Pat Summitt Steps Down as Tennessee Volunteers Head Coach

Joshua Moeschl@jmoeschl7Correspondent IIIApril 18, 2012

PALO ALTO, CA - DECEMBER 20:  Tennessee Lady Volunteers head coach Pat Summitt argues with the referee during their game against the Stanford Cardinal at Maples Pavilion on December 20, 2011 in Palo Alto, California.  (Photo by Ezra Shaw/Getty Images)
Ezra Shaw/Getty Images

ESPN.com is reporting that iconic Tennessee Volunteers women's basketball coach Pat Summitt will step down as head coach. She will be succeeded on the bench by Holly Warlick.

Summit was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame in 2000, and is arguably the greatest basketball coach of all time, men's or women's. She is the owner of eight national championships, 18 Final Four appearances and 1,098 wins as a head coach.

Summitt was recently diagnosed with early-onset dementia. Summitt was going to try to keep coaching, but as this past season wore on, it became more and more clear that this was her final hurrah. 

This is a sad day for college basketball, and for the state of Tennessee. Summitt is a legend, and rightfully so. The face behind so many memorable Tennessee Final Four teams, Summitt truly exhibited strength and class towards the end of the year, knowing she was going to be finished doing the thing she loves so much.

We can all take a few pages from Coach Summitt's book. Throughout her decorated career, she has epitomized what college basketball should be about. She built a powerhouse program that will likely stay on top for decades to come.

Holly Warlick has been by Summitt's side for 922 of her victories, so she has learned a lot. A former Lady Vols player, she is a Knoxville native and couldn't be more prepared to take over. The Lady Vols are 804-113 during Warlick's tenure as a coach. 

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