Oct. 27, 2011
Lady Vols head coach Pat Summitt spoke at SEC Media Day in Hoover, Ala., on Thursday. She spoke about the upcoming season as well as her battle with dementia. Some of her comments included:
Pat Summitt (On We Back Pat Shirts): "Its been amazing, all across the country, hopefully it will help other people out"
(On being upfront): "I'm not going to hide anything, telling the truth is the right way to go, so I am not trying to cover anything up."
(On the season): "We just need to cut down nets, I think we have a team right now that is working every day, very, very focused"
(On Baugh): "Vicki has had a great influence, she rallies everybody in. I think she will do the same thing when we start games"
(On keeping going): "Everyday, I can't wait to get on the court. I'm not ready to retire, I may be old as dirt, but I'm still trying to win ballgames. I love it! I love working with our student-athletes and our coaches."
(On her health): "What I want everybody to know is that I'm doing great," Summitt said. "Every day I get up and I want to go to work. That's what keeps me going.
"Overall, I don't really feel like I have dementia, but I have dementia. Everyone is asking about it all the time "I don't think it's something that's slowing me down. If anything it's revving me up."
Watch Summitt's Press Conference here:
University of Tennessee Women's Basketball Head Coach
Holly Warlick on Coach Summitt's health:
"Tennessee really appreciates, especially the media, for being sensitive to Pat's health. She is fine, she is at every practice, she is heavily recruiting, and she is involved in everything we do. She is still our head coach, and she is doing a heck of a job. Coach Summitt believes it's not about her, it's about her program. We're not doing anything different as we approach this season."
On approaching the season:
"Nothing is different. We just need to cut down nets. We have a team that is working every day and are very focused. Our defense and our board play is a must. I think our guard play is getting better. You always want to have that point guard who can step up and make a difference."
Coach Summitt on her assistant coaches:
"It is great to have that support, and they're there everyday. I am still the head coach, and I can still dictate who does what. We're like family. Every day I can't wait to get on the court. I'm not ready to retire. I have a great staff and we are focused on this season."
Coach Summitt on the team and expectations for the season:
"Workouts have been great We talk about getting better every day. We go in talking about our daily improvement and sticking together. They want to be part of a championship."
Coach Summitt on Glory Johnson, Shekinna Stricklen, and Vicki Baugh:
"Shekinna has elevated her game. She can shoot from long range and she can go in and post up. Glory is a block player and works well in the paint. Vicki's leadership has the team [elevated]. She is the voice, and the team listens. The team has respect for her, and she is stepping up."
Vicki Baugh #21
University of Tennessee, Graduate Forward/Center
On Coach Summitt's health and how it's impacted the team:
"I don't think we really feel pressure. Everyone is excited, motivated, and ready to come together on the floor and prove that this team has what it takes. She is still our coach, still very involved, and interacting in practice. We are a family at Tennessee; whatever comes our way we are willing to handle it as a family. Her health is not a distraction; she is still very focused. She teaches us to be the best we can be. There's no selfish aspect of Coach Summitt at all."On her injury: "The knee is 100% and I feel great. I have been getting better and back to how I was prior to my injury."
On the team:
The team only worries about understanding their roles on the court and team chemistry. It's time to apply Tennessee's philosophy in defense and rebounding to the court and translate that to games. I'm really looking forward to this season and playing for this team and the coaching staff."
On expectations for this season:
"Being Tennessee, our program will always be in the spotlight. We know what we can do and are expected to be in the Final Four and compete for a championship. I want to go out