When Mickie DeMoss returned to the Lady Vol sidelines in 2010-11, it was as if she had never left Rocky Top. The seamless transition back to Tennessee, after seven years away, reunited DeMoss with a university and women's basketball program she called home for 18 seasons as an assistant coach.
DeMoss and current Associate Head Coach Holly Warlick both joined the Lady Vols' coaching staff prior to the 1985-86 season. For the next 18 years, the coaching trio of Summitt, DeMoss and Warlick, posted six NCAA Championship titles (1987, 1989, 1991, 1996, 1997 and 1998) while advancing to 12 NCAA Final Fours. During this span, the Lady Vols had a 554-77 overall record (.878). In 2000, DeMoss was promoted to associate head coach at Tennessee.
DeMoss, who just finished her 34th season on the sidelines as a women's basketball coach, left the Lady Vols after the 2002-03 season to take the head coaching job at Kentucky. In four seasons, she guided the Wildcats to a 71-56 record including consecutive 20-win seasons (for the first time in 16 years) and three postseason appearances (one NCAA and two WNIT) for the first time in school history.
In 2005-06, DeMoss was named the SEC Coach of the Year, a first for a UK coach, as she guided the 22-9 Wildcats to the NCAA Tournament for the first time in seven seasons and punctuated the trip with an NCAA win. The breakout year also included a victory over No. 1-ranked Tennessee, 66-63, in front of a school-record crowd of 13,689 at Rupp Arena. It marked the first win over a top-ranked team in UK history. In 2006-07, Kentucky was 20-14 and advanced to the WNIT. That season, DeMoss' Cats attracted a school record attendance of 5,863 fans per game.
She elected to step aside as head coach at Kentucky in April 2007.
Her coaching hiatus ended when she accepted an assistant coaching position at the University of Texas in the summer of 2007. She was the Longhorns' top recruiter while also coaching the post game.
During her first stint at Tennessee, DeMoss developed a reputation as the top assistant in the women's game. A survey of the nation's NCAA Division I women's head basketball coaches tabbed her the top assistant in the country in 2000. She also garnered that same distinction from a 1998 The Women's Basketball Journal poll. While on Rocky Top, DeMoss was considered a great technical mind, floor coach and entertainer. Off the court, she was regarded as one of the best recruiters in the college game, year after year recruiting future All-SEC and All-America award-winners, while stockpiling rosters with the kind of players essential to winning national championships.
Some of DeMoss' most notable recruits at Tennessee include: Tonya Edwards, the 1987 Final Four MVP, Dena Head, the 1992 SEC Player of the Year, Chamique Holdsclaw, the 1996 and 1997 Final Four MVP, and Tamika Catchings, a four-time All-American.
Noted for her success coaching post players, DeMoss protégés have represented Team USA in every Olympic Games since 1992. That year, three DeMoss-coached centers helped lead the U.S. to a bronze medal in Barcelona, Spain.
Daedra Charles, who DeMoss shaped into a Wade Trophy winner in 1991 at UT, Tammy Jackson, who played for DeMoss during her first head coaching stint at Florida, and Vickie Orr, who she recruited to come to Auburn while an assistant coach there, each saw significant time in the post on the U.S. roster. The trio combined to average over 20 points per game.
In 1996, former Lady Vol Carla McGhee helped lead the United States to the gold medal in Atlanta, Ga., while Holdsclaw represented the Red, White and Blue at the 2000 Sydney Games, but was sidelined for the tournament with a stress fracture. The latest DeMoss pupil to have success on the international level, the versatile Catchings, captured gold medals for Team USA at the 2004 Olympics in Athens, Greece, and the 2008 Games in Beijing, China.
Prior to joining the Tennessee staff in 1985, DeMoss had been an assistant coach at Auburn University (1983-85), a head coach at the University of Florida (1979-83) and an assistant at Memphis State (1977-79).
DeMoss received her undergraduate degree in physical education from Louisiana Tech University in 1977, where she starred at point guard. She then received her master's degree in education at Memphis State University in 1979. She is a native of Tallulah, La.