The Official Student Newspaper of Tarleton State University since 1919

the JTAC

The Official Student Newspaper of Tarleton State University since 1919

the JTAC

The Official Student Newspaper of Tarleton State University since 1919

the JTAC

Three and a half decades to a close

Lonn Reisman announces retirement

Vice President for Intercollegiate Athletics Lonn Reisman has announced that he will retire in the spring of 2024.

Reisman started his career at Tarleton State University 35 years ago in 1988 as a basketball coach. 

At the time, Tarleton State athletics was in the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics (NAIA) and was struggling. Once Reisman took over, athletics went from struggling to successful.

In 1993, after five years of success as the basketball coach, Reisman was promoted to be the Athletics Director and started the transition into the Lone Star Conference (LSC) in the National Collegiate Athletics Association (NCAA) Division II. 

Story continues below advertisement

Tarleton State athletics dominated Division II under Reisman’s direction. Every sports team at Tarleton State University qualified for the NCAA Division II national playoffs, and ranked in the top 25 sports teams. 

Reisman was also involved in the advancement of the Texan Club, which is a club within the National Association of College Directors of Athletics (NACDA), as well as numerous advancements of athletic facilities at Tarleton State. This is mainly the renovations to Memorial Stadium, which has since been dedicated as the Lonn Reisman Athletics Center as of 2017.

In 2019, Reisman headed the historic transition of Tarleton State athletics into NCAA Division I.

At the Division I transition announcement in 2019, Reisman recounted a conversation he had with then Tarleton State University President, Dr. Barry B. Thompson, when he first began his coaching career at Tarleton State in 1988. 

President Thompson told Reisman “you do not have the nerve to take this job.” 

Reisman responded with, “not only do I have the nerve to take it, but we’re going to win!”

In his 30 years of coaching basketball, Reisman has won 654 games at Tarleton State, holding the record for most wins by any coach in Tarleton State University’s history and in NCAA statewide. He is ranked in the top 15 Division II head coaches in the country, and is only one of 14 head coaches to have over 650 wins across both divisions Tarleton has been in. 

Under Reisman, Tarleton State has attended 41 NCAA playoffs, 14 NCAA regional championships, 20 conference championships, and 19 division championships across both Division I and II.       

Reisman has received countless awards throughout his coaching career. He holds 13 Coach of the Year awards; including two from TIAA District 8, five from LSC, three from TABC Small College, and one from NCAA Regional. He also holds three National Coach of the Week awards. 

Reisman’s most prestigious award is the Guardian of the Game Award for Leadership from the NABC, which he received in 2018. 

“I am forever grateful for the dedication to our student-athletes, commitment to excellence, and steadfast leadership that Lonn Reisman has given to Tarleton State University,” Tarleton President Dr. James Hurley said. “On behalf of the entire university, I congratulate Lonn on his upcoming and well-deserved retirement.”

The search for who will fill in Reisman’s shoes as Tarleton State’s VP of Intercollegiate Athletics is ongoing. 

“I have been blessed beyond my wildest dreams to have been able to call Tarleton State University home for the last 35 years,” Reisman said. “After all this time, all I can say is that I hope I made Dr. Thompson, our fans, and all of Tarleton State University proud.”

Leave a Comment
More to Discover
About the Contributor
Jessica Blakely, Staff Writer

Comments (0)

All the JTAC Picks Reader Picks Sort: Newest

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *