Thoughts On Jalen Rose’s Comments And Grant Hill’s Reaction

Jalen Rose said in the Fab 5 documentary that he felt when he was 18 and in college that black players that went to Duke were "Uncle Toms". He was expressing what he thought at that time and now people are taking it and running with it. The latest example is Grant Hill. Hill penned a letter to the New York Times saying that he wonders if Rose still feels this way and that his comments were somewhat sad and pathetic. Well, I think its time for Grant Hill to calm down.

Jalen Rose was being candid and honest in the Fab 5 documentary. That's something that I appreciated about him. He was open and honest about everything that he felt at that time and for Grant Hill to come out and personally pen a letter about this makes no sense. Hill comes across as a guy who has hurt feelings over what Rose thought back then. If I were Grant Hill, I would have this differently.

I personally took the comments for what they were, the thoughts of an inner-city kid who grew up in a single-parent household and had his own views. Now I'm not saying all kids with one parent in the household would say what Rose said, but he was just trying to allow the viewing public into what he was thinking. Rose also said later on that the Duke team that he hated so much was a better team and he also said it took him years to come to grips with that.

I think that Jalen Rose was refreshingly honest, forthright and has shown that he has grown up since those times. And instead of people persecuting him for what he said and thought at that time, people need to understand that he was just painting a picture and expressing what he thought at 18. I'm not agreeing with what he said or thought by any stretch of the imagination. I'm just saying was it really worth a letter Grant?

34 Responses

  1. James Rutherford

    I agree Rose was a eighteen year old kid at the time and if that’s what he felt at that time in his life,it is what it is enough said.Grant Hill is a idoit to send a letter voiceing his thoughts on something said so long ago by a teenager,not to mention he(Grant Hill) was born with a silver spoon in his mouth,his father played football at Yale University and then went on to be a All-Pro for the Dallas Cowboys,his mother was a successful attorney so he has no right to criticize Rose for his comment,Rose being a poor kid from the inner-city and from a single parent home, so if he felt like that at the time so what.

  2. I see no problem with it. Do I share his opinion? No, but at least hes being honest and not sugar coating anything. Apparently were supposed to not hurt anyone’s feelings anymore. Not to go all patriotic, but thats one thing that makes America great, we can say what we feel, and others can respond in opposition or agreement.

  3. Carlos D

    I usually try to say something insightful but Grant Hill is acting like a little B! I think Hill probably has been called a Uncle Tom numerous times and his life and this was the perfect time strike back. If Duke wants to change the perception of the type of players they recruit they can change it, but they want. They don’t want that inner city kid. Proof is Coach K didn’t even recruit John Wall who was in his back yard. He is content with the Shane Battier’s of the world. It’s been successful for them so why change. But until that changes they gonna have to deal with Black people perception of the program. The ball is in Coach K’s court!

    • dan

      he did recruit john wall and other inner city prospects like lebron james, elton brand,Corey Maggette, Will Avery, Sean Dockery. Harrison Barnes came from a single parent household like Jalen and Duke recruited Barnes.

      • I’m wondering why didn’t Grant Hill mention these players in his letter. Can someone explain why he didn’t mention Magette, Avery, Dockery? I want to know that answer.

      • Got a question for you Dan. Dop you think it was coincidence or by accident that Grant Hill left Dockery, Avery, Brand out of the letter he wrote?

  4. Mel

    Grant had a right to respond just like Jalen had a right to say what he said.

    • He had a right to respond. That’s true, but what was the reasoning for responding. He was responding to the thoughts of a 18 or 19 year old Jalen Rose at 37. Does that make sense to you?

      • dan

        jalen said that ‘now’ he understands that duke does recruit kids from private schools so that they don’t see some of the players selling goods or selling their rings for money. skip asked him if he don’t feel that way today.. he didn’t really answer that he doesn’t, he was also also asked, if they were to recruit you now,, he says they will recruit my kids..

        like grant hill said,, he left us all guessing on what he believes today,

        • If you watched the documentary, you could tell that he doesn’t feel that way now, he shouldn’t have to explain all that to everyone. That was just a TV moment that he was trying to create when he didn’t answer that question from Skip. I seriously believe that.

  5. James Clary

    I think that Jason Whitlock’s comments about this hit the nail on the head. While it is certainly valid for an 18 year old kid to feel that way, and for a 37 year old adult to say how he felt, he should also be expected to distance the 37 year old mans perspective from that of the 18 year old boy.

