Cheryl Miller is an aspiring American basketball player and coach who is considered one of the greatest players in women’s basketball history. She has ruled the game through her immense energy and devotion. Having spent more than two decades as a professional basketball player, she has made an exceptional career, popularized the game, and elevated it to a higher level. Miller is an inspiration to all young women athletes in the world.
Early Life and Education
The aspiring player, Cheryl Miller, was born on January 3, 1964, somewhere in Riverside, California. Born to a well-to-do family with parents Saul Miller and Carrie Miller, she spent childhood in California. Not to mention, the sportscaster also has 3 siblings: 3 brothers (Reggie Miller, Darrell Miller, and Saul Miller Jr.)
Growing up in an athletic family, Miller excelled in nearly every facet of basketball. Moreover, her father inspired a competitive spirit in all of his children. Hence, he demanded top performances from his kids in sports and the classroom.
Moreover, her younger brothers are also involved in sports activities. Reggie is also a basketball player in the NBA. Darrel is a former American Baseball catcher. Saul Miller Jr. is a musician.
The basketball player attended Riverside Poly High School. Later, after completing her high school career, she joined the University of Southern California in Los Angeles, where she studied organic chemistry and quantum physics.
As soon as Cheryl joined high school, she immediately impacted the girls’ basketball team and participated in the high school competition, shattering virtually every state scoring record, including the highest average in a season (37.5 points a game).
In her 90 matches at Riverside Polytechnic High School, Cheryl Miller scored 3,026 points, an average of 32.8 per game, grabbed 1,353 rebounds, and had 368 assists. She scored 105 points in a fun and was the first female player to dunk a basketball in a competition.
The most selected female athlete of the time, Cheryl Miller, received over 250 scholarship offers. Moreover, after enrolling at the University of Southern California, her basketball skills lead the Women of Troy to national championships in her freshman and sophomore seasons.
Later, Miller played in the championship game her senior season. Although just a freshman, she got chosen as the Most Outstanding Player of the NCAA tournament because of her ability to dominate games with her all-around athleticism.
Throughout her four years and 128 games at Southern California, she scored 3,018 points, grabbed 1,534 rebounds, and had 462 steals in 128 games.
Miller commenced her journey towards the USA National team by participating in the World Championships held in Sao Paulo, Brazil. Her team conquered six games, but the Soviet Union team defeated them. In the initial round, they had a lead by nine points. Eventually, The Soviets won by 85-84 points. Cheryl had scored 23 points in the game.
Nevertheless, Cheryl and her team won the next four games with the gold medals against USSR. The USA team earned a silver medal in the next match after hitting the game-winning shot by the USSR team. However, in the game, Miller led the team in scoring 17.6 points per game.
In 1984, the United States sent its National team for pre-Olympic practice to the William Jones Cup competition in Taipei, Taiwan. Cheryl’s team won the victory against all the eight teams with an average of 50 points in each game.
Eventually, with the gold medal at the 1984 Summer Olympics, Los Angeles, Miller led the U.S. team to victory. In 1993, Miller was also part of the gold medal team at the Pan American Games, which took place in Caracas, Venezuela.
At the inaugural Goodwill Games, held in Moscow, Cheryl participated in the game representing the US, where Kay Yow served as their coach. Miller’s team started with a 72–53 win against Yugoslavia, where 19 points were from Cheryl.
After that, the team won over Brazil with a score of 91–70. The third game against Czechoslovakia went relatively smoothly. In this game, Miller scored 26 points that led to a 78–70 victory. After that, The USA played against Bulgaria in the semifinal and again won a 67–58 victory.
In the final match against the Soviet Union, led by Ivilana Semenova, the USA team won the gold medal with an 83–60 win. Throughout the event, Miller averaged 20.6 points.
Furthermore, Miller proceeded to represent the U.S. in the National team at the 1986 World Championships in Moscow. The USA team was indeed more powerful this time, so they easily won the early game this time. In the semifinal game against Canada, the Miller team declared victorious after achieving 82–59.
After Cheryl graduated from the University of Southern California, she got immediately selected by various professional basketball associations. Unfortunately, Miller endured a knee injury that stopped her to continue playing basketball.
Henceforth, she served as an assistant coach at USC from 1986 to 1991. Additionally, she also worked as a sportscaster. After her team scored a record of 42-14, she got honored with the title Head Coach at USC after coaching from 1993-1995. With this record, the team reached the NCAA tournaments both seasons.
For the next four seasons with the Phoenix Mercury of the WNBA, she worked as a coach and general manager. Later, in 1998, Miller trained the Mercury to the WNBA Finals. However, her team got defeated by Houston Comets. Sadly in 2000, she resigned from all her contracts after suffering from fatigue.
On April 30, 2014, she got selected as the women’s basketball coach by athletic director Mike Garrett at Langston University. Similarly, on May 26, 2016, she got titled as the women’s basketball coach by athletic director Mike Garrett at California State Los Angeles.
Cheryl started her professional broadcasting career for the NBA on TNT’s Thursday Night for TNT Sports coverage, where she worked as an assistant reporter. During the 2008-2009 NBA season, the Californian worked as an analyst and reporter for NBA TV.
Furthermore, in 1996, Miller became the first female analyst to call a nationally televised NBA game. Later on, the basketball player also worked in 2K Sports’ NBA 2K Series as the sideline reporter until 2013.
Moreover, Miller has also served at the 1994 Goodwill Games as their basketball commentator. Furthermore, the inspirational woman has worked as a women’s basketball analyst and men’s basketball reporter for NBC’s coverage of the 1996 Atlanta Olympics.
Personal Life, Husband & Kids
The sportscaster has not mentioned her romantic life and is single has not tied the knot. She still has not found a perfect partner for her yet. Since Cheryl lives a private life, her fans are curious about her sexual orientation.
There’s speculation that she is interested in girls and thus is a lesbian. However, Miller has never answered anything to clarify questions about her sexuality.
Moreover, the basketball coach likes to lead a personal life and has never stated anything about marriage and sexual orientation. Thus, it is not clear whether she is a lesbian, gay, bisexual, or straight.
There are no specific reasons known for her choice to remain single for such a long time. Furthermore, Miller doesn’t have any kids of her own and has not stated anything about adopting.
Awards and Achievement
Through her utmost passion and dedication, Cheryl Miller has achieved heights of success in her career. Initially, In 1984, she received the Honda Sports Award for her exceptional basketball performance and became the WBCA Player of the Year. Similarly, the American received the Honda-Broderick Cup winner for all sports.
In 1985, Miller got honored with the Honda Sports Award for basketball for the second time. The same year she also achieved the Wade Trophy winner and became the WBCA Player of the Year.
January 3, 1964
- Burst onto the national scene by leading the USC Trojans to the National Collegiate Athletic Association (NCAA) Women’s basketball championship.
- Took position as head coach and general manager of the WNBA's Phoenix Mercury. She resigned from that position in 2000 and returned to broadcasting.
- Inducted into the Naismith Memorial Basketball Hall of Fame in 1995.