MIDLAND, MICH. – Northwood University has announced a series of staffing changes.
After a decade of leading the Men's Basketball program and an incredible run to the GLIAC Championship game this spring, Head Coach Jeff Rekeweg has decided it is the right time to step down from the program and focus on a new career at the University in the advancement and alumni relations department. Lonnie Griffin, who has served as Rekeweg's assistant coach for the past six seasons, has been promoted to head men's basketball coach.
"It is my great pleasure to welcome Jeff Rekeweg to the advancement and alumni relations team," said Northwood University President Dr. Kent MacDonald. "Jeff believes in Northwood's important mission, he understands the importance of education and The Northwood Idea, and he loves the Midland community and Great Lakes Bay region."
"I am humbled that I have been given an opportunity to help make a difference in our advancement department," said Rekeweg. "I want to thank Justin Marshall and Dr. MacDonald for their confidence in me in this new role.
"This was not an easy decision for me with the success of our basketball program this past year and growth over recent years. We have a great group of young men and I will miss coaching them. The program is in good hands with Lonnie Griffin and Darvin Ham. I want to thank our past players and fans for all of their support."
Rekeweg recently completed his ninth season at Northwood. He finished his career at Northwood with a record of 135-153. Rekeweg earned the GLIAC Coach of the Year in 2012 and led Northwood to the GLIAC Tournament Championship this season. His victory over Northern Michigan in the GLIAC Semifinals was the 400th of his coaching career, as Rekeweg posted 265 wins in 14 seasons as head coach at St. Francis (Indiana) prior to his arrival at Northwood.
"We greatly appreciate all Coach Rekeweg has done for our basketball program," said Dave Marsh, Northwood Athletic Director. "I am very happy he will continue to be at Northwood. He will be a tremendous asset to our Advancement team."
Griffin brings a wealth of coaching experience to the head coaching position. He recently completed his sixth season as an assistant under Rekeweg. Griffin brings head coaching experience to the position, as he led the Delta College program for four seasons prior from 2010-14. This is his second time working at Northwood, as he spent the 2004-05 season as an assistant coach. Griffin also spent time as an assistant at Central Michigan, Alma and Grand Valley State.
"Being named the head coach at Northwood University is special for me and my family," said Griffin. "This is a program, institution and community that is very dear to us. I would like to thank Dave Marsh and Dr. McDonald for their trust in me to lead this program.
"I am extremely humbled and excited to build on the growth we've had under Coach Rekeweg's leadership. My passion for working with our student-athletes is a major reason I am so eager to assume this position. We have a great group of young men that have helped to build a very competitive program in the GLIAC and I look forward to seeing the continued growth of this team."
"Lonnie is the perfect fit to lead our men's basketball program," said Marsh "He is loyal, has a proven track record, is an extremely hard worker, has a great rapport with the student-athletes, and believes in Northwood's mission. We are confident he will lead our program successfully and carry on the legacy left by Coach Rekeweg."
"Jeff's work to develop a great coaching staff is a gift that allows Lonnie Griffin to be named as Northwood University's new head coach," said MacDonald. "Lonnie will honor a tradition of great basketball, leading with ethics, and developing scholar-athletes. Northwood University's future is bright."