With the recent hiring trend of minority candidates in college basketball, some black coaches are hopeful. There’s still a long way to go before coaches like Tim Floyd and John Thompson can see their dream come true but they’re optimistic it will happen sooner rather than later.
The “black college basketball coaches 2021” is hopeful over recent hiring trends in the industry. The article discusses how more and more black candidates are being hired for head coaching positions.
Some of the best Black men’s and women’s college basketball coaches in the country are optimistic about recent hiring trends for minority coaches, but they also recognize that they will be under pressure to succeed if those patterns continue.
Following the assassination of George Floyd in Minneapolis in 2020, schools around the country pledged to invest more in diversity. More than 51% of men’s basketball coaching openings were filled by Black coaches last year, while 47% of women’s basketball coaching vacancies were filled by Black coaches.
“I’m optimistic it’ll stay in the years to come because my expectation is that we’ll be successful,” said Kara Lawson, head coach of the Duke women’s basketball team, on ESPN’s Martin Luther King Jr. roundtable, which aired on College GameDay on Saturday. “As a result, I have a lot of faith in the men and women around the nation who have been given these chances. And, although success has been overlooked in the past, I believe it is becoming more difficult to overlook the success that minority coaches, particularly African American coaches, are experiencing at this point in our sport.”
LeVelle Moton, the men’s basketball coach at North Carolina Central, is concerned that the recent hirings in the sport are a reaction to the present atmosphere in America about social justice and diversity.
“A lot of those hires followed the George Floyd incident a couple of years ago, and so my question is always, can these chances and dialogues continue when it’s no longer a hot subject, when it’s no longer a guilt trip for people to address these needs?” Moton remarked.
The current trend, according to Florida State men’s basketball coach Leonard Hamilton, who obtained his first head coaching position at Oklahoma State in 1986, illustrates that there is a “window of opportunity” for Black coaches. He also stressed the need of Black coaches mentoring one another as they advance.
During the roundtable, Hamilton said, “I try to represent some of the positive things I’ve learned from Dr. Martin Luther King by reaching out and trying to make myself available to help and be involved with counseling and mentoring as many younger, inexperienced [and] new coaches as I possibly can, and hopefully I can contribute to having some success with those guys who are on their way up.”
Kyra Elzy, who guided Kentucky’s women’s basketball team to the NCAA tournament in her first season as head coach, said she, too, wants to help others. She said that the greatest way to do this is via success.
During ESPN’s roundtable, Elzy remarked, “The name of the game is winning, and we have to win, but I believe we’re all rooting for each other to succeed.” “However, before we sit in the seat, we must ensure that we are prepared for success, that we are mentored, and that we are placing ourselves in a position to be ready when our name is called and those interviews take place.”
Men’s coaches are often brought up in discussions concerning diversity in collegiate basketball. Black women in coaching, on the other hand, undergo the same scrutiny, according to Lawson, and should be included in the discourse.
“As we get a louder voice and wider platforms, I have to admit that I sometimes simply giggle to myself when people say things like, ‘Oh, she’s quite good.’ ‘What did you expect to happen?’ I’ll think to myself. What did you expect her to turn out to be? She’s been excellent. ‘She has always been a nice girl.’ We’ve always done well. We’ve always been sufficient. We’ve always had the potential to be exceptional at what we do.”
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Black college basketball coaches are hopeful over recent hiring trends for minority candidates. The trend is that many more coaches of color have been hired this year, which has led to a rise in the number of black head coaches. Reference: black basketball coaches.
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