"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
"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
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.