Milan ‘Mimi’ Bolden-Morris hits gridiron Saturday as lone female GA in Power Five college football
Bolden-Morris, at University of Michigan, is reportedly the first female graduate assistant football coach with a Power Five school since the '80s.
The University of Michigan announced earlier this year that former Georgetown Hoyas guard Milan “Mimi” Bolden-Morris had been tapped to serve as a graduate assistant working with the Wolverines quarterbacks. On Saturday, she’ll make her official debut on the sidelines when the Michigan Wolverines face off at home in Ann Arbor against the Colorado State Rams.
Bolden-Morris, the sister of UMichigan senior defensive end, Mike Morris, is believed to be the first female graduate assistant football coach with a Power Five school since Carol White worked with the kickers at Georgia Tech in the 1980s, per The Associated Press.
“I have always believed in providing opportunities for individuals who are passionate about football, and Mimi is someone who has shown that drive to become a football coach,” Michigan Coach Jim Harbaugh previously said in a statement shared by the university.
Harbaugh described Bolden-Morris as a “bright, intelligent and competitive young woman who will be a great addition to our program and offensive coaching staff.”
In her own statement amid news of her March hiring, Bolden-Morris said: “These opportunities have been an anomaly for a black woman until recently. Growing up watching my dad coach my brother, it has always been my dream to be a part of a football team in some form, so this opportunity is allowing me to live out a dream of mine, especially working with quarterbacks.”
Bolden-Morris played women’s college basketball for Boston College and Georgetown from 2017 to 2021. She also played softball and flag football growing up in Florida.
“She wanted to be the first female QB in NFL history,” her brother recalled, according to Click 2 Detroit.
“I’m so blessed that I played so many sports growing up,” said Bolden-Morris in a recent interview on “B1G Today.”
“My IQ in everything that I played was always so high,” she shared. “Playing catcher, I had to call pitches some games. I had to know situational stuff. Then in basketball, the same thing happened. I had to know time and score, how many timeouts, the possession. Now in football, having to read defenses and know the coverages and stuff like that, different formations that will help us get an advantage.”
It was during her time assisting the Hoya football team, where she did “recruiting and film stuff,” that Bolden-Morris decided to seek out graduate assistant jobs. Most graduate assistants receive a stipend and have their tuition covered by the school.
“I was emailing and reaching out to coaches in the ACC saying, ‘Hey do you have a GA spot or an intern spot?’” Bolden-Morris said, per Click 2 Detroit. “I wanted to get my foot in the door. Even if it was coming in and not getting paid. A lot of them said, ‘No, we have GAs.’”
She reached out to Coach Harbaugh, who said, “‘Absolutely, she can go intern,’” Bolden-Morris said. When a graduate assistant job opened up, Bolden-Morris interviewed and impressed Harbaugh.
“Mimi reached out and expressed an interest in our graduate assistant positions when we had multiple openings this spring. We had some great conversations and I came away extremely impressed with her desire and ideas for coaching, and for making us better as a team,” Harbaugh said in a statement.
“I am a genuine person,” Bolden-Morris said. “He liked the way I approached the game so differently from a basketball perspective.”
Bolden-Morris began her new job on June 1.
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