More than a handful of black sports industry figures made history in 2021. Here are some of the biggest culture changes of the year in athletics.
The South Carolina girls’ basketball coach has continued to climb the all-time ranks in the sport this year. After signing the first recruiting class, the Gamecocks granted him a seven-year, $ 22.4 million contract extension in October. The deal makes her the highest-paid black coach in all of women’s college basketball.
In November, the Michigan state football coach signed a 10-year, $ 95 million contract extension, making him the highest-paid black coach in American sports. The Spartans end the season at the Peach Bowl against Pittsburgh on Dec. 30 in Atlanta.
In October, Wallace became the second Black NASCAR driver to win a Cup race with a victory at Talladega, and the first since Wendell Scott in 1963. In June 2020, Wallace also made headlines when he noticed a noose in his garage in Talladega.
Bianca Belair and Sasha Banks
In April, Belair and Banks became the first black women to face each other in a singles match at Wrestlemania. Belair won the historic match and both wrestlers won an ESPY for the groundbreaking match.
The Las Vegas Aces forward had the first WNBA Top Shot NFT moment with a two-handed block on the great Isabelle Harrison of the Dallas Wings.
Read on on the next page.