MIAMI (CBSMiami) – University of Miami Hurricanes fans are all too familiar with the phrase, “lack of institutional control.” While UM was charged with that in the Nevin Shapiro case; the terminology applies to the ugly situation surrounding the Miami Dolphins, according to CBS Sports’ James Brown.
“To engage in any personal attack; I think that talks to the lack of institutional control that there wasn’t a better handle on this from team leaders who understand what’s going on in the locker room and there’s going to be a lot of teasing and pushing guys, figuratively speaking,” Brown told CBS4 in an exclusive interview. “But when a guy gets to the end of his rope, you’re supposed to back off and not cross that line. This is totally uncalled for in any environment.”
The Dolphins have indefinitely suspended guard Richie Incognito for allegedly making racist comments and physical threats towards teammate Jonathan Martin. One of the bigger questions that has come from the entire incident with Martin and Incognito is what role the coaches had in the situation.
“I wouldn’t go as far as to say Coach Philbin should lose his job,” Brown said. “I will say that the buck does stop with him. Most coaches have a good pulse into what is going on the locker room. They do that with the help of team captains and the leaders they assign. And clearly Mr. Incognito was one of the leaders on that team.”
Brown continued, “Number 2 you have trainers, equipment managers who keep a pulse on what the culture is. It’s not a-typical to see a coach put a stop to gambling – poker games that have been played on team planes because a lot of the vets end up taking money from the youngsters. A lot of the players start complaining about this. That’s when it has to stop.”
It’s unknown if Martin complained about the treatment from Incognito, but he did finally leave the team out of fear of his personal safety last week. He didn’t reveal his evidence, even to his family, until Sunday and finally told the team.
Brown said the NFL will bring in Senior Vice President of Labor Policy Adolfo Birch to investigate the work environment and conditions. Brown also said the NFL Players Association is going to be in a tough position trying to defending both players.
“The NFL Players Association has a delicate balance because they represent both players,” Brown said. “So there has to be an effort to guarantee that Richie Incognito gets due diligence, but also that they protect their own like Jonathan Martin, who at least in the early going, seems that he did everything possible to endure this and until he just got to his breaking point.”