Skip to content
Jose Fernandez

LABC rocks Cleveland for Women’s Final Four

Latino Association of Basketball Coaches nurtures women's basketball coaches

On the eve of the Women’s Final Four, USF women’s basketball coach Jose Fernandez and Mississippi State assistant Corry Irvin participated in an empowerment panel held by the Rising Coaches organization. Their LABC brothers and sisters provided a small cheering section in the crowd Thursday afternoon in Cleveland.

As Fernandez looked into the crowd, he could not miss the small group of Latino coaches and administrators. The entire women’s basketball committee for the Latino Association of Basketball Coaches attended the panel discussion to hear Fernandez and Irvin. 

“We went to support and watch,” said Patty Medina, an assistant athletic director at American University. “It was amazing. We were all there. All the LABC women’s committee was there in the audience supporting. 

“It was a ‘see him, be him’ moment. Seeing Corry, seeing Jose on the panel, it really inspires you.”

Dean of Latino women’s college hoops coaches

Fernandez has spent the last 25 years as USF’s women’s basketball coach. He’s the vice president/president elect of  Women’s Basketball Coaches Association and an assistant coach for the USA Basketball under-18 women’s national team.

Fernandez is also an important part of the LABC, which is steadily growing its membership while helping develop the next generation of men’s and women’s basketball coaches. The LABC has six board members, three from the women’s side and three from the men’s side. 


Latino basketball coaches nurture growing ranks

Latina Athlete of the Year: Hannah Hidalgo

Kamilla Cardoso not defined by shoving incident

The LABC’s men’s basketball committee will hold a luncheon at the Men’s Final Four in Phoenix. The women’s committee will host a watch party Friday night in Cleveland at Añejo Tequila Joint. 

There will be free drinks, free tacos, the “special” LABC watermelon spicy margarita and networking, lots of networking. The crowds at the LABC mixers during the Women’s Final Four have grown steadily over the last three years.

There were approximately 40 people at the inaugural mixer in Minneapolis two years ago. The LABC women’s committee held a panel discussion and then a mixer in Dallas last year. A crowd of about 50 attended the panel, and about 120 attended the networking mixer.

Medina hopes to have 75-80 attend the networking mixer in Cleveland.

“It’s more so a networking mixer,” Medina said. “We’re going to have members, potential members and friends of members.”

LABC open to all

Attendance and events may be greater for the LABC next year when the Women’s Final Four is held in Tampa, Fla., home of Fernandez’s USF.

“We want to continue to empower more Latino coaches to want to coach and want to grow in the field,” Medina says.

Moreover, the LABC women’s basketball committee is proud to welcome all groups. Medina estimates that the LABC’s women’s committee’s events might be the most inclusive out of all the affinity groups at the Final Four. 

“The goal is to allow the youth and young coaches to see themselves in me and Patty, who is more in the administrative side,” said USF assistant coach Sheila Boykin. “Jose (Fernandez) does some tremendous things in our community. It’s just a matter of showing up as our best selves and showing them the possibilities that they can reach.”

Stay in the Loop

Get the Our Esquina Email Newsletter

By submitting your email, you are agreeing to receive additional communications and exclusive content from Our Esquina. You can unsubscribe at any time.