Best of Philly

Best Coach

2023 Best Glass-Ceiling Smasher

Autumn Lockwood

Women continue to make major inroads into traditionally male-dominated sports. Philly scored a major splash in this regard when Lockwood, an assistant sports performance coach for the Eagles, became the first Black woman ever to coach in a Super Bowl. The Birds’ trip to the big game was aided by the fact that their star-studded roster was also one of the NFL’s healthiest. Can’t fly with broken wings, y’know. Read More »

2022 Best Grateful Gesture

Dawn Staley

We can’t get enough of North Philly native Dawn Staley, the former women’s basketball coach at Temple who this year won her second NCAA national title leading South Carolina’s team. (Her Twitter feed, highlighted by pup Champ, is worth reading.) Before her big April win, she revealed that after triumphing in her first national championship, in 2017, she purchased mini trophies for all her former teammates at UVA plus all her former players and fellow coaches at Temple and South Carolina and had them engraved with “Because of you.” Priceless. Read More »

2020 Best Philly Basketball Season

Dawn Staley

The hoops being played in South Philly when the pandemic struck were maddeningly inconsistent. The Philly hoops being played farther south were consistently euphoric. The South Carolina Gamecocks’ women’s team — helmed by Philly legend Dawn Staley — went 32-1, won their last 26 games, and in a season without a tournament were the consensus national champs. Staley rightly won the prestigious Naismith Coach of the Year award, making her the first such winner to have also previously won the Naismith Player of the Year award (which she did in 1991 and ’92). One wonders what madness March might have wrought. Read More »