    He knew what he was saying would be offensive to Grant Hill, and that is why he sent him an apologizing tweet. I think that if I received an apology by tweet or text message that I would expect it to be for nothing more then be 15 minutes late meeting me. He used specific language that is extremely pejorative, and is probably the most offensive thing one black person can say to another (from a white man’s perspective). To expect there would be no reaction is ridiculous.

    Further, the while there is some element of revenge in Grant Hill’s column (I never lost a game to Michigan in my career), there was a lot more calling for black solidarity and respecting those who come from different households, focusing on the fact that it is sufficiently difficult for people to make it without name calling.

    There were numerous other issues with the documentary, which again, I feel Whitlock does a far superior job in addressing then I ever could, including: the lack of discussion of the scandals, the lack of discussion of the teams antecedents (Georgetown Hoyas, but to some extent the UNLV Running Rebels, and Texas Western), the fact that someone who was being reported on was the executive producer of the project (this is supposed to be a news organization). None of that addresses the comments regarding Grant Hill’s character and family situation.

    • James Clary

      I also think these comments from Jason Reid in the Washington Post also address the question. Particularly striking is his paragraph about when Milton Bradley called him an Uncle Tom in 2004.

      • The difference between Milton Bradley and Jalen Rose was that Rose was in a flashback mode saying what he felt at the time when he was 18. He also said Duke was the better team as well. I think he was just being refreshingly honest about what he felt at that time in his life. Bradley was just wrong in using this term because he meant it for right now and was trying to tear him down. That’s obviously not what Rose was doing. Two completely differnt scenarios.

    • Well, as these writers have their opinions, so do I. I feel as if he was just trying to bring us into what he was feeling at the time and that the letter was unnecessary by Grant Hill. We agree to disagree. While I agree what he called Hill isn’t a good term, that’s not what he believes now and I think that more people are making what Rose said up to be more than what it was.

      • James Clary

        Then if they are making more of it then they should, then I believe that greater clarity could have been made by three of the four men that participated in the documentary in the interviews on ESPN. After that clip came out, but before the entire documentary was played, three of the fab five including Jalen were on an interview show on ESPN where they talked about their feelings for Duke when they were young men. None of them made any effort to distance themselves from those earlier feelings.

        I think there were plenty of opportunities to express how that while Grant Hill was an example they used of their view when they were 17, that it does not mesh with what they know of him now. This was not a comment made by a person who never talks to the press, this was a frank discussion by someone who is not a talking head. I also feel, it is a caluclated move, because I probably would not have watched the documentary without those comments being a part of it. Jalen Rose made his statements in a public forum, and Grant Hill has the right to address it in a public forum, and furthermore, did so in a respectful way.

        • I think too much is being made of it. I think through paying attention to the documentary, you would understand that he meant those comments for during that time. People are making this too much of a story when its not a story at all.

  6. James Clary

    Another perspective, that balances between the two viewpoints

  7. Jim Poppe

    Its funny how a “man” like Jalen Rose is to be commended for expressing his thoughts and Grant Hill is criticized for expressing his. Jalen Rose never qualified his comments about the black Duke players being thought of as Uncle Toms and stated that is what he thought as a teenager but has grown and seen he was wrong then.
    He stoked the racial fires with his rascist comments using a very negative racial term in referring to the black basketball players of Duke. I wonder how it would be received if a white player used a negative racial term against the Michigan (not so) Fab Five? There would be no excuses acceptable for the white player.
    Nobody brings up the Duke Lacrosse team blatant and criminally false accusations and the racial attacks made against the team and school when it happened. I have read few if any apologies to the team or school when the accusations turned out to be 100% false and were fodder for the DA’s political career. All of the things that occurred during the Lacrosse team trials and tribulations are a side show to the Jalen Rose fab documentary but are to be considered because of the anti-white hate these false accusations generated and the anti-Duke speeches and editorials that were generated. And I cannot repeat enough, how many of those that condemned Duke and their sports programs ever apologized and acknowledged how wrong they were when the truth finally came out?
    As for jalen Rose growing up, read today’s papers about Jalen being accused of DWI. That does not seem to grown up to me.

    • People make mistakes, so I’m not going to run Jalen over the coals for the DWI. And for the record, I think you are taking all this overboard. Why does he need to give an apology? He was painting a picture for everyone. That’s all.

