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2024 Dave Williams National Coach of the Year Award presented by Golf Pride Grips Announced

NORMAN, Okla. – The six outstanding collegiate golf coaches receiving the 2024 Dave Williams National Coach of the Year Award presented by Golf Pride Grips were announced today by the GCAA. Golf Pride Grips will present the coaches with their awards during the Hall of Fame Banquet at the GCAA National Convention on December 10.

Nick Clinard of Auburn (Division I), Bryson Worley of North Georgia (Division II), Steve Conley of Methodist (Division III), Ben Rickett of Dalton State (NAIA), Brad Stracke of Odessa (NJCAA Division I), and Brad Thornton of Mississippi Gulf Coast (NJCAA Division II) earned coach of the year honors for 2024. Golf Pride Grips Region and District Coaches of the Year were also named.

Clinard, the Southeastern Conference (SEC) Coach of the Year, guided top-ranked Auburn to 10 wins and three other top-three finishes in 2023-24. With victories in each of their last seven events, including the program’s first national championship and fifth SEC Championship, the Tigers were led on the course by three PING All-Region honorees, including J.M. Butler, Jackson Koivun, and Brendan Valdes. Koivun, the only golfer to win the Ben Hogan, Jack Nicklaus, and Phil Mickelson Outstanding Freshman Awards in the same season, and Valdes were both PING First-Team All-Americans and selected to compete for Team USA in this July’s Arnold Palmer Cup.

Ranked first in the Scoreboard powered by Clippd National Rankings throughout 2024 and in eight of the nine 2023-24 Bushnell/Golfweek DII Coaches Polls, Worley’s Nighthawks won six times and finished no worse than sixth. Their wins this season included the South/Southeast Regional, the program’s first Peach Belt Conference Championship, and the Cateechee Fall Invitational all by double-digit strokes. Worley became the first coach in conference history to win PBC Coach of the Year in three consecutive seasons while being led on the course by three PING All-Region golfers, including PING First-Team All-Americans Will Chambless and Jack Vajda.

Conley’s Monarchs collected five victories, including his and the program’s 14th national championship, and seven consecutive Bushnell/Golfweek DIII Coaches Poll No.1s in 2023-24. Methodist was led on the course by the entire First-Team All-USA South Conference, including PING First-Team All-Americans Cameron Cappuzzo, Cooper Hrabak, Caleb Ryan, and Chase Walts. Walts, Ryan, Hrabak, Cappuzzo, Ryan, and Aiden Spampinato all finished the season ranked inside Scoreboard powered by Clippd’s top 10 in the NCAA Division III National Rankings.  

Ranked first in the Scoreboard powered by Clippd National Rankings for all but three weeks in 2024, Rickett’s Roadrunners won eight of their 10 tournaments this season, including the program’s second national championship and eighth Southern States Athletic Conference (SSAC) Championship. Dalton State was led on the course by five PING All-Region golfers, including Jack Whaley, who received SSAC Freshman and Player of the Year, the 2024 NAIA Phil Mickelson Outstanding Freshman Award presented by StrackaLine, and PING First-Team All-American honors.

Stracke led the Wranglers to six wins and 13 top-two finishes in 15 tournaments during his first season at Odessa. Being ranked first in the final 26 Scoreboard powered by Clippd National Rankings of 2023-24, the Wranglers finished runner-up at the 2024 NJCAA Division I National Championship and carded no lower than a sixth-place finish all season. Odessa was led on the course by PING All-Region and GCAA All-Freshman honorees Sungyeop Cho (PING First-Team All-American) and Adam Bresnu (PING Second-Team All-American).

Going 114-0-0 and winning their final 13 tournaments by a combined 325 strokes, Thornton’s Bulldogs put together a season that will never be forgotten in Perkinston. Mississippi Gulf Coast’s school-record 13 wins, beating the mark of 11 they set a year ago, included the program’s second national championship and the Gulf District Championship by 65 strokes. Thornton’s entire lineup won at least one individual title in 2023-24 and earned PING All-American honors while finishing the season ranked inside the Scoreboard powered by Clippd National Rankings top 10. 

2024 Dave Williams National Coach of the Year Award Presented by Golf Pride Grips

Division I - Nick Clinard, Auburn

Division II - Bryson Worley, North Georgia

Division III - Steve Conley, Methodist

NAIA - Ben Rickett, Dalton State

NJCAA Division I - Brad Stracke, Odessa

NJCAA Division II - Brad Thornton, Mississippi Gulf Coast

2024 Golf Pride Grips Region and District Coaches of the Year

Division I

Northeast - Will Green, Princeton

East - Andrew DiBitetto, North Carolina

Southeast - Nick Clinard, Auburn

Midwest - Mike Small, Illinois

Central - John Fields, Texas

West - Matt Thurmond, Arizona State

Division II

East - Stephen Ferrara, St. Thomas Aquinas

Atlantic - Dustin Coleman, Gannon

Southeast - Bryson Worley, North Georgia

South - Steve Fell, West Florida

Midwest - Gareth Lappin, Grand Valley State

Central - Derrick Thompson, Central Oklahoma

South Central - Mark Hull, Colorado Christian

West - Jason Owen, CSU Monterey Bay

Division III

Region I - Jeff Page, Babson

Region II - Dan Wesley, Rochester

Region III - Tana Thomas, Swarthmore

Region IV - Steve Conley, Methodist

Region V - Grant Wallace, Kenyon

Region VI - Nick Cocalis, Bethel (MN)

Region VII - Jamie Zantua, Redlands


Midwest - Barry Doty, Columbia (MO)

South - Ben Rickett, Dalton State

Central - Scott Seymour, MidAmerica Nazarene

West - Kevin Long, Texas Wesleyan

NJCAA Division I

Southeast - Daniel Allen, Central Alabama

Central - Michael Wetrich, Indian Hills

South Central - Brad Stracke, Odessa

West - Zach Smith, Eastern Wyoming

NJCAA Division II

East - Brad Thornton, Mississippi Gulf Coast

Central - Corbin Sebens, Parkland

West - Darin Pint, Kirkwood

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