Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise
Sports News Without Fear, Favor or Compromise

Are You A Racist If You Root For Cornell?

Illustration for article titled Are You A Racist If You Root For Cornell?

Dan Shaughnessy, wrote a boring little filler column about why Cornell is better than Kentucky. Matt Jones, who covers Kentucky, says that attitude is elitist and racist. So who is the most wrong here? WRITER FIGHT!


It's no surprise that Shaughnessy's argument is lazy and poorly reasoned. His thesis is that the Big Red are humble, hard-working nerds who pay their own bills and won't find future jobs in this tough economy. The Wildcats are cheaters who hire spoiled NBA professionals to buy championships. (Ironically, Kentucky, and not the Ivy League, is the snotty rich kid in this scenario.) Jones responded with some salient points—that Kentucky's kids are really the poor, scrappy ones who rose from humble beginnings to get where they and are a Cornell diploma is not exactly a burden in a job interview.

Oh, and also: Boston is "the most racist major sports town in America."

Try not to get hit by all the falling stereotypes. Shaughnessy was simply trying to make the point the Cornell is the loveable underdog and that Kentucky sold its soul to bring in John Calipari and his one-and-done wonders. Jones was simply trying to prove that Shaughnessy is wrong and a snob. (Both probably true.) But is it racist to root against a team that's all black in a favor of one that's mostly white? That seems like a stretch. Dan didn't even call any of the white guys "gritty"!

Jones also wonders if the same column would have been written if Duke were playing Cornell. Well, yes, except in that column Duke would be the hated elitist basketball factory with the jerk for a coach. (I said watch out for the stereotypes.) And then Dan would be accused of racism for hating a talented basketball team simply because they're white.... Wait. I'm confused now.

Anyway, listening to Jones and Shaughnessy shout about it on Boston radio didn't solve anything. Imagine that.

Clinging to an Ivy climber [The Boston Globe]
Dan Shaughnessy Puts on His Elitist/Racist Hat [Kentucky Sports Radio]
Kentucky Battles Shaughnessy [98.5 The Sports Hub]
Everybody Hates Duke: Why Some Teams Rile Us [Newsweek]