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Barnes and... A Conversation with Dr. Fitzgerald Hill

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Steve Barnes converses with Dr. Fitz Hill, president of Arkansas Baptist College in Little Rock about his book CRACKBACK! How College Football Blindsides the Hopes of Black Coaches.  Hill has spent the past 24 years studying race-related issues for African American football coaches employed at predominantly white colleges and universities.  They also discuss his new life as president of Arkansas Baptist College.

TRANSCRIPT

HELLO AGAIN EVERYONE. THANKS VERY MUCH FOR JOINING US. DR. FITZGERALD HILL. FITZ HILL AS HE HAS BEEN KNOWN AND NOW COACH AT UNIVERSITY OF ARKANSAS AND NOW UP 21500 ENROLLMENT.

1200 HOPEFULLY HIGHER THIS YEAR.

YOU'RE CHANGING LIVES.

YEAH. WE CALL IT THAT.

YEAH AND THE DOCTOR IS BACK FOR A NEW BOOK. CRACK BACK.

IT'S A BLOCK THAT YOU NEVER SEE AND FROM A SECONDARY DOWN TO A LINEBACKER SOMETIMES THAT PERSON WILL COME IN AND CRACK BACK AND THE CORNER BACK IS SUPPOSED TO TELL THE INSIDE LINEBACKER "CRACK, CRACK, CRACK" AND SOMETIMES IT HAPPENS AND SOMETIMES NOT AND IT'S A BLIND BLOCK THAT YOU DON'T SEE AND I TOOK THAT AND IN THE HIRING PROCESS THERE ARE THINGS THAT YOU NEVER SEE AND NO ONE CAN SAY THAT AND YOU'RE HIT AND YOU DON'T RECOGNIZE IT UNTIL AFTER YOU HAVE BEEN HIT AND CRACK BACK GIVES THAT CONNOTATION OF A BLIND SIDE BLOCK THAT YOU NEVER SEE.

NOW IT'S TIME FOR THE AUDIENCE AND THOSE THAT DON'T KNOW YOU'RE A ARKADELPHIA PRODUCT.

YES, SIR.

A STUDENT ALTOGETHER -- -- ETHLEAST.

AND YOU THE STARTED AS IN ADMINISTRATION AND THEN TO ATHLETICS.

YES. THAT WAS MY PASSION AND THE COACHES FROM ARKANSAS AND THOSE HAD SO MUCH POSITIVE INFLUENCE ON MY LIFE TO GUIDE ME AND DIRECT ME AND I WANTED TO BE LIKE THEM AND MY COLLEGE COACH HAD SUCH A POSITIVE IMPACT ON ME AS FAR AS MY DAILY CHOICES AND GIVING ME THE DAILY GEEM TO DO THE RIGHT THING AND I WANT TO DO THAT TO OTHER'S LIVES.

AND THE APEX OF THE CAREER WAS FOUR SCENES AT SAN JOSE STATE.

YES. AS A HEAD FOOTBALL COACH. I CAN SAY ONE OF THE MOST ENJOYABLE TIME WAS ACTUALLY ON THE RAZORBACK STAFF WHEN THE COACH CAME IN AND THAT WAS SUCH A FUN YEAR WE WON THE WESTERN DIVISION AND LOST TO TENNESSEE IN A FLUKE PLAY, BUT ALUMNUS OF ARKANSAS AND BEING FROM ARKANSAS THOSE WERE JUST REALLY GREAT DAYS BUT TO BE THE OPPORTUNITY TO BE A HEAD FOOTBALL COACH AT SAN JOSE STATE WAS A CHALLENGING ENVIRONMENT BUT I WAS GRATEFUL TO DO AND MANY PEOPLE DO NOT GET THE OPPORTUNITY TO HEAD FOOTBALL COACH.

IT'S SPICE IT UP AND THERE ARE A LOT OF RAZORBACK AND OTHER PEOPLE.

