When questioned about competing against Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin and “representation” at his daily press conference, Buccaneers head coach Todd Bowles stopped many woke reporters in their tracks.
The Tampa Bay coach was answering inquiries from journalists who thought it essential to make the upcoming Bucs game against Pittsburgh a matter of race at the news conference he held on Tuesday. The NFL coach was adamant in his disinterest in their plan of action.
Bowles was questioned by a reporter about his and Tomlin’s status as “two of the black head coaches in the league,” how they got along, and whether Steve Wilks, the interim head coach of the Carolina Panthers, would be “joining that fold.”
Bowles replied, “I have a very good relationship with Tomlin. We don’t look at what color we are when we coach against each other. We just know each other. I have a lot of very good white friends that coach in this league as well. And I don’t think it’s a big deal,” he added. “As far as us coaching against each other, I think it’s normal … and we coach ball. We don’t look at color.”
A second reporter then intervened and appeared to chastise the coach for not responding in a way that was deemed appropriate, saying, “You also understand that representation matters, too, right?” The head coach was then informed of how others are motivated by his presence because “football players, they see you guys. You know, they see someone that looks like them, maybe grew up like them…”
Todd Bowles on coaching against Mike Tomlin this Sunday: "I don't think it's a big deal…we don't look at color."
Bowles on representation in coaching: "I think the minute you guys stop making a big deal about it, everybody else will as well."
*Questions included for context pic.twitter.com/JtehXqqKcW
— David Schiele WTSP (@Deacon_Schiele) October 12, 2022
Bowles replied, “Well, when you say ‘see you guys’ and ‘look like them’ and ‘grow up like them’ means that we’re oddballs to begin with. And I think the minute you guys start — stop making a big deal about it, everybody else will as well.”
After the Panthers sacked coach Matt Rhule following the team’s terrible start to the 2022 season with a 1-4 record, Wilks was named as the team’s interim head coach on Monday. Rhule has a cumulative record of just 11-27 while playing for the team for less than three years.
Featured Image: Screenshot from YouTube.
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