Wesleyan’s Thompson to Turn Focus Solely to Men’s Basketball

John Thompson
John Thompson

Rocky Mount, N.C. - Longtime Vice President and Director of Athletics John Thompson has announced he is stepping aside from those duties, effective May 1, to concentrate on his role as Head Men's Basketball Coach.

Named Director of Athletics in 1998, Thompson has guided the Department of Athletics for 20 years with tremendous success. Highlights of his tenure include the inception of Wesleyan's Athletic Hall of Fame, NCAA Tournament appearances by virtually every sport on campus, a National Championship in baseball, the addition of football, women's lacrosse, men's and women's tennis, and men's and women's cross country as varsity sports, and record-setting academic recognition for our student-athletes. Additionally, Thompson has spearheaded significant staff and facility improvements, while overseeing leadership programming campus-wide, which includes the creation of the Wesleyan Academy for Athletic Leadership (WAAL).

"It has been my honor to serve in the role of Vice President and Director of Athletics here at Wesleyan. The table had been well-set by Moe Bauer, Don Scalf, John McCarthy and Mike Fox. I hope that I am leaving this position with the Department of Athletics in an even better state than when I came in," Thompson stated.

"As our programs continue to grow and our need for facilities increases, it is time for there to be a Director of Athletics devoted solely to our overall operation. I look forward to focusing my full attention and my passion on our basketball program and the outstanding young men we have here," he added.

In his role as Director of Athletics, Coach Thompson has also served as both President and Vice President of the USA South, aided numerous institutional and conference committees, and is currently serving as Vice-Chair of the league.

Thompson added, "I want to thank everyone who has helped me in my administrative role. All of our coaches, trainers, and other administrative personnel have been unbelievable to work alongside. The staff, faculty, and Board of Trustees of the college have, for 20 years, been great to work with and I am extremely appreciative of all who have played a part in what we do in athletics."

Said Wesleyan President Dr. Dewey Clark, "John has done an outstanding job as our Athletics Director. Wesleyan will forever be indebted to him for his leadership and loyalty to the college and our student-athletes over the past two decades."

He continued, "John was born to coach. I look forward to seeing where his passion takes our program as he is able to focus his time and energy solely on basketball."

President Clark will be handling the search for Wesleyan's new Director of Athletics. Details regarding the search will be forthcoming.