Kyle Blankenship has been named the Head Coach to lead the LSU Shreveport Pilots men's basketball team. He returns to LSUS as a coach after a one year stint at Lamar State College and the previous two seasons at Rogers State University. He was the first assistant coach at both schools.
"I am very grateful for the opportunity to become the new Head Coach at LSUS. I have been very fortunate during my coaching and playing career to be a part of some great teams with great players, while also working and playing for several coaches that have helped mold me into the coach I am today. I cannot even begin to verbalize how excited I am to be returning home to LSUS," said Blankenship.
"I am looking forward to embracing the tradition and building on the tremendous success Coach McDowell and this program has had over the last nine years," he continued. I know that with the help of our administration, faculty, staff, coaches and students we can continue to make LSUS a wonderful university where great things happen."
Blankenship also played one season at LSUS, finishing his playing career in 2006 for the Pilots. As a player and coach Blankenship helped the Pilots to a 106-27 overall record, two regular season Gulf Coast Athletic Conference (GCAC) titles, four consecutive GCAC Tournament championships (2006-2009) and four straight NAIA National Tournament appearances (2006-2009).
Blankenship guided the Pilots offense to a record-breaking season and a No. 1 national ranking during his senior season. He finished his career at LSUS as the school's single-season assists leader (199) and single-game assists record holder (14), while leading the nation in assists-to-turnover ratio.
He began his playing career at The University of Tulsa in 2001 where he was a team captain, three-year letter winner and a member of two Western Athletic Conference championship teams. During those two seasons, the team made consecutive appearances in the second round of the NCAA Tournament. After transferring to LSUS to complete his collegiate eligibility, Blankenship returned to Tulsa and received his Bachelor of Science Degree in Business Administration.
The Shreveport native was a standout high school player at C.E. Byrd High School from 1997-2001, playing all four seasons for former LSUS Head Coach Chad McDowell. Blankenship was a two-time All-City selection as a junior and a senior, while earning All-State honors as a senior.Former men's basketball coach Chad McDowell, who is in the transition to be the next Athletic Director at LSUS, has high praise for the new leader of the program, "It's exciting to have Kyle Blankenship back at LSUS. He is a fantastic young coach who has experience as a player and coach at multiple levels of competition. Kyle is a very good recruiter and has a great understanding of basketball. He served as an assistant coach in three highly successful programs over the past six years. He is a leader who will do a superb job serving as the Head Coach for our men's basketball program."