Sun, Feb 04, 2007 - Page 23 News List

Super coaches put winning first

PRIORITIES Coaches Lovie Smith and Tony Dungy are pals, but they're both more focused on becoming the first black coach to win the NFL's biggest game today


Dungy played on a Super Bowl winner with the Pittsburgh Steelers in 1978, but had never been to one in 15 years as an assistant coach and 10 years as a coach.

Smith was a defensive coordinator for the St. Louis Rams in 2001 when they lost to the Patriots in Super Bowl 36. It took Smith just three years to make the Super Bowl as a coach.

Cito Gaston is still the only black manager to win Major League Baseball's World Series, earning back-to-back titles with the Toronto Blue Jays in 1992 and 1993.

There has been a series of black coaches that have won NBA titles, starting with Bill Russell as a player-coach with the Boston Celtics in 1968 and 1969.

The only other time two black coaches faced off against each other in a championship game or series was in the NBA finals in 1975, when Al Attles and the Golden State Warriors swept K.C. Jones and the Washington Bullets.

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