Barry Switzer: ‘I’d never recruit a white quarterback’
A day after calling Johnny Manziel “an arrogant little pr—,” Barry Switzer has dropped another eyebrow-raising opinion regarding quarterbacks. The larger-than-life personality who coached Oklahoma to three national titles and the Dallas Cowboys to a win in Super Bowl XXX, told WNSR in Nashville that Manziel would not have been a Sooner because Switzer wouldn’t recruit a white quarterback.
The former Oklahoma and Dallas Cowboys coach made the comment during an interview on WNSR in Nashville on Thursday as part of a response to a question about whether he would want Manziel in his backfield.
Switzer was asked: “If you are a coach in the NFL at this point in time — we know your opinion on Johnny and his mental state on and off the field, but we also know how much you think of him as a football player — is this a guy, in Johnny Manziel, that you would draft or you would want your team to draft, and would you have him as your starting quarterback on your roster?”
After explaining that he’d talk long and hard to Manziel about his attitude, Switzer again praised the 2012 Heisman Trophy winner before adding what could be considered controversial rationale for why he would not have been a Sooner.
“I’ve always said I’d never recruit a white quarterback. The only way I’d ever recruit a white quarterback to play for me was if his mom and daddy would have to both be black, and that’s the only way I would do it.”
“My offense is a quarterback-fullback offense,” Switzer continued. “I’d have to have a Jamelle Holieway, J.C. Watts [or] Thomas Lott. Those guys are gonna be my quarterbacks, they’re great runners, they’re great ball carriers and … able to pass, complete some, and those guys could. Those guys could throw and run.”
Switzer did recruit a white quarterback in the ’80s, Troy Aikman, who went on to be his quarterback in Super Bowl XXX. Aikman transferred to UCLA after having his freshman season (1985) cut short with a broken ankle. With Aikman out, Switzer’s decision to return to the Wishbone with Holieway running the show led the Sooners to the national championship that season.