In a move that’s been rumored for weeks, Lady Vols basketball coach Holly Warlick has been relieved of her duties.
Athletics Director Phillip Fulmer made the announcement Wednesday.
“Holly and I met this afternoon, and I informed her of the decision to change leadership within the program,” Fulmer said. “While it certainly stings to make this decision, I am charged with doing what I believe is best for this storied program. It’s important to all of us that Lady Vols basketball maintains its status among the elite.”
The University has launched a nationwide search for the next Lady Vols head coach. Assistant coach Dean Lockwood will run the program in the interim.
Tennessee won three SEC trophies while Warlick was head coach, winning regular-season championships in 2013 and 2015 and capturing the SEC Tournament title in 2014.
Warlick is a Knoxville native who played for the Lady Vols from 1976-80. She went on to serve as an assistant and associate head coach for 27 seasons. She became head coach for seven seasons.
A news release from the University praised her highly:
“Warlick’s coaching honors also are extensive. In 2013, members of the Women’s Basketball Coaches Association named her the Spalding Maggie Dixon Division I Rookie Coach of the Year. She was selected by the AP and league coaches as the 2013 SEC Women’s Basketball Coach of the Year, and members of the Tennessee Sports Writers Association also chose her as TSWA Women’s Basketball Coach of the Year that season.
In May 2017, Warlick was recognized for her years of leadership, volunteer activities, philanthropic work and professional accomplishments that have contributed to improving the quality of life in Tennessee. She was named the Tennessee Woman of Distinction at the 32nd annual Chattanooga Women of Distinction Awards luncheon. In 2019, she became a member of the Pat Summitt Foundation Advisory Board.
She is a member of the Women’s Basketball Hall of Fame (2001), the Tennessee Sports Hall of Fame (2004), the Greater Knoxville Sports Hall of Fame (1994) and the University of Tennessee Athletics Hall of Fame (2002).”
Warlick is about as Tennessee as it gets. She was an assistant to the legendary Pat Summitt for 27 years following a playing career that left her jersey hanging in the rafters at Thompson-Boling Arena.
“My passion for the program, my passion for the game…if I had a daughter, I’d send my daughter – whether I’m coaching or not – to the University of Tennessee because they care about women,” Warlick said before.
There is no word on Warlick’s future plans.