by Nick Hamilton (@NickHamiltonLA)
LOS ANGELES — With the NFL making headlines lately regarding diversity or lack thereof, with only two Black quarterback’s coaches in the entire league, Pep Hamilton is one of them.
In 2020 as the league continues to struggle with diversity for those who grace the sidelines in some capacity each week, the Los Angeles Chargers made sure they took steps in the right direction and hired an incredibly qualified man who happens to be Black.
To have an Black head coach in Anthony Lynn and a quarterback’s guru in Hamilton, stands out nowadays like a green hat with an orange bill in a crowd full of grey. Two of the most intelligent football minds have come together to help ensure this team’s success not only at their various coaching positions, but as leaders of men along with the rest of the staff.
When hiring Hamilton, Lynn assured reporters that he didn’t see the skin color but more so the qualifications necessary for a position coach on his staff. As honorable as that is, color unfortunately can’t be overlooked.
However with the experience of coaching on various levels from collegiate, NFL to XFL levels, Hamilton is the perfect fit to execute the vision of Lynn going forward this season.
“He’s highly intelligent, very qualified and I thought I’d be working under him one day not the other way around,” Lynn said.
High praise from your head coach is nothing to be taken lightly, and in the words of the late Notorious BIG, if he said it he meant it, bite his tongue for no one, especially when Lynn speaks.
Having graduated from an HBCU in Howard University and once coached there, Hamilton was asked about more opportunities for players from HBCU’s getting an opportunity to be drafted into the NFL.
“I do think that NFL scouts, NFL personnel do there do diligence,” Hamilton explained. “They’ve always did a great job of scouting all the schools across the country. I do think that being in the football business, it’s important that we find players wherever they come from to give us a chance to win games. If that [happens to be] from my alma mater or your alma mater it doesn’t matter to us, the game is about power speed and production. We want to find the best players.”
While dealing with a concerning COVID-19 pandemic, and not having full availability to his quarterbacks in Tyrod Taylor, Easton Stick, and rookie Justin Herbert, Hamilton surely has his work cut out for him.
In a game where you’re judged by wins, losses and deep playoff appearances, could the success of this season allow the opportunity for more black coaches and coordinators to grace the sidelines in the very near future?
“I think having on the field success is going to open doors and give everybody who desires to advance in the profession an opportunity to just that….advance their careers.“
This season for the Chargers is a spirit of newness, new stadium (SoFi Stadium), new coordinators, new starting quarterback and a great opportunity to continue to build the fan base in Los Angeles. If all goes well for this team, the wins belongs to Lynn, Hamilton, the rest of the coaching staff and the players. Yet the bigger win goes to a step closer to curtailing a lack of diversity in a league that is long overdue for it. When we look back the record show that if given an opportunity, Black coordinators and positions coaches have not only the intellect but the determination to lead a group of men to victory in this great land of ours.
Hamilton demonstrates excellence, skill, and determination is every thing he does on and off the football field.