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STLCC Basketball Coach Albrecht Retires after 36 Seasons
May 23, 2013
|Randy Albrecht is retiring as men's basketball coach at St. Louis Community College after a 36-
year career. Albrecht has 28 consecutive winning seasons at the helm of STLCC teams.
Legendary men’s head basketball coach Randy Albrecht announced his retirement Thursday (May 23), effective immediately.
The longtime coach manned the St. Louis Community College sidelines for 36 years, finishing with 28 consecutive winning seasons, including a 20-12 mark in his final season. With 736 career junior college victories, Albrecht finished the 2012-2013 campaign ranked eighth among active National Junior College Athletic Association coaches.
Albrecht, who is a member of the halls of fame for the NJCAA, the Missouri Basketball Coaches Association and STLCC-Meramec, was an 11-time Region XVI Coach of the Year.
“The thing that I’m probably most proud of is the 28 consecutive winning seasons,” Albrecht said. “I think that speaks to having a program that is consistently competitive. You find new players and they can compete at a similar level each year.”
Albrecht became an institution at STLCC-Meramec, routinely guiding the Warriors/Magic to regional titles and national prominence, including a No. 1 national ranking for much of the 1988-89 season.
Different Circumstances, Same Results
However, Albrecht’s success was not limited to his time at Meramec. When STLCC converted to a districtwide athletics department in 2011, his experience helped form the building blocks upon which the program would be built.
"When we went to this transition (to a districtwide program), Randy was the foundation in what we wanted to build," said Sharon Marquardt, co-manager of districtwide athletics. "He was able to give us the guidance that 35-plus years can give, with regard to how a program should be built and what players to look for. He has a wealth of knowledge and is a big part of the basketball community.”
Albrecht turned in one of his best seasons in 2011-12. After an 8-6 start, the Archers reeled off 14 consecutive victories and finished at 24-8.
“To win 14 in a row with that group, that was hard to see coming,” Albrecht said. “To beat Division I teams like Three Rivers, Southwestern Illinois College and Lewis and Clark, that was a pretty special year.”
Albrecht has long been revered by his NJCAA peers, particularly those who have coached against him for much of his 36-year junior college career. Possessing a disposition much more reserved and methodical than some of his much more animated counterparts, Albrecht was renowned for his success as a game tactician and his knack for maximizing the production from his teams.
“I’ve always said Randy Albrecht is one of the best coaches I’ve ever faced,” SWIC head coach Jay Harrington said following Albrecht’s 700th junior college victory in 2012. “If he would have had the scholarships that (all-time NJCAA wins leader) Gene Bess had at Three Rivers, or Coach (Bob) Sechrest at Mineral Area, he might have had 800 or 900 wins. He’s playing in a league that’s half Division I and half Division II, and with what he’s still been able to do, you have to give Randy Albrecht all the credit. There is not a better fundamental teacher of the game and strategist in the Midwest than Randy Albrecht.”
Basketball from a different perspective
Albrecht, who cited recent health issues as contributing to his decision to call it a career, anticipates increased time with his family this coming fall and winter, something he hasn’t had the luxury of enjoying for the better part of the past four decades, which includes a three-year stint as the head coach at Saint Louis University from 1974-76.
“In basketball, you miss Thanksgiving, you miss Christmas, and you’re usually not very good with Valentine’s Day,” Albrecht said.
Albrecht looks forward to following basketball from the stands instead of the sideline, and plans to visit Marquette High School regularly this winter, where his grandson will be a freshman.
As he transitions out of coaching, Albrecht cites his relationships with players as the most memorable aspect of his career.
“The players are what you remember,” Albrecht said. “In many areas of life, you don’t have a ton of overachievers. But in athletics, you see some who over-perform their talent level. I think you see it a lot in athletics, and it’s great to be around those kids. It was a lot of fun and very rewarding.”