DéRonté Polite has been announced as the head coach of the Hood College women’s basketball program by Director of Athletics Dr. Susan Kolb.
“I am absolutely thrilled to be named the next head women’s basketball coach at Hood College,” said Polite. “I would like to give a major thank you to Director of Athletics, Dr. Susan Kolb, and Hood College President, Dr. Andrea Chapdelaine, for trusting me to lead this program. Thank you also to everyone on the search committee and to those involved in my interview process—the passion for Hood College was apparent and very inviting. My family and I are excited to join the Blazer family and the Frederick community. Go Blazers!”
Polite takes over the Blazers after serving as an assistant coach and recruiting coordinator at Division I University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee from 2019-23. His efforts on the sideline and recruiting trail helped the Panthers to a 12-win improvement in 2022-23, going 22-12 with an appearance in the Horizon League semifinals.
He replaces Jack Mehl, who will focus full-time on his role as associate director of athletics after 12 seasons on the Hood bench.
“This search was incredibly competitive with significant interest from candidates across the country,” said Kolb. “DéRonté came through our interviews highlighting a process to meet our deepest needs for the program. We wanted to find someone that would retain and graduate our student-athletes, teach them how to win and develop their character and integrity. Blending his coaching experience, recruiting experience, and personal expectations for his players, I am confident we have found the right coach who will take our women’s basketball team to new heights.”
Polite arrived in Milwaukee following one season at Lincoln College in Lincoln, Ill., leading the Lynx to a 16-13 record in 2018-19 as the program transitioned from the NJCAA to the NAIA level.
Before Lincoln, he spent four seasons as the girls’ academy varsity basketball coach at IMG Academy in Bradenton, Florida. While at IMG, Polite assisted with the girls’ national and women’s post-graduate teams.
Polite served on the staff at Bryan College, an NAIA program located in Dayton, Tenn. in 2013-14. The Lady Lions went 20-11, setting the program’s win record and posting its highest conference finish in seven years. Polite directed all facets of skill development for the program and served as the head coach of the Lady Lions’ junior varsity program.
That followed a two-year stint as the head women’s coach and assistant athletic director at Central Christian College of the Bible, members of the National Christian Collegiate Athletic Association. During his tenure at CCCB from 2011-13, he led his alma mater to the first two winning seasons in school history, compiling 37 victories.
Polite had an impressive playing career at CCCB from 2007-09. He was an integral member of the 2008-2009 team that achieved the first 20-win season in men’s basketball history, capped with a second-place finish in the Association of Christian College Athletics Tournament. A two-year captain, Polite was named the ACCA Player of the Year twice, was a two-time NCCAA Division II All-American, two-time NCCAA Academic All-American and set CCCB’s season scoring record with 833 points.
Polite graduated CCCB with a bachelor’s degree in religious studies, and prior to that, graduated from North Carolina Agricultural & Technical State University with a Bachelor of Science in economics. He earned a Master of Education in educational, school, and counseling psychology with an emphasis in positive coaching from the University of Missouri.
Polite and his wife Sarah are the parents of three children, daughters Zion and Mazie and son Brody.D3