Thorsten Leibenath

Last updated
Thorsten Leibenath
ratiopharm Ulm
Position Sporting director
League Basketball Bundesliga
Personal information
Born (1975-04-07) 7 April 1975 (age 44)
Leverkusen, Germany
Coaching career1999–present
Career history
As coach:
1999–2000TV 1860 Lich (assistant)
2000–2006 Gießen 46ers (assistant)
2006–2007 Scottish Rocks
2007–2008Gießen 46ers
2008–2010 Artland Dragons
2011 Giro-Live Ballers Osnabrück
2011–2019 ratiopharm Ulm
Career highlights and awards

Thorsten Leibenath (born 7 April 1975) is a German former basketball coach and basketball player. He is the Sports Director of ratiopharm Ulm in the German Basketball Bundesliga. Leibenath coached the Ulm basketball team for eight years, spanning from 2011 until 2019.

Basketball team sport played on a court with baskets on either end

Basketball is a team sport in which two teams, most commonly of five players each, opposing one another on a rectangular court, compete with the primary objective of shooting a basketball through the defender's hoop while preventing the opposing team from shooting through their own hoop. A field goal is worth two points, unless made from behind the three-point line, when it is worth three. After a foul, timed play stops and the player fouled or designated to shoot a technical foul is given one or more one-point free throws. The team with the most points at the end of the game wins, but if regulation play expires with the score tied, an additional period of play (overtime) is mandated.

ratiopharm Ulm basketball team

Ratiopharm Ulm, officially stylized as ratiopharm Ulm, is a professional basketball club that is located in Ulm, Germany. The club has two teams, one professional team, which plays in the Basketball Bundesliga, the major German professional league and one youth team, which plays in the so-called NBBL. The home arena of the team is the Ratiopharm Arena, an indoor sporting arena with a capacity of approximately 6,000 spectators.

Basketball Bundesliga sports league

The Basketball Bundesliga (BBL), for sponsorship reasons named easyCredit BBL, is the highest level league of professional club basketball in Germany. The league comprises 18 teams. A BBL season is split into a league stage and a playoff stage. At the end of the league stage, the top eight teams qualify for the playoff stage, and the teams positioned in the 17th and 18th places are relegated to a lower tier league. The playoffs are played in a "Best of five" format. The winning team of the final round are crowned the German Champions of that season.


Coaching career

Leibenath began his coaching career at TV Lich, a second-division team in Germany. With TV Lich, Leibenath won the championship, promoting the club to the first division. After his stint with TV Lich, Leibenath moved to Gießen 46ers where he worked as an assistant coach for six seasons.

Gießen 46ers basketball club based in Gießen, Germany

Gießen 46ers is a professional basketball club based in Gießen, Germany, that plays in the Basketball Bundesliga. Their home arena is Sporthalle Gießen-Ost, with a capacity of 4,003 people.

During the 2006-07 season the German was head coach of the Scottish Rocks in the British Basketball League. At the end of his first season in British basketball, Leibenath reached the BBL Cup final, eventually losing to Guildford Heat 82-79, while also finishing 4th in the League Championship, and lead the Rocks to the BBL Playoff final, losing eventually to Newcastle Eagles. He also picked up the BBL Coach of the Month award for March 2007.

British Basketball League sports league

The British Basketball League, often abbreviated to the BBL, is a men's professional basketball league in Great Britain, the highest level of play in the country. The BBL runs two knockout competitions alongside the BBL Championship; the BBL Cup and the BBL Trophy, as well as the post-season Play-offs.


The British Basketball League Cup, often shortened to the BBL Cup, is an annual cup competition for British basketball teams organised by the United Kingdom's top professional league, the British Basketball League. It is one of two peripheral competitions operated by the League during the regular season, with the other being the BBL Trophy. The competition is usually played as a single game knock-out tournament, and is only contested by members of the British Basketball League. The final takes place in early January at the Arena Birmingham in Birmingham.

Newcastle Eagles

Newcastle Eagles, for sponsorship purposes Esh Group Newcastle Eagles, is a British Basketball League team based in Newcastle upon Tyne.

In 2008, Leibenath returned to Germany, taking over as head coach of Artland Dragons basketball team. While playing in the EuroCup and the EuroChallenge in the 2008/2009 and 2009/2010 season, the club only ranked 9th in the regular season in both years, missing the Basketball Bundesliga play-offs. In May 2010, team management decided to release Leibenath who moved to GiroLive-Ballers Osnabrück in the German Pro-A league (lower division).

Artland Dragons basketball team

QTSV Quakenbrück, representing its professional team as Artland Dragons, is a basketball club based in Quakenbrück, Germany. Their home arena was the Artland Arena, which has room for 3,000 spectators. From 2003 till 2015 the club played in the Basketball Bundesliga and in several European competitions.

In May 2011, Leibenath signed as head coach with ratiopharm Ulm in the German Basketball Bundesliga. [1] In the 2016-17 season, he led Ulm to a Bundesliga all-time best winning streak of 27 games and was honored as Bundesliga Coach of the Year. [2]

In March 2019, it was announced that Leibenath would step down after the end of the season and would assume the function of Sports Director at ratiopharm Ulm. [3]

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  1. "Thorsten Leibenath ist neuer Head Coach von ratiopharm Ulm". 9 May 2011.
  2. "easyCredit - Awards: Leibenath "Trainer des Jahres" - Auszeichnung für Akpinar". (in German). Retrieved 2017-05-05.
  3. "Basketball: Ratiopharm Ulm: Thorsten Leibenath künftig nicht mehr Chef-Trainer". 21 March 2019. Retrieved 8 June 2019.