perhaps because they are better on average at learning multiple positions.

Hester would be the epitome of the white guy who will do whatever it takes to help the team win, whether being the obscure blocking back as a senior in high school or the star running back as a senior in college. (Hester rushed for more yards his senior year in college than his senior year in high school, which is very rare for somebody who was healthy both years.)

Anonymous said...

Did anyone notice how much stereotypes influence how sports reporters perceive (i.e., distort) reality. For instance, at the start of the season here in Philadelphia on the Daily News Live television show they were discussing how Kevin Curtis would do as a replacement for Donte Stallworth at WR. The consensus was that even though Curtis runs good routes, he doesn't have the break away speed that Stallworth had and was therefore not going to be as good (note: he turned out to be better). Well, according to nfldraftscout.com, Kevin Curtis runs a 40 yard dash in 4.42 sec. Stallworth runs a 4.48 sec. 40. The sports journalists were obviously just talking out of their asses and assumed that Curtis was much slower than Stallworth because he is white.

Re RBs, white running back Brian Leonard is 6'1 1/2", 226 and his 40/20/10 yard dash times are 4.52/2.60/1.54. Jacob Hester is 5'10 3/4", 228 lbs. and runs an average 40 time of 4.63 (low time 4.55). For comparison, Eagles star black RB Brian Westbrook, is 5'8 3/8", 200 lbs. and runs a 40/20/10 in 4.57/2.65/1.58, which means that he's slower than Leonard and not much faster than Hester. Despite this "lack of speed," Westbrook managed to set the record for total yards from scrimmage this year (rushing + receiving). While blacks are generally faster than whites, the above goes to show that 1) blacks are not always faster than whites, and 2) Westbrook's success shows that speed is overrated. Perhaps Westbrook's success is in some part due to the fact that he is an intelligent player, as evidenced by his 31 Wonderlic score (equates to an IQ of 122 - 1 point higher than John Kerry and 3 points higher than JFK ;-). FWIW, Kevin Curtis has a IQ 156 based on his Wonderlic, the highest among all current NFL players. Imagine how Curtis and Westbrook must feel when their magnificent physical specimen of a QB, Donovan McNabb, armed with is IQ 88 (14 Wonderlic), who never calls an audible or makes an adjustment at the line of scrimmage, underachieves re his physical talent in game after game because he's too dumb to effectively run the West Coast offense. This seems to be the general problem with black QBs and why, despite their greater average athletecism and arm strength, they are generally not able to break into the very top ranks of game dominating QBs which is populated by less physically gifted white QBs. Looking at Wonderlic results posted on nfldraftscout.com and Mac Mirabilles site, most black NFL QBs seem to have IQs in the high 80s to low 90s, whereas the good QBs today are invariably triple digiters and generally score 110 or higher (e.g., Tom Brady - IQ 126, Peyton Manning - IQ 118, Tony Romo - IQ 134). The lowest scoring top-notch QB is Brett Favre with and IQ of 104 (and the one knock on him is that he throws too many INTs - perhaps not reading the field well enough?). Perhaps Jamarcus Russel is smart enough to fulfill his potential as the "Great Black Hope." His IQ is 108.

Anonymous said...

The reasonableness of these comments drives me nuts. I'm so fed up with the reasonableness of white men.

I'm tired of seeing white men get their asses kicked on the football field and on the basketball court.

So, I'm gonna root for white men to get the jobs and win. I don't care what it takes. My self-esteem demands it. Black men make up fake racial grievances to get what they want. Why in the world are white men trying to be any better? Fake a grievance, if you have to, to get your hands on the women and the loot.

I refuse to accept that blacks are simply superior athletes and that white men must kiss black men's asses and play the pliable substitute.

The reasonableness of white men is their greatest virtue and their greatest weakness. When are we going to get tired of getting pushed around? It's really time to play dirty, just like everybody else.

Anonymous said...

Sailer said "Hester would be the epitome of the white guy who will do whatever it takes to help the team win, whether being the obscure blocking back as a senior in high school or the star running back as a senior in college."

Exactly, sure sounds likes New England Patriots material to me.

Anonymous said...

Phillyguy- an comparison between Brian Westbrook and Brian Leoneard is preposterous. Westbrook may be the best RB in football is way more elusive than just about anyone in the NFL- Brian Leonard is at best an average RB who has dissapointed so far. They don't belong in the same conversation. Dan

Black Sea said...

