Blog Entry

The college football hall of fame and the f word

Posted on: May 1, 2009 12:52 am
Edited on: May 1, 2009 12:53 am

You might have noticed that the College Football Hall of Fame announced its latest inductees on Thursday. Fine men, all of them, but as long as Chuck Ealey remains off that list, the hall is a fraud.

With a capital F.

Try being a black quarterback at any level in the late 60s, early 70s. That was Chuck Ealey. In his four seasons at Toledo he went 35-0 as a starter. That's the best record, ever, by a college starting quarterback. From the beginning of high school to his first year of a distinguished career in the CFL, Ealey lost once.

The NFL didn't draft him after Ealey made it known that he wanted to play quarterback, having led the Rockets to what is now the fourth-longest winning streak in history. Unfortunately, discrimination was alive and well back then. Coaches and general managers didn't consider him at his natural position largely because of his race.

He has been kept out of the hall because of a technicality. To be considered for the hall of fame, players must make an All-American team recognized by the NCAA. Ealey was a Football News All-American in 1971. The NCAA didn't recognize the Football News All-American team until 1983. Is that a reason to keep out one of the most accomplished players in history?

Of course not. The site is doing all it can to keep Chuck's legacy alive. Today, he is a 58-year-old businessman in Toronto, a credit to his company, his school and his sport. He was long ago resigned to his fate despite having every reason to be bitter.

The hall of fame is supposed to be about athletic accomplishments and also fame. Ealey has been a credit to the game and also his race. The hall looks petty and foolish for not allowing Ealey in. It changed its rules a couple of years ago by inducting Joe Paterno and Bobby Bowden while they were still active. The hall wanted to honor the two coaching greats while they were still alive.

One of Thursday's inductees was Harvard's William Lewis, the first African-American All-American in history (1893). One-hundred sixteen years later, the winningest African-American quarterback in history can't join Lewis because of some fine print. The hall should do the right thing for Chuck Ealey. It would bring glory to a great player and credibility to a hall that lacks what it takes to be truly great.


Since: Aug 7, 2008
Posted on: May 6, 2009 3:09 pm

The college football hall of fame and the f word

Stats could help, or hinder, your argument. Also, I hope this is not a case of feeling bad for an undeserving minority for the sole reason that he is a minority. 

Since: Jan 30, 2008
Posted on: May 6, 2009 1:46 pm

The college football hall of fame and the f word

Ah, the cunundrum of all cumundrums.  What evil speaks of is morally and ethically wrong, BUT, he is allowed to have his opinion and say what he wants per the ammendments of our Constituion.  If you dont like it, dont read it, or give him one star, or post your opinion, but one of the biggest problems we face today....not just on this website, is that there are people who want to cry foul because THEIR beliefs are not perpetrated.  People, this is wrong.  So evil is an idiot.  We can all agree on that, but to desire to kick him off because he has a belief or idea, no matter how biggoted is wrong too.  Does the fact that I believe gay people are in the wrong based on my religious views mean I should be kicked off this site?  It is my opinion, belief and right as a free American to not only express myself, but to be allowed that without vindictive, self righteous, hypocrites mocking and choosing for me whether I should be allowed to have an opinion or not.

Since: Nov 18, 2006
Posted on: May 6, 2009 1:29 am

The college football hall of fame and the f word

You're right.  But what about the Baseball HOF?   How can you have a Hof without the all-time hit leader andHome run leader?  Those are arguable the 2 most hallowed baseball records?  Would you not agree that is a farce as well?   Sports HOFs should induct players solely on their stats, not their color, ethics or anything else.    

Since: Nov 24, 2008
Posted on: May 6, 2009 12:42 am

The college football hall of fame and the f word

Wow!!!  Who did you vote for?  I am guessing Obama.  I really can't stand you Northeastern liberals.

Since: Feb 5, 2007
Posted on: May 5, 2009 1:57 pm

The college football hall of fame and the f word

Gave my Hamilton Tiger-cats a Grey Cup in his rookie season. Got rookie of the year and MVP awards. If his he didn't get injured he would of been in the CFL hall of fame and we would be having the same arguement with him not being in the Pro Football Hall of Fame like Doug Flutie.

Since: Oct 20, 2006
Posted on: May 5, 2009 10:25 am

The college football hall of fame and the f word

I, also for the first time ever, agree with Dodd.  The point here is the rules. Based on the rules, Pat White, the greatest football player in the history of West Virginia Football will also not qualify for the Hall of fame.

Since: Sep 3, 2007
Posted on: May 4, 2009 8:26 pm

The college football hall of fame and the f word

What happened in 1983 that made the Football News team legit?  Seems like a rather arbitrary time to suddenly become noteworthy.  I agree with the people who like sticking to rules, however what qualifies as an All-American is an interesting question. 
I was going to commend Dodd on picking a topic worth writing for that can't be written like a huge controvercy, until I read through the comments and found strife.

Since: Sep 24, 2006
Posted on: May 4, 2009 5:35 pm

The college football hall of fame and the f word


The problem with the "rules" is that this guy likely wasn't on the right All-American lists because of his race. If the people putting together those lists would have looked beyond his skin color, his undefeated record would have easily been enough. Ealey would be a household name -- not just one whose story comes up from time to time. 35-0?! That kind of prolonged success only existed on John Wooden's basketball teams!

I'm all for changing this rule -- or allowing a non-biased group to re-assess this man's (lack of) induction status!

Since: Dec 4, 2006
Posted on: May 4, 2009 12:56 pm

The college football hall of fame and the f word

53-0 as a starter in amateur football... a "benchwarmer, walk-on WR for the Gators in the 80s"...

Yes, I see how your record is so similar to Ealey's. How about the fact that he was an All-American? Football Writers' Association of America ring a bell?

Since: Mar 31, 2009
Posted on: May 4, 2009 11:01 am

The college football hall of fame and the f word

The NCAA shoud be ashamed of themselves, this man desrves his spot in the hall of fame. not only is he deserving he is an inspiration to young black men who want to be Qbs.

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