YEAH AND I TELL YOU COACH JO KIND AS I WRITE IN THE BOOK HAD THE MOST POSITIVE INFLUENCE ON MY LIFE AS A COACH, JUST HIS WAY OF MOTIVATING YOUNG PEOPLE. I CAN THINK ABOUT BEING IN MEETINGS WITH HIM AND GIVE ME A HELMET AND I WILL GO PLAY TOO. HE WAS THAT INSPIRATION OFFAL OF A LEADER BUT I HAD POSITIVE INFLUENCES AND COACH HATFIELD WAS SUCH AN ENCOURAGING AND POSITIVE MAN, AND YOU KNOW, BUT I HAVE LEARNED SO MUCH FROM SO MANY DIFFERENT COACHES.

AND NOW -- I MEAN YOU LOVED IT, YOU RELISHED THE GAME, YOU LOVED AT BEING EVERY LEVEL BUT OF COURSE WHEN THE GET THE HEAD JOB THAT'S -- I GUESS EVERY COACH'S DREAM, BUT NOW YOU'RE IN ADMINISTRATION AND NOW THERE ARE CRACK BACKS SO YOU SEE A PROBLEM.

ABSOLUTELY.

THERE IS A LITTLE TROUBLE IN PARADISE.

YEAH. THIS IS SOMETHING STEVE THAT I RESEARCHED FOR 24 YEARS. IT WAS NOT A PROBLEM I JUST RECOGNIZED IN THE COACHING PROFESSION. PART OF MY DOCTOR RAL DISSERTATION I DID IN 1997 AND I STARTED RESEARCHING THIS BACK IN ACTUALLY 1989 WHEN I WENT TO MY FIRST AMERICA FOOTBALL ASSOCIATION CONTENTION IN NASHVILLE TENNESSEE. I REMEMBER IT LIKE YESTERDAY. I AM A RESERVE OFFICER IN THE MILITARY. I NEVER HAD BARRIERS IN MY LIFE. ARKADELPHIA AND STUDENT BODY PRESIDENT AND ALL OF THE THINGS I WANTED TO ACHIEVE AND THEY WERE THERE AND I THOUGHT IF YOU WORKED HARD AND GET THE DEGREES AND DO THE THINGS YOU'RE SUPPOSED TO THINGS WILL WORK OUT BUT WHEN I WENT TO THE FIRST CONVENTION AND I SIT THERE AND I WRITE ABOUT IT IN THE BOOK AND DAVID LEE WAS THE HEAD COACH AND GOT A NEW JOB AND I DIDN'T KNOW HIM PERSONALLY AND HE WALKED THROUGH THE LOBBY AND I SAID "THERE GOES COACH DAVID LEE" AND HE JUST GOT THAT JOB AND WE MIGHT HAVE THE SAME TIES AND I WILL GIVE HIM A CALL AND THIS YOUNG AFRICAN-AMERICAN COACH SAID "DON'T WASTE YOUR TIME" AND I SAID "WHY?" AND HE SAID "HE'S HIRED THE ONE BLACK COACH FOR THE STAFF" AND HOW LONG HAVE BEEN IN THE BUSINESS? AND YOU WILL UNDERSTAND THERE IS ONLY ONE COACH AND THAT WAS 1989 AND I DIDN'T KNOW KNOW THAT AND I STARTED LOOKING AT THE DEMOGRAPHICS AND DURING THAT TIME MOST STAFF ONLY HIRED ONE AFRICAN-AMERICAN PER STAFF SO THAT REALLY BECAME A STUDY FOR ME TO DO A THESIS PROJECT FOR MY MASTER'S DEGREE AND I STARTED LOOKING AT THIS AND STUDYING STEVE I RAN UP ON MATERIAL BY DR. RICHARD LAPCHICK TALKING ABOUT THE LACK OF OPPORTUNITIES FOR AFRICAN-AMERICAN COACHES AND THAT BECAME A PASSION FOR ME TO STUDY IS IT THAT AFRICAN-AMERICAN COACHES DO NOT GET ACCESS TO EMPLOYMENT IN COLLEGE FOOTBALL AND THAT'S WHAT "CRACK BACK" TALKS ABOUT.

IN THE LARGER ACADEMY -- AT LEAST WE READ THERE IS UNREMITTED PRESSURE FROM TRUSTEES, FROM THE POLITICAL SPEAR, GOVERNOR'S OFFICES ACROSS THE COUNTRY. WHERE ARE YOUR BLACK FACILITY IN THE ARTS AND SCIENCES, IN THE HUMANITYS?

