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Redskins won't say what they did to comply with Rooney Rule

We taped earlier this morning a PFT Daily segment that sets forth our concerns regarding whether the Redskins violated the spirit of the Rooney Rule by announcing the resignation of Vinny Cerrato and the hiring of Bruce Allen barely an hour apart.

But compliance with the spirit of the Rooney Rule and compliance with the letter of it are two different things.

The official word from the league and the Redskins is that the team respected the requirement that at least one minority candidate be interviewed for the G.M. position. 

Initially, we contacted NFL spokesman Greg Aiello for more information.  He directed us to the Redskins for an answer.  (In the interim, we were told that the Redskins had complied with the Rooney Rule, but our source did not identify the minority candidate(s) who interviewed for the job.)

Contacted by e-mail, Redskins spokesman Zack Bolno advises that the team “over-complied” with the requirements of the Rooney Rule.

But, still, no one will tell us the name(s) of the candidate(s) who interviewed.

“It would not be fair to the other candidates to disclose their names,” Bolno said.

Fine, but it’s not fair to the process to suddenly swap out General Managers without any potentially interested and qualified candidates even knowing that the job might be available.

We’ll have a lot more to say on this one, because there’s something about it that doesn’t pass the smell test — and I’ve confirmed that it’s not because I forgot to apply deodorant.  Again.
 

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60 Responses to “Redskins won't say what they did to comply with Rooney Rule”
  1. AlanSaysYo says: Dec 17, 2009 11:44 AM

    Who cares? The rule is awful. Bruce Allen clearly wasn’t hired just because he’s white – he knows a metric ton about running a football operation.

  2. MN Boise Fan says: Dec 17, 2009 11:44 AM

    They probably “interviewed” Sherm Lewis for this job before they offered him the consultant job. Or at least thats my crazy guess of the day…

  3. swervinmervin says: Dec 17, 2009 11:45 AM

    They interviewed Art Shell. Isn’t that what everybody does?

  4. teke184 says: Dec 17, 2009 11:45 AM

    I’m guessing that Sherm Lewis was interviewed for about 2 seconds in order to give lip-service to the Rooney Rule.

  5. soflaeagle says: Dec 17, 2009 11:45 AM

    Your nose is too close to your arse Florio

  6. wydok says: Dec 17, 2009 11:45 AM

    Dan Snyder: “Hi, yes, is Mr. Dungy at home?”
    Maid: “No, sorry”
    Dan Snyder: “OK, thanks” (to NFL) “OK, all done”

  7. Desertman says: Dec 17, 2009 11:45 AM

    The ‘Dark Heart’ reigns in DC

  8. cobie79 says: Dec 17, 2009 11:45 AM

    Morocco Brown is a minority in their front office and has been labeled as an up and comer…. You would have to believe he would have been the one…

  9. chrismoore06 says: Dec 17, 2009 11:48 AM

    I’d be willing to bet it was Morocco Brown, who was an assistant under Vinny. The one who actually made good decisions and smart draft picks like Chris Horton and Marko Mitchell. As a Skins fan, I would have loved to have seen him get a shot.

  10. smiley says: Dec 17, 2009 11:49 AM

    We’ll Danny Dugglestein that M’Fer….white dat sh*t up!!!

  11. straverse says: Dec 17, 2009 11:49 AM

    I guarantee one of them (probably two) were named Sherm.

  12. Facts Domino says: Dec 17, 2009 11:49 AM

    They were likely the team that contacted Tony Dumbgy.

  13. Branephood says: Dec 17, 2009 11:51 AM

    No way the Skins did the right thing, biggest cesspool of cheaters in the history of the league.

  14. tomatl says: Dec 17, 2009 11:51 AM

    Here we go again.. Florio digging for something to bash the Redskins with.. If the NFL and the Redskins said they complied then it needs to be dropped. Simple as that..

