A fixture on the Kent State University campus since arriving as an undergraduate three-sport student-athlete in 1970, Director of Golf Herb Page has grown to become one of the most respected golf coaches in the country.
For more than 36 years now Page has been a tireless worker with his players, on the recruiting trail, as a fundraiser and as an ambassador for the game of golf. But even after three decades of monumental accomplishments under his direction, the Golden Flashes golf program continues to reach new heights every season.
In 2013, Page led the Golden Flashes to their seventh consecutive and 23rd overall appearance in the NCAA Men's Golf Championship Regional Tournament at Rich Harvest Farms. Kent State also captured its sixth outright Mid-American Conference Championship with a 10-shot win over Toledo and Akron, and Page was once again named the Mid-American Conference Golf Coach of the Year.
In 2012, Page guided Kent State into match play at the NCAA Championships at famed Riviera Country Club. The Golden Flashes won a playoff over Florida State to advance to match play where they finished fifth in the nation. Page's teams have qualified for five of the last six NCAA championships, including a tie for 27th last year at the Capital City Club near Atlanta.
In 2011, Page guided Kent State to second straight top 20 finish at the NCAA Championship. By tying for 19th at that year's NCAA finals, the Golden Flashes joined an elite group of only 10 schools that had finished top 20 at the NCAA Championship in 2010 and 2011 (Oklahoma State, Georgia Tech, Augusta State, Arizona State, San Diego, Texas A&M, USC, UCLA and Illinois). The 19th place finish now ranks as the sixth best showing in school history.
In 2010, Kent State won the NCAA East Regional title and finished 20th at the National Championship.
Only a few short years ago, Page celebrated his 30th anniversary as the head coach of the Golden Flashes in style and in a manner that could not have more perfectly summed up his career.
Take the following into account:
• Early in the fall of 2007, the Ferrara & Page Golf Training Center was officially dedicated. Bearing his name, the facility — which had been a dream of Page’s for many years — officially became a reality with a formal ribbon-cutting ceremony on Sept. 15, 2007. It immediately gained acclaim as one of the top facilities of its kind in the country.
• Calling it “one of the highest honors of his career,” Page was presented with the 2008 Golf Coaches Association of America Labron Harris Sr. Award in January. Named after the late Labron Harris Sr., former head coach at Oklahoma State University, the award is presented to the college or high school coach and PGA Professional whose support of the game through teaching, coaching and involvement in the community has helped ensure the continued growth of the golf.
• Kent State then capped off the 2007-08 season in stunning fashion, finishing in sixth place at the NCAA Championships in May — the best showing in the storied history of the program. After four grueling rounds at Purdue’s Kampen Course, the Golden Flashes finished a mere 10 shots behind eventual champion UCLA.
• Just a few short months later, Page was in Louisville, Ky. to watch former three-time All-American Ben Curtis help the United States reclaim a Ryder Cup trophy that it hadn’t held since 1999. Curtis defeated Lee Westwood 2 & 1 in singles play to cap off a solid 1-1-1 performance in his first appearance on one of golf’s biggest stages.
• Kent State finished fifth in the nation at the 2011 NCAA Championships when the event was held at Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades, Cal.
• In 2012, Page was asked to give the commencement address at Kent State's graduatin ceremony.
• Also in 2012, Page was inducted into the Northern Ohio Golf Association Hall of Fame along with Ben Curtis.
You see, it was all there. For all Page has given to the game of golf — never once doing so for the recognition — his labor of love has paid him back tenfold.
Page has built a dynasty in the Mid-American Conference and the legacy only seems to grow stronger with each passing year. He has led the Golden Flashes to 19 MAC titles on his watch and along the way has garnered 19 MAC Coach of the Year awards.
However, the highlights haven’t been limited to just play in the MAC — far from it actually. On top of the 22 NCAA regional appearances Kent State, has advanced to the NCAA Championship 14 times during that span.
In 1993, the Golden Flashes captured their first-ever NCAA Regional title before tying for the title in 2001. In between, at the 2000 NCAA Championship, Page led the Golden Flashes to their highest-ever finish at the time — ninth. All told, in more than 30 years of coaching, Page has led his alma mater to an astounding 80 tournament titles, claiming NCAA District IV Coach of the Year honors seven times.
That success has not gone unnoticed in the national golf press, as Page’s linksters have been ranked consistently among the nation’s top 25 teams over last 15 years. The 1995 squad garnered the highest-ever national standing of any Kent State team with a seventh-place ranking in late May, a feat which would be duplicated again in the fall of 1999. In his tenure with the Kent State program, Page has coached 82 All-MAC golfers, 21 All-Americans and 19 golfers who have been selected as All-America Scholar-Athletes. In 2011, John Hahn captured his third consecutive All-American accolade and then joined former Golden Flash Brian Bridges (1990, 1991) as the only two MAC players in league history to be named to both the All-America team and an All-America Scholar in the same season in consecutive years. In 2013, Corey Conners became the third to join that group.
Page’s tutors have gone on to excel once they’ve left the friendly confines of Kent for the rigors of professional golf. He has mentored Curtis, who can also lay claim to the 2003 British Open title and a runner-up finish at the 2008 PGA Championship, and Kent State’s first first-team All-American and current Nationwide Tour member in Jon Mills. In addition, KSU also boasts roughly a half-dozen other alumns who are currently playing professional golf right now. In the summer of 2008, he proudly followed former four Flashes as Curtis, Mills joined Bryan DeCorso and David Morland IV who were all competing at the PGA Tour’s 2008 RBC Canadian Open.
