Mike Krzyzewski and Pat Summitt have long been linked in greatness. So it's only fitting that the two coaches have been named Sports Illustrated's sportsman and sportswoman of the year in 2011.
Krzyzewski, head coach of the Duke men's basketball team, set the all-time Division I wins mark this season, surpassing Bobby Knight's previous record of 902 on Nov. 15.
Summitt, head coach of the Tennessee women's basketball team, is the winningest coach in major college basketball history and has led the Volunteers to eight national titles. She revealed this year that she's suffering from early-onset dementia, although she has vowed to continue coaching at Tennessee as long as she's able to.
Summitt also launched the Pat Summitt Foundation to raise funds and awareness about Alzheimer's last month.
SI.com's Alexander Wolff admits that there's an element of lifetime achievement in SI's decision to give the two legendary coaches the honor. The decision, as Wolff points out, also sets the table for 2012, when Krzyzewski will bring Team USA to the London Olympics and Summitt will enjoy the 40th anniversary of the passage of Title IX (the law that started the boom in women's sports).
The award is typically reserved for one individual, but Sports Illustrated decided to have Coach K and Summitt split the award this year, despite some tough competition from athletes like Aaron Rodgers, Rory McIlroy, Dirk Nowitzki and Novak Djokovic.
Drew Brees was named SI's Sportsman of the Year in 2010.