Former Black Iowa Football Players Call Out Program and Strength Coach Chris Doyle for Troubling Treatment

Iowa strength coach Chris Doyle
Iowa strength coach Chris Doyle | Matthew Holst/Getty Images

The fallout of individuals sharing their own racism encounters amid the nationwide protests in response to the death of George Floyd has extended to the world of college football. On Friday night, this concerning narrative continued when several former Iowa players took to social media to disclose their experiences within the Hawkeyes program.

Chicago Bears offensive lineman James Daniels sparked this dialogue when he tweeted about "racial disparities" within Iowa football and the state as a whole.

That's when the conversation began exposing members of the Hawkeyes coaching staff, most notably team strength coach Chris Doyle.

Tennessee Titans safety Amani Hooker, who played at Iowa for three seasons from 2016-2018, was the next to chime in. The former Hawkeye called out the coaching staff for making African American players feel uneasy around the facility.

Minnesota Vikings defense end Jaleel Johnson also joined the conversation and made it a point to call out Doyle specifically. Per Johnson, the Iowa strength coach would step on players fingers during pre-workout stretches.

"I remember when I used to wear my tank top in the facility, I used to get called in the coaches office because I had too much tattoos and it wasn’t the ‘Iowa culture’ or the ‘Iowa Way," said running back Marcel Joly via The Athletic. “You better not dare walk around in the facility with your cornrows.”

This revealing quote from Joly really echoes the claims made above by Hooker, and it wasn't even the worst of the bunch.

The following recollection from Daniels' former teammate Maurice Fleming is extremely alarming.

If true, these acts and overall culture set by Iowa is despicable. The program's alleged actions to put down black athletes absolutely qualify as racial injustice, and university president Bruce Harreld had better look into these damning accusations.