Different opinions from readers on the Bayless case.
About 50 percent of players in the NFL are black. About 90 percent of the running backs, wide receivers, and defensive backs are black (quarterback, tight end, and linebacker are the other key positions, and they're not any were near 90 percent white). Over 2/3 of the players in the NBA, and about 90 percent of the stars, are black.
In terms of number and intensity of fans, football has overtaken baseball as the national pastime. For example, Fantasy Football mania and many football teams sell out all their games with season tickets.
Football and basketball compete successfully with baseball for TV viewers when their seasons overlap, and also for players, despite the fact there are more professional baseball players and their careers are longer. (More baseball players, and more baseball players in key positions are white than in either football or basketball.)
How could these sports have achieved the popularity they have if it is common for white fans to only be interested in white players? If that were the case, hockey and golf would be the most popular sports, since the overwhelming majority of hockey players and golfers are white.
Bayless is a moron ? generally ? but not on this. If you were to write down every sports prediction he makes and check them 3 months later, they would be more than 75 percent wrong!
But on this he's right. Not one of my friends, all sports enthusiasts, watch the NBA ? not one second of one single game including playoffs and championship rounds. The game is consider by almost everyone, including others at ESPN who have spoken about it, to be a "black" sport. Little wonder ? the squads are made up almost exclusively of blacks.
Nobody has a kind word for Jimmy Breslin, though. Personally I always thought ? when I was reading him back in the 1970s, I mean: he's still alive and writing ? he was a sharp writer when on form, but an idiot on all social and political issues, including immigration.
(Being an idiot about immigration is kind of an Irish specialty, for historical reasons that go much deeper than you'd think. This idiocy is currently destroying Ireland herself: see Irish Savant for the grisly details.)
Breslin was also an idiot about the Irish Troubles of the 1970s, completely failing to notice the psychotic and Leninist tendencies in the Republican movement. That particular idiocy is visible in the novel I mentioned. I haven't read him for decades; but I assume that like Rep. Peter King, Breslin saw the light on wanton terrorism round about lunchtime on September 11th, 2001.