I don't believe NFL coaches are hopelessly racist; I think they are just influenced by group averages when evaluating talent, particularly non-superstar talent. In other words, a white running back with the abilities of LaDanian Tomlinson (were such a phenomenon ever to occur) wouldn't be switched to fullback and would start as soon as possible.

However, if an NFL team drafts two moderately successful, small-school tailbacks - one white and one black - in round five, the white guy is going to immediately be pegged as a fullback, even before he's entered training camp. Almost all NFL tailbacks are black, and that reality has to creep into the coach's and GM's awareness, in the same way that you'd be more likely to pick Asian rather than hispanic kids for a math competition, even if you'd never seen any of these kid's math scores. Just a matter of playing the averages. Call it superior athleticism, or speed, or whatever, but coaches will generally assume that in a comparison betwen a black and a white player with the same rushing stats, the black guy probably has better quicks and elusiveness. It isn't always true, but often enough, it is.

Jacob Hester is a good, not a great, college tailback. I suspect he'll go in rounds four to six, and he'll stick with whichever team drafts him. I see him becoming a player similar to Bob Christain. Christian played tailback at Northwestern, and left the school with the all-time record in rushing yardage (since broken). He was drafted in the 12th round in 1991, bounced around the league as a special teams player for a few years, played in NFL Europe, and was even out of football for a while. He eventually returned with the Carolina Panthers, and then became the Falcon's starting fullback during their brief and only period of success.

Once he'd found his niche, Christain became a better than average, and more athletic than average, fullback. He could run the ball effectively, and did so as the principal ballcarrier when the Falcon's starting tailback was injured. He also had good hands, could get yardage after the catch, and though smallish for a fullback, became a good blocker. In other words, a good, all-round offensive asset, who made a couple of Pro Bowls, but never a superstar. Still, not bad for a guy who had given up on football before his career was resurrected.

It's with guys like him, who aren't going to get a lot of detailed scrutiny from coaches and scouts, that the assumptions about positions for white versus black players are most in force. Nobody's going to take a guy like this and give him a couple of seasons to demonstrate whether or not he can play tailback. It's not worth it to the coaching staff, because they know at best he's only going to be a marginal back-up, and there are plenty of those already available. He either makes it as a fullback, or he's out.

I suspect that Hester won't have to bounce around the league like Christain did, but I don't think he'll ever be a starting tailback in the NFL either. Still, he did a great job for LSU this season and is one of the main reasons why they're national champions.

Anonymous said...

Hey Dan, do you even bother to read and think about what people write before commenting? I agree with you that Westbrook is the best all purpose back in the NFL and obviously far, far better than Leonard. I'm a big Brian Westbrook fan. The point of comparing physical stats between Westbrook and Leonard and Curtis and Stallworth is to show that 1) people assume that blacks are faster than whites even when they aren't (looking at combine stats, while blacks are on average faster and are therefore way overrepresented in speed positions, the select sample of whites that do play the same positions are generally not deficient in speed compared with the blacks who play the same positions); and 2) speed, while very important in football, is often overrated. As you hinted at re Westbrook, elusiveness, i.e., starting, stoping, changing direction and accelation is more important than actual 40 speed for a RB (e.g. Emmitt Smith only ran a 4.71 40). (Though re acceleration, looking at his 10 and 20 times, Leonard appears to have the edge on Westbrook in this, though I have no doubt that Westbrook is better at changing direction.) My other point re Westbrook was that what makes him good was not just his raw physical skills, but his smarts. He is very patient and lets plays develop before committing himself and makes a lot of smart plays (such as choosing not to score a TD at the end of the game against Dallas to ensure that Dallas would not get the ball back and have no chance to win). Perhaps his 122 IQ, which is likely higher than Leonard's, is part of the reason why he is a better RB and not just his physical skills. There are probably a lot of college players that get overlooked because of their combine stats that would be good NFL players due to mental intangibles and don't get a chance. I suspect that there are a lot of whites in this category. I also suspect that because blacks actually are ON AVERAGE faster than whites, whites players get stereotyped as slow and overlooked even when a given white player is actually not slow (and is therefore playing a given position in the first place).