Holly and Nikki
APRIL 19th, 2012 - NAMED HEAD COACH OF THE LADY VOLS!
The 2004-05 season marked the start of Associate Head Coach Holly Warlick's third decade at the University of Tennessee, working with fellow Women's Basketball Hall of Famer, UT Head Coach Pat Summitt. As Summitt has become the all-time winningest coach in men's or women's collegiate hoops, Warlick has been alongside her, either as a player or an assistant, for 834 of the unparalleled number of wins collected by her mentor. Including this season, Warlick has spent over 30 years with the program helping shape UT into a national powerhouse. In 2007, the WBCA named Warlick the nation's top assistant coach after she helped lead UT to its seventh national title.
Somehow it doesn't seem that long ago that the charismatic Warlick was flying up and down the court as a Lady Vol All-America point guard. Warlick's association with the Lady Vols started in 1976 when she joined the program as a scholarship 400-meter track athlete who walked on to the basketball team. For over three decades, Warlick has been considered the finest point guard to ever play for the University of Tennessee Lady Vols. A number of Halls of Fame agree, as she has been enshrined in five of them. Warlick was also the first player in the history of Tennessee athletics (men or women) to have her jersey retired (number 22) at the end of her career in 1980.
A native of Knoxville, Warlick earned her B.S. in marketing from Tennessee in 1981 and her master's degree in athletic administration from Virginia Tech in 1983. Warlick added "biker" to her vitae in 2001. To commemorate her induction into the Women's Basketball Hall of Fame, a number of Warlick's friends got together and presented her with a Harley-Davidson "Sportster" motorcycle. In the summer of 2007, she and former fellow assistant Nikki Caldwell created the non-profit organization Champions For A Cause. Their long-haul motorcycle ride - Crusin For A Cause – is the organization’s premier event, along with the TaTa Tour.
Warlick also was singled out for her performance, which included scoring a top-three recruiting class complete with the nation's No. 1-ranked player in 6-foot-6 Mercedes Russell. The 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 A.P. and league coaches as the 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.
Caldwell brings to LSU the combination of outstanding in-game coaching ability with that of being a tremendous recruiter. She was officially introduced as the school's seventh women's basketball coach on April 4, 2011.
"She's a star, she's a role model and she has the priorities of the young student-athletes in her heart and in her mind," said LSU Vice Chancellor and Director of Athletics Joe Alleva. "She wants to make them better, not just as basketball players but as people, and that's what this is all about. She has been successful on every level and she has all the qualities to bring our program to national prominence. This is a great day for LSU and our women's basketball program."
Caldwell has been a part of a championship and winning pedigree at every level of her career. She played, coached and studied under one of the game's greatest figures, the legendary Pat Summitt at Tennessee and she assisted Women's Basketball Hall of Famer Debbie Ryan at Virginia.
Widely recognized as one of the nation's top assistant coaches during stints at Tennessee and Virginia, Caldwell took over at UCLA in 2008. In three years with the Bruins, she turned around a UCLA program that had won only one NCAA Tournament game in the nine years prior to her arrival.
Caldwell led the Bruins to a 72-26 (.735) overall mark, reached the NCAA Tournament twice and finished second in the Pac-10 Conference in both 2010 and 2011. She was named the Pac-10 Coach of the Year in 2010 after going 25-9 overall and advancing to the second round of the NCAA Tournament.
Her best season at UCLA came in 2011 as she led the Bruins to 28 victories, just one shy of the school mark of 29 set back in 1980-81. The Bruins spent the entire 2010-11 season ranked in the top 20 and they claimed the No. 3 seed in the NCAA Tournament. UCLA finished the year with just five losses, the fewest in school history during the NCAA era.