Missouri State women’s basketball coach Kellie Harper is Tennessee’s top choice to take over the Lady Vols program, ESPN reported Monday night.
Harper has spent six seasons with the MSU Lady Bears, taking the program to two NCAA Tournaments, most recently the Sweet 16 last month. The Sparta, Tenn. native played for legendary coach Pat Summitt at Tennessee from 1995-99, winning national championships in her first three seasons.
Harper would inherit a program looking for a return to dominance. Tennessee fired Holly Warlick last month after a 19-win season and a first-round exit in the NCAA Tournament. Warlick, an assistant coach during Harper’s playing career, was head coach for seven seasons, posting a 172-67 record. Tennessee made the NCAA Tournament in each of Warlick’s seasons, but the Lady Vols have not reached a Final Four in 11 years.
Neither Tennessee nor Missouri State have made any announcements as of late Monday night.