Holly Warlick has been named the new head coach of the Tennessee Volunteers women's basketball program following Pat Summitt's retirement Wednesday afternoon. Warlick was a three-time All-American as a player for the Lady Vols, and has spent the last 27 seasons with the program as an assistant under Summitt.
The university released a statement Wednesday officially announcing Summitt's retirement and naming Warlick as her successor. In the statement, Summitt expressed her full support for Warlick, as well as her continued passion for her players and the game.
"I've loved being the head coach at Tennessee for 38 years, but I recognize that the time has come to move into the future and to step into a new role," said Summitt. "I support Holly Warlick being named the next head coach, and I want to help ensure the stability of the program going forward. I would like to emphasize that I fully intend to continue working as head coach emeritus, mentoring and teaching life skills to our players, and I will continue my active role as a spokesperson in the fight against Alzheimer's through the Pat Summitt Foundation Fund.
"If anyone asks, you can find me observing practice or in my office. Coaching is the great passion of my life, and the job to me has always been an opportunity to work with our student-athletes and help them discover what they want. I will continue to make them my passion. I love our players and my fellow coaches, and that's not going to change."
In turn, Warlick gave gratitude to Summitt, and thanked the university for the opportunity to lead one of women's basketball's most storied programs.
"I'm very thankful for all Pat Summitt has done to prepare me for this opportunity," said Warlick. "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. I'd like to thank Dave Hart, Chancellor Cheek, and the University for having confidence in me to lead the Lady Vol program, and we will work as hard as we possibly can with the goal of hanging more banners in Thompson-Boling Arena."