Well, that didn’t take long. With 6 minutes remaining in the first half of the first game of the new NFL season, Al Michael and John Madden cued sideline reporter Andrea Kremer. Kremer had seven months to prepare her monologue: “[Indianapolis Colts] coach Tony Dungy understands that his winning the Super Bowl transcends sports. But he told me that the seminal [sic] moment when he realized that was when his daughter Tiara, who just graduated [sic] Spelman College told him that her professors at school said that they had witnessed many historical events: Martin Luther King being put in jail, African Americans gaining voting rights; and they have equated Tony Dungy winning the Super Bowl with those monumental events.” Hmm, really?
In Kremer’s defense, she didn’t make the comparison, but reported what Tiara Dungy said her college professors said. Nevertheless, journalists (and I am using that term broadly to include football sideline reporters) should not uncritically repeat goofy statements. I suspect, however, that we are not getting the full story. Tiara Dungy was a Sociology major at Spelman, participated in a Human Rights Exchange program in South Africa and probably has a better understanding of and appreciation for the historical import of the Civil Rights movement than do I. Thus, I bet there is context missing from Kremer’s report.
(My other takeaway from this game is that I’m glad I passed on drafting Drew Brees in my fantasy league.)