Anthony Nicodemo is an open high school basketball coach and AD in New York. He is also a member of the Equality Coaching Alliance, an organization for LGBT+ coaches, administrators and staff.

  1. Why did you get into coaching?

Love of sports at an early age

  1. How many years have you been coaching?

25 years

  1. Who has been your biggest influence in coaching and why?

Henry Sassone- as a young coach he taught me that ethics and integrity were the most important values a coach could present

  1. What do you enjoy most about coaching and why?

I enjoy my connections with my players. Watching them grow up and flourish is a pleasure.

  1. What has been one of the greatest lessons you have learned about life through coaching? Please explain.

We must give all kids a chance. When I landed a new job there was a player with great talent. Many told me to cut him because he was difficult. We had a conversation and I told him that I’d always have his back if he did mine. He had a terrific season and has grown into an incredible father. Following the season he gave me a note thanking me for taking a chance and I still have it in my night table. I recently attended his wedding and couldn’t be more proud.

  1. What is your ultimate goal in coaching?

To produce young men that will be productive in society.

  1. What has been your greatest lesson as a coach during the pandemic?

Appreciating the game. Having not been able to get in the gym has been difficult for coaches and players. I truly realize how much I miss the game.

  1. What has been one of the toughest lessons you have learned through coaching. Please explain.

Saying goodbye is always the toughest for me. We get caught up in our seasons and never truly enjoy it. A few years back I had a team that was very good with high level talent. We were upset in the quarter finals and it was devastating. I still miss that team.

  1. As a minority coach, what do you feel has been the biggest challenge for minority coaches in the profession?

Being able to balance the sport and what is happening culturally is always difficult. Many believe that politics should be separate, but some of our greatest social justice movements stem from sports. It’s our jobs to expose our players to these issues no matter the push back.

  1. Tell us something about yourself that people would be surprised to know about you.
    People always seem shocked when I share that I’m gay. I don’t fit the cultural stereotypes and people are always surprised.

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