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Old 11-21-2013, 01:12 PM   #1
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Default Shine In The Moment: South Carolina's Dawn Staley

Shine In The Moment: South Carolina's Dawn Staley

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By: Sean Cartell
Twitter: @SEC_Sean
SEC Digital Network

COLUMBIA, S.C. – The steady dribble of a basketball and the unmistakable squeak of sneakers on the hardwood have been constants in Dawn Staley’s life. They were there during the good times. Perhaps, more importantly, they were present during the bad.

Those aural symbols are associated with the most fundamental levels of the game Staley so deeply loves, but they have always meant significantly more to the sixth-year South Carolina head coach.

Staley, who this summer became just the 27th woman to be inducted into the Naismith Basketball Hall of Fame, was reared in the housing projects of North Philadelphia. Lacking many material items that are coveted by today’s youth, Staley found her confidence through basketball.

The transitive power of a pair of sneakers to, both literally and physically, move Staley forward would become a central theme in her life.

“I grew up in the projects in North Philly and I didn’t care what I looked like from my ankles up,” Staley said. “If I had a nice, new pair of sneakers, my world looked differently and felt differently. The things that made me happy were sneakers and basketball. Those were the two things that I really enjoyed, and people came in and out of my life to supply me with opportunities to play.”

With a laser-sharp focus on her passion, Staley became the USA Today National High School Player of the Year in 1988 at Dobbins Tech, earning a scholarship to the University of Virginia, where she was a two-time National Player of the Year.

“Basketball is a tremendous sport,” Staley said. “It is a sport that continues to grow and I want to be someone who helps the sport grow because the sport has helped me grow and mature into the woman I am today.”

Staley’s resume is long and decorated; her credentials in the game of basketball unmatched.

She is a three-time Olympic gold medalist, a member of the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame, and recently was awarded the “Order of the Palmetto,” the highest honor a civilian citizen in the state of South Carolina can earn. The WNBA’s Community Leadership Award even is named for Staley.

Given all of those accomplishments and her passion for the sport, Staley has never lost sight of what matters most. Just like those sneakers so many years ago, basketball is a vehicle through which she continues to make a positive impact.

“She does so much with her community service initiatives and is very humble about it,” said Ray Tanner, the University of South Carolina’s Director of Athletics and a two-time NCAA Champion baseball coach in his own right. “I saw her play when she was a point guard at Virginia and watched her in the WNBA. She has been there and done that. She can talk the talk because she has walked the walk. She does all the right things.”

Staley’s impact on the South Carolina program has been undeniable – she has led the Gamecocks to back-to-back 25-win seasons and a pair of NCAA Tournament appearances. South Carolina won a school-record 11 Southeastern Conference games last season.

Diving deeper than the numbers, she has instilled a sense of duty in her players, a duty to the community in which they live and the fans who provide them support.

“I think a lot of that goes to how she was raised and the neighborhood she grew up in,” South Carolina junior forward Aleighsa Welch said. “She’s seen the other side of things. It’s definitely great to have a coach who is able to look back on what she came from and want to be able to reach out to the community. I’m blessed to play for a coach like her.”
http://www.secdigitalnetwork.com/NEW...wn-staley.aspx
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Old 12-05-2013, 01:48 PM   #2
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Default Re: Shine In The Moment: South Carolina's Dawn Staley

The latest USA Today Sports Top 25 women's basketball coaches poll was released on Tuesday, and six teams from the Southeastern Conference are in the rankings.

The SEC boasts three top-10 teams in No. 3 Tennessee (7-0), No. 6 Kentucky (8-0) and No. 10 South Carolina (8-0).

How about some love for our TOP 10 rated girls!!
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Old 12-05-2013, 01:50 PM   #3
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Default Re: Shine In The Moment: South Carolina's Dawn Staley

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Old 01-31-2014, 06:25 PM   #4
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Default Re: Shine In The Moment: South Carolina's Dawn Staley

Not to alarm anyone,but last night Dawn was sitting by Eric Hyman at the men's game.I'm positive it was harmless,after all Eric brought her to USC,but it just underlines the need to make sure she is taken care of financially and otherwise to a point that no job is more attractive than USC.Heck, maybe we should do like Tenn. did and say if we can't be a men's BB school then maybe we can dominate on the womens side.(not serious).
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Old 01-31-2014, 09:03 PM   #5
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Default Re: Shine In The Moment: South Carolina's Dawn Staley

Quote:
Originally Posted by Beano Cook View Post
Not to alarm anyone,but last night Dawn was sitting by Eric Hyman at the men's game.I'm positive it was harmless,after all Eric brought her to USC,but it just underlines the need to make sure she is taken care of financially and otherwise to a point that no job is more attractive than USC.Heck, maybe we should do like Tenn. did and say if we can't be a men's BB school then maybe we can dominate on the womens side.(not serious).
Gary Blair is only a few years removed from a national championship. There is zero chance of Dawn going to A&M.
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