NORMAN, Okla. – The GCAA in conjunction with Golf Pride Grips today announced the six outstanding collegiate golf coaches receiving the Dave Williams National Coach of the Year Award presented by Golf Pride Grips. Golf Pride Grips will present the coaches with their awards during the Hall of Fame Banquet at the GCAA National Convention on December 3.
Alan Bratton, Oklahoma State (Division I), Lynn's Andrew Danna (Division II), Steve Conley of Methodist (Division III), Oklahoma City's Kyle Blaser (NAIA), Nathan Weant of Indian Hills (NJCAA Division I), and Tommy Snell of Mississippi Gulf Coast (NJCAA Division II) earned coach of the year honors for 2018. Golf Pride Grips Region and District Coaches of the Year were also named.
Bratton led Oklahoma State to the NCAA Championship after sweeping Alabama in the match play final. The NCAA Championship was one of 10 victories in 13 events for the Cowboys. Oklahoma State's other three finishes were third, fourth, and a share of second. They Cowboys were the unanimous No. 1 in the final regular season Bushnell Golfweek Coaches Poll and were ranked first in the final six polls. The Cowboys produced 30 of 40 rounds of par or better this season. Bratton was also a member of Oklahoma State's 1995 national championship squad.
Danna's Lynn squad the claimed Division II NCAA Championship after downing top-ranked West Florida, 3-2, in the match play final. The championship was one of two Fighting Knight victories on the season. The team finished inside the top five in 10 of its 12 events. Lynn recorded a program record 285.06 team stroke average and lowest 54-hole total (826). The national championship was Danna's first after Lynn finished runner-up in 2013, '15, and '17.
Conley led Methodist to its 12th NCAA Division III championship during his tenure. The 12 titles ties the Monarch's with Stanislaus State (now a Division II program) for most in Division III history. The national title was one of four Methodist wins on the season. The Monarchs did not finish outside the top six. Methodist closed the season ranked No. 1 in the final three regular season Bushnell Golfweek Division III Coaches Polls. Conley was also named USA South Athletic Conference Coach of the Year. This marked Conley's fifth Dave Williams Award.
Oklahoma City claimed its 11th NAIA national championship under Blaser's direction with a 13-shot victory. It was one of seven Stars tournament victories this season. Oklahoma City closed the regular season as the top-ranked NAIA team in the Bushnell Golfweek Coaches Poll and held the No. 1 spot for five polls. The Stars were also runners-up three times and placed no worse than third in 11 events. Blaser was also named Sooner Athletic Conference Coach of the Year. It is Blaser's ninth Dave Williams Award selection.
Weant led Indian Hills to the NJCAA Divison I national championship in his first year as head coach. He led the Warriors to nine team wins on the season in 11 events. Individually, an Indian Hills golfer captured medalist honors in seven tournaments. The Warriors were ranked first in the final regular season Bushnell Golfweek Coaches Poll and No. 1 in seven polls overall.
Snell led Mississippi Gulf Coast to its first NJCAA Division II national championship while firing 9-under for a one-shot victory. The national title was one of five Bulldog victories on the season. They were also runner-up five times and did not place outside the top four in 13 tournaments. All five Mississippi Gulf Coast golfers received PING All-America honors. The Bulldogs were ranked No. 1 for four rankings in the NJCAA Division II Bushnell Golfweek Coaches Poll. Snell previously was named a Williams Award recipient in 2008.
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Dave Williams National Coach of the Year Award Presented by Golf Pride Grips
Division I - Alan Bratton, Oklahoma State
Division II - Andrew Danna, Lynn
Division III - Steve Conley, Methodist
NAIA - Kyle Blaser, Oklahoma City
NJCAA Division I - Nathan Weant, Indian Hills
NJCAA Division II - Tommy Snell, Mississippi Gulf Coast
Golf Pride Grips Region and District Coaches of the Year
Northeast - Greg Nye, Penn State
East - Larry Penley, Clemson
Southeast - Nick Clinard, Auburn
Midwest - Mike Small, Illinois
Central - Alan Bratton, Oklahoma State
West - Matt Thurmond, Arizona State
East - Matt Arvanitis, Southern New Hampshire
Atlantic - Will Johnson, Charleston (WV)
Southeast - Travis Muncy, Lincoln Memorial
South - Steve Fell, West Florida
Midwest - Brent Nicoson, Indianapolis
Central - Dustin Howell, Harding
South Central - Daniel Hayden, Arkansas Fort Smith
West - Chris Oetinger, Holy Names
Northeast - Brad Johnson, NYU
Mid-Atlantic - Sam Oglesby, Mary Washington
South - Steve Conley, Methodist
Great Lakes - Grant Wallace, Kenyon
Central - Scott Proshek, St. Thomas (MN)
West - Chris Hill, Concordia (TX)
North - Cameron Andry, Taylor
South - Ben Rickett, Dalton State
Central - Kyle Blaser, Oklahoma City
West - Justin Clews, Victoria
NJCAA Division I
District I - Sandy Davis, Eastern Arizona
District II - Walt Williams, Midland College
District III - Nathan Weant, Indian Hills
District IV - Dave Jennings, Central Alabama
NJCAA Division II
East - Scott Brotebeck, Mott
Central - Tommy Snell, Mississippi Gulf Coast
West - Andy Walker, South Mountain