Report: Kellie Harper Won’t Retain Longtime Lady Vol Assistant

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    (Photo via Austin Perryman/Tennessee Athletics)

    New Lady Vols head coach Kellie Harper has already filled two positions on her coaching staff. That third and final spot won’t be filled by one of Tennessee’s longtime assistants for the Lady Vols, though.

    According to longtime Knoxville reporter Jimmy Hyams, Harper has elected not to retain Dean Lockwood on her staff at Tennessee. Hyams says Lockwood has “nothing but gratitude” for his time at Tennessee, and he has “other opportunities” he can pursue elsewhere.

    Lockwood has been on staff at Tennessee since 2004. He came to UT after serving as head coach at Saginaw Valley State for six seasons. Pat Summitt hired him as an assistant prior to the 2004-05 season, and he was a fixture of her bench for her final eight seasons as the Lady Vols’ head coach.

    When Holly Warlick took over as head coach, she retained Lockwood on her staff, and he served as her assistant for all seven years she was head coach.

    As an assistant at Tennessee, Lockwood helped the Lady Vols win seven SEC Tournaments and five SEC regular season championships, as well as a pair of NCAA titles (2007 and 2008).

    Lockwood not only coached as an assistant for the women’s basketball program at Tennessee, but he was also an assistant for the men’s team in the 1980s. Don DeVoe hired Lockwood as part of his staff in 1986, and Lockwood was retained on staff when Wade Houston took over as head coach in 1989. Lockwood served as an assistant for UT’s men’s basketball team for five seasons from 1986-91.

    All in all, Lockwood coached at Tennessee for 20 years.

    There’s a good chance that some of the other opportunities Lockwood could explore could be up north in Michigan. Lockwood’s hometown is Bay City, Michigan, and most of his coaching career that wasn’t spent in Tennessee was spent coaching at various schools in Michigan. He graduated from Central Michigan and served as a grad assistant there and later returned there as an assistant, and he’s been a head coach at Northwood University and Saginaw Valley State in Michigan as well.

    Harper has one more spot remaining on her assistant coaching staff after it was announced on Monday that she brought over her husband, Jon Harper, from her Missouri State staff and hired Jennifer Sullivan as well.



    2 COMMENTS

    1. Certainly wish Kellie well , and understand her actions, but losing Lockwood could really hurt the program. He’s been part of the real glue that has held the program together, for as long as it has held together.

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