Alabama's golf coach Seawell named National Coach of the Year

Alabama's golf coach Seawell named National Coach of the Year

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Seawell (L) becomes the first Alabama coach to earn National Coach of the Year honors Seawell (L) becomes the first Alabama coach to earn National Coach of the Year honors

Alabama men's golf coach Jay Seawell was named the Dave Williams National Coach of the Year presented by Golf Pride Grips the Golf Coaches Association of America announced Friday.

Seawell, who just completed his 12th year as the Alabama men's golf coach, led the Crimson Tide to its second straight NCAA Championship this past May with a 4-1 win over second-ranked Oklahoma State in the NCAA Match Play Finals. The Tide defeated Illinois by the same 4-1 score a season ago and has three straight NCAA Match Play Finals appearances after finishing runner-up to Texas in 2012.

Seawell also was named the Division I Southeast Coach of the Year by GCAA and will be presented the award during the Hall of Fame Banquet at the GCAA Convention on Dec. 8. Seawell has won three straight SEC Coach of the Year honors and four in his Alabama career.

His Crimson Tide teams have captured four SEC Championships and four NCAA Regional Championships – three straight in each – while winning 42 tournaments during his tenure. The Tide has won 27 tournaments over the last four years, including eight in 2012-13 and a school-record nine in 2013-14.  His 2012-13 and 2013-14 teams also combined to win a NCAA-record 11 consecutive tournaments from March of 2013 to March of 2015.

Seawell has coached 28 All-Americans during his career, including four in 2011-12 (Justin Thomas, Whitsett, Bobby Wyatt and Hunter Hamrick), five in 2012-13 (Whitsett, Wyatt, Thomas, Trey Mullinax and Scott Strohmeyer) and then four again in 2013-14 (Wyatt, Robby Shelton, Mullinax and Whitsett).

Thomas won the Jack Nicklaus, Fred Haskins and Phil Mickelson awards in 2012 and Shelton captured the Mickelson Award as the nation's top freshman in 2014.

In the classroom, the men's golf team has put 59 players on the SEC Academic Honor Roll in the past 11 years (does not include this year), while eight players (13 honors) have been named to the Cleveland Golf All-America Scholar Team. Three players have garnered six first team Capital One/CoSIDA Academic All-America honors. Joseph Sykora and Cory Whitsett have both won the SEC's H. Boyd McWhorter Scholar-Athlete Award (all sports, all males in the league) and Alabama's Bryant Award, as the top male student-athlete from any sport. Whitsett is also a two-time winner of the NCAA Elite 89 Award.

INFORMATION SOURCE: UA Athletics Dept.

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