You have to get to this game. By “this game”, we mean the Stanford Women’s Basketball team taking on Tennessee. It will be a good one. Many questions will be answered, especially about Stanford’s team. One being can they rise to the occasion, and hey, if the local 49ers football team can knock off Pittsburgh, then anything is possible.
But really, you have to get to this game for another reason, this might be your last chance to see legendary Tennessee coach Pat Summit coaching basketball. Much has been written about her legend (8 NCAA championships and over 1,000 wins) and about her decision to go public with her early onset dementia, Alzheimer’s type. A true silver lining is the awareness and influx of contributions to the condition. (For more info see the Pat Summit Foundation).
When Pat went public, she said she as going to turn over more responsibility to her assistant coaches. However, many are noticing she has turned over practically everything to them and he has become the assistant. She no longer speaks to the media after games or in the huddles or travels to see recruits. The San Jose Mercury reported she did not attend Tennessee’s’ practice at Stanford Monday.
Stanford head basketball coach Tara VanDerveer hinted to the crowd after the Princeton game to come out because it would be “special.” Other opposing teams have already honored Pat in some way when she come to play, and C and R think the word is out, privately, that Pat is not coming back to caching and this might be the last time to honor her.
Listen to Tara VanDerveer talk candidly about Pat Summit in an interview by Stanford alum Ros Gold-Onwude:
Speaking of something special, the first 2,500 people that come to Maples tomorrow get a free “We back Pat” rally towel, and you know how much C and R love free stuff, although Stanford and C and R draw the line at orange: the towels will be red. Highlights of past Stanford-Tennessee games will play before the game (Hope they show the Stanford wins, but with Tennessee holding a 22-6 margin of victory, that would be a short highlight reel. Wait, didn’t Candice Wiggins beat Candace Parker at Maples one year? Yes, we believe so).
Anyway, come for some great college women’s basketball, and to support and say goodbye to a great college basketball coach who has changed the women’s game forever.