May 30, 2001
The Buckeyes have concluded the 2000-01 season with an 11th place finish at the NCAA Central Regional Tournament last weekend at the par-72 Karsten Creek Golf Club in Stillwater, Okla. The tournament was hosted by Oklahoma State.
The Buckeyes tied with Tulsa, shooting a three-round-total of 893 to fall just one stroke shy of being eligible for the NCAA tournament to be held in Durham, N.C., May 30-June 2.
“We’ve got to grow from this,” Brown said. “We were still in there going in, only five shots behind the Big Ten Title, but we just didn’t play very well in the second round.”
Mike Austin (Sr., Burton, Mich./Flint Powers Catholic), in his final collegiate tournament, led for the Buckeyes with a fifth-place finish, scoring 68-75-73=216.
Kevin Hall (Fr., Cincinnati, Ohio/St. Rita) recorded a 74-77-73=224 to finish in 50th place. Jason Oien (Jr., New Albany, Ohio/Westerville North) concluded the tournament in 55th place, scoring 76-75-74=225. Ryan Dennis (Jr., Stow, Ohio/Walsh Jesuit) finished in 97th place with a 231, while Justin Collins (Fr., Ironton, Ohio/Ironton) carded a 233 for 111th place.
Lineup To Stay Strong
With Austin, the only senior lost from this season’s lineup, Coach Brown said prospects for next year’s squad are good.
“Next year we will have Collins, Oien, Dennis and Hall who played a significant number of tournaments this season,” Brown said. “They have some good experience and we have some good freshman recruits coming up. We will have a smaller squad next year and I think this will work in the team’s favor.”
Season In Review
The Buckeyes took a while to warm up this season but won back their winning reputation with two tournament titles, a bid for the NCAA Regionals and a third-place finish in the Big Ten. The Buckeyes won the Marshall Invitational, April 6-7 and broke a tournament record. The Buckeyes also took top honors at the Kepler Tournament, hosted by OSU. Individually, the Buckeye squad contained some tough competitors with Mike Austin taking medalist honors at the Marshall Invite while tying the tournament record set back in 1997. Austin also finished second this season in the Big Ten. Freshman, Hall proved to be an asset in only his second collegiate tournament, the Kepler, when he finished in second place.
2000-01 Buckeye Honors
The Buckeyes finished the season with many individual honors. First, Austin was named to the All-Big Ten team. Austin also made the All-tournament team and the All-District Four NCAA team. Austin also received Academic All-American honors and a scholar athlete for the fourth year. Austin was this years recipient of the Robert kepler Award, the Scarlet and Gray Top Buckeye Award and received the Lowest Stroke Average Award, ending the season with a 73.3.
Oien also received Academic All-American and scholar athlete honors. Oien was honored with the Tom Weiskopf Award.
Other scholar athlete Buckeyes are Brian Williams, A.J. Quinter and Scott Anderson. Hall won the Best First Year Player Award and Collins won the 2000 Jack Niclaus Fall Low Qualifier.
Mike Austin Says Goodbye
Team leader, Mike Austin, has completed his last collegiate season ending his four years with the Buckeyes. Austin has been a huge contributor to the team. He was team captain for the second-consecutive year this past season, a well-deserved title.
Austin has competed in all 14 tournaments this season, making for 43 rounds with a stroke average of 73.3, the lowest on the team.
Austin won medalist honors at the Marshall Invitational and broke the tournament record for lowest score after two rounds and tied the tournament record for lowest individual score. As a team, OSU broke the record for lowest team score of the tournament.
Austin holds the record low round of this season with the Buckeyes, shooting a 65 at the Gator Invitational, Feb. 10. He has broke the season record twice for lowest tourney, scoring 208 at the Gator Invitational, Feb. 10-11 and at the Marshall Invitational, April 6-7.
Buckeyes To Host Preview
The Buckeyes will host three tournaments next season–the Ping/Golf Week Preview, the annual Kepler tournament and NCAA Regionals.
The Ping/Golf Week Preview will be Sept. 28-29 at the OSU Scarlet Course and will feature the top 15-17 teams in the country.
“The preview is here next season and we’ll have the chance to compete against the best schools in the nation,” Brown said. “We’ll have a smaller squad next season and so we should be ready to go.”
Each year the hosting school for the NCAA tournament also hosts the Ping/Golf Week Preview in order to have the hosting school’s home course checked to be sure it meets all NCAA regulations. This year the meet will be held at the OSU Scarlet Course.
Head Coach Jim Brown
As the head coach of the men’s golf team for 28 years, Jim Brown has built Ohio State golf into one of the finest and most respected collegiate programs in the nation.
The numbers are impressive. Under Brown’s guidance, the Buckeyes have qualified for the NCAA tournament 25 times, 11 times finishing in the Top 10, while claiming one national championship in 1979. Ohio State also has dominated Big Ten play, winning 16 conference titles.
This season the Buckeyes won the Marshall Invitational, April 6-7 and the Kepler tournament, April 14-15, giving Brown 153 tournament wins during his tenure at the helm at OSU.
When the Buckeyes won the national title in 1979, it marked the first time in nearly two decades a northern school claimed the champioship. Brown proved the 1979 season was no fluke as the program finished fourth in the NCAA’s in 1980, 1983, 1987 and again in 1997.
Brown earned National Coach-of-the-Year honors in both 1979 and 1986, and was named District IV Coach of the Year in consecutive seasons from 1977 through 1980 and again from 1982 through 1987. He also coached the NCAA All-Star Team that competed in Japan in 1979 and the 1999 Palmer Cup Team that defeated a team of top collegiate players from Great Britain and Ireland.
Golf hasn’t been the only thing on Coach Brown’s mind during his tenure at OSU though. He takes great pride in the fact that his golfers are student-athletes in the truest sense of the word. In fact, Brown boasts a 99.9 percent graduation rate in his 27 years at OSU, with just two golfers not earning their degrees.
His greatest personal achievement came in 1989, when he was elected to Golf Coaches Association of America Hall of Fame. Two years later, he was inducted into the Ohio State University Athletic Hall of Fame. Brown was also inducted into the Martins Ferry High School Hall of Fame in 1972 and the Ohio High School Golf Coaches Association Hall of Fame in 1994.
The winningest coach in OSU golf history, Brown has tutored one NCAA individual champ (Clark Burroughs–1985), 11 Big Ten medalists, 87 All-Big Ten Selections, 11 first team All-Americans and 39 other All-America honorees during his stay on the Columbus campus.
Brown is married to Tina Lankard and has two children, Julie, who is an OSU grad, and Jeff, a former member of the golf team and 1999 OSU graduate.