Former Columbus State Head Coach, GCAA Hall of Famer Earl Bagley, Dies at 81
Columbus State University mourns the passing of Dr. Earl Bagley, a national champion golf coach and longtime administrator who was affectionately known as "Bubba" to friends and family, coach, educator, husband to Jane and father to Anna.
Jay Sparks, Interim Director of Athletics, says, "Coach Bagley's drive on the Columbus State University golf family will forever be remembered. He was the true beginning of the success and history of the golf programs, and his legacy will live on forever. Many students, athletes and young professionals have truly been changed, affected, and touched through his influence on them during his time at Columbus State."
During his tenure as golf coach from 1983-1993, Bagley elevated the program to its status as one of the top overall golf teams in the nation, where he led the Cougars to two NCAA Division II National Championships in '89 and '92, being honored as the DII Coach of the Year in '89. His teams were regular-season champions in '85, '92 and '93, and he was named the Peach Belt Conference Coach of the Year in '92 and '93. He was also a three-time Regional Coach of the Year in '89, '92 and '93. Under Bagley's direction, the Cougars never finished less than third in the national tournament. Four of his players have won the Individual DII National Championship and at least 15 of his players have achieved All-America status. After finishing his stint as head coach, Bagley became the Assistant Coach Consultant for the team until '98 and was inducted into the Golf Coaches Association of America Hall of Fame in '99 and the Columbus State University Athletics Hall of Fame in 2001.
Before coaching, Bagley arrived at Columbus College in '73 to teach social science. He served as the Associate Dean of Students, later promoted to Dean of Students, and was an Associate Professor of Education. Bagley retired in 2004 as the Vice President of Student Affairs, serving in this position for 10 years. He was appointed Emeritus in 2006.
Throughout his time at Columbus State University, Bagley was dedicated to mentoring students, athletes, and young professionals, helping anyone reach their goals. Not only was he an involved faculty and staff member, but he was also active in student activities including student government and newspaper.
Outside of CSU, Bagley provided leadership to the Bull Creek Golf Authority and played a role in developing the First Tee Program for the youth of Columbus.
Bagley is a three-time alum of the University of Georgia, receiving his bachelor's, master's, and doctoral degrees in education. He graduated from LaGrange High School in '61.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the Kidd-Bagley fund at Columbus State University that supports the golf team and the travel abroad program (Columbus State University Foundation, 4225 University Avenue, Columbus, GA 31907) or to Paws Humane Society (4900 Milgen Road, Columbus, GA 31907).
Services to be announced at a later date.