Women have been breaking barriers and coaching men’s professional sports for some time now. San Antonio Spurs assistant coach and former WNBA star Becky Hammon might be the most prominent example as she’s found great success on Gregg Popovich’s staff. Hammon was the head coach for the Spurs’ summer league team that was victorious in 2015. She followed in the footsteps of Nancy Lieberman and Stephanie Ready, who also had coaching experience in men’s professional basketball.
In recent years, we’ve seen the NFL also take steps to hire women in coaching roles. The Arizona Cardinals were the first in 2015, hiring Jen Welter as a linebackers coach during training camp. Last season, the Bills hired Kathryn Smith as the NFL’s first full-time female coach. She served as a special teams quality control coach.
So this is happening all around major professional sports and breaking barriers is always a good thing, right? Well, for some reason when a caller asked Mike Francesa if we’ll ever see a female head coach in major men’s professional sports in our lifetime, he seemed to get agitated at the thought and go on a several minute exposition on why it would never happen.
Mike Francesa with an unfathomable display of sexism. Women shouldn't be anywhere near men's sports!
(Except for cheerleaders, presumably.) pic.twitter.com/2n2plZMLIF
— Funhouse (@SportsFunhouse) March 2, 2017
Francesa says it’s a “gender situation” on one hand, but when the caller brings up Geno Auriemma coaching the UConn women (although he says Gino Toretta, which is all kinds of hilarious) he shuts it down by saying loudly “HE COACHES WOMEN.”
That seems to be just a slight double standard, doesn’t it?
And although Francesa seems to be against the “million-to-one” odds, we’re going to see it happen someday sooner rather than later. Why Francesa is ignoring recent history and examples of successful female coaches in men’s professional sports already is mystifying. NBA coaches and players seem to agree that it’s just a matter of time before we see a female head coach in the NBA, and they’re probably better authorities on the issue than Mike Francesa.