RCW: Sport Spotlight 4.25 (Men's Golf)
With the win, that is now NINE event titles for the Jayhawks in head coach Jamie Bermel’s six seasons at Kansas. ??#KUgolf also has 35 top-5 finishes during that time.
— Kansas Men’s Golf (@KUMensGolf) March 4, 2018
A post shared by Kansas Men’s Golf (@kumensgolf) on Mar 4, 2018 at 2:54pm PST
Dating back to 1968, the Kansas men’s golf team has seen just eight coaches at the helm of the program. For the past six years, head coach Jamie Bermel has been the one steering the ship, and has led the team to nine tournament victories, with the most recent coming this past weekend at the Desert Mountain Intercollegiate.
In his six years with the Jayhawks, Bermel has just one season without a win, while the past two seasons he has led the team to multiple titles. As the only four-year Jayhawk golfer on the 2017-18 team, senior Daniel Hudson believes that his lessons on the course might help the team to these high finishes, but the lessons off the course are what makes Bermel a great coach.
“I think his coaching style is one that applies to life in general,” said Hudson. “To say my golf coach has made me a better person in all aspects of my life is truly a blessing.”
Though his lessons off the course have impacted Hudson and many Jayhawks before him, Bermel’s name is etched throughout the Kansas men’s golf archives as well. Bermel is now just the second coach to be at the head of the program for more than six years. His nine-event victories are the second-most under a coach, only behind Ross Randall’s 35, which he picked up over the course of 27 seasons.
This season, the Jayhawks have recorded top-5 finishes in 5-of-7 events. The fall season featured an individual average of 71.13, almost a stroke better than last fall’s player average. Already two events into the spring season, the team has recorded a fifth-place finish at the Wyoming Desert Intercollegiate and a first-place finish at the Desert Mountain Intercollegiate.
The Desert Mountain Intercollegiate title showcased the team’s consistency, as all five Jayhawks walked away with a place in the top-20. With the team-wide success, the Jayhawks were 21 strokes above the next closest team, which is the fifth-largest margin of victory in Kansas men’s golf history.
With the second half of the season underway, Hudson says the lessons that Bermel always preaches will contribute to the team’s success.
“The biggest thing I have learned from him is that you have to do things you don’t want to do when you don’t want to do them,” said Hudson. “In other words, you have to be willing to grind and accept the fact that in order to achieve your goals, you will have to do things you don’t want to do. You have to commit every ounce of your energy to pushing through challenging times, knowing that it is getting you closer to where you want to be.”
With five events left on the schedule, Hudson and his teammates will be searching for another victory, which would make Bermel the only Jayhawk coach besides Randall to reach double-digit victories. Though the feat of 10 wins would be an elite milestone, it is safe to say that Bermel’s footprint on the program isn’t only defined by wins and losses, but rather by the lasting impact that he has on the Jayhawks who learn under him.