WICHITA FALLS (KFDX/KJTL)— Midwestern State Athletic Director Kyle Williams announced the promotion of Christopher Reay as head coach of the women’s basketball program Monday afternoon.
“It is exciting to have one of our own become the 11th head women’s basketball coach in the history of Midwestern State University,” Williams said. “Chris has shown the demeanor and personality to lead the program and is deserving of the opportunity. His love for MSU Texas is contagious and unwavering, but most importantly Chris is a quality person and is a Mustang through and through.”
Reay succeeds Noel Johnson, who passed away following a 14-month bout with ovarian cancer this month. He served the past 10 seasons as top assistant.
“The opportunity to continue to represent Midwestern State is amazing. I love everything about MSU and Wichita Falls. This truly is a special place with special people,” Reay said.
Reay served as interim head coach for the final 10 games of the 2019-20 season leading the Mustangs to a 4-5 mark in the second half of Lone Star Conference regular season play earning a berth in the league’s postseason tournament. MSU fell at Angelo State in the opening round.
“The last 10 years with Coach J were a true blessing,” Reay said. “She taught me about a tremendous amount about how to coach college athletes. I learned how to impose our core philosophy but, also, how to evolve with making adjustments to each team to help make them the best they can be on and off the court.”
He played an instrumental role in the best three-year run in program history as MSU advanced to the NCAA Division II postseason play. The Mustangs claimed an NCAA era record 26 wins on the way to conference regular and postseason titles and were one step away from an Elite Eight appearance in 2012-13.
Midwestern followed up by qualifying for NCAA postseason play in each of the next two seasons.
Reay also contributed to a culture of success off the floor, as well. During Johnson’s tenure, each of the 37 women who completed their playing eligibility earned degrees.
“It is a true honor to follow Coach J, I wish it hadn’t been under these circumstances, but one of my biggest goals now moving forward is to honor Coach J’s legacy of caring and teaching our players,” Reay said. “Once again, that includes both on and off the floor.”
Reay is deeply rooted on the Midwestern State campus first arriving as a transfer from Southern Methodist in 2005.
After serving a medical redshirt season, he played a starting role for coach Jeff Ray, helping the Mustangs to a Lone Star Conference title in 2006-07 as the team advanced to the NCAA Division II South Central Region semifinals.
Just as strong in the classroom, Reay was named to the Lone Star Conference All-Academic Team in each of his two playing seasons at MSU after gaining Conference USA all-academic accolades at SMU.
He also served as president of Midwestern State’s Student-Athlete Advisory Committee.
Reay, who averaged 7 points and 6 rebounds in 62 games during his career at MSU, was the first recipient of the Marie Morgan Award following his senior campaign in the spring of 2008. The award is presented to the most outstanding student-athlete at Midwestern for their tireless efforts on behalf of his or her team and the entire program and for exemplary participation throughout the community.
After completing a master’s degree in curriculum and instruction from MSU, Reay played three seasons playing professionally in the New Zealand National Basketball League, making stops with the CPS Nelson Giants and McDonald’s Manawatu Jets.
He returned to Wichita Falls to begin his 10-year tour under Johnson with the Midwestern State women’s basketball program.