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USC coaches support Tennessee's Pat Summitt

August 23, 2011 |  8:15 pm

Pat Summitt, Tennessee's legendary women's basketball coach, has early-onset dementia, as The Times' Baxter Holmes details in this story.

Coaches across the country, including several from USC, voiced support for Summitt.

"I was very shocked to hear the news about Coach Summitt. After spending some of the summer with her out recruiting, she still seems to be the coach that we've all known and seen over the years. I send out prayers and best wishes for her and her family, and I know with doctors' recommendations and care, she'll continue to be the strong-minded coach that she's been and exemplified for the last 37 years.... I know that I as well as the rest of the coaches around the country are going to expect nothing but the best every time she and her team step on the floor."

-- USC women's basketball Coach Michael Cooper

"I am truly saddened by the news of Coach Pat Summitt's medical diagnosis.  What she represents to not only the sport of women's basketball, but all sports, cannot be measured in words but only described as 'inspiration.'  After listening to her statement and having the opportunity to see up close the type of fierce competitor she is, I am confident that she will handle this challenge just as we
have seen her handle other challenges throughout her career.  I add my support and the support of our Trojan football program to that of those around the world for Pat, her family, staff and players for the road ahead.  Fight on!"

-- USC football Coach Lane Kiffin, who coached at Tennessee in 2009

"As a Tennessee athlete and then as a coach there, I always had great respect for Coach Summitt and her program.  She has a very structured program, she runs intense practices and her athletes are always so focused.  She gets the most out of her athletes and I have been impressed with how successful her teams have been.  It's that same foundation that I know she will use to battle what is in front of her now.  If anybody can fight through this obstacle, it's Coach Summitt.  I wish her the best."

-- Aaron Ausmus, USC strength and conditioning coach


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-- Gary Klein

Photo: Tennessee women's basketball coach blows kisses to the crowd after winning her 1,000th game as coach in 2009. Credit: Mark Zerof / U.S. Presswire