The 6 Types of Black Male Athletes

Published October 14, 2011 by Leonard Moore

6 Types of Black Male Athletes

When engaging the Black Male athlete we can no longer use the one-size-fits-all approach. While many black males have similar experiences, I have come to the realization that there are six distinct black male athlete personality types. Use this guide to help you as you help these boys become men.

The Myron Rolle’s: Just gets it. Understands the value of education. Will be an academic all-American as well as first-team all American on the field. A leader.

The Collis Temple III’s: Using his athletic scholarship for a degree and networking opportunities. Focused on life after athletics. Not really concerned about playing time. Will work hard, do the right thing, and because of his attitude, work ethic, and character, will be a solid contributor his junior and senior year. Athletics doesn’t define him. Named after my former student who graduated in three years, earned his master’s degree during his fourth year, and started working on a Ph.D. during his last year of eligibility.

The Kellen Winslow Jr’s: The suburban wanna-be thug. This type is from the suburbs, a good family background, parents college-educated, they have some money. But he wants to act as if he is from the hood. Very dangerous. A ringleader. Can have a negative influence over younger guys. Dresses nice, nice car, but doesn’t care about consequences because his parents have money.

The Michael Oher’s: This guy is from the hood and he has faced some trauma in his life so he wants to get a degree so that he can change his family. Football got him here but it is secondary. He has a hard exterior, but he is soft on the inside. More than anything else he wants to go back home with a degree and he will seek to maximize the college experience. He likes being an athlete but it doesn’t define him.

The Dez Bryant’s: Hood background. Not really into school. He identifies 100% as an athlete and he has not even considered any other options because he knows he’s going to the league. As long as he is starting and getting considerable playing time he will go to class, study hall, tutoring, whatever it takes to maintain eligibility. A workout freak. A huge ego. But if his playing time gets cut or if he loses his starting job watch out because he doesn’t know how to handle adversity.

The Cecil Collins’s: This guy should not be on your campus. 100% thugged-out and your program doesn’t have the support structure to handle all of the baggage he’s accumulated over the years. Great athlete but will bring headaches and headlines.

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