Bernstein: Iowa Needs To Fire Kirk Ferentz

Former players have described a culture of systemic racism in the program.

Dan Bernstein Show
June 10, 2020 - 3:20 pm

(670 The Score) In the wake of former Iowa football players describing a culture of systemic racism under the leadership of coach Kirk Ferentz, the Hawkeyes need to fire Ferentz, 670 host Dan Bernstein argued on his show Wednesday morning.

Ferentz has directed Iowa for 22 years, marking the longest current tenure at one school in college football. Bears center James Daniels was one of dozens of former Iowa players to share allegations of racism and mistreatment in the program while they were there.

"There are too many racial disparities in the Iowa football program," Daniels wrote on Twitter. "Black players have been treated unfairly for far too long."

Iowa has placed strength and conditioning coach Chris Doyle on administrative leave after he was accused of racial mistreatment. As of Monday, current players hadn't publicly complained of mistreatment, the Associated Press reported.

Bernstein believes the Hawkeyes have to take big steps to change the culture -- and that means removing Ferentz, he argued.

"They have to fire Kirk Ferentz, and the sooner they do it, the sooner they can move on and eradicate what clearly is a poisonous and racist culture at the University of Iowa football," Bernstein said in his opening segment. "They’ve got to do it soon. They’ve got to do it completely, and they have to figure out how they can move forward. With all of these claims, understanding there’s cultural problem there, it comes down to this: There is no way they move on from this with him remaining as head coach. There is no way. There’s too much out there. Too much has been said, too many bells that can’t be un-rung. And they are powerful. This is real stuff coming from real people – and important people. And every day that goes by, there are more stories. You got to keep track. You’ve got to be following on Twitter and be listening to the number of players who are saying, ‘Here, here, it’s about time somebody said this.’

“They clearly have to do that, but that’s just the start. When you really look at what’s been intertwined here for all of these years and who is involved in these stories. With everyone coming out, we’re getting Ferentz linked more directly to their treatment. This thing needs to be fumigated. And Iowa football, that school can not go on with him remaining in power. There is no change to the culture, there is no change to the system until the single person most responsible for it is removed."

Listen to the full segment below.