Higher Education Advocate Sends Two Players to Olympics

By Catherine Groux
Posted July 31, 2012 10:38 AM

In her coaching career, Pat Summitt has graduated all of her players.
In her coaching career, Pat Summitt has graduated all of her players.
Although she recently stepped down as the University of Tennessee's (UT) women's basketball coach, Pat Summitt has managed to become the all-time win leader among NCAA basketball coaches and rack up 1,098 victories at UT throughout her impressive career. However, one of her biggest accomplishments as a leader has been graduating all of her players, The New York Times reports.

"Summitt instills a pattern of success in her players and constantly challenges them to reach their potential as a student and an athlete," the University of Tennessee's website states.

While showing her players the importance of higher education, Summitt has also managed to transform many of them into All-Americans, USA National Team members and All-SEC performers. Currently, two of her former players - Tamika Catchings and Candace Parker - are competing in the 2012 Olympic Games in London.

Catchings graduated from UT with honors, earning a bachelor's degree in sports management a semester ahead of her class. In May 2005, she went on to earn a master's degree, the Women's Sports Foundation states. Catchings' Olympic teammate Parker also earned a bachelor's degree in sports management from UT.

Recently, Catchings and Parker used the skills Summitt taught them to help the U.S. Olympic women's basketball team defeat Croatia with a score of 81-56. The women will now move on to play Angola.

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