La. Tech names Mickie DeMoss women’s basketball interim head coach

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RUSTON — Louisiana Tech Athletics Director Tommy McClelland told media Friday that associate head coach Mickie DeMoss has been named the interim head coach for the Lady Techsters basketball program.

DeMoss, who has 38 years of coaching experience including the past two at her alma mater in Ruston, takes over the role following the resignation of Tyler Summitt on Thursday. Summitt resigned after admitting an inappropriate relationship.

“I reached out to Mickie DeMoss,” said McClelland. “Unfortunately, she is out of the country on vacation but I was able to reach her by phone. I notified her about Tyler’s decision to resign as head coach and I offered her the position of interim head coach. She has accepted that, so as of yesterday at 4:30 p.m. Mickie DeMoss is our current interim head coach for the Lady Techsters.

“No further discussions happened at that time as it relates to Coach DeMoss in her possible interest in being the head coach. It would not have been appropriate to have that conversation over the phone. She gets back into town on Sunday and my intention is to meet with her one-on-one, not only to talk about her possible interest [in the head coaching position], but for the immediate plans for the program and the daily things that have to go on. I am happy that she has accepted that.”

DeMoss is widely known by the Louisiana Tech faithful as she was a player on the inaugural Lady Techster team in 1974 and lettered for the first three years of the program’s existence. She was the very first point guard in the history of the program.

Prior to coming back to LA Tech, DeMoss spent the previous two years as an assistant coach with the WNBA’s Indiana Fever, helping guide the franchise to the 2012 WNBA championhip. She was a part of six national championships and 12 Final Four teams at Tennessee before reviving the Kentucky Wildcats program where she was named the 2006 SEC Coach of the Year during her four years as the head coach.

McClelland said a national search would begin for the seventh head coach in the program’s history soon, but that his main focus heading into the weekend was on the welfare of the current student-athletes.

“As I said earlier, I have not gotten into hiring mode yet,” McClelland said. “I need an opportunity, me personally, to be able to collect my own thoughts and evaluate some things as we move forward and, quite frankly, focus on our student-athletes right now and give them the support that they need.

“I think with the situation that has happened with an abrupt resignation, maybe requires a different mindset. I have not had a chance to really dive in on that. If I sat down today and decided what I wanted in a leader, it might be different than what I might decide on Monday because it is an emotional process. I do not want to be driven by emotions or overact to a circumstance or situation.

“I told the ladies in the locker room yesterday that I am as focused today, maybe even more, in finding the best coach to lead them and give them the best experience possible than I have ever been. For me, it is the same. I will attack this like I have any coaching search, like I did two years ago with this search, to find the best person to come in here and lead these ladies. I have not and will not give up on the Lady Techsters.”

— Staff Reports