    • Another thing Jim. What’s your basis for questioning whether Jalen is a man or not? If your basis is because he made a mistake, then a lot of men in this world really aren’t men then. I’m sure you’ve made a mistake in your life too that you weren’t too proud of. Did anyone question whether you were a man or not? Grown people make mistakes too and if you haven’t made mistakes, then I want to see you walk on water too.

      • Jim Poppe

        I did not question whether he was man or not, I simply put the word man in quotations to show I was not impressed with him and his rascist point of view. And it is rascist.
        To call another black an “Uncle Tom” is being rascist, its implying that the black person is less of a black man and is doing the bidding of whites. That is rascist. And he is being given a free pass on being rascist. What Duke student, teacher or coach would be allowed to be a rascist and get away with it? None.
        There were lines of people piling on and hammering Duke as being a rascist institution over the alleged rape of a now confirmed liar, hooker and accused murderer. But where were the lines when the truth came out? I did not see any or read any.
        Jalen Rose painted himself as judge and jury of the Duke Program and was wrong and biased in his view. And lo and behold, he gets himself a DWI, hides it from his employer and tries to worm his way out of being held accountable in the press for his illegal and clearly wrong behavior. All the while he wants Duke to be held accountable for his biased views that have never been shown to be accurate at all. He is a hypocrite and should not be given a pass when he himself spreads incorrect attitudes and accusations at a school that has not done anything remotely rascist any of us have been witness to. Until he or anyone can provide some ironclad proof of Duke’s institutional rascism or biased policies, they should shut up and worry about their own illegal behavior.

        • Cut it out Jim. You obviously didn’t pay attention to the documentary. I have my opinion and you have yours. That’s that.

  8. Jim Poppe

    I paid attention all too well to the documentary. The man is a rascist and I will not give him a pass as you will. You also want to give him a pass on DWI, I don’t. He put himself in a situation where he could have killed or injured someone while drunk, why give that a pass?
    There is a standard of behavior we all must adhere to, especially those like Jalen that like to point fingers and accuse others of there perceived shortcomings. He got on his soapbox and with bias accused others of inappropriate behavior, not a shred of evidence to back him up, used racial stereotypes aginst some Duke student athletes and you want to give him a free pass. I will not and whether you like it or not, I am entitled to those opinions and I will not cut it out.

    • Believe what u want. I’m not saying you aren’t entitled to your opinion, but I’ve expressed mine and mine is different than yours. The end.

  9. Jim Poppe

    do you always feel the need to get in the last word?

    • No. Just when I feel like saying something, I say it.

      • Jim Poppe

        whether it makes sense or not.
        you must be so proud.

        • Very proud to be able to express my opinion like you are to express yours.

  10. Jim Poppe

    but I don’t tell you to cut it out. You do.
    As misguided as you are, express your ill informed opinion.
    I will fight to the death for your right to express
    your opinion no matter how stupid it is. You tell people
    to cut it out and stop when you disagree. You must be
    a liberal.

  11. You weren’t joking when you said this argument was still going on. This post must still get good views haha.

    • I tried to tell you. Haha. What’s your thoughts on this post D.B.?

      • I don’t know what really happened in relation to the topic or the know facts behind it to be able to comment on anyone’s views or bring my own into play. Happy arguing though 🙂

        • Check out “The Fab Five” piece that ESPN did and then drop a comment.

  12. Jim Poppe

    I have re-read some of the posts and they are very interesting.
    Apparently it is commendable to be honest and not sugar coat anything and I agree. But did Jimmy the Greek speak honestly and not sugar coat anything?
    I think so but what he said was racist and the man lost his job over it.
    Is he to be commended for his honesty or criticized for his racist remarks?
    Grant Hill spoke with honesty and did not sugar coat his opinions but he is criticized because he is not street enough because his dad went to Yale and his mom is a lawyer. The double standard here is a reflection of how our America has become.
    There is a NYC ffer that was not allowed to be in his firehouse when the president visited because he was not scheduled to work and all off duty ffers were banned from attending the ceremony. He wanted special consideration because of his race and when refused by the secret service, it was called racism. He wanted special consideration because of his race. That is racism by definition and should not be allowed in our society. Either being denied something or given something because of your race is plain and simple, wrong. But in today’s America to deny because of race is wrong but to be given something because of race is right. That attitude is wrong in every way shape and form. If this ffer was given permission to attend because he was black, the white ffers were being denied because they are white. That is discrimination plain and simple.
    I applaud Grant Hill for stating his opinion and speaking honestly about how he feels. He is as black as anyone, any where.

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