Rumor: Spurs assistant Becky Hammon could be first female coach of Div. 1 men’s team

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Becky Hammon can flat-out coach.

Gregg Popovich brought her on as a Spurs assistant after the six-time WNBA All-Star in San Antonio was around the facilities after an injury and just asked to sit in on coaches meetings. She ended up being so impressive she got a job, and has been part of the Spurs bench since 2014 (she was the first female assistant coach in the NBA). She coached the Spurs’ Summer League team to a title a couple of seasons back. Ask a player or anyone with the Spurs about her (on or off the record) and there is nothing but praise.

Now she may land the head coaching job at Colorado State, becoming the first female coach of a men’s Div. 1 team. From Pete Thamel of Yahoo Sports.

Athletic director Joe Parker has been quoted publicly saying that he’d considered hiring San Antonio Spurs assistant coach Becky Hammon as the men’s basketball coach. She was a three-time All-American at Colorado State, has her jersey retired there and has since emerged as a star assistant coach in the NBA. “It’s the most frequently asked question I get, and recommended candidate,” Parker told Coloradoan.com. “I’m not closing the door on any thought.”

A source with knowledge of Colorado State’s search process told Yahoo Sports that Hammon is considered one of the top candidates by the administration. And by opening the door to a groundbreaking hire, the possibility looms for Hammon to be the first woman to work as a head Division I men’s basketball coach in history. Perhaps the best way to sum up how qualified Hammon is as a Colorado State candidate is that those who know her best don’t consider the move at all anomalous or unusual.

I don’t have a doubt she could do the job. Granted, college coaching is different from life in the NBA. First, recruiting is the lifeblood of college hoops and how good Hammon is at that remains to be seen (although there are assistant coaches who specialize in that she could hire). Also, unlike the NBA, time coaches are allowed with players in practice or the film room is limited.

This would be a great hire for Colorado State, and a groundbreaking move for the already groundbreaking Hammon. The question is, will she want to leave the Spurs and step into a brighter spotlight (San Antonio shields its assistant coaches from media largely)? We may find out. This is something to watch.