Kept on the sidelines, Black assistant basketball coaches want a shot to lead

Bruiser Flint remembers being a Massachusetts assistant coach building a resume that would one day have him running his own program. He had twice interviewed elsewhere before his moment arrived with mentor John Calipari bolting for the NBA, vacating the big chair for the Minutemen.

The breakthrough had come for Mr. Flint, who was 30 at the time: He had joined the limited ranks of Black men in charge of a top-level college basketball team.

“I was unbelievably grateful,” Mr. Flint recalled. “It was my first job … and I think at the time, I might have been the youngest head coach in the country. That was one of my goals, that’s what you work for.”

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