Never in the job for personal gain, the Labron Harris Award was nonetheless the most recent honor in a long line of awards for Page. In 2005, he was inducted into the Northern Ohio PGA Hall of Fame. The previous year, Page joined Larry Penley of Clemson University and East Tennessee State University’s Fred Warren as the 2004 inductee class into the Golf Coaches Association of America Hall of Fame. In the summer of 2004, he joined Tom Weiskopf and two others who were inducted into the Ohio Golf Hall of Fame.
In 1998, Page received the honor of coaching the U.S. team in the World Junior Championships held in Japan. The year before, he was given a Special Achievement Award by Kent State University as well as the Lifetime Achievement Award from the Northern Ohio PGA. Page was also honored by the Dapper Dan Association of Akron with the William Falor Lifetime Achievement Award and was inducted into the Portage County Sports Hall of Fame in 1994.
The ever-active Page served as chairman of the NCAA District IV Advisory Committee for five years in the late 1980s and served on the committee again for the 2000-01 season. His first stint was from 1988-92, during which he served as the chairman in 1992. His second term was from 1998-2001 and he served as the chairman in 2001.
Page also spearheads the main Kent State fundraiser — the Rango Invitational, which is held every August at Windmill Lakes Golf Course. This tournament, along with other gifts, has earned over $1.4 million for the Kent State University golf endowments and the new facility.
As an undergraduate at KSU, he earned eight varsity letters — four in golf and two each in football and ice hockey. He was the golf team’s captain his senior year and the placekicker for two of the most successful grid teams in school history — the 1972 MAC champions and the 1973 team that set a school record with nine victories. In 1974, Page was named the MAC Scholar-Athlete of the Year and was drafted in the fifth round by the British Columbia Lions as a placekicker, although he never played in the Canadian Football League.
For all of his accomplishments at Kent State, Page was inducted into the Varsity “K” Alumni Association’s Athletic Hall of Fame in 1985.
The Markham, Ontario, native also made a name for himself as a top player and teacher with the Northern Ohio PGA. In his first professional tournament victory more than a decade ago, he shot a one-under-par 71 on the renowned Firestone Country Club North Course. Page’s participation in Pro-Am tournaments include a number of impressive performances. At the 1987 Trumbull County Pro-Am, he registered a 67 (three under par), and at that year’s Ohio Open Pro-Am he earned runner-up honors with a six-under-par 66.
Despite all the honors and accolades, Page has never wavered from his grand plan for the Kent State golf program. In August of 2005, Page, along with numerous contributors to the Kent State golf programs, broke ground on the new Kent State Golf Training & Learning Center. Just a little over two years later, the sparkling $2.2 million facility was formally dedicated. A long-time vision of Page’s for the golf programs, the state-of-the-art practice facility will ensure Kent State Golf’s continued success at the highest national level.
In November of 2007, the KSU Board of Trustees formally approved the name of the building as the Ferrara & Page Golf Training & Learning Center in honor of the family of Dr. Emilio Ferrara, who was responsible for the lead gift, and Page.
Page is married to Dr. Paula Treckel, a history professor at Allegheny College in Pennsylvania. They reside in Kent.
Season Events Titles MAC Championship Post Seasson (Finish)
1978-79 9 0 Eighth
1979-80 9 1 Ninth
1980-81 11 1 Ninth
1981-82 9 0 Eighth
1982-83 12 2 Fourth
1983-84 15 4 First NCAA Championship (24th)
1984-85 12 3 Second
1985-86 13 2 Third
1986-87 15 1 Third
1987-88 12 1 Second
1988-89 13 1 Third NCAA Regional
1989-90 14 4 Second NCAA Championship (T-18th)
1990-91 14 3 Second NCAA Regional
1991-92 15 4 T-First NCAA Championship (25th)
1992-93 15 5 First NCAA Championship (27th) Won Regional
1993-94 13 6 First NCAA Championship (13th)
1994-95 14 3 First NCAA Championship (26th)
1995-96 14 0 T-Second NCAA Regional
1996-97 13 1 First
1997-98 14 4 First NCAA Championship (24th)
1998-99 14 4 First NCAA Regional
1999-00 14 6 First NCAA Championship (9th)
2000-01 13 3 First NCAA Championship (30th) Won Regional
2001-02 12 0 Third
2002-03 13 4 First NCAA Regional
2003-04 14 0 Third NCAA Championship (24th)
2004-05 11 2 First NCAA Regional
2005-06 13 1 First NCAA Regional
2006-07 12 0 Third
2007-08 14 2 Second NCAA Championship (6th)
2008-09 13 2 First NCAA Regional
2009-10 14 2 First NCAA Championship (20th) Won Regional
2010-11 14 3 First NCAA Championship (T-19th)
2011-12 13 5 First NCAA Championship (T-5th)
2012-13 14 3 First NCAA Championship (T-27th)
2013-14 12 1 First NCAA Regional
36 seasons 465 81 19 MAC titles 23 Regional appearances*
15 Championship appearances
*The NCAA began a regional playoff format in 1989 with a set number of teams advancing from three regions until 2008. In 2009 the field split into six regions with the top five teams at each site advancing to the NCAA Championship. Kent State has now earned a regional berth in 23 of the 26 years the regional system has been in place and in 14 of those trips, the Golden Flashes have moved on to the NCAA Championship. (Bold denotes NCAA Championship berths)