RIGHT.

BUT THAT DOES NOT SEEM TO BE HAVE TRANSLATED AND A BLACK ENGLISH PROFESSOR HAVING LUNCH WITH A BLACK BUSINESS PROFESSOR AND THEY'RE WOMEN AND YOU'RE SUGGESTING THIS HAS NOT REALLY GONE DOWN TO THE FOOTBALL BENCH.

NO, I MEAN ABSOLUTELY WHEN YOU LOOK TODAY THE 120 DIVISION OR FOOTBALL SUBDIVISION INSTITUTIONS 84 HAVE YET TO HIRE A AFRICAN-AMERICAN COACH IN THE HISTORY IT AND WHEN YOU LOOK AT NUMBERS AND IT COMES TO THIS AND IT'S THE PROCESS AND IF YOU'RE GOING TO HIRE A DEAN, A PRESIDENT, OR LEADERSHIP POSITION WHERE YOU'RE TALKING IN THE FACILITY POSITIONS HOW WOULD YOU DO THAT? YOU HAVE A PROCESS. OFTENTIMES FOR THE HEAD FOOT BALL COACH THERE IS A PROCESS AND IT'S DECIDED DIFFERENT WAYS AND SO THE PROCESS NEGATES ACCESS. THAT'S WHAT CRACK BACK TALKS ABOUT SO IF YOU HAVE A PROCESS WHICH YOU SAY OKAY -- IF YOU SAID WHAT ARE THE PREREQUISITES TO BE A FOOTBALL COACH? YOU DON'T KNOW. SOME SAY THIS. SOME SAY THIS BUT THIS ISN'T A DEFINED JOB DESCRIPTION. TO SAY I MEET THE QUALIFICATIONS AND FOR THAT REASON PEOPLE FEEL -- MANY COACHES THAT I STUDIED "I DON'T KNOW WHAT TO DO IN ORDER TO MAKE MYSELF A VIABLE CANDIDATE BECAUSE YOU HAVE ONE PERSON SELECTING SOMEBODY HE KNOWS WITHOUT THAT PROCESS THAT IS INCLUSIVE OF EVERYONE.

LET ME STEP BACK FOR A SECOND AND LET ME MAKE IT CLEAR SO I DON'T GET MAIL THEY DON'T NEED TO AND ON THE ACADEMIC SIDE AND AFRICAN-AMERICANS ARE REPRESENTED ON THAT SIDE BUT THE DISPARITY IN FOOTBALL --

YEAH. BECAUSE BASKETBALL IS DIFFERENT. IT HAS A FASTER BREAK. THAT'S THE NAME OF THE CHAPTER IN THERE.

WHAT'S AT THE CORE? I MEAN -- TOKENISM IN ALL TOO MANY INSTANCES.

THE BOOK -- THAT'S WHY IT TOOK OVER 300 PAGES TO WRITE. IT'S A VERY COMPLEX SITUATION AND SOME PEOPLE CLOSE IT OUT. SAY NO IT'S NOT A PROBLEM AND I'M NOT CALLING ANYBODY RACIST. THAT'S NOT IT. I AM SAYING THE PROCESS IS NOT INCLUSIVE WHEN IT COMES DOWN TO HIRING FOOTBALL COACHS.

WHAT'S THE DIFFERENCE.

I WILL GIVE YOU AN EXAMPLE IN THE BOOK. I AM A BOOSTER CLUB MEETING IN 2003 SAN JOSE AND OF COURSE I HAVE BEEN RESEARCHING AT THE TIME FOR 18 YEARS AND A BOOFTDER COMES UP AND SAYS "YOU KNOW COACH HILL, YOU KNOW YOU MADE SOME PROGRESS WITH THE PROGRAM". IT'S A WHITE MALE. HE SAYS -- HE HAD A COUPLE GLASDZS OF WINE AND MAYBE THIS WAS THE REASON HE FELT HE COULD SAY WHAT HE WANTED TO SAY BUT I HAVE LEARNED TO DEAL WITH IT AND HE SAID "A COUPLE OF BOOSTERS --

GOT COMFORTABLE.

