Tony Dungy on Rex Ryan Language: “He Has a Potty Mouth” | Robert Littal Presents BlackSportsOnline

Tony Dungy on Rex Ryan Language: “He Has a Potty Mouth”

by Robert Littal | Posted on Monday, August 16th, 2010
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I think I was in like 7th or 8th grade, back when NWA and The Geto Boyz were in their primes.  I was rocking the Raiders cap and the Starter jacket.

Like a lot of my friends and I were cursing up a storm, because that was the “cool” thing to do.

One day we were on the bus stop dropping “F-Bombs” and there was an older gentlemen there and he said something like this:

“In our world people perceive what is coming out of your mouth as an indication of how smart you are and make judgments on that.  If you truly are smart anytime you want to curse you can think of a better word to get your point across and if you can’t then why are your cursing?  People already see us (black men) as ignorant why feed into the stereotype?”

Of course my friends dropped like 100 curse words on the old man, but it struck a nerve with me.  I was cursing just to curse not because I didn’t know how to express myself.  From that point on the only time I have cursed is if I have been extremely upset and I have found creative ways to express myself (Littal Speak) without sounding like Andrew Dice Clay.

What does this have to do with Tony Dungy and Rex Ryan?  Nothing really, but I wanted to tell that story, here is what Coach Dungy had to say about Ryan’s colorful language:

“I’m disappointed with all the profanity,” Dungy said. “I think Rex can make his points without all that.”

Asked if he would hire a coach who talks the way Ryan does, Dungy answered, “I would not. I personally don’t want my players to be around that. I don’t want to be around that. . . . It’s hard for me to be around that, and if I were in charge, no, I wouldn’t hire someone like that. Now, I’ve been around ‘F’ bombs, so it’s not like it’s new. I just don’t think that has to be part of your every-minute, everyday vocabulary to get your point across.”


Dungy thinks NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell would be wise to give Ryan a call and ask him to think about how he’s representing the NFL.

“I would hope that he does,” Dungy said of the possibility of Goodell getting involved. “I don’t know that he will or not but I hope that he does because I just don’t think the league needs that. I don’t think our young people need to hear that that’s what’s done to be successful. Because it doesn’t have to be that way.”

I respect Tony Dungy, but I don’t think it is his place to tell someone how to speak.  I thought the cursing was a bit excessive on Hard Knocks and I would advise people with children to be aware of that before they let their kids watch, but saying Goodell should get involved is a bit much.

I totally agree with Dungy’s premise on cursing because it is very similar to what I was told as a teenager, but there is fine line between being helpful and riding on a high horse.

It is one thing to tell impressionable young men why they should cursed,  it is another thing to tell grown men how to talk.

Dungy needs to be careful, because he sounds preachy.  Everyone has different ways and styles of communicating. There is no right or wrong way.  You have to be yourself and make personal decisions.

I made a personal decision I didn’t want to use that type of language, but if that is who Rex Ryan is, that is who he is.  I am sure Dungy wouldn’t want Goodell coming to him saying he uses to many religious references.

His opinion on if he would hire Ryan is his opinion but encouraging the Commish to get involved is overstepping and he shouldn’t try to force his opinions on what is right and wrong on others.

That isn’t the Christian way.

Tebow would not be pleased.

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  1. Jarren says:

    I think you're missing the point. Dungy is talking about how a coach is to be representing the league, the NFL. He's not lecturing on how he should be using more appropriate words in his personal life, but rather, that it shouldn't be advertised as much to where people see it and assume that unless a coach is riding your crotch and cussing you out, that thats the only way you're going to work hard. He's talking about setting an example for people watching, not for changing who he is. Because I can tell you right now, my high school basketball coach used to be the nicest guy until Coach Carter came out. Then out of nowhere, pushups and suicides for every little thing.
    Ocho is himself on the field, but he gets fined for being too excessive.

    • Robert Littal says:

      I disagree. It isn't Dungy's place

    • See, this is why the puss-ification of America will continue through 2010 and beyond. Hard Knocks is on HBO. when I tune in to HBO, I expect to see some cursing, and a few channels up, maybe some nudity. If anything, Rex Ryan is just doing what most coaches do during TRAINING CAMP, which is not a public appearance or press conference. There are no league rules on cursing in the film room, locker room or during closed workouts. Just b/c HBO cameras are allowed in doesn't mean they need to automatically need to censor it. If you don't like it, Jarren, change the channel. Dungy didn't even watch the show, he was commenting based on reports. He's entitled to his opinion, but I agree with Rob, asking Goodell to step in is out of place with what he needs to continue doing, which is spread his gospel and be a role model for young men across the world.

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