Nell Fortner to resign after season

AUBURN, Ala. -- Auburn women's basketball coach Nell Fortner, who led the U.S. national team to an Olympic gold medal in 2000, is resigning after the season.

She has gone 143-105 in eight seasons at Auburn, but the Tigers (11-16, 3-11 Southeastern Conference) have lost five straight games and struggled since winning the 2008-09 league title.

"I love Auburn and have absolutely loved my time here during the course of the last eight years," Fortner said in a statement. "I have dedicated the last 28 years to coaching basketball and feel it is time for me to pursue something different.

"This was not an easy decision, as I have contemplated this for several months, but I am looking forward to the change. I'm proud of where the Auburn program is and what we've accomplished."

The Tigers close out the regular season this week at home against Alabama and Mississippi.

"We respect Nell's desire to pursue other opportunities and appreciate everything that she's done for Auburn," athletic director Jay Jacobs said. "Nell has been a tremendous ambassador for Auburn athletics, the university and our community, always willing to be a team player. She achieved success on the court and developed her players athletically, academically and socially."

Fortner was named SEC Coach of the Year after leading Auburn to its first regular season league title in 20 years in 2008-09, while posting a 30-4 record and 12-2 league mark.

Auburn hasn't been back to the NCAA tournament since that season, the second NCAA appearance under Fortner.

Fortner was head coach of the WNBA's Indiana Fever from 2001-03. The former Texas player led Purdue to a Big Ten Co-Championship during the 1996-97 season.