Whit Lesure is a walking legend at Bridgton Academy. The longest-tenured head basketball coach in Academy history, Coach Lesure is now entering his twentieth season at the helm of Bridgton Basketball.
After growing up in Acton, Massachusetts, Lesure went on to Hobart College and it was during his days as a collegiate student-athlete that Lesure’s career as a coach began to take shape. He spent his summers coaching his former high school basketball team in the Framingham, MA summer league, and began his life-long friendship with New England coaching icon Bert Hammel at the Merrimack College basketball camps. Upon his college graduation in 1982, Whit caught what would prove to be his first professional coaching break when he was hired by Lou Gnerre to revitalize the basketball program at the New Hampton School in New Hampshire. During Lesure’s nine-year tenure, New Hampton School became a staple on the competitive prep school circuit. Under his leadership, the team achieved two NEPSAC championships and earned a reputation for excellence both on and off the court. In 1991, Lesure joined the staff at the University of New Hampshire (UNH) as an assistant coach under the tutelage of current Cleveland Cavalier NBA assistant coach, Jim Boylan. During his five years at UNH, Lesure was part of some of the most successful seasons in the program’s history.
In 1997, Coach Lesure was hired by Bridgton Academy — where he has been pacing the sidelines and leading a classroom ever since. Since that time, Bridgton Academy basketball has become synonymous in the prep ranks with individual development and team accomplishment. Over the course of a Bridgton Academy career highlighted by four NEPSAC crowns in a span of five years, Coach Lesure is most proud of the over 250 Wolverine Basketball players from all over the globe who have successfully matriculated to every level of collegiate basketball in pursuit of their higher education, athletic goals, and life’s dreams. A number of Coach Lesure’s players have gone on to play at the highest levels — from the NBA to Europe — including a “who’s who list” of Division I colleges. Today, well over a dozen of Coach Lesure’s former players enjoy successful careers in coaching at the high school, college, and professional level.
In October 2009, Coach Lesure was honored with his induction into the New England Basketball Hall of Fame.
Coach Lesure and his wife, Marybeth, reside on Bridgton Academy’s campus. They are proud parents of three children, Leigh, James, and Jackson. Jack, the youngest, is currently attending Bridgton Academy as a postgraduate student and most recently helped lead the Lake Region Lakers High School Basketball team to its first state championship boys’ title in thirty years. In his free time, Coach Lesure is an avid golfer, reader, and fan of Netflix. During the summer, you can also find him on his home basketball court here at the Academy, working as the director of basketball for Bridgton Sports Camp.