Nov. 3, 2010
HOUSTON - Former University of Houston men's basketball head coach Tom Penders recently made a generous donation to the Athletics Department.
Penders, who served as the Cougar head coach from 2004-10, and his wife Susie donated $20,000 to Student-Athlete Academic Services. The money will be used in a variety of ways to benefit student-athletes academically, including the purchase of additional laptop computers for use on trips and the hiring of additional part-time staff.
"This gift is a way of giving back to a great university that gave me the privilege to coach its basketball team for six years. Hopefully, all Cougars, particularly former student-athletes, will be inspired to step up with me and support our Athletics Director Mack Rhoades and Chancellor Renu Khator. I have asked to direct this gift towards academic support because that has always been a priority for me," Penders said. "I believe in Mack Rhoades and Chancellor Khator and in the direction that they are leading our University. Now is the time to give them our support."
"We are grateful to Coach Penders and Susie for their generous donation to our Student-Athlete Academic Services operations and their dedication and support during their tenure at UH," Director of Athletics Mack Rhoades said. "Their gift will be most helpful for all our student-athletes as they continue to work hard on the field and in the classroom during the 2010-11 academic year."
In six seasons as the Cougars' head coach, Penders guided Houston to a 121-77 record and five postseason appearances. With four wins in four days at the 2010 GMC Sierra Conference USA Championship, Penders led the Cougars to the tournament title and the program's first NCAA appearance in nearly two decades.
In 2008-09, forward Sean Coleman was named to the C-USA All-Academic Team. Coleman recently received his bachelor's degree in sociology from the University, joining recent men's basketball graduates Nick Mosley and Bernard Smith.
Following the Cougars' NCAA Tournament run, Penders decided not to return to the Cougar program in 2010-11.