Sum It Up: A Thousand and Ninety-Eight Victories, a Couple of Irrelevant Losses, and a Life in Perspective

Sum It Up: A Thousand and Ninety-Eight Victories, a Couple of Irrelevant Losses, and a Life in Perspective

4.6 93
by Pat Summitt, Sally Jenkins

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Pat Summitt, the all-time winningest coach in NCAA basketball history and bestselling author of Reach for the Summitt and Raise The Roof, tells for the first time her remarkable story of victory and resilience as well as facing down her greatest challenge: early-onset Alzheimer's disease.

Pat Summitt was only 21 when she became head coach


Pat Summitt, the all-time winningest coach in NCAA basketball history and bestselling author of Reach for the Summitt and Raise The Roof, tells for the first time her remarkable story of victory and resilience as well as facing down her greatest challenge: early-onset Alzheimer's disease.

Pat Summitt was only 21 when she became head coach of the Tennessee Vols women's basketball team. For 38 years, she has broken records, winning more games than any NCAA team in basketball history. She has coached an undefeated season, co-captained the first women's Olympic team, was inducted into the Basketball Hall of Fame, and has been named Sports Illustrated 'Sportswoman of the Year'.
She owes her coaching success to her personal struggles and triumphs. She learned to be tough from her strict, demanding father. Motherhood taught her to balance that rigidity with communication and kindness. She is a role model for the many women she's coached; 74 of her players have become coaches.
Pat's life took a shocking turn in 2011, when she was diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer's disease, an irreversible brain condition that affects 5 million Americans. Despite her devastating diagnosis, she led the Vols to win their sixteenth SEC championship in March 2012. Pat continues to be a fighter, facing this new challenge the way she's faced every other—with hard work, perseverance, and a sense of humor.

Editorial Reviews

The New York Times Book Review - Emily Bazelon
The most gripping parts of the book are close-ups of Summitt's trying moments on the sidelines, as she willed one group of tricky players after another to come together.
From the Publisher
"I have admired Pat Summitt for many years. To me, she epitomizes what it means to be a coach.  Not only has she molded championship teams, but she has helped her players grow as people and always done it with class and dignity. This book gives us tremendous lessons for winning on and off the court."  
-Tony Dungy, former professional American football player and NFL coach, and #1 New York Times bestselling author of Quiet Strength and Uncommon.

“Sum It Up” is absolutely incredible!  No one has coached the game any better than Pat Summitt.  Sally Jenkins has worked with Pat to produce a truly inspiring book that will benefit every reader.  Pat was a pioneer.  She has led women’s basketball over the last three decades.  As a result of her leadership, women’s basketball has achieved great heights.  I consider a true honor to call her a friend.”— Mike Krzyzewski, Head Basketball Coach, Duke University

"Basketball legend Pat Summitt recalls her life in vivid detail, describing its triumphs, both on and off the court.... With her trademark honesty and grace, Summitt reveals her fears, her early anger and astonishment, her diminishing abilities, her decision to retire, and how her faith sustains her."—USA Today

"Pat Summit was one of the best coaches ever, and one of the most enduring...She helped lift her sport out of an era in which high school girls didn't even play on a full court, saw the number of female college athletes rise from 16,000 to almost 20,000, won eight national titles, and gradduated 100 percent of the players who completed their eligibility. She did this through force of personality and, in her own telling, with a mix of love, fury and manipulation...As scandals and player lawsuits make college sports seem increasingly ruthless and suspect, Summitt is often held up as a rare example of dignity and class."
-Emily Bazelon, NY Times

"Vibrant, sprightly."
-NY Times

"Pat is a remarkable leader, lady, and Coach. One of the best of all time." 
-Rick Pitino, Head Basketball Coach, University of Louisville.

