Transgender Flag Evert Nelson/The Topeka Capital-Journal via USA TODAY NETWORK

A heavily debated topic recently has been whether or not transgender athletes should be able to compete against athletes of their same sexual orientation, regardless of what gender they were born as. Well, one prominent college basketball coach made her opinion very clear on the matter on Saturday.

South Carolina women’s basketball coach Dawn Staley spoke to reporters to discuss their upcoming National Championship game against the Iowa Hawkeyes and Caitlin Clark.

She was asked whether or not she believes that transgender athletes should be able to compete in women’s college basketball, where she stated that transgender athletes should be able to compete against women as long as they themselves identify as women.

“Damn, you got deep on me,” Staley joked. “I’m under the opinion of if you are a woman you should play. If you consider yourself a woman and you want to play sports, you should be able to play. That’s my opinion. Do you want me to go deeper? Yes, so now the barnstorm of people are going to flood my timeline and be a distraction to me on one of the biggest days of our game. And I’m okay with that.”

Staley clearly wasn’t all that thrilled with the question, which is understandable because her comments on the matter could certainly be a distraction for her team ahead of their big game on Sunday.

But regardless, this is significant because very few coaches in her level of power have openly shared this opinion, which is obviously a controversial one to some.

Whether you agree with Staley’s opinion on the matter or not, you have to admire her courage to address the question when there are clearly question about South Carolina’s upcoming game that should have been front and center at this press conference.

[Lindsay Gibbs on Twitter/X]

About Reice Shipley

Reice Shipley is a staff writer for Comeback Media that graduated from Ithaca College with a degree in Sports Media. He previously worked at Barrett Sports Media and is a fan of all things Syracuse sports.