  15. Favre On HGH says: Dec 17, 2009 11:51 AM

    Lions were fined $250,000 when they violated the Rooney Rule while replacing a head coach.
    Bud Adams was fined the same amount for waving to Buffalo Bills sideline.
    Can’t find the exact rule, just references about it. Really don’t care to look very hard either. What I have found says a “minority candidate needs to be interviewed.” Barring explicit language elsewhere in the rule couldn’t Bruce Allen qualify if he is 1/4 Indian, Hispanic or another race?
    Couldn’t a team also pull up a random minority from elsewhere in the organization and sit him down for an interview?
    Hello Bob from accounting, would you like a nice Christmas bonus? Come interview for this position you have no shot at and we’ll add some nice padding to your check.
    Even if they have wording saying a qualified candidate must be interviewed who decides what qualified means?
    Just seems like another hoop for teams to jump through and it appears most don’t take it seriously.
    Name some top executive prospects who are minorities please. I can think of some coaches, but qualified executives or executives with experience is making me think too hard than I want to this early on vacation.

  16. Pudge Heffelfinger says: Dec 17, 2009 11:52 AM

    “Fine, but it’s not fair to the process to suddenly swap out General Managers without any potentially interested and qualified candidates even knowing that the job might be available.”
    That sounds like the whining of a five-year-old. Why do you feel it’s your right to know that they are looking for a GM? Where you going to apply for the job?

  17. Squire says: Dec 17, 2009 11:53 AM

    Wait — potentially interested “candidates” don’t have a right to know about a potential opening and apply. If the Redskins wanted to make a change, they could have told Cerrato that he was on the way out, but sit tight until we make a change — interviewed people (and thus complying with the Rooney Rule) and once they decided on Allen (and negotiated terms) — Vinny resigns and Allen is hired.

  18. Vince says: Dec 17, 2009 11:56 AM

    Who cares? Nothing is going to come out of this

  19. OZZ says: Dec 17, 2009 11:57 AM

    The Rooney rule is stupid and outdated at this point anyway. Isn’t it more disrespectful to just interview a guy that you have no intention of hiring anyway just to be in compliance with a “reverse discrimination” rule?

  20. Gweez says: Dec 17, 2009 12:00 PM

    People will always hire who they feel comfortable with. Forcing them to interview isn’t a bad thing but being artificial many of those interviews are just that, artificial.

  21. CoronaDoug says: Dec 17, 2009 12:01 PM

    They emailed Tony Dungy and called it an interview.

  22. scrapdawg12 says: Dec 17, 2009 12:01 PM

    Who cares about this Rooney Rule. I think its not fair. If a team wants to hire a certain someone they should not have to waste their time on other candidates. Seems pointless and like a waste of money.

  23. DemocratsAreStupid says: Dec 17, 2009 12:02 PM

    The Rooney Rule is an embarrassment to minorities. Unless they are seriously being considered they are just chucking and jiving.

  24. Scrodge2010 says: Dec 17, 2009 12:03 PM

    I know it’s been said time and time again, but the Rooney Rule really serves no purpose…unless it’s purpose is to degrade the minority candidates that are interviewed simply to satisfy the rule.
    When a team has a vacancy, they immediately have a list of people who they would like to see fill it. If there is a minority candidate on the list, then they will obviously be interviewed, but if there isn’t, then they simply pull some poor schmoe into the office for an interview that both parties are aware will not result in a hire.
    Frankly, I think the entire process is offensive, and I see it as taking steps away from the goal the rule is designed to achieve, rather than advancing the interests of minority parties in professional football.

  25. promin1 says: Dec 17, 2009 12:03 PM

    I hope they didn’t comply with it. Its a stupid joke of a rule anyway. I run my own business and nobody is going to tell me who I can interview or hire. Best person gets the job. Period. This country has become a disgrace. Can’t even say Merry Christmas anymore without some liberal douchebag screaming they are offended.

  26. filthymcnasty says: Dec 17, 2009 12:08 PM

    Maybe they don’t want to tip off interest in a potential coaching sleeper like….Zorn!
    Besides, if the league says that they complied…who cares?

