Pat Summit, Tennessee legendary women’s basketball coach to step down
The University of Tennessee’s legendary basketball coach Pat Summitt announced on Wednesday that she will step aside as the women’s basketball coach, eight months after disclosing her diagnosis of early-onset Alzheimer’s disease. The announcement makes way for Summitt’s longtime assistant, Holly Warlick, 53, to take over the Lady Vols. The news was made public at a press release on Wednesday afternoon, after Summitt, 59, met with her players in Knoxville, Tenn., to inform them in private.
Summitt, who has racked up 1,098 winning college basketball games, more than any other man or woman in the sport, is not retiring, but will remain part of Tennessee’s staff, assuming the title “head coach emeritus,” which will give her freedom and flexibility to do as much mentoring with players as her health permits. Summitt said, “It is what it is. And Holly has been doing a lot, and we not only have a great friendship, we understand each other. And we can work through this.” Warlick, who is a three-time all-American and former Tennessee point guard, was a member of the coaching staff for all eight NCAA championships won under Summitt. Warlick said, “She is my coach, mentor and great friend, and I am honored with the opportunity to continue and add to the great tradition of this program.” A news conference is expected to follow on Thursday.