Well, that was interesting. Earlier today on First Take, Skip Bayless and Rob Parker debated the merits of Chad Ochocinco’s MLS tryout – specifically, whether Ochocinco’s desire to play pro soccer was for real, or a pure publicity stunt. Parker’s opinion was more provocative, but as the headline suggests, Bayless still got in the best line.
Parker and Bayless agreed on one thing – that Ochocinco was trying to drum up publicity with his tryout (since really, when isn’t he trying to do that in one form or another?). Bayless, though, thought that beyond the attention-seeking, Ochocinco really was doing something he genuinely wanted to do – or something he thought he genuinely wanted to do, anyway. Parker wasn’t convinced:
Really? A dream? If Chad Ochocinco was serious about this being a dream of his, he’s the only black guy in this country who’s not from foreign descent or Caribbean descent who wants to play soccer.
Strong words – and honestly, they smack of stereotyping. According to the U.S. Census Bureau’s 2009 estimates, the U.S. population was about 307,000,000, nearly 13 percent of which was black. That’s almost 40 million people. Of course, included in that number are certainly some first-generation Americans, but plenty aren’t. Not one of those people ever harbored soccer-playing dreams?
And Bayless actually said he agreed with that, but qualified it by saying of Ochocinco:
“This is one weird black guy. Chad’s out there.”
Yes, Skip said it. It makes more sense in context, but he still said it…and we thank him for saying it, because that was a hell of a quote to pull for the headline of this post. Of course, breaking down the statement into its most basic literal components, there’s not a whole lot to argue. Ochocinco is indeed black, and anyone who’d change his or her last name to Ochocinco is indisputably “out there.”
But the way it all came together to form that line…what more could someone who watches TV waiting for crazy-sounding things to happen ask for? Video, via ESPN2, below.