Three UT students heard the news of UT women’s basketball coach Pat Summitt’s resignation in three different ways yesterday, but their opinions of the eight-time national champion were the same.

Abby Morris, sophomore in kinesiology, was eating at Field of Greens in the University Center when she received a text message from the Knoxville News Sentinel informing her of the announcement.

“I guess I knew it was coming eventually,” Morris said. “But it’s still a little shocking because I didn’t expect it.”

Morris believes the memory of Summitt’s resignation will stick with her.

“I’m just so used to thinking of University of Tennessee sports and thinking of Pat Summitt,” Morris said. “And when I think of women’s college basketball, I think of Pat Summitt, and now to see her, such a big figure, my role model, to have to go out this way, it’s heartbreaking.”

Micah McDonald, an undecided sophomore, was told by a friend that Summitt was resigning. He was not surprised by the announcement.

“The fact is, you see her on the sidelines and she doesn’t seem to have it all there, I wish she did because she’s a great coach. But she doesn’t and I’m not really all that shocked.”

Walter Weaver, an undecided freshman, heard the news while watching ESPN.

“I wasn’t too surprised,” Weaver said. “I just didn’t know it was going to be this soon.

“I feel like (the Lady Vols) won’t be as strong without her as head coach. But maybe she can mentor someone up who will be just as good as Pat, maybe.”

Holly Warlick, UT Lady Vols assistant for 27 years and current associate head coach will be replacing Summitt in the 2012-13 season.

But for now the focus remains on Summitt, who will remain in the program as a “head coach emeritus.”

McDonald said that Summitt’s accomplishments set her apart in the coaching profession. The UT-Martin graduate and Clarksville native led Tennessee to the Elite Eight this year.

“Pat Summitt is going to go down as the best basketball coach in the history of the NCAA,” McDonald said. “She (has the most wins), she basically made women’s basketball as we know it today.

“I mean really, who else has done more? No one.”