Summitt named Naismith Outstanding Contributor; will be honored in March
ATLANTA – Pat Summitt, the all-time winningest coach in NCAA basketball history, can add one more career achievement award to her trophy case. Summitt was selected as the 2013 Naismith Outstanding Contributor to Women’s College Basketball Award, the Atlanta Tipoff Club announced Wednesday.
First given in 1999 to Margaret Wade, the Naismith Outstanding Contributor to Women’s Basketball Award is presented annually to individuals whose extraordinary efforts have made contributions of outstanding significance and have created a long-lasting positive impact on the game of basketball. The recipients display character, integrity and dignity, and have contributed mightily to the growth, success and viability of basketball. To be eligible, an individual must have been involved with the sport in a capacity related to coaching, broadcasting, college administration or the news media.
Summitt is the only coach in NCAA history with 1,000 victories and holds a career record of 1098–208. She retired in 2012 after spending her entire 38-year career coaching at Tennessee. During her tenure, Summitt led the Lady Vols to eight national championships and 16 SEC championships, and was named Naismith Women’s College Coach of the Year five times (1987, '89, '94, '98, 2004). On May 29, 2012, President Obama presented Summitt with the Presidential Medal of Freedom.
Selected by the Atlanta Tipoff Club's Board of Directors, Summitt will be recognized at the Atlanta Tipoff Club’s Naismith Awards Banquet on Tuesday, March 19, 2013 in Atlanta. The Naismith Outstanding Contributor to Men’s Basketball winner is Lute Olson. He will be honored alongside Summitt.
“If it’s possible to be both proud and humbled at the same time, I am at being named as the winner of the 2013 Naismith Outstanding Contributor to Women’s College Basketball Award,” Summitt said. “Any award associated with the name Naismith is a special award, and I look forward to receiving it in Atlanta next March. I have always enjoyed my association with the Atlanta Tipoff Club and have appreciated all they have done to grow and promote the game of basketball.”
“It’s hard to imagine what women’s college basketball would be today had Pat not been the pioneer that she was,” said Eric Oberman, Atlanta Tipoff Club executive director. “Her contributions, both on and off the court, embody the very meaning of this award and her imprint on the sport will live on forever.”