Saitama, Japan (Associated Press)- Dawn Staley As the first black head coach of the US Women’s Basketball Olympic team, he did not feel any additional pressure.
she Have to bear the pressure of representatives she Country and American Basketball More than twenty years.At the Tokyo Olympics she The focus is to guide the United States to win the gold medal for the seventh time in a row.
This doesn’t mean she Not sure about the size and responsibility of the stage.
“We have work to do. It’s not about me at all,” Starley Say. “In this regard, I never surpass myself. I enjoy the journey very much. I know very well what is happening around me.”
Americans dominate the sport Starley Has participated in the development of this standard. As a player 25 years ago, she He was a member of the 1996 Olympic team. Then, as is the case today, failure is not an option. This means winning the gold medal.
Starley Won the gold medal in the team in 1996, 2000 and 2004, and helped the US team win the gold medal in 2008 and 2016 as an assistant coach.Now as the person in charge, this 51-year-old from North Philadelphia can inspire others to be like she.
“Representation is important,” said forward Aja Wilson, who was Starley In South Carolina and are competing she The first Olympic Games. “This is one of them, if you can see she, you can she. I think this person is very individual.coach Starley Is my second mother, I am willing to she. This is how I feel now.
“This is a personal matter because it is important. This is the first time for her. She is the first time in many things, but yes, I will make sure that I am a member of the team and can complete the task. .”
Breaking barriers is nothing new Starley, She led South Carolina to win the first women’s basketball national championship in 2017. Four years later, Starley Joni Taylor of Georgia became the first black coach to participate in the SEC Championship. A few weeks later, Starley Aditya Barnes of Arizona is the first black coach to meet in the Women’s Final Four.
Starley She is one of five black women who have served as an assistant coach for the US team. In the 12th Olympic Games, there were 24 assistant coaches in the women’s basketball team.
In terms of men, only two black male coaches have led the U.S. team to the Olympics: John Thompson in 1988; Lenny Wilkins in 1996.
“I think it’s appropriate dawn Because it’s almost like a complete circle,” Karan said. “Knowing Dawn, she is an energetic player, but always a coach on the court. Then when she coached and played in ABL and WNBA, she was natural. “
Starley Definitely the player’s coach, experienced the color gamut American Basketball. she Was not selected for the 1992 Olympic team because she Cut off she Say “too small, not enough international experience.” she Before the start of the 2004 Athens Olympics, it was a reserve team in 1996 and 2000.
Starley I am disturbed by several reasons why winning the gold medal in Tokyo is important. From continuing to maintain a winning streak, allowing Karan, who retired after the Olympics, to win, and allowing Bird and Taurasi to win a record fifth gold medal.
Being the first black female coach to win a gold medal is not on her list, but that doesn’t mean she doesn’t care.
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