  27. Big Stretch says: Dec 17, 2009 12:11 PM

    Rooney rule is total B.S. People should get hired based on merit, not skin color.

  28. chrismoore06 says: Dec 17, 2009 12:11 PM

    The ranks of College Football show that the Rooney Rule is working and needed.

  29. timegambit says: Dec 17, 2009 12:16 PM

    THE most insulting and condescending approach to diversity ever invented.
    If teams will draft the best players regardless of race why do we need a rule to force it elsewhere?
    If you’re the best, people do not care what color you are.
    It’s basically a rule that says you need extra help to compete and it’s not true.
    You’d better get 20% hispanic’s in this league if this is the game we will be playing.
    Pc bs.

  30. texasPHINSfan says: Dec 17, 2009 12:18 PM

    You know Mike, I really wish you wouldn’t be the public watch-dog on issues like this.
    99.9% of the people who read your site wish the rule didn’t exist. PFT going after teams that don’t openly comply doesn’t really appease your readership. If anything you should be letting crap like this slide as the rule is, indeed, crap.

  31. RacerX says: Dec 17, 2009 12:18 PM

    the R Rule is absurd; perfect example of “no good deed goes unpunished”
    glad you guys will have a “lot more to say” on this… gee, i’d love you poking around my billion dollar asset too, questioning whether I’ve intereviewed the right number and right color of people. Why dont u spend your time pointing out the silliness and impracticality of this dumb rule instead?

  32. Colinito says: Dec 17, 2009 12:20 PM

    “Fine, but it’s not fair to the process to suddenly swap out General Managers without any potentially interested and qualified candidates even knowing that the job might be available.”
    Why?? This is a very strange statement to make!

  33. FBGeek77 says: Dec 17, 2009 12:21 PM

    You can’t ask teams to comply with the “spirit” of a rule any more than you can ask citizens to comply with the “spirit” of a law, and you should know that, Mike.
    The rule is what’s written down, including penalties or remedies if the rule isn’t followed. Asking teams to go beyond the written rule is both patently absurd and necessarily subjective.

  34. Bob S. says: Dec 17, 2009 12:23 PM

    Rooney rule is leftwing racism. And why Obama gave Rooney a job in Ireland.
    If only African-Americans(nudge-nudge-wink-wink- that is the ONLY minority they mean) are guaranteed an interview – this is outright racism.

  35. scooby says: Dec 17, 2009 12:24 PM

    people keep saying the ‘rooney rule’ is reverse discrimination.. but you have to look deeper at what the NFL is trying to do with the rule.. Obviously interviewing for the sake of interviewing is pointless to the organization already set to hire someone else.. but a front office exec is not ever going to know what to expect in an interview unless he’s been thru the process b4.. so in a sense the rooney rule is basically helping minorities get prepared for a future interview they have a real shot at getting..

  36. FBGeek77 says: Dec 17, 2009 12:25 PM

    promin1: “Can’t even say Merry Christmas anymore without some liberal douchebag screaming they are offended.”
    Just so you know, I’m one of those liberal douchebags you speak of, and I don’t care if you say Merry Christmas, one nation under God, in God we trust, or anything else, especially since I say all those things, too. I also don’t care if your kids pray in school.
    Just wanted you to know that not all liberals are crazy. Now, back to our regularly-scheduled commenting.

  37. straverse says: Dec 17, 2009 12:29 PM

    And hell, whites are the minority in DC. So technically, Allen could be the minority candidate.

  38. bake says: Dec 17, 2009 12:30 PM

    I think it would be insulting to be a black man and getting first interview for a job based on that..Like I need remedial help.
    These owners hire the best, period. If they were racist how come we ain’t had a good white running back since John Riggins??
    Jerry Reese in NY and Ozzie Newsome in Baltimore have been outstanding, and would get hired anywhere regardless of color. If you’re good, you don’t need special help.
    That being said, the Redskins first owner, George Preston Marshall, said “I’ll hire black players when the Harlem Globetrotters hire white guys to play basketball.”

