JAMESTOWN – Thad Sankey has been named the University of Jamestown’s head women’s basketball coach, Director of Athletics Sean Johnson announced Thursday.
Sankey spent the last five seasons as the head women’s coach at Concordia (Mich.) University in Ann Arbor. He led the Cardinals to a 40-27 record over the past two seasons, including a runner-up finish in the 2017-18 NCCAA national championship game. The 2017-18 team received votes in four of six regular-season NAIA Coaches’ Top 25 Polls, as well as the postseason poll. Since 2013-14, twelve of Sankey’s players earned NAIA-Daktronics Scholar-Athlete honors, and his 2016-17 team was 21st in the WBCA Academic Top 25 with a 3.41 team grade point average.
“Thanks to Dr. Peterson and Sean Johnson for this opportunity to coach at the University of Jamestown,” said Sankey. “Jimmie basketball has a tradition of excellence, expectations for success, and an incredible work ethic. It’s an honor to coach such a great team, and my family is excited to join the University of Jamestown. ”
“Thad is a tremendous hire for the University of Jamestown,” Johnson said. “He is a perfect fit for our culture and will be a great leader for our student-athletes. He has experience in the Great Plains Athletic Conference (GPAC) as a student-athlete and coach and has done an excellent job building the program at Concordia in Ann Arbor. We are thrilled to have Thad, Sarah, and their family join our community.”
Although the Jimmies will be newcomers to the GPAC in 2018-19, Sankey is no stranger to the conference. He graduated from Concordia (Neb.) in 2006 with a Bachelor of Science in Education and was a four-year varsity player for the Bulldogs, serving as team captain his final two seasons. Concordia was the NAIA Division II National Tournament runner-up in 2005, and made it to the quarterfinals of the NAIA Division II National Tournament in 2003.
Following graduation, Sankey was a graduate assistant men’s basketball coach at Concordia during the 2006-07 season. He then worked at Immanuel Lutheran Christian Academy in Broken Arrow, Okla., from 2007-2012, serving as assistant administrator, athletic director, junior high, and high school teacher.
Sankey returned to Concordia as the graduate assistant women’s coach in 2012-13 and was a part of a Bulldog team that finished with a 25-7 record, including a 16-4 mark in GPAC play, and an appearance in the NAIA National Tournament.
“Thad is an awesome individual – the hardest worker I know,” said current Concordia (Neb.) women’s basketball head coach Drew Olson. “He stays true to his Christian and family values, and genuinely cares about his players. I know following a legend like Greg Ulland is never easy, but with Thad’s determination and his players’ belief in him, the program will continue to rise. I am really happy for Thad. He deserves this awesome opportunity.”
Sankey earned his Master’s Degree in Education Administration from Concordia (Neb.) in 2016. He and his wife Sarah have three sons, Eli, Micah, and Benjamin.