'Disbelief' turns to opportunity for Mitchell's Trevor Flemmer in first, final season as Presentation coach

“As an alumni myself and the head coach now, you never want to see your alma mater no longer become a school,” Flemmer said. “It was kind of disbelief that it actually is happening.”

Presentation College men's basketball head coach Trevor Flemmer gathers his team to talk to them during a game earlier this season
Courtesy of John Davis / SD Sports Scene

ABERDEEN, S.D. — It was a mixture of shock and disbelief as Trevor Flemmer sat in one of the main classrooms at Presentation College.

The men’s basketball head coach received the news with the rest of the faculty — Presentation College will be closing this summer.

The news came in the middle of the Saints’ season, which was also Flemmer’s first season as the head coach in Aberdeen after he spent four seasons as an assistant at Dakota State.

“As an alumni myself and obviously the head coach now, you never want to see your alma mater no longer become a school,” Flemmer said. “It was kind of disbelief that it actually is happening.”

Flemmer, who graduated from Mitchell High School in 2011, played 56 games for the Saints and averaged 3.5 points and 2.8 rebounds per game before graduating in 2015-16.


Presentation is partnered with schools such as Dakota Wesleyan University and Northern State University, among others, for students to finish their studies, but it doesn’t necessarily ensure players a spot to play. But for Flemmer’s team, the future isn’t nearly as important as finishing this campaign and focusing on this season.

“They just want to finish out the season and figure out their future from there,” Flemmer said. “I’ve been telling them, ‘You get to stamp your legacy on the last team in PC history.’ So they’ve kind of bought into that.”

Flemmer met with each player individually the day after the announcement of the impending closing and discussed their future plans, but said that all of them were on board that they want to finish the season.

Of course, too, there were recruits lined up for next season, who will now go back to being recruited by other schools in search of a new future home. Right after Flemmer met with his team, the next calls went to recruits, who he said largely knew of the news before he got the chance to tell them.

“I've built a relationship with a lot of these recruits,” Flemmer said. “(I tell them), ‘If you've got questions in the recruiting process and things like that, or say I get a job down the road, I'd be more than happy to talk or help you through the recruiting process, if I don't.’”

Since the announcement, the Saints have dropped two games, falling to 5-14 on the season. But the energy during those two games has been “tremendous,” and Flemmer said the four games prior to the news, his team had been “moving in the right direction.”

With his time at Presentation winding down, though, Flemmer is still hoping to stay in coaching afterward. Like his players, his attention is on the season right now before he turns it toward finding something new, and while he’s open to all options, he said he’d “love” to stay in South Dakota at his next job.

No matter where he winds up, Flemmer said when he looks back at his time at Presentation, he’ll remember it fondly.


“It's unfortunate that it's ending this way,” Flemmer said. “But 20 years down the road, I think I'll look at it as it was a blessing as well.”

Zech Lambert is a sports reporter for the Mitchell Republic. He graduated from Penn State University in May 2022 and began at the Mitchell Republic in July 2022. He can be reached at or on Twitter @Zech_Lambert.
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