In spectacular fashion, the Green Bay Packers were defeated by the San Francisco 49ers in the second round of the NFC playoffs. Too soon to talk about it? Maybe…. but take solace, Packer fans, the Green and Gold defense was shredded by a new phenomenon in the NFL… the rise of the “cornball brother.” 

We can thank Rob Parker, formerly of ESPN, for coining the phrase. In his attempt to question Redskins quarterback Robert Griffin III’s “blackness,” Parker ended up dooming his career with ESPN. He may also have saved the “culture” by defining what competent, educated Americans of African descent look like, what they don’t sound like, and what they are up against in the “culture.” (You see, real blacks call President Barack Obama “Our Lord and Savior,” star in revisionist spaghetti slave westerns, and pimp themselves on reality TV shows called “All My Babies’ Mamas.”  How black is that?)

Yes, it’s like that old 1990’s phrase, “It’s a black thang… You wouldn’t understand” Only I’m black and I don’t understand!

According to the Urban Dictionary a cornball brother is:

a. An African American male who chooses not to follow the stereotype. This includes, but is not limited to, being educated, well spoken, a role model, a leader, selfless, an upstanding member of the community and above all - humble.

b. life choices include marrying white women, being republican, and not being "down with the cause".

c. a rare breed of African American males who should be praised, not chastised by their own race.

d. a term where MLK would be rolling over his grave for

Presently there are two, possibly three “cornball brothas” in the NFL: Robert Griffin III of the Washington Redskins, Russell Wilson of the Seattle Seahawks, and Packer Killer Colin Kaepernick of the San Francisco 49ers.

What else is different about “cornballs?” What is that X factor that makes RG3 and Russell Wilson “all work, no play, in bed by 9:00 and up by 6:00” type of leader?

What is that X factor?

The X factor missing from the Urban Dictionary definition and in too many black children’s lives is….  

e. a father.

Something so simple and so profound…a father. One who has a heartfelt impact in the lives of their sons and a strong faith in Jesus the Christ (see links below).  Holy common denominator, Batman! As the father of two up and coming cornball brothas and a cornball “sista, “ all I have to say to that is, “Amen and Boom Shakalaka… and pass the butter!”

Our society has long diminished the role of fathers in the lives of their children. Leave it to the NFL to highlight fatherhood’s glorious role and potential!

This football season welcomed the next wave of Millennial age black quarterbacks to the NFL. They are poised, skilled and wise beyond their years. They are confident in their skills, humble, and disciplined. They come from strong families and exude a strong quiet faith.

They are role models of leadership and have garnered the respect of their teammates and millions of fans… except those who still question their blackness.

Somewhere between Dr. King and President Obama, the content of one’s character lost to the color of one’s skin… and to the culture it represents! It’s the culture, stupid, and the culture is sick.

And so, in the face of a crushing Packer defeat, the only thing that softens the blow (and only a little), is that the “new age” QB who ran all over my Pack, was a Wisconsin boy, from a loving Wisconsin family, who happens to be an African American male who chooses not to follow the stereotype. “This includes, but is not limited to, being educated, well spoken, selfless, and humble. In other words, being an upstanding member of the community, a role model, and a leader. “

Wisconsin, we were beat by a cornball brotha. And another corn baller with Wisconsin connections beat the Packers, too. But he needed the help of a bunch of replacement screwball refs.  Just saying….