Mere minutes after Timothy M. Wolfe stepped down as president of the University of Missouri on Monday, this amid protests and racial unrest on campus, former Tigers wide receiver and current St. Louis-based media member T.J. Moe dropped by CBS Sports Radio to share his thoughts on the matter.
“Well, he stepped down as of a few minutes ago – and he released a statement yesterday that said nothing about him stepping down, so it seems like this is not what he wanted to do,” Moe said on Tiki and Tierney. “He would have loved to come to the negotiation table and talk through some things. It appears that was not an option. To me, if I was a leader of a university, a leader of a large corporation – a leader of anything – I would be scared to death right now of what extreme measures can prove, whether you were or were not at fault. That argument can be had here with Tim Wolfe because he has done nothing (wrong).”
A large portion of Missouri’s football team went on strike after a series of on-campus racial incidents that were, in their eyes and the eyes of many others, not handled swiftly enough or appropriately enough by Wolfe.
“(You could say), ‘Well, that’s negligence. He hasn’t responded in a timely manner,’” Moe said. “But to say he’s fully at fault, I don’t know what him resigning really accomplishes – except that a lot of people now are upset with him and perhaps he’s not fit to do his job and can no longer perform at a high level. But what does firing a president do to stop ignorant white people from screaming the N-word across campus? When did it become his fault that these guys are doing that? Because if it’s the fault of the leaders, we should have impeached Barack Obama a long time ago because there’s been a lot of murders in this country under his watch.”
Brandon Tierney likened this situation to the Greg Hardy fiasco in Dallas, with Jerry Jones getting a lot of heat for Hardy’s prior transgressions. Moe, however, sees an important difference.
“Jerry Jones brought in a person that has committed an act that a lot of people deem is unfit (for him) to be playing in the NFL now, Moe said. “The only student that had been caught screaming racist slurs has been expelled at Missouri.”
Moe pointed out that the university was taking other actions as a result of recent incidents, but the public outcry clearly became too great for Wolfe to be spared.
“People don’t understand that things take time,” Moe said. “Chancellor (R. Bowen) Loftin has already announced that he was going to be implementing diversity training classes for all incoming students this upcoming year and they were trying to get the details together to do that, but that’s not good enough. Well, what is good enough? What is going to change people? What is going to stop people from being so ignorant when you grow up in a town like I did of all white people?”
Moe, for what it’s worth, is Caucasian.
“What turned my head on this thing was becoming a football player at the University of Missouri and understanding cultures and realizing how to love people and be different,” he said. “You can’t do that without educating people.”