A Legacy of Resilience and Dedication: Remembering
Tasha Butts, Former LSU Coach
BATON ROUGE, La. - The basketball community is mourning the loss of Tasha Butts, the former assistant coach for the LSU Lady Tigers and the current head coach at Georgetown, who passed away on Monday, October 23, 2023. Butts, 41, lost her two-year battle with advanced-stage breast cancer. Her diagnosis in 2021 prompted the creation of the Tasha Tough campaign, dedicated to raising awareness and funds for underserved women affected by breast cancer through the Kay Yow Cancer Fund.
Kim Mulkey, LSU's Head Coach, expressed her condolences, emphasizing Butts' influence as a player and coach. "Tasha was a great player and had a successful career as a coach. More importantly, she impacted so many lives throughout her lifetime. We are sad to lose her at such a young age."
Bob Starkey, LSU Associate Head Coach and a Kay Yow Cancer Fund board member commended Butts' courage in her battle and called for continued efforts to find a cure for breast cancer in her honor.
Tasha Butts' journey in the basketball world began with her remarkable success as a player at Baldwin High School in Milledgeville, Georgia. She was a consensus All-American and the Georgia Gatorade Player of the Year. Butts remains the school's all-time leading scorer, with her No. 23 jersey retired in her honor.
She continued her career at the University of Tennessee, where she was part of four SEC regular-season championship teams and secured two National Championships in 2003 and 2004. Her accomplishments included being ranked fourth all-time in games played and seventh in three-point shots made at the university. Her achievements earned her a spot in the WNBA, where she played for the Minnesota Lynx.
Following her playing career, Butts transitioned into coaching, with stints at Duquesne University and UCLA. Her time at UCLA was particularly notable, with records for regular-season victories, Pac-10 wins, and scoring defense.
As an assistant coach at LSU in Baton Rouge, she contributed to four 20-win seasons and six NCAA Tournament appearances. Butts was renowned for her coaching and mentorship, nurturing players like Raigyne Moncrief-Louis and Danielle Ballard, who achieved significant success on and off the court.
Butts later moved on to Georgia Tech, leading the team to back-to-back NCAA Tournament appearances and a notable victory over UConn. Her dedication and commitment were also evident as she guided the Yellow Jackets during the challenges of the COVID-19 pandemic. In April of this year, Butts took on the head coach role at Georgetown. However, in September, the school announced her temporary departure from coaching to focus on her health in the ongoing battle against breast cancer.
Tasha Butts is survived by her parents, Spencer Sr. and Evelyn, her brother Spencer Jr., her nephew Marquis, and a vast extended family. Her passing leaves a significant void in the women's basketball community, but her legacy and impact will continue to be felt. Tasha Butts' story is a testament to her resilience and determination, inspiring all to join the fight against breast cancer in her memory.