Title

How Race Affects Dismissals of College Football Coaches

Document Type

Article

Publication Date

9-1-2004

Department

Political Science, International Development, and International Affairs

Abstract

We employ a discrete-time hazard model and a Blinder-decomposition approach to explore the possibility of racial discrimination in the dismissal and retention of college-football coaches by university administrations. A rich data set consisting of 81 institutions over an 11-year period (1990-2000) that contains, in addition to a coach's race, variables on cumulative winning records, annual on-the-field improvements, and pre-/post-season game participation by institutions and their coaches is employed. Our study finds that black coaches, on average, face a dismissal probability that is 9.6 percentage points below that of their nonblack counterparts, ceteris paribus, suggesting that black head coaches may be the beneficiaries of favorable treatment by university administrators. Such a result likely stems from universities' approach to social concerns involving race and gender issues. This finding also fits a construct that considers workplace discrimination as multi-dimensional. For example, black representation in the college football coaching ranks may be disproportionately low, possibly as a result of discrimination. However, once hired, black coaches are given more time to succeed than nonblacks, other things constant.

Publication Title

Journal of Labor Research

Volume

25

Issue

4

First Page

645

Last Page

656