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Countdown to Tokyo: US women’s basketball coach Dawn Staley

(KYMA, KECY/ NBC News) - Dawn Staley is not only an American basketball Hall of Fame player and coach, but also a three-time Olympic gold medalist and she takes that into the 2021 Tokyo Olympics as the US women's head coach.

Staley made her mark in the basketball world after a stellar career at the University of Virginia, capping it off by winning a gold medal at the 1996 Summer Olympics before being drafted to the NBA.

16 years later, Staley was a Women's Basketball Hall of Fame inductee and a Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Famer just a year later. All while being under the helm of the University of South Carolina Gamecocks women's basketball program since 2008 after eight years at Temple.

A national title later, Staley was named as the head coach of the USA national team and the first person to win the Naismith Award as a player and as a coach.

In 2021, Staley will lead the US women's national team on the court into Tokyo, looking for another gold medal to hang on the shelf.

In Friday's Countdown to Tokyo, a special person in her life, A'ja Wilson, describes just how dynamic Staley is.

"I would have to say Coach Staley's swag is something that is going to always stick out in her. She's probably all of 5-6, 5-7, but she has the heart of a seven-footer the way she carries herself," said Wilson. "To see the game repay her in this way as the head coach of this Olympic team is definitely huge and special to her."

As Seen on TV / Olympic Countdown / Sports / Video
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Cole Johnson

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