  39. Katmanduu says: Dec 17, 2009 12:30 PM

    The Rooney Rule is stupid huh? The moron Redskin fanbase is dumber than I thought.
    Get a clue people…..

  40. Mike Quick says: Dec 17, 2009 12:33 PM

    “The official word from the league and the Redskins is that the team respected the requirement that at least one minority candidate be interviewed for the G.M. position.”
    As long as the NFL is satisfied, thats all that matters. We DONT care if Florio is.

  41. akuehn713 says: Dec 17, 2009 12:36 PM

    Two things, Sherm Lewis wouldn’t agree to be part of a sham interview. He turned down several interview opportunities years ago that he felt weren’t real opportunities.
    Second, it still chaps my ass that all these teams wiggle around the rule, or scam their way past and don’t get fined. But when the Lions hired Mocch they refused to do a sham interview and mock the system and they got fined.
    It’s bullshit.

  42. Bob Nelson says: Dec 17, 2009 12:41 PM

    There is more than one type of minority so over compliance with the Rooney rule administrative requirements is very easy to claim.
    Rooney rule candidates are in the process early as those interviews must take place before you can talk to the serious candidates.
    Naturally there are some candidates you don’t want after less than a minute of interview time.
    To prove he was colorblind, Jerry Jones has conducted these interviews over the telephone. I mean in these days of swine flu, who wants to be shaking hands.
    With all vacancies there is a round up of the usual suspects who get Rooney Rule interviews.
    The Rooney rule is a time consuming proccedure that discriminates against candidates of one racial background so they can never be the first ones interviewed.
    There has never been a satisfactory explanation of why this loony Rooney racial discrimination is sanctioned by the NFL in the 21st century.
    A person’s race doesn’t matter. Performance on the job is what matters.

  43. Scoop says: Dec 17, 2009 12:46 PM

    At times, the Rooney Rule seems to be more insulting and patronizing than meaningful. Yo, minority dude, can you come in for a fake interview so we can get on with hiring the guy we already intend to hire?
    Another example of idealism gone bad…

  44. GregO says: Dec 17, 2009 12:56 PM

    What scam? Do you think Snyder had Cerrato resign and hired Allen sight unseen? I am guessing he had an interview that *gasp* Florio had not heard about prior to his joining the team.
    Isn’t it possible that Snyder had been interviewing people for awhile now and you simply had not caught any rumors about it?
    Look up the definition of “hubris” Florio.

  45. Twiz says: Dec 17, 2009 12:57 PM

    The real question in all this is:
    Why do you care Lord Florio?
    It is not your call to decide if they violated any rule or not, nor should it even be your concern.
    My guess is you are only once again looking for site hits and trying to create controversy where there may not be any.
    Stick to copying the football news others print and go on about your daily life!

  46. texasPHINSfan says: Dec 17, 2009 1:03 PM

    “FBGeek77 says:
    December 17, 2009 12:25 PM
    promin1: “Can’t even say Merry Christmas anymore without some liberal douchebag screaming they are offended.”
    Just so you know, I’m one of those liberal douchebags you speak of, and I don’t care if you say Merry Christmas, one nation under God, in God we trust, or anything else, especially since I say all those things, too. I also don’t care if your kids pray in school.
    Just wanted you to know that not all liberals are crazy. Now, back to our regularly-scheduled commenting.”
    ———————————————-
    Then you’re not a liberal. :P
    Kidding. :)

  47. Patrian says: Dec 17, 2009 1:06 PM

    Will the Rooney rule actualy get ANY one a job?
    Most owners know who they want regardless of race already before firing somone..
    Seems like this will do nothing but waist people time…

  48. Hovenaut says: Dec 17, 2009 1:07 PM

    It can still be all good.
    Hire a top notch minority candidate to coach, and draft Toby Gerhardt as the next running back. That’s what I’d do.
    Respectively,
    GP Marshall.

