Today’s Black History Month post features influential Black athletes and coaches, all of whom have paved the way for others to succeed in youth, high school, college, and professional sports. CHAT has chosen to feature Coach John Chaney, a longtime college basketball coach who passed away last month.
Well-known Black athletes—like Kobe Bryant, Jackie Robinson, and Muhammed Ali—have acted as role models for Black students wishing to pursue professional sports. But there are many others, like John Chaney, who may be less well-known and who have made Black excellence in sports possible. Chaney, a long time coach at Temple University, was a fierce advocate for Black athletes, coaches, and education, and advocated to help to open doors both athletically and educationally. Chaney, along with John Thompson Jr (former Georgetown coach), protested NCAA regulations that disproportionately impacted Black athletes recruited by universities by making freshmen ineligible for sports if they didn’t meet academic requirements and pay their own way their first year. Black History Month provides a great opportunity to celebrate Chaney’s legacy of advocacy for Black athletes.
Photo Credit: The New York Times