Dawn Staley Becomes First Black Coach to Win Three D1 Basketball Titles


April 8, 2024

She has cemented her place in history!

According to Andscape, Dawn Staley, head coach of the University of South Carolina Gamecocks women’s basketball team, saw a dominant win over the University of Iowa in the NCAA championship game. The victory secured her team’s undefeated season and her own third national title – a feat that has never been accomplished by a Black coach in college basketball history (men’s or women’s).

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This championship victory is the culmination of a stellar season for Staley and the Gamecocks. Despite facing a lack of media recognition throughout the tournament, they rose above the noise, showcasing not only their talent but also Staley’s exceptional coaching skills.

Staley’s coaching ability is undeniable. She took a team with a completely new starting five and led them to an undefeated season, defeating top contenders like UConn and LSU along the way. This championship win wasn’t just about individual talent; it was a show of Staley’s ability to develop players, foster a culture of teamwork, and consistently deliver winning results.

As pointed out by Seattle Storm head coach Noelle Quinn to Andscape, Staley serves as a powerful role model for Black coaches, particularly Black women, in the sport. “The time that she has poured into me and other coaches alike – it’s amazing she is still able to be so level-headed, purpose-driven and never lose sight of the goal. I look up to her. I’m inspired by her. I’m thankful for her, for carrying the torch and her position with so much grace and gratitude – a woman of God. These are things that she stands firm in and she never backs down from. It’s a great example for us as coaches.”


Staley’s journey hasn’t been without its challenges. The Andscape article highlights instances where her coaching abilities have been questioned, despite her undeniable success. However, Staley remains focused on her mission: building a winning program and empowering those around her.

With the core of their championship team returning and another top recruiting class on the horizon, the future looks bright for the South Carolina Gamecocks. Dawn Staley, a champion on and off the court, will undoubtedly continue to lead her team to greatness while inspiring future generations of players and coaches.

We celebrate Dawn Staley’s historic achievement and her unwavering dedication to excellence. She is a true role model, proving that with hard work, dedication, and a commitment to building a better future, anything is possible.


Cover photo: Dawn Staley Becomes First Black Coach to Win Three D1 Basketball Titles / Credit: Associated Press

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