VILLANOVA, Pa. (CBS) — Once sports do return, a different face will be on the sidelines for the Villanova women’s basketball team. After 42 years, Harry Perretta has retired. A familiar face will take his place.
Life has come full circle for Denise Dillon. After 16 seasons as head women’s basketball coach at Drexel University, she’s now returning to her alma mater as Villanova’s head coach.READ MORE: Philadelphia-Area Clinics Temporarily Close, Pivot After FDA, CDC Recommend Pausing Use Of Johnson & Johnson's COVID-19 Vaccine
Dillon is replacing Perretta, her former coach and a basketball legend.
“It is quite surreal, in many aspects. One, coming back to Villanova in this capacity, having the opportunity to have played there, get my degree, a tremendous experience. And to be an assistant for four years under Harry and learn so much,” she said.
Men’s basketball coach Jay Wright had some great advice for her.
“He said you just have to remain patient. You obviously know what you’re doing. It was great, it was heartfelt,” she said.READ MORE: Lateshia Hill's Family Vows Justice Will Be Served After Deadly Triple Shooting In Wilmington
And how do you recruit in a time like this?
“It’s certainly reinventing yourself in this whole profession and world we’re living in,” she said.
The hardest part for Dillon is not being able to get on campus.
“A combination of Drexel, not feeling like you closed that door because I haven’t been able to get my stuff from the office there. And then starting at Villanova, it will be, at some point I’ll be there on campus, in the office, on the court with the team, but that’s been tough,” she said.MORE NEWS: Duante Wright Shooting: Dozens March In Philadelphia In Protest Of Fatal Police Shooting
So, for now, Dillon is like the rest of us is adapting to the new normal.