Brothers in Flight

By Bruce H. Edwards
Updated: March 13, 2005

LEXINGTON, KY—As we enjoy March Madness, let us not forget those who provide the entertainment that generates the billions of dollars associated with college basketball. To that end, I offer this poem written in 2001…I don’t think much has changed.

Brothers in Flight

Young brothers ballin’

Dunkin’, shootin’, scorin’

High priced coaches in their Armani best

Corporate logos pinned to their chest

Best teams in the land

Seeking Final Four glory

But behind the hoop and hype

A totally different story

A story of Black Gladiators

Performing incredible round-ball feats

More blacks on the court

Than in the arena seats

Sponsors, media, NCAA and of course the schools

All getting paid

All but those who upon their backs

The money is shamefully made

College basketball

In a sorry, sorry state

All you need do

Is check the black graduation rate


Academic manipulation

The shame and the sham of higher education

NBA training ground

Where brothers think they will play

White players sit the bench and cheer

They are the ones who graduate

While boosting the team GPA

Brothers for hire

Jumping higher and higher

Campus heroes

Some living large

Through a variety of sources

Far too many trying to stay eligible

With bogus and remedial courses

Billions of dollars generated from the game

Brothers in flight

The trade off is a shame

All but the brothers

Have a huge financial stake

Brothers being used

For the millions others make

Financially, it’s unfair

Morally, it’s not right

See them score

Brothers in flight


© 2001

Somebody give Darius Washington, Jr. from Memphis a hug. I felt bad for the young brother whose missed free throws kept his team from going to the big dance. Washington played a great game and he’s a pretty good free throw shooter. Too bad he waited until there was no time left on the clock to get hit with a bad case of freshmanitis.

Hey Gladys Knight…Please tell me that is not you in that stupid MBNA rugby commercial. Is there not anything or anyone left sacred in this world?