Allen Iverson has probably squandered $154 million. Yesterday, Ta-Nehisi Coates posted a Youtube video of a woman laying out an argument for why athletes tend to go broke. She also addresses whether race has anything to do with it.
Her arguments for why athletes tend to squander their wealth:
- The main issue is taking care of family members. Athletes are willing to dole money out to their “homeboys”, parents, cousins, etc.
- People hurrying them into business before the athlete is ready. Most athletes do not have time to properly monitor their investments.
- Too many kids
Of the four arguments, the only one which the woman accepts any racial explanation for is the tendency for black athletes to have too many kids. But that variable is explained by the same factor that explains 2 and 3, and may also explain parts of 1. Poor future-time orientation i.e. low IQ. Pertaining to 2 above – the woman makes the statement that “people hurry” athletes into business. This begs the question: why are athletes stupid enough to get hurried into business? Not being bright enough to know when and when not to go into business is part of the problem as is not being bright enough to select a woman who isn’t trying to get your money or your sperm.
The best indicator of IQ we have in sports is the Wonderlic test conducted on potential NFL draftees. Here is a breakdown by position of Wonderlic scores:
The highest scoring positions are quarterback, and offensive line. The lowest scoring positions are defensive backfield, offensive backfield, and wide receiver. Of the QB and O-line positions, 80% of NFL quarterbacks are white as are over half of offensive linemen. Black players are the vast majority of all of the other positions.
So the woman providing the explanations for some athletes squandering their wealth doesn’t go far enough. Stupidity is certainly part of the problem.