YEAH AND I MADE HIM COMFORTABLE WHICH WAS GOOD AND HE SAID "WE WERE THINKING ABOUT YOUR SEASON AND WE THINK YOU WOULD HAVE BEEN MORE SUCCESSFUL IF YOU HAD FEWER AFRICAN-AMERICAN COACHOS YOUR STAFF". AND I SAID "REALLY?" AND ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT WIN AND LOSSES? , AND HE SAID "YEAH" AND I SAID "YOU RESEARCHED THIS" AND HE SAID NOT REALLY AND THE COACH WAS HERE AND REPLACED IN THE THIRD YEAR HERE DID YOU GO BACK AND STUDY THEIR RECORD VERSUS MINE? AND HE SAID "NO I DIDN'T" AND I SAID "I DON'T THINK SO" AND YOU WOULD HAVE REALIZED I WON MORE GAMES THAN BOTH OF THEM IN THE FIRST THREE YEARS AND HE SAYS "REALLY?" AND IF YOU TOLD THEM ME WHAT DID YOU SAY TO THEM? DID YOU SAY YOU WOULD HAVE WON MORE GAMES IF THERE WERE LESS WHITE COACHOS THE STAFF. FOR AFRICAN-AMERICAN STAFF WE ARE PERCEIVED OR STEREOTYPED NOT TO BE QUALIFIED AND HAVE TO PROVE WE ARE AND WHITE COACHES GIVEN THE SITUATION THEY ARE QUALIFIED AND MAYBE THEY'RE NOT. I SAY IT'S NOT FAIR TO EITHER ONE SO REALLY THINK ABOUT THAT BEFORE YOU SAY THAT BECAUSE I DIDN'T GET THE JOB BECAUSE MY ATHLETIC DIRECTOR THOUGHT I WAS UNQUALIFIED. HE THOUGHT I WAS THE BEST PERSON FOR THE YOB AND THE DIRECTOR THOUGHT THAT AND YOU NEVER SEEN TWO AFRICAN-AMERICAN COACHES IN SAN JOSE STATE IN THE HISTORY OF THE PROGRAM.

GOOD EXAMPLE BUT YOUR QUANTITATIVE ANALYSIS GOES BEYOND.

YEAH. AND THE NUMBERS -- YOU KNOW, SUPPORT THE HIRING PATTERNS. THERE ARE STEREOTYPICAL PERCEPTIONS OF AFRICAN-AMERICAN COACHES AND SO WHEN YOU HAVE BOOSTERS AND PEOPLE STEVE INVOLVED IN THE HIRING PROCESS AND THEY HAVE THIS POINT IN CASE BACK IN NOTRE DAME AND I AM GOING BLANK AND THEY HIRE A CATHOLIC -- I AM DRAWING A BLANK AND THE DIRECTOR SAID HE CAME OUT OF CENTRAL CASTING AND IN THEIR MIND THEY KNEW WHAT THEY WANTED FOR A HEAD COACH SO YOU DON'T THINK ABOUT IT IN YOUR SUBCONSCIOUS MIND WHAT A HEAD COACH LOOK LIKE. YOU THINK WHAT ABOUT WHAT YOU WANT AND WHEN YOU THINK OF A SUCCESSFUL COACH AND THINK OF THAT. THAT'S IN YOUR MIND. SO WHAT I AM SAYING IN ORDER TO LOOK AT THAT AND SAY IS THAT RIGHT BECAUSE BOTH OF THEM HAD TO BE GIVEN OPPORTUNITY SOMEWHERE. BEAR BRYANT WAS NOT BORN TO BE A FOOTBALL COACH. SOMEONE HAD TO GIVE HIM AN OPPORTUNITY AND THE BOOK SHOWS THAT IS DEFINED THERE. I WAS LOOKING AT A BROCHURE AND TALKS ABOUT THE ZIP CODE YOU WERE BORN AND HAS A LOT TO DO WITH HOW LONG YOU LIVE AND THE COLOR OF YOUR SKIN AS A FOOTBALL COACH DICTATES YOUR OPPORTUNITIES AND IF YOU LOOK AT THAT AND ONLY 84 INSTITUTIONS HAVE YET TO HIRE A AFRICAN-AMERICAN FOOTBALL COACH IN 2012 THERE ARE SOME REASONS FOR THAT STEVE, BUT THE FACT REMAINS IN THIS COMPLEX HIRING PROCESS WE HAVE TO WORK TO BE INCLUSIVE. ALL RIGHT. BECAUSE IN OUR MINDS THAT WE HAVE THESE -- THIS MIND SET THAT A HEAD FOOTBALL COACH LOOKS LIKE THIS BUT WE MIGHT BE OMITTING SOMEBODY WHO IS QUALIFIED AND COULD DO THE JOB BUT YOU HAVE TO CHANGE LENSES AND THAT PERSON MIGHT NOT LOOK LIKE ME BUT MIGHT BRING SOMETHING TO THE TABLE. AND MIKE TOMLIN AND HE MIGHT NOT HAVE BEEN HIRED EXCEPT THE RULE THAT SAID YOU HAVE TO INTERVIEW A AFRICAN-AMERICAN CANDIDATE BUT HE CAME INTO THE INTERVIEW AND SAID HE WAS SO POLISHED AND KNEW EXACTLY WHAT NEEDED TO BE DONE TO GET PITTSBURGH'S STEELERS BACK TO WHERE THEY NEEDED TO BE AND HE'S 32 AND WE CAN'T LET THIS PERSON GO BUT IF NOT FOR THE RULE HE MIGHT NOT HAVE BEEN INCLUDED IN THE PROCESS AND THAT'S WHAT "CRACK BACK" TALKS ABOUT AND MAKE SURE YOU HAVE A DIVERSE POOL AND MAKE SURE IT'S INCLUSIVE AND LET THE PROCESS WORK OUT.

