McPHERSON — McPherson College athletic director Andrew Ehling announced men’s basketball coach Tim Swartzendruber has resigned to become the next athletic director at Pratt Community College.
A Hesston High School and Bethel College graduate, Swartzendruber holds a master’s degree from Wichita State.
He has coached at McPherson College for 11 seasons. He has spent 37 years as a head coach. He started his coaching at Newton High School for three seasons. He coach for four years at Wellington High School and then spent 15 years at Kingman High School.
In 2004, became the men’s coach at Hesston College, where he spent four years. He led the team to two 20-win seasons, and in back-to-back years, he took them to the NJCAA Division II, Region VI title game.
When longtime McPherson coach Roger Trimmell retired following the 2008 season, the college hired Swartzendruber to be his successor.
In his 11 seasons, Swartzendruber was 170-173. His teams qualified for the NAIA DII National Tournament four times. In 2010-11, the Bulldogs made it to the Elite Eight, and a year later, they went one round further, making it to the Final Four.
The Bulldogs were the KCAC regular season champions once (2011-12) during his tenure, and the tournament champions twice (2011-12, 2012-13). Twice his teams were named the KCAC Team of Character, back to back in 2017-18 and 2018-19. Coach Swartzendruber was named KCAC Coach of the Year, and Kansas College Coach of the Year in 2012.
Seven of his players were named First Team All-KCAC. One was the KCAC Player of the Year, and three were named NAIA All-American. Nine of his players were recognized as NAIA Scholar Athletes, and twice the team was recognized an NAIA Scholar Team.
Under his tenure, the team renovated the men’s basketball locker room, took trips to Florida, California and Puerto Rico, where the team played and also participated in service projects. He was instrumental in starting “Bulldog Madness” to kick off each season, and also started the “Faculty Coach” program, recognizing a faculty member at each home conference basketball game. He was also active with in the KCAC, serving the past few seasons as the chairman of the men’s basketball coaches.
A number of his players and assistant coaches went on to coach other teams.
“My years at McPherson College have been some of the best of my career,” Swartzendruber said. “I can’t say enough about the tremendous support I’ve had during my tenure.” The administration, faculty and staff have all been great. I have been blessed with outstanding assistant coaches and players. It is very difficult to leave, but I am excited about my new opportunity and having a chance to lead an athletic department. We only had two seniors on our team this past year so the future is bright for the next coach at McPherson College. I wish them nothing but the best.”
“Coach Swartzendruber is an excellent coach and even better person,” Ehling said. “He’s a mentor, teacher, family man. I could go on and on with how Coach has made a positive influence in people’s lives at McPherson College including, myself. Coach Swartzendruber is going to make a wonderful athletic director. Pratt is getting a good one.”
Swartzendruber will begin his duties as athletic director for the Beavers Monday. Pratt offers six men’s sports (basketball, baseball, soccer, wrestling, cross country and track and field), six women’s sports (basketball, softball, soccer, volleyball, cross country and track and field) and one co-ed sport (competitive cheer).
A national search for the McPherson head men’s basketball coach, will begin immediately.