President Laurie S. Nichols announced the hiring of Scott Larson as the next Director of Athletics at Black Hills State University.
“Scott brings with him a strategic vision and unmatched NCAA knowledge that will elevate Black Hills State athletics,” Nichols said. “I was impressed by the strong pool of applicants. Ultimately, it was the continued success of student-athletes, coaches, and athletics under Scott’s leadership that set him apart. His familiarity competing on regional and national championship stages will continue to enhance BHSU. We are thrilled to welcome Scott and his family into our Yellow Jacket family.”
A seasoned athletics administrator with over two decades of NCAA experience, Larson was most recently the Director of Athletics at Lubbock Christian University in Lubbock, Texas. Larson oversaw 17 intercollegiate athletic programs which saw unprecedented success in competition and the classroom.
During his tenure at LCU, the athletic department attained three NCAA Division II national championships (women’s basketball) along with 20 national championship appearances (cross country and indoor and outdoor track and field). Baseball, men’s basketball, women’s basketball, men’s golf, and softball combined for 21 South Central Regional appearances since 2015. In 2022-23, LCU finished 70th in the Learfield Director’s Cup, a program best.
Chap and Lady Chap student-athletes consistently achieved an overall grade point average between a 3.2 and 3.4 with Larson at the helm. A program record 119 student-athletes were honored with the 2022-23 D2 ADA Academic Achievement Award.
Capital improvements under Larson included a new track and field/soccer facility, a new tennis facility, and installation of turf and videoboard for softball.
At LCU, Larson increased season tickets sales by 150% in four years, secured a licensing agreement, developed an athletics booster club, and created an NCAA Division II compliance program.
“I have long been impressed with Yellow Jacket athletics from a distance, and it is an incredible opportunity to join the outstanding coaches, staff, and student-athletes,” Larson said. “I am extremely excited to get to campus and get to work.”
At the NCAA level, Larson has been immensely involved. Committee appointments include Student-Athlete Reinstatement, Legislation (Chair), Compliance Think Tank (Legislative Subgroup Chair), Transfer Portal Advisory Group, Board of Governors Federal and State Legislation working group member for Name, Image, and Likeness, and Softball Regional Advisory Committee. He is also on the NACDA Executive Committee, NAAC DII Committee Chair, and Division II Education Program Committee Chair.
Before LCU, Larson was the Associate Director of Athletics at University of South Carolina Upstate and had prior stops at University of Texas at El Paso, Northern Arizona University, Gardner-Webb University, University of Wisconsin, and Arizona State University.
Larson earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from The University of Tulsa and a Master of Business Administration from Arizona State.
He and his wife, Marla, have two sons, Cade and Reid.
What They’re Saying About Scott Larson:
Leslie Schuemann | Deputy Commissioner at Great Midwest Athletic Conference
“Black Hills State has made a tremendous hire in welcoming Scott Larson. Scott is an outstanding administrator who is focused on building a strong and diverse team to support the mission of his organization. His leadership and integrity will make him a great addition to the BHSU team. His ability to work hard, lead, listen and develop individuals will help Black Hills State athletics thrive. I am thrilled for him and his family as he takes this next step.”
Steve Gomez | Head Women’s Basketball Coach at LCU and three-time WBB DII National Champion
“Scott’s personality and leadership have been a vital part of the success and stability that we have experienced across the athletic department at LCU. We will miss his influence, and I know he will have a positive impact across the campus and community of Black Hills State University.”
Jay Poerner | Commissioner of the Lone Star Conference
“Scott is a strong leader with a wealth of experience in college athletics. He will bring a passion for success and a student-athlete first mentality to Black Hills State. I’m certain he will have an immediate and positive impact on the athletic department and local community.”
Al Roberts | Senior Vice President/CFO at LCU (Retired)
“The athletic department at LCU experienced significant growth on multiple levels during Scott’s tenure. Not only did the number of varsity sports increase to drive growth in enrollment, but new facilities were added and upgraded. Most importantly perhaps, academic achievement by student-athletes reached historic levels.”