This is a really interesting story: Amile Jefferson, for unspecified reasons, was not able to attend Peach Jam as a coach so Duke’s new General Manager, Rachel Baker, filled in.
Obviously this is the first time that any woman functioned as a men’s basketball coach at Duke, so in that sense, it’s historic.
But based on what everyone has said about her, and her knowledge of the game, she sounds more than capable. Toss in serious ties to grassroots basketball and she could be a major asset as a recruiter, even though it’s a temporary situation.
Check out what Duke A.D. Nina King said to the News & Observer’s Steve Wiseman about Baker: “Listen, Rachel is amazing. She is a rock star. And I think folks think we hired her just to manage NIL. That’s a part of her job. I mean, she’s really a connector and air traffic controller. She’s in on the recruiting scene. She could be an assistant coach and go out and recruit if she wanted. That was the career path for her. And she’s really tied into the AAU scene and grassroots basketball. So she’s just going to bring something fresh and different to the program.”
Certainly seems so.