Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Summitt can overcome her summit

I will say I’m not the greatest women’s basketball fan. I don’t follow it, I don’t watch and I just don’t really care for it. But I’m no fool. I know who Pat Summitt is, although I wouldn’t blame you if you didn’t know. She is the head coach for the women’s basketball team at Tennessee. The winningest coach in that sport’s history, so one could conclude she knows what she is doing. She has eight national championships, 1,021 career victories, and 37 seasons as Tennessee’s coach. Clearly, I have respect for this woman. It can sometimes be hard to coach a team that does not have a large following. I would watch her on SportsCenter and think I would not want to mess with her. So you can imagine that I was very saddened about the news I heard yesterday.

Summitt was diagnosed with early-onset dementia at age 59. It is extremely sad to hear about this because 1. She is a fantastic coach, clearly and 2. She is pretty young to be diagnosed with such an awful and depressing disease. The reason I decided to talk about this is because it makes athletes, coaches and celebrities in general feel like real people. They are going through the same problems as normal people; they just have to do it publically. It is also very cool how Summitt will continue to coach the Lady Vols until she feels unfit to do so. I would consider this very brave and I actually wouldn’t expect any less from a coach like Summitt. 

She has produced Candice Parker, somebody I have always taken interest in since she went to the same high school as my cousins. She has a gold and silver medal from the Olympics as a coach and a player. She has truly left her mark on college basketball in general and for women everywhere.Which is why I give her high praise and even give ESPN the necessary coverage to this big news. I still feel like women's sports do not get the attention it deserves unless it is the Olympics and they are covering gymnastics or something. Men's sports dominate this world, which I understand and sometimes agree with (for example I certainly prefer to watch men's bball than women's) but I have gained more respect for ESPN for covering Summitt's situation. Some may say, of course they covered this, but I'm not too sure. I also think it is credit to Summitt and her success which everyone in the sports world should acknowledge. 

So, I suppose what I'm saying is Pat Summitt is awesome. She had to make something very personal, public and seems to have a great attitude about it. It's going to be really hard, a battle and a struggle and any other difficult word you can think of. But for this coach, as successful as she is, still wants to coach. That is who she is and I feel like all those football, baseball, basketball professionals can learn a lot from her. She is going through something she can't control but still doing the thing she loves. Check out her video statement here.

With that some side notes for you all.
1. It's looking more and more like the Indians aren't gonna make the playoffs. This is extremely upsetting to me because if they don't get in I have no teams since there is no chance the Cubs are going. So, I guess it'll be me rooting for the underdog again. Granted there are still five weeks left.
2. Pathetic, pathetic performance by the Bears this past Monday. There is no reason to lose by 28 points in a preseason game. I'm not sure if I it is necessary for me to freak out about this season, but I am certainly worried.
3. Look forward to my blog next week as today marks a week and a half until college football starts!! Can you tell I'm a little excited? I have a lot of confidence that Illinois will be competitive with Scheelhaase having a year under his belt. Come back in a week to hear more on my take on Illini football. I-L-L ...

With that I say... Live long and prosper.


  1. Thanks for the shout out Sammie :)

    I saw Kath last night and we both admitted we were going through withdrawl last week since you didn't have any blogs. They were truely missed. But just wanted to let you know that we are 2 HUGE fans of yours!