I GUESS THINKING ABOUT DENZEL WASHINGTON AND TALKING ABOUT IMPACT OR MATINEE IDOL OR HOLLYWOOD'S IDEA AND I THINK IT WAS HARRY REED AND TALKING ABOUT PRESIDENT OBAMA BEING A ARTICULATE BLACK MAN.

ABSOLUTELY. IN YOUR MIND -- AND I TALK ABOUT THAT IN THE BOOK AND I SAID -- I HAD THAT HAPPEN TO ME BEFORE. PEOPLE SAY "WELL, WE'RE LOOKING FOR AN ARTICULATE PERSON" SO IN YOUR MIND YOU'RE BASICALLY SAYING THAT YOU DON'T PERCEIVE MOST AFRICAN-AMERICANS TO BE ARTICULATE SO THAT'S YOUR NORM.

YEAH.

SO HOW CAN YOU DISTINGUISH YOURSELF FROM THAT NORM? AND SO THOSE ARE THINGS THAT THE NCAA HAS FOR AFRICAN-AMERICAN COACHES AND I LOOK AT THAT. I SAID SO THE NCAA HAS A PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT SEMINAR FOR PERSPECTIVE AFRICAN-AMERICAN COACHES THAT HAVE SHOWN THE LEADERSHIP SKILLS TO BE HEAD COACHES BUT THEY DON'T HAVE THE SAME SEMINAR FOR WHITE COACHES AND I SAID THE REASON IN MANY INSTANCES THAT YOU WILL SEE YOU'RE SAYING THEN THAT AFRICAN-AMERICAN COACHES NEED TO BE POLISHED.

WHEREAS IF IT WERE A WHITE WE WOULD WANT A MUSCULAR TOUGH GUY. ARTICULATION WOULDN'T ENTER INTO IT.

NOT AT ALL. THINK ABOUT SOME OF THE WHITE MALE HEAD COACHES.

CAN YOU TALK GOOD OLD TO THE CHECK WRITERS.

DANNY FORD AND THINK ABOUT HIS IMAGE. AS AN IMAGE. HE WON A NATIONAL CHAMPIONSHIP AND YOU WANT SOMEONE TO REPRESENT THE INSTITUTION AND OFTENTIMES STEVE THE HEAD COACH IS THE SIGNATURE PERSON OF THE INSTITUTION.

