Friday, June 19, 2009

Yes, women can coach men

Two stories about women coaching boys or men recently.
One at Hillsborough High in Florida where Stephanie Crawford was recently appointed head coach of the boys' basketball team. Crawford was the girls' team coach at a nearby school but had always wanted to coach a boys' team. Hillsborough is coming off of a successful season and Crawford is looking forward to the opportunity to coach a premiere team. Crawford grew up playing with boys but played at the collegiate and professional levels with women. There is, of course, the double-edged sword present here. As great as the opportunity is, it is somewhat disconcerting that Crawford felt she had to be a head coach of boys' team in order to have legitimacy as a coach, perhaps as a female coach, perhaps as a female coach of color. Or maybe she just likes the challenge and likes challenging the system.
Regardless, the hiring "sent shockwaves throughout the boys' basketball community." Shockwaves!
I didn't feel them up here in New England but maybe that's because the women-coaching-men issue has already gotten some press in the form Justine Siegel, coach of the Springfield College baseball team, who is now coaching the professional Can-Am League Brockton Rox. Siegel is a huge advocate for youth baseball for both boys and girls.

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