Deborah (Debbie) Jennings filed a lawsuit in Federal court against the University of Tennessee and Dave Hart, UT’s Athletic Director. Ms. Jennings was the long-time Media Relations Director of the UT Women’s Athletic Department. She was an employee since 1977, became the first Lady Vol Sports Information Director in 1978, and ran the Media Relations Office until 2009 when the men’s and women’s Media Relations Departments were consolidated.
Jennings later resigned under pressure, as recounted in court papers.
But it was recently when the lawsuit gained national attention after Pat Summitt was made part of the legal festivities that the damage to hundreds of thousands of alumni and friends of the University was done.
Two words in the English language are habitually overused: genius and legend. When speaking of Pat Summitt, the second word definitely applies, and will be used for many decades to come, likely as long as basketball is still played on this planet. The importance of J.S. Bach, Beethoven, Buddy Bolden, Louis Armstrong, Duke Ellington, Elvis Presley, Bob Dylan, and The Beatles to their various types of music cannot be overstated. Neither can the importance of Pat Summitt to not only women’s basketball, but Basketball.