THE EQUITY OF THE WHOLE MATTER ASIDE AND THE EQUALITY OF OPPORTUNITY ASIDE, IS THERE A SPECIAL IMPORTANCE OR SIGNIFICANCE TO HAVING BLACK COACHES TODAY? I MEAN WORKING WITH BLACK KIDS? KIDS -- I MEAN YOUNG --

ARE YOU TALKING ABOUT HEAD COACH?

ANY LEVEL. FROM GRADUATE ASSISTANT UP TO HEAD COACH.

I THINK YOU HAVE TO HAVE A DIVERSE -- WITH ANY CORPORATION, NOT JUST COACHES, YOU NEED A REPRESENTATION OF A DIVERSE GROUP OF PEOPLE ON YOUR TEAM. I MEAN THAT JUST MAKES IT BETTER. I ALWAYS USE THIS. IF I WENT TO JAPAN TO START A BUSINESS AND 80% OF MY LABOR SPOKE JAPANESE I THINK MY MANAGEMENT TEAM SHOULD BE A REFLECTION OF MY LABOR, OF EVERYBODY'S DOING THE WORK. I MEAN SO BECAUSE THERE MAYBE SOME CULTURAL DIFFERENCES THAT YOU WILL NEED TO HAVE EXPERTISE WHEN LEADING A GROUP OF PEOPLE. THAT'S JUST GOOD BUSINESS. THAT'S WHY IN MARKETING WHEN YOU DO PROMOTION -- I REMEMBER ONE TIME TOM JOINER AND ONE OF THE LARGEST AFRICAN-AMERICAN MORNING SHOWS AND SYNDICATED THROUGHOUT THE UNITED STATES OF AMERICA -- I WAS READING ABOUT THIS AND SAID THEY COULDN'T -- A COMPANY CAME TO THEM AND SAID WE CAN'T GET AFRICAN-AMERICANS ON THE CRUISE SHIP AND WE WANT TO REACH OUT TO YOU AND WE WANT YOU TO HELP US AND HE SAID "HOW ARE YOU DOING IT ?" AND WE DO IT TO A MASS AUDIENCE AND NO LET'S DO IT THIS WAY AND TARGET THE SPECIFIC AUDIENCE AND HAVING THOSE PEOPLE THAT CAN COMMUNICATE SOMETIMES FROM KIDS FROM DIFFERENT BACKGROUNDS AND DIVERSITY IS IMPORTANT SO EVERYBODY CAN BE REPRESENTED AT THE TABLE AND MAKE DECISIONS.

TALK IF YOU WILL DR. HILL OF THE IMPORTANCE OF COLLEGIATE ATHLETICS AND INTER MURAL BUT COLLEGIATE LEVEL AND THE IMPORTANCE IT CAN PLAY IN THE DEVELOPMENT OF A YOUNG MAN.

OH MAN. I WOULDN'T BE HERE TODAY. LET ME TELL YOU STEVE. IN 1983 I LEFT NORTHEAST LOUISIANA BECAUSE MY DAD WAS DYING OF CANCER. HE DID DIE WHEN I TRANSFERRED BACK TO OUACHITA AND I WAS IN A STATE OF DEPRESSION. I HAD NO MOTIVATION TO GO TO COLLEGE WHATSOEVER. COACH BUDDY BOB CALLED ME, NOT A FACILITY MEMBER, A COACH, AND HE MOTIVATED ME LISTEN "YOU CAN SIT AT HOME AND FEEL SORRY FOR YOURSELF OR YOU CAN GET BACK IN HERE AND HELP WHAT YOU YOUR MOTHER AND FATHER WANTED YOU TO DOO" AND IT WAS A COACH AND THEY HAVE INFLUENCE AND THEY'RE HELPING TO YOU BE THE BEST -- NOW, THERE ARE TEACHERS LIKE THAT. I'M NOT SAYING THAT. HE CALLED ME BECAUSE I DIDN'T WANT TO GO BACK TO SCHOOL AND THE WAY HE MOTIVATED ME, AND ONCE HE GAVE ME THIS VISION FOR MYSELF ON DOING THE RIGHT THINGS, HOMEWORK. HERE'S HOW WE DO IT AND THAT'S WHY COACH BENSON IS ADMIRED BY HIS FORMER PLAYERS TO THIS DAY AND I FEEL THE SAME WAY, SO WHEN THE CAME TO ARKANSAS BAPTIST COLLEGE I KNEW AN ACADEMIC OUTREACH WAS THROUGH SPORTS. I DIDN'T WANT TO COACH. I COULD COACH SOMEWHERE ELSE BUT IT ATTRACTS YOU TO THE EDUCATIONAL PROCESS. IF IT WASN'T FOR FOOTBALL I DON'T KNOW IF I WOULD HAVE WENT BACK TO SCHOOL AND GIVES YOU THAT TANGIBLE ITEM TO DO WHAT THEY NEED TO DO AND IN ORDER TO MOVE THEMSELVES FORWARD AND THAT'S WHAT IT'S ALL ABOUT. I CALL IT THE LABORATORY OF LIFE. YOU HAVE A BIOLOGY LAB IN BIOLOGY AND ATHLETICS IS A LIFE LAB. IT TAUGHT ME SO MUCH. WHEN I WAS IN DESERT STORM TWO A DAYS GOT ME THROUGH IT.

