Staley proud to be 2nd African-American coach to win title

The South Carolina Gamecocks beat the Stanford Cardinal during the semifinal round of the 2017 NCAA Women's Final Four. South Carolina will play Mississippi State Sunday night for the NCAA women's championship

SC head coach Dawn Staley signals toher players during the first half against Mississippi State in the final of NCAA women's Final Four college basketball tournament, Sunday, April 2, 2017, in Dallas. SC won 64-61 at home during the regular season and then 59-49 in the SEC Tournament championship.

The school had pushed back the ceremony to honour Dawn Staley and her national champions to avoid the bad weather.

The victory also was the first national championship for head coach Dawn Staley, who was a highly decorated player in high school, college and the Olympics. Then in the Final Four, her buzzer beater ended Connecticut's reign as championships in women's basketball.

MSU (34-5) was swept by the Gamecocks this season.

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Some might disagree, but it certainly was a miraculous victory for Mississippi State, especially considering that the last time the two teams met, the Bulldogs lost by 60. Staley has done basically everything but win a national championship.

The Bulldogs couldn't muster the same effort against their SEC rival.

"Man, just be with us next year, we're trying to be in this same spot next year, we're going to see how it goes", Wilson said after winning the most outstanding player award for the Final Four. She had 18 points and 10 rebounds while fellow junior guard Kaela Davis also reached double figures with 10 points. Losing makes a team cranky even if the losses are several years apart. They spent a year getting to know our team, getting to know our system.

Mississippi State plays SC today for the championship of women's Division I college basketball and no, that is not a typo.

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There were several pivotal moments in South Carolina's ascension, none bigger than the decision to hire Staley from Temple nine years ago. We had a heck of a year. Tennessee did it in 1987 and Louisiana Tech accomplished the same feat a year later.

The Bulldogs will try to knock off a third consecutive No. 1 seed Sunday night, two days after ending UConn's record 111-game winning streak on Morgan William's breathtaking, buzzer-beating jumper.

The all-Southeastern Conference national title game was the third such matchup in tournament history and the first since Tennessee beat Georgia in 1996.

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