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Why are so many walk-ons white?

By The Undefeated

At the top level of men’s college basketball, where teams harbor national championship hopes and NBA talent, most of the competitors are African-American. But oRead full story

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  • If finances are keeping walk-on level African Americans out of Div 1 schools, then this is another problem that would be fixed by paying NCAA players.

  • This isn't just a case of black players not understanding the value of being a walk-on athlete, as with most things, it's also a clear indication of opportunities dependent on economic differences. The article touches on the median net worth of white families being about 10 times higher than the median net worth of black families--which, simply put, does not give them the ability, or finances needed, to pay for their sons to go to Division I schools with only hopes of making the team.

    Also, I'd

    This isn't just a case of black players not understanding the value of being a walk-on athlete, as with most things, it's also a clear indication of opportunities dependent on economic differences. The article touches on the median net worth of white families being about 10 times higher than the median net worth of black families--which, simply put, does not give them the ability, or finances needed, to pay for their sons to go to Division I schools with only hopes of making the team.

    Also, I'd argue that capitalism has created an environment in which most black players don't think of basketball as a hobby, and if they did then the time and effort necessary to play NCAA basketball without financial compensation or reward is a luxury not afforded to them.

  • Derrick Henderson
    Derrick HendersonWH Consulting Agency, LLC

    Upon reading this post I have to be frank about this so-called “problem”. First I hate how society tries to generate problems when African-Americans are slightly more glorified or superior in a particular activity. We don’t discuss how disadvantaged Africans-Americans are when it comes to sports such as tennis, golf, and swimming. But the argument to that would be that African-Americans don’t possess the necessary talent to compete in those sports. So I would also argue that coaches recruit the most

    Upon reading this post I have to be frank about this so-called “problem”. First I hate how society tries to generate problems when African-Americans are slightly more glorified or superior in a particular activity. We don’t discuss how disadvantaged Africans-Americans are when it comes to sports such as tennis, golf, and swimming. But the argument to that would be that African-Americans don’t possess the necessary talent to compete in those sports. So I would also argue that coaches recruit the most elite players who happen to be African-American. It is also evident that many African-Americans aren’t financially able to attend college so why should it be seen as adverse to use a particular skill set to propel one to college. I could of analyzed this article to highlight the plethora of socioeconomic problems that potentially have created this “problem,” but it’s time to stop worrying about offending someone with the truth.

  • Olivia  Penn
    Olivia Penn

    After reading this long and arduous article, it’s clear that being a walk-on is not simply a matter of sitting on the bench. As we know, most dominant “6th Men”, are on the bench. Here’s the deal, NCAA Athletes (many, who are black) do not get paid for being in the game and now, we are wanting them to not get paid while walking-on and sitting on the bench. All this, for the Art of Leveraging the Walk-On Experience- are you kidding me.

    Perhaps a stipend would provide a more leveraging and compelling reason to walk on, for Blacks that is.

  • Ok this article is nothing but a filler. This total and utter full of ish that I don’t see the point of it. Yes their are more whites who are walked on.... So What? There are more blacks on scholarship. Isn’t that what we want? I mean especially if we look at the financial numbers. Most blacks can’t afford to pay for college and play sports. Now the angle of how this is how these young men are getting coaching jobs. Now that maybe true, if it is so what? I mean you can’t win everything. You can go

    Ok this article is nothing but a filler. This total and utter full of ish that I don’t see the point of it. Yes their are more whites who are walked on.... So What? There are more blacks on scholarship. Isn’t that what we want? I mean especially if we look at the financial numbers. Most blacks can’t afford to pay for college and play sports. Now the angle of how this is how these young men are getting coaching jobs. Now that maybe true, if it is so what? I mean you can’t win everything. You can go to the club and walk out with every girl. I don’t think it’s an issue and definitely not one we should focus on. You can’t win all battles.

  • America is race obsessed.

  • Gregory Pierce
    Gregory Pierce

    Let me get this straight, college basketball players are mostly black (starters and most of the bench) and because the one or two players given the chance to walk-on are white you all want to cry racism? That's a stretch. Huge college basketball fan here and do you know how rare it is to see a white player anywhere on the court during the game? I'm sure if you asked the players they'd have no problem with the fact that the bench players aren't black. Seems like we're searching for a problem where there isn't one.

  • Booooo!!! Why aren’t there any black bench warmers? Because they’re all starting! How bout that!? So what you’re really saying is you’re mad too many whites are only walk ins instead of scouted for and given scholarships and starting. (Right?)

  • One thing that may play a role here is "Bias". A very good book that I would suggest reading is called "The Undoing Project" by Michael Lewis. In this book, about Nobel Prize winner Daniel Kahneman and Amos Tversky - the story of Jeremy Linn is presented and discussed. Perhaps there are so many walk-ons who are white related to what team's expect a good player to look like?

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