TWO A DAYS IN ARKANSAS.

THAT'S RIGHT. WHEN I WAS IN THE DESERT AND IT WAS TIRED AND HOT AND THE COACH IS RUNNING TWO A DAYS AND ALL OF THOSE THINGS HELPED ME AND PUSHED MYSELF. THOSE ARE LESSONS I LEARNED AND THAT'S WHAT I TEACH TODAY TO YOUNG PEOPLE. IT'S THE PAIN OF DISCIPLINE OR THE PAIN OF REGRET. YOU HAVE THE DISCIPLINE TO DO WHAT YOU WANT TO DO SO YOU CAN DO WHEN YOU WANT TO DO IT.

IT'S YOUR BOOK, YOUR WORDS. I ALSO WANT TO KNOW -- PLAYING DEVILS ADVOCATE. YOU CAN SUBURB PARENTS. YOU HAD MENTORS ALONG THE WAY. YOU HAD ROTC. YOU WERE A MILITARY OFFICER. I DON'T KNOW IF IT WAS INFANTRY.

YEAH.

AND YOU HAD A LOT OF CULTURAL AND FAMILY INFLUENCES ON YOUR LIFE AND YOU THINK IT WAS FOOTBALL.

CHURCH HAD A BIG PART.

YEAH.

AND COMMUNITY DEVELOPMENT. AS I MENTIONED TOO IT'S THE WHOLE ARKADELPHIA COMMUNITY. TODAY YOU WALK DOWN MAIN STREET KNOWING I WAS BEING LOOKED -- OBSERVED AND WATCHED OVER BY THE ENTIRE COMMUNITY.

YOU LOVE THAT TOWN STILL.

I LOVE THAT TOWN. I HAVE TO TELL YOU I AM ARKADELPHIA. THE FACT THAT OUR FOOTBALL, BASKETBALL, TRACK, THE TEACHERS, THE PRINCIPALS, TO THIS DAY I WISH MY SON COULD HAVE WHAT I HAD AT ARKADELPHIA OR MY DAUGHTERS HAVE THAT EXPERIENCE. IT'S SOMETHING I WILL TAKE TO MY GRAVE. ARKADELPHIA IS ONE OF THE BEST THINGS THAT HAPPENED TO ME TO HAVE THAT SUPPORT SYSTEM AND YOU'RE RIGHT. IT WASN'T JUST ATHLESTICS BUT IT WAS A MAJOR PART BECAUSE I SPENT SO MUCH TIME IN IT.

THANKS DR. HILL THANKS SO MUCH FOR THE TIME. IF YOU HAVE EXTRA TIME I LIKE TO GET IN A FEW MORE QUESTIONS AND WE WILL INVITE YOU AT THE CONCLUSION -- WE REACHED THE END OF THE ON AIR PRESENTATION. GO TO OUR WEBSITE AND WE WILL CONTINUE THE CONVERSATION WITH DR. FITZ HILL. THANKS FOR TUNING IN.

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