KNOXVILLE, Tennessee — For the first time ever, the U.S. women's basketball team will head to the Olympics without a current or former Lady Vol on the roster.
Women's basketball premiered at the Olympics in 1976. New Tennessee basketball coach and future legend Pat Summitt played on that inaugural U.S. Olympic team that won the silver medal at the games in Montreal. Future Lady Vol Cindy Brogdon and Patricia Roberts were also on that team.
In 1980, the U.S. boycotted the games held in Moscow, but the U.S. women's team included three Tennessee players--- future Lady Vol coach Holly Warlick, Jill Rankin, and Cindy Noble.
Summitt later coached Team USA to its first gold medal in the 1984 Olympics in Los Angeles. Lady Vols Lea Henry and Cindy Noble played on that team. Summitt was the first person in USA Basketball history to earn an Olympic medal as an athlete and coach.
Her legacy lived on in the players she coached.
Lady Vol Bridgette Gordon won a gold medal in the 1988 games in Seoul.
In 1992, Team USA had to settle for bronze, even with Lady Vol great Daedra Charles on the roster. The Unified Team, made up of players in countries that were previously part of the Soviet Union, won gold that year.
It was back to gold for Team USA in the 1996 Olympics in Atlanta, with Nikki McCray and Carla McGhee helping lead the way.
Lady Vol standout Chamique Holdsclaw won gold in her only Olympic appearance in the 2000 games in Sydney.
Tamika Catchings made her first of four Olympic games in 2004 in Barcelona. It was also her first of four total Olympic gold medals with Team USA.
2008 saw Candace Parker and Kara Lawson join Catchings on the team for the games in Beijing.
Parker and Catchings were back in 2012 for the Olympic games in London.
Only Catchings represented the Lady Vols on Team USA in the 2018 games in Rio de Janeiro, and there are no current or former Lady Vols on the roster for the 2020 games in Tokyo, which was released on Monday.
The Lady Vols have had more former and current players on Team USA than any other college or pro team in history. The University of Connecticut is second with nine.
Kara Lawson will be at the Tokyo Olympics, coaching Team USA's debut in 3 on 3 basketball and as an analyst for NBC. Candace Parker will also be working with NBC as an analyst for basketball games.
Lady Vols in the Olympics
Pat Summitt (1976 player, 1984 coach)
Cindy Brogdon (1976)
Tamika Catchings (2016, 2012, 2008, 2004)
Daedra Charles (1992)
Bridgette Gordon (1988)
Lea Henry (1984)
Chamique Holdsclaw (2000)
Kara Lawson (2008)
Nikki McCray (2000, 1996)
Carla McGhee (1996)
Cindy Noble (1884, 1980)
Candace Parker (2012, 2008)
Jill Rankin (1980)
Patricia Roberts (1976)
Holly Warlick (1980)