In the NFL, the Rooney Rule requires teams to interview at least one minority candidate for their head coaching positions. The Fritz Pollard Alliance Foundation seeks to assist in this process by compiling a list of minority candidates they feel are deserving of an interview every year. This year, the list of nine includes Indianapolis Colts offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton.
According to the Detroit Free Press' Dave Birkett, Hamilton is one of the nine members on the list who the Fritz Pollard Alliance Foundation will recommend to NFL teams with head coaching vacancies this year. This isn't the first time that Hamilton's name has been thrown around as a potential candidate for head coaching positions, as earlier this season Bleacher Report's Mike Freeman mentioned Hamilton as one of the hottest head coaching candidates in all of football. Of course, Hamilton just appearing on this list of minority candidates doesn't even guarantee that he'll get an interview, but combined with the other things we've been hearing about his chances, it seems as if he'll at least be getting several looks when the season ends and other teams begin looking for potential head coaches.
Pep Hamilton is in his second season as offensive coordinator of the Colts, and he has shown a lot of improvement this year. The Colts are the third ranked offense in the entire NFL in terms of yards per game and points per game, and they boast the number one passing offense in football. While last year was a down year statistically for Andrew Luck in his first year with Hamilton at the NFL level, this year Luck is on pace to surpass 5,000 yards passing and 40 touchdowns through the air. This makes one thing pretty apparent to people in the league: Hamilton knows how to use his personnel (ironically something many Colts fans were criticizing him over last year). Ultimately, he has shown a lot of improvement this year and he's a very intriguing candidate for a head coach: he's very smart, has experience working with one of the league's top offenses, is young, is a good leader, and is humble, among others. He likely wouldn't have needed the Fritz Pollard Alliance Foundation to recommend him in order to get an interview, but being on the list certainly can't hurt his chances of getting an interview, considering the Rooney Rule is in place.
According to Birkett, the list of nine people includes: Lions defensive coordinator Teryl Austin, Cardinals defensive coordinator Todd Bowles, Giants defensive coordinator Perry Fewell, Buccaneers defensive coordinator Leslie Frazier, Titans defensive coordinator Ray Horton, Colts offensive coordinator Pep Hamilton, Bengals offensive coordinator Hue Jackson, Packers assistant head coach Winston Moss, and former 49ers head coach Mike Singletary.