  49. TheVulture says: Dec 17, 2009 1:20 PM

    If I worked hard in life to own a business then I’ve earned the right to hire whomever I want. If I want a white guy, then I’ll hire a white guy. Its my business not yours.

  50. JoaquinFenix says: Dec 17, 2009 1:25 PM

    The spirit of the Rooney Rule is racism.

  51. realitypolice says: Dec 17, 2009 2:13 PM

    I’ve got to be honest with you- if they told the league what they did and the league determined that they complied with the rule, it’s really none of your damned business. Do you think the league would let them get away with not telling them who they interviewed? Obviously not.
    And enough of this “hour apart” nonsense with the resignation and the hiring. You have no idea when this decision was actually made and how long they have been interviewing people. Did it ever occur to you that due to Cerrato and Snyder’s close relationship, Vinny had decided to resign weeks ago and agreed to stay on until they found a successor?

  52. Ottawa49ers says: Dec 17, 2009 2:23 PM

    who cares, Rooney rule is a joke. They’re going to hire the best possible candidate, and wasting time to comply with the rule is retarded. Wasting time ratting on them is even more pathetic.

  53. Bazooka Joe says: Dec 17, 2009 2:28 PM

    Oh boy. This topic will bring all of the brainless-inbred-incestous-hillbillies out of the woodwork and crying about how the Rooney Rule is unfair. Bunch of whiny dumbass crackers.

  54. Mean D says: Dec 17, 2009 2:48 PM

    Florio works for NBC and MUST support racial quotas. Thing is Florio, the Rooney rule is a farce. How many women or Asians have been interviewed under this rule? I have a secret to tell you, Florio: Owners want to WIN! They don’t care if their hire is green.
    Next up, Florio, we need to go after the ticket and merchandise buying fans because they are in excess of 90% white.

  55. chapnasty says: Dec 17, 2009 3:06 PM

    @FB
    While you may not be a liberal doucher, 99% of liberals are over sensitive, cry baby, dependant pain in the a$$e$.

  56. Raiders757 says: Dec 17, 2009 3:12 PM

    I’ve seen a few use the term “reverse discrimination”.
    When are people going to realize that there is no such thing. Discrimination is just that, and it doesn’t matter what race or skin color you are. Discriminating against others isn’t something exclusive to only white people.
    …as for the Rooney Rule? It is well past being no longer needed. It’s time to stop wasting everyone’s time with this nonsense.

  57. promin1 says: Dec 17, 2009 4:42 PM

    Bazooka Joe says:
    December 17, 2009 2:28 PM
    Oh boy. This topic will bring all of the brainless-inbred-incestous-hillbillies out of the woodwork and crying about how the Rooney Rule is unfair. Bunch of whiny dumbass crackers.
    Well it obviously brought out a brainless, welfare dependent, want everything handed to you, pull the race card whenever you dont get what you want jerkoff like yourself. Go cry about slavery that happened 400 years ago retard.

  58. sourdiesel says: Dec 17, 2009 7:37 PM

    The NFL is mostly black, why should there be a Rooney rule? I think everyone on the Eagle’s defense is black. Should they have to put a white person out there?

  59. sourdiesel says: Dec 17, 2009 7:44 PM

    The NFL is mostly black why do you need to interview a minority candidate? Technically in the NFL whites are the minority. The Eagles have no white people on their starting defense

  60. Vito says: Dec 17, 2009 7:59 PM

    When a team fires someone for the exact purpose of hiring someone else, I’ve always found it pointless for a team to have to comply with the Rooney Rule. You can’t force people to give an honest shot to someone when they have someone in mind and you can’t penalize people for having someone in mind already. The only argument I’ve ever heard that makes it somewhat agreeable to apply the Rooney Rule even in those cases is that it gets the minority candidate’s name out there and can help him for future job openings. If they refuse to release the name(s) of the minority candidate(s) they interviewed, isn’t it even making that aspect of it pointless?

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