EDINBURG – The University of Texas Rio Grande Valley (UTRGV) Department of Intercollegiate Athletics announced on Saturday that women's basketball head coach Larry Tidwell, who recently completed his fifth season, is resigning to become the Chief of Staff for the women's basketball program at Texas Tech.
A national search for Tidwell's successor will begin immediately.
"We appreciate Coach Tidwell's hard work and dedication as the head women's basketball coach over the past five years," UTRGV Director of Athletic Chris King said. "He's been a wonderful representative of our University and a mentor for our student-athletes. He has produced champions on the playing court, in the classroom, and in the community, and has always done so with the utmost class and integrity. He took over a program that did not have a winning season in 30 years and produced three postseason appearances in the last four seasons.
"Coach Tidwell leaves as the winningest head coach in program history, but he has meant so much more to this program than just wins on the score board. He has been a tremendous ambassador for this University at one of the most historic times of its young history, and for that, we will all be forever grateful to Coach Tidwell."
Tidwell finishes his UTRGV career as the program's all-time leader in wins (85), winning percentage (.531), conference winning percentage (.528), conference wins (38), conference tournament wins (4), conference tournament winning percentage (.444), home wins (51), home winning percentage (.739), road wins (22), road winning percentage (.310), neutral site wins (11), neutral site winning percentage (.579), conference home wins (22), conference road wins (16), conference road winning percentage (.457), non-conference winning percentage (.534), and non-conference home winning percentage (.882). Tidwell is also second in program history in non-conference wins (47), non-conference home wins (30), and conference home winning percentage (.611).
After taking over a program that hadn't had a winning season in 30 years, Tidwell led the program to new heights, achieving the first winning season (19-15) and postseason appearance (Women's Basketball Invitational) in the NCAA Division I history of the program in 2014-15, sustaining that success by going 19-14 and reaching the WNIT in 2015-16, and then helping the team to a 19-14 record, its first postseason win, a spot in the WBI Quarterfinals, and the Preseason WNIT in 2016-17.
In his five years at UTRGV, Tidwell's teams broke 117 program records and tied 83 others.
"I appreciate the administration, players, fellow coaches and support staff here at UTRGV," Tidwell said. "The administration went above and beyond, as [legacy institution UTPA President] Dr. Robert S. Nelsen, [UTPA Interim President and former UTRGV Provost] Dr. Havidán Rodríguez, [UTRGV President] Dr. Guy Bailey, and Chris King in particular have done a lot to make this program better. You're only as good as your administration wants you to be, and our administration wants us to win. We were given the resources we needed and that is much appreciated. I want to thank everyone in the Rio Grande Valley for their support through higher attendance and embracing us through community engagement. We had five great years. Our players have been phenomenal. The future for UTRGV women's basketball is very strong."