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Pat Summitt steps down as Tennessee women’s coach

Apr 18, 2012, 1:59 PM EDT

PatSummitt

Legendary Tennessee women’s head basketball coach Pat Summitt is stepping down after 38 seasons with the Lady Volunteers.

Summitt will be named an honorary head coach emeritus and assistant coach Holly Warlick will take over primary coaching duties.

“I feel really good about my decision,” Summitt told the Knoxville News Sentinel. “I think this is going to be a win-win situation for everybody. Holly and I will work really well together.”

In 1999, Summitt was inducted as an inaugural member of the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame and amassed an all-time record of 1098-208 at Tennessee.

In August of 2011, Summitt was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer’s disease, but remained on the sidelines to coach the Lady Vols to a 24-8 record this past season and a berth in the Elite Eight.

As head coach emeritus, Summitt can still attend practices and call recruits, but Warlick will have the majority of the head coaching responsibilities.

“I feel like Holly’s been doing the bulk of it,’’ Summitt said. “She deserves to be the head coach. I’m going to support her. No doubt, I’ll be there for her.”

Summitt was a 16-time SEC champion at Tennessee, a seven-time national coach of the year, and eight-time national champion.

“I support Holly Warlick being named the next head coach, and I want to help ensure the stability of the program going forward,” said Summitt in a release. “I will continue to make them my passion. I love our players and my fellow coaches, and that’s not going to change.”

Daniel Martin is a writer and editor at JohnnyJungle.com, covering St. John’s. You can find him on Twitter:@DanielJMartin_

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