Did Dallas Sports Announcer Say Something Racist About Eastwood Football Players? [VIDEO]
I spoke at length on the phone with Dale Hansen. He couldn't be more surprised and sorry that his comments on student athletes were misunderstood. Hansen told me that after checking out the transcript of his comments, he can see how they could have been misconstrued. He said he was not saying that Eastwood student athletes couldn't pass a biology class, he was saying that he didn't want to hear that any student athlete in Texas couldn't pass a biology class, and if they didn't, they shouldn't be allowed to play. Hansen's stand on No Pass/No Play isn't always a popular one in Dallas, but he stands by it, and he stands by his comments on Thursday night being about student athletes in general, not specifically Eastwood High School athletes. I believe him.
If you would like to find out more about Dale Hansen, click here. He really is a good man who doesn't always take the popular stand, but does take the stand that we can be better than we are. I really like that in a man.
By the way, this is what Dale Hansen had to say about the game being cancelled in the first place. You should really listen to it.
The Eastwood/Plano high school football game happened last night and for the most part, it was a great night. The game was surrounded by controversy because Plano ISD officials said they didn't want Eastwood to come to their town to play because they were worried about safety issues in the wake of the El Paso Walmart massacre. When they were pressed about what safety issues they had with an El Paso high school coming to town, the Plano ISD officials couldn't point to one. They turned down offers by YISD to meet them halfway or for Plano to come to El Paso. Finally, after a lot of pressure, bad publicity and the chance to play in the Dallas Cowboys practice facility, Plano relented and agreed to play the game.
During the game, there were a lot of discussions about the Walmart shooting, the way it impacted both communities because the shooter attended Plano Senior High School, the Odessa shooting, and the game getting canceled and then reinstated, but some comments about foreign languages and grades has really touched a nerve with some El Pasoans.
Dale Hansen, a celebrated sports journalist from WFAA in Dallas, was talking about the No Pass/No Play rule in Texas. He said that he didn't feel like student-athletes who couldn't maintain their grades shouldn't be allowed to play. He then said if they can learn a foreign language like football, they should be able to keep their grades up.
A 14 second clip of his conversation flooded El Paso social media and angered a lot of people who thought he was denigrating Eastwood players for speaking Spanish. That's not what he said. He never mentioned Spanish the whole evening. He was saying that football players are smart because they speak the language of football, a language most of us don't understand.
Look, there is enough racism and division out there without creating it over a misunderstood comment. Hansen happens to be a pretty liberal guy in his views of immigration and the border. Trust me, if he had made a racist comment, you know I would have wiped the floor with him, but he didn't. Listen to the clip above so you can hear the full conversation.