BHSU Athletic Director Jhett Albers announces retirement

SPEARFISH, S.D. — Jhett Albers, Director of Athletics for Black Hills State University, has announced that he will retire in June.

Albers, who has served as Director since 2006, held responsibility for the direct oversight and day-to-day operations of the schools athletic department and Donald E. Young Sports and Fitness Center. He is also a member of the BHSU President’s Administrative Team.

“When the history books are written on Yellow Jacket athletics, Jhett Albers will be regarded as a leader in building the athletic program. His experience included being a student athlete, head coach, associate and later Athletic Director. He not only led BHSU to national competition, but also moved the university from NAIA to NCAA DII and secured membership in the RMAC as our athletic conference.  Alone these are major achievements, but coupled together, Jhett leaves a legacy,” said BHSU President Laurie Nichols.

Albers, a Spearfish High School and BHSU graduate, has lived in the community for 45 years. H was a successful three-sport athlete in high school and an All-Conference, All-District, and Academic All-American for the BHSU Football team in the mid-1980s. Albers earned his bachelor’s degree in elementary education and a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction both from BHSU. He served as a teacher and three-sport coach at Spearfish High School for 11 years prior to joining the staff at BHSU.

As Athletic Director, Albers was selected NAIA-ADA DAC Athletic Director of the year in 2008-09.  BHSU was awarded the DAC Commissioner’s Cup in 2007-08, and runner up in 2008-09 & 2009-10. In 2009-2010 Albers stepped down from his head coaching and part-time AD position to become the full-time Director of Athletics to successfully lead BHSU and Yellow Jacket Athletics through the transition from NAIA to NCAA DII.  He was also instrumental in securing BHSU’s membership to the Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference in 2012-2013.

Albers served as the head volleyball coach at BHSU for 11 years. As the head volleyball coach, Albers led the Yellow Jackets volleyball program to back-to-back DAC Championships and NAIA National Tournament appearances (2008 & 2009) for the only time in school history.  Albers was named NAIA DAC Volleyball Coach of the Year in 2007 & 2008.

During Albers tenure, BHSU Athletics and the Yellow Jacket Foundation have increased Athletic Scholarship Awards from $450,000 to over $1,000,000 annually.

Albers was inducted into the Spearfish High School Athletic Hall of Fame in 2007 in recognition of his accomplishments as a student-athlete and coach. He and his wife, Kathy, have two children – Austin and Abby – who are both graduates of BHSU.

“I am extremely grateful to BHSU for the opportunities provided me over the past 22 years. I have been fortunate to be surrounded by tremendous people who have contributed greatly to the success of the programs as well as supporting me as leader. I will miss the day-to-day interactions and relationships that have been developed over the years and will treasure many memories,” Albers said. “It is an exciting time for BHSU and I look forward to continuing to follow and support Yellow Jacket athletics.  My wife Kathy and I are excited for the future and are looking forward to the next chapter in our lives.  Once a Yellow Jacket, always a Yellow Jacket!”

More information will follow as the university begins the search for Albers’ replacement.

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