Long time University of Tennessee women's basketball coach and legendary badass Pat Summitt announced today that she'll be stepping down from her post at the helm of one of the most successful programs in college sports, citing early-onset dementia that began affecting her last summer. She leaves the court the winningest college basketball coach ever.
Summitt coached the Lady Volunteers from 1974 on and has never had a losing season. She's one of three college coaches with 1,000 career victories and has netted 8 national championships with the Vols, the second most ever for a college head basketball coach.
After being diagnosed with rapidly progressing early onset dementia, she ratcheted down her role with the team this season, but was still present courtside. Now that she's resigned, she won't join her team on the bench anymore, but she still plans to have a role in the program. Associate Head Coach Holly Warlick will attempt to fill Summitt's giant shoes.
Here is a list of people who have not been forced to retire/shut up forever due to early-onset dementia: Ted Nugent, Rush Limbaugh, Brigitte Bardot, Ronald Reagan (he just kept on Presidenting!), Mel Gibson, and Ann Coulter. The world's so terribly unfair sometimes.
If college basketball coaching were one big meta-game, now would be the time for Pat to cut down the net under a hail of confetti. She won. But that doesn't make her departure any less of a loss.
Pat Summitt Steps Down [Go Vols]