"How many times have we heard a basketball fan utter that’s “the truth” when witnessing a great play or player?  This book IS the truth, capturing the reality of challenges, the blessings of friendship and teamwork, the exhilaration of achieving excellence, and the rewards of mentorship and leadership."
-Jody Conradt, University of Texas

Kirkus Reviews
The NCAA's winningest basketball coach opens up about private and public contests that have defined her. While the title of Summitt's latest work (Reach for the Summit, 1998, etc.) is a reflection of her long career as head coach of the University of Tennessee's Lady Vols--eight national championships and 1,098 victories--the substance of this engaging memoir offers an unvarnished look at defining moments behind those incomparable achievements. In 2011, the basketball world was shocked when Summitt, one of the best strategic minds ever to grace the hardwood, revealed she had been diagnosed with early-onset Alzheimer's. The author tackles the elephant in the room by introducing each historically gauged chapter with snapshots of conversations, between Summitt and co-author Jenkins (co-author: In a Heartbeat: Sharing the Power of Cheerful Giving, 2010, etc.), focused squarely on the coach's relation to her illness. Though hardly one to wallow, when asked if she would trade her championships to have her health restored, Summitt admits, "I would give back every one of my trophies to still be coaching." The bulk of the memoir demonstrates why, with detailed recollections plumbing the depths of Summitt's investment in psychological tactics used to help players reach their potential and strategies executed in key games. The author is also quick to show her human side, exploring the drive her rural upbringing and tough-love father instilled in her, the pride she feels over having raised a son, her regret over the breakup of her marriage, her struggles with rheumatoid arthritis and her sense of accomplishment over the 100 percent graduation rate of her players. Frank on sensitive subjects like the inequities women athletes have had to face, Summitt also includes many humorous and touching anecdotes involving some of the biggest names in the women's game. The master of emotional jousting on the court speaks candidly of life challenges off of it--a must-read for basketball junkies, sport fans and any whose lives have been touched by incurable illness.

Product Details

Publication date:
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6.10(w) x 9.30(h) x 1.60(d)

Meet the Author

PAT SUMMITT became head coach of the Tennessee Lady Volunteers in 1974; since then she has achieved an astounding .843 average and won 8 national championships. She is the first coach in NCAA history to reach 1,000 wins. She lives in Tennessee with her son, Tyler. SALLY JENKINS is the author of #1 New York Times bestseller It's Not About the Bike. Her other 8 books include The Real All-Americans: The Team That Changed a Game, a People, a Nation, and The State of Jones. Her work has been featured in Vanity Fair, GQ, and Sports Illustrated. A native of Texas, Jenkins graduated from Stanford and lives in New York City.

