Matt Thurmond Named Washington Golf Coach
June 18, 2001
Seattle, WA - Washington director of athletics Barbara Hedges announced today that Matt Thurmond has been named the head men's golf coach for the Huskies. Thurmond replaces O.D. Vincent, who resigned to pursue a career in professional golf. Thurmond becomes the eighth golf coach in the Washington program's history.
For the past year Thurmond was an assistant coach for both the Husky men's and women's golf programs. Prior to joining the Washington staff, he worked as an assistant coach for his alma mater, Brigham Young, during the 1999-2000 season.
Thurmond was a four-year letterman on the BYU golf team, from 1993-1999, and was named Western Athletic Conference Freshman of the Year in 1994. Following that, he served as a missionary for his church in Venezuela and then returned home to become team captain and earn recognition as a WAC Scholar-Athlete and Academic All-American in 1998.
Thurmond graduated from BYU in 1999 with a degree in English. He is married to two-time WAC champion triple jumper, Kathy Sorenson, who also competed for the Cougars. Thurmond is from Burlington, Wash., where he attended Burlington-Edison High School.
'This is a wonderful opportunity,' Thurmond says. 'Washington's golf program has emerged as one of the best in the nation and you have to give O.D. a lot of the credit for laying that foundation. It was an honor to work and learn from him. As the coach, I know he had great vision for Washington golf and I will continue to pursue those goals.'
Vincent resigned after six years as the Huskies' coach and director of golf operations to resume a professional career that he started after graduating from Washington in 1991. He played on the PGA's European Tour for one year, including an appearance at the British Open where he shot 67 during the first round.
Vincent took over the Husky program in 1996 and led the team to consecutive NCAA appearances from 1999-2001. His 1999 team won three tournament titles and finished fourth at the NCAA Championships. Following that season he was recognized as the College Golf Association's National Coach of the Year. That same year he was also awarded District VIII Coach of the Year and Pacific-10 Conference co-Coach of the Year honors.
As a Husky sophomore, he won medalist honors at the 1988 Pac-10 Championship while leading the Huskies to their first conference title since 1963. He lettered at Washington in 1987-89 and 1991. He and his wife, Jana, a former All-American swimmer at both Washington and Florida, plan on relocated to Vincent's hometown of Palm Spring, Calif.
'I think the program is in great hands with Matt Thurmond as the head coach,' Vincent says. 'He has been a real pleasure to work with this past year and he was a big factor on such a young team making it back to the NCAAs. I want to thank Washington, and specifically Barbara Hedges, for letting me realize a dream by working as the Huskies' golf coach. Working with our student-athletes, the staff and administration, Mary Lou Mulflur (women's head coach) and our supporters has been a great experience.
'I am anxious to give professional golf another try,' Vincent says. 'My perspective on the game and being a professional has changed over the past 10 years. I realize that making the tour is a very challenging objective, but I am looking forward to it.'