We’re thrilled to share a Women’s History Month article submitted by MGC Charlotte attorney Savannah Putnam.

Dawn Staley is paving the way for a new generation of women’s college basketball while respectfully paying homage to those who came before her. If you don’t know already, Staley is an American Hall of Fame basketball player. She played for the Virginia Cavaliers before being drafted in the first round of the WNBA draft in 1999 by the Charlotte Sting. Staley is currently the head coach of the undefeated South Carolina Gamecocks—a mean-looking women’s basketball team—who are still dancin’ as they chase their way to a national title.

While you may be familiar with Dawn Staley’s basketball repertoire, you may not know that she is also considered a “fashion icon” of sorts—along with her LSU rival, Kim Mulkey. For example, while winning a National Championship with the Gamecocks in 2022, Staley wore a green Louis Vuitton varsity jacket. She is known for her expensive taste and her playfulness with patterns and design.

Most recently, during her second-round NCAA tournament game, Dawn Staley sported a Cheyney University women’s basketball jersey. The significance? Well, Cheyney is the nation’s oldest HBCU and is the only HBCU to ever reach the women’s or men’s championship game. While Cheyney ultimately missed their shot at the title in 1982, Staley recognized that the eyes would be on her during her current NCAA run and make the conscious choice to bring Cheyney University, and their history, to the surface.

The Gamecocks have advanced to the Sweet Sixteen and are projected to cut the net in Dallas. As women’s history month comes to a close, I found it necessary to admire a woman who has put women’s basketball on the national stage and who is an advocate for women across the globe.


Savannah Putnam is an attorney in MGC’s Charlotte office, with a focus on workers' compensation. She is a graduate of the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill where she received a BA, as well as Campbell Law School where she received a JD.

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March Madness: Dawn Staley's Cheyney jersey 'means a lot' to head coach Alishia Mosley's team | Yahoo Sports

Dawn Staley's jacket had everyone talking during South Carolina's title-game beatdown of UConn | Sporting News

The style and substance of South Carolina basketball's Dawn Staley | ESPN

Dawn Staley Doesn’t Care What You Think | GQ