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Sum It Up: A Thousand and Ninety Eight Victories, a Couple of Irrelevant Losses, and a Life in Perspective 4.6 out of 5 based on 1 ratings. 93 reviews.
UCONNWOMEN More than 1 year ago
Excellent nonfiction book, great for any sport lover. Pat Summitt is the most successful women's basketball coach in all of basketball history, a must have for hoops lovers! Very well researched, written in an easy to read-entertaingn manner. Sally Jenkins (co-author) is the best sports writer alive on Earth today. Very good book, highly recommend, motivated me to instant action in my depressing-miserable life. Motivating, captivating, well written, a wonderful book.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Pat Summitt is an extraordinary coach, but most of all teacher of the game and to young women. Her greatest accomplishments aren't her national championships, but of the players she has helped by being a mother figure to them and by pushing them to be the best player and person they could be. This book isn't just about her disease, but her about her life- how she was raised, her Tennessee program, and her son Tyler. How she was raised explains a lot about her, and how she coached her players. It is an important aspect to understand about Pat. This book will help you understand who Pat is, and make you appreciate the kind of woman she is. We are all extremely fortunate to have Pat on this Earth because she makes the world a better place. People might not like her and think she is mean as hell, but Pat is a woman we all should respect and this book will deepen your respect for her as it has for me.
somewhereintime1 More than 1 year ago
Must buy for all sport coaches. Pat Summitt is the best womens coach in all of college history, she is the John Wooden (UCAL coach) of women's basketball. This book provides keen insight into her country youth, her parents were extremely tought-goal oriented people. She is a hard coach, but very successful in all areas of her life. A must buy for any coach of athletics, learned a lot about motivational tactic, goal achievement, what it takes to become a champion. AAA book.
CraigGrand More than 1 year ago
Sum It Up, by Pat Summitt (author) with Sally Jenkins (author) was a very good book, uplifting biography of Pat Summitt. Learned a lot about goal-achievment, how to succeed in life. Great nonfiction book for the mind, body, spirit. Pat Summitt, the women's basketball coach for the University of Tennessee is the all time victory leader for a coach in all of women's sports. Brutally honest portrait of what life is like as a coach, a great read for any coach, prospective coach. Superb.
TomMillerVailResorts More than 1 year ago
Sally Jenkins (co-author) is the best sports writer on Earth today, this book is further proof of that. Very good writing, excellent content, Pat Summitt is the most winning women's baskebtall coach in all of NCAA history, this book will show you how she did it. Great biography, very insightful-packed full of useful wisdom to apply in everday life when searching for success.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I am a huge fan of all levels of basketball, so I was very interested to read this nonfiction book about basketball's all time winning coach, Pat Summitt from the University of Tennessee. It was a very good biography, motivating book, Pat Summitt is a very successful person in all areas of her life just not as a coach, so it was very interesting to read, apply that information to my own life as a motivational tool of wisdom for success. Very good book, highy recommended.
Lynn84 More than 1 year ago
Even though I am not an avid sports fan, I decided to purchase Sum It Up after seeing Pat do an interview. I thoroughly enjoyed reading this book and highly recommend it. This book is beautifully written and is a tribute to Pat, her family and the colleagues and players that became a part of her extended family. These women in particular made Women's College Basketball what it is today. This most certainly would not have been possible had Pat not been raised with such great responsibility, all the while knowing that she was truly loved. She can also be proud of her finest accomplishment, her son Tyler. I wish her much love and peace and would love to meet her someday!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Having watched Pat on the sidelines on TV for many years, it was fascinating to see what made her tick. Given Pat's Alzheimer's, Sally Jenkins did a superb job pulling memories out of her. Not really a "light" read, but certainly an "easy" read. Too bad more young people don't have the work ethic she had growing up.
Pattmusic More than 1 year ago
This is a courageous woman's life story of achievements, told with confidence and humility. Leading the Tennessee Lady Volunteers is Pat Summit's vocation, and makes for extremely interesting reading, evoking both laughter and tears. Thoroughly enjoyable and informative.
MysteryLover14 More than 1 year ago
This was a terrific book --- a great story. Pat Summitt is a legend, and deservedly so. I was inspired when I learned of her roots and her work over the years with young women. I feel so dismayed to know that her illness has cut her career short. If you admire strong, heroic woman, you will see one here.
AliyaC More than 1 year ago
Grannie-Reader More than 1 year ago
There were many, many parts I really enjoyed; especially the philosophies she shared with the girls on her teams. I sympathized for her in her hard childhood--especially her stern, seemingly uncaring, cold father. As the story progressed he did seem to become a bit lighter and more encouraging. I did not enjoy all the statistics and details of the actual games and players. I found them to be tedious and overdone. I can appreciate what she did with her life in terms of dedication to "winning"; but I do think she lost as much or more than she gained in being so obsessed with winning and becoming "something". Overall, I would just say it's okay-certainly not the best book I've ever read; but also not the worst.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Pat Summitt is an excellent role-model for all female athletes on Earth, especially women in America. Her tactics are very interesting, uplifting. This book is very well written, learned a lot about how to become more successful as an athlete, person. Recommend this book, highly!
TNVOL8 More than 1 year ago
This really revealed Pat's human side and how people are really important to her. Very interesting book that took a lot of courage.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
You will laugh and cry! This book motivates me to be a better woman! Go Big Orange! Go Lady Vols!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Excellent insight to the art of achievment. Pat Summitt is one great motivational speaker-coach!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
As a former athlete and person battling a chronic disease, I was deeply moved by this book. I highly recommend it!
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Im here for now
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