Georgia Tech didn't wade into the pool of active candidates to fill its women's basketball coaching vacancy.

Instead, it opted for one of the sport's biggest names from the past.

On Tuesday, the school hired Nell Fortner as the new head coach of women's hoops

Although the 60-year-old Fortner (306 victories ... .618 winning percentage) had been away from the sidelines for seven years, it doesn't diminish the impact of Georgia Tech's hire, landing one of the most decorated coaches in women's basketball history.

Fortner led Purdue (1997) and Auburn (2009) to conference titles in the Big Ten and SEC, respectively.


She also served as Team USA's head coach from 1997-2000, guiding the American women to three international championships and a gold medal in the 2000 Summer Olympics (Sydney, Australia).

"I'm excited to welcome Coach Fortner to the Georgia Tech family," said Georgia Tech athletics director Todd Stansbury. 

"Her resume speaks for itself – she is one of the most successful and respected coaches in women’s basketball history. She's not only led teams to Olympic gold and major conference championships, but she has also proven to be an outstanding leader of young women who has embodied our mission of developing the young people who will change the world."

The women's basketball program had been under heavy scrutiny the last two months, dealing with the fallout of former head coach MaChelle Joseph's controversial suspension and ultimate dismissal from the school.