Her entire coaching career, since she was 22, Pat Summitt has
called Knoxville, Tennessee home as the head coach of the Lady Vols.
Now 38 years later Summitt, who is 59, is stepping down as
the Lady Vols head coach with 1,098 all-time career wins, which is the most
ever in either the men’s or women’s game, and reached the top more times than
you can count one two hands.
Former Hall of Fame Lady Raider head coach Marsha Sharp, who
led the 1993 Lady Raiders to the National Championship, said Summitt has done a
lot for the game and her thoughts go out to the Summit family.
who has coached women's basketball at any time during the past four decades
owes an enormous debt of gratitude for what Pat has done for our game,” Sharp
said in a statement released on Wednesday. “There will be evidence of her
efforts for many years to come. On a personal note my thoughts and prayers go
out to Pat, to Holly, and to the entire Lady Vol
Family. We are a nation of coaches who love and support all of you.”
with winning games on the court had to overcome a personal mountain of her own
this season as in August she announced that she had been diagnosed with early
on-set dementia which could lead to Alzheimer’s disease.
Summitt coached the Lady Vols to 16
regular season SEC titles, 16 SEC tournament titles, never failed to reach the
NCAA Tournament and made 18 trips to the Final Four.
Out of those 18 trips to the Final Four, Summit climbed the
ladder to cut down the net eight times as National Champs. One of those seasons
ended with the Lady Vols perfect at 39-0.
Current Texas Tech Women’s Basketball coach Kristy Curry
also weighed in on the news of Summit stepping down as head coach.
Summitt is an icon in women’s basketball,” Curry said in a statement released on
Wednesday. “I think whenever people look back on the history of this game and
those who helped it get to where it is today, she is one of those fixtures that
emulates women’s basketball and its success. She’s not only been a great coach
over the years but an amazing person, friend and ambassador for us all."
Summitt will not
fully leave the program as she will serve as “head coach emeritus” and will
report to the Athletic Director.
assistant coach Holly Warlick will take over the Lady
scheduled a press conference for Thursday.