WAXAHACHIE — Donnie Bostwick, the winningest basketball coach in the history of Southwestern Assemblies of God University, resigned from his position as head men's basketball coach early Thursday morning.
In an SAGU press release, Bostwick cited a desire to be closer to his family as the reason behind the resignation. He also announced his plan to return, in some capacity, to Oklahoma Wesleyan University, which he coached to a NAIA Division II National Championship in 2009 after a 120-20 career record (.858 winning percentage).
“This has been one of the most difficult decisions of my life. I love what SAGU stands for and the wonderful presence of the Spirit of God that surrounds the university," explained Bostwick in the SAGU release. "The past six years have been pure joy and full of God’s favor. The support I have received from SAGU leadership has been nothing less than amazing."
Bostwick spent six seasons with the Lions, helping the program reach the National Association of Intercollegiate Athletics National Tournament five times.
He was hired as the SAGU head men's basketball coach in 2011. Under Bostwick, the Lions boasted a 152-56 overall (.731 winning percentage) and 86-34 (.717 winning percentage) conference record. The Lions also won Red River Athletic and a Sooner Athletic Conference Championships and reached a NAIA National Championship during the 2012-13 season.
“Coach Bostwick has meant so much more to the SAGU community than basketball wins,” stated SAGU athletic director Jesse Godding. “His intentionality with players in their spiritual walk, his desire to see God glorified in all he does, and his servant attitude to the school and community will be his legacy. We thank him for his service and wish him the best.”
In his first year with the program, the Lions enjoyed the largest turnaround in NAIA college basketball. After a 10-22 mark the year before his arrival, the program enjoyed a university-best 27-11 record during the 2011-12 season. The following season, Bostwick and Dominique Rambo helped SAGU reach the NAIA championship game for the first time in school history. The Lions fell 88-62 to Georgetown in the national championship.
That year, Rambo was No. 1 in total steals (135), No. 9 in steals per game (3.6), No. 4 in total scoring (740) and No. 14 in points per game (19.5) in only his second season with Bostwick.
On Feb 11, 2014, Bostwick won his 200th game during a 77-74 victory against Texas Wesleyan University. The NAIA ranked SAGU at No. 4 in men's basketball at the time.
Bostwick leaves behind a team that went 24-10 overall and 12-6 in the SAC, reached the third round of the NAIA tournament for the third consecutive year and returns all but two players from its roster. SAGU made the playoffs five out of the last six seasons under Bostwick.
According to the SAGU Sports Network, Bostwick has recruited and developed 12 All-Americans during his coaching tenure.
Marcus S. Marion, @MarcusMarionWNI