Charlotte, N.C. - Charlotte 49ers Director of Athletics Judy Rose, today, announced the hiring of Auburn Assistant Coach Ryan Cabbage as the 49ers head men's golf coach. Cabbage was an assistant to the Auburn men's team for 10 years and has been an assistant for the women's team for the past two years.
"I am delighted that Ryan will be our next head coach," Rose said. "It is definitely a win/win for our program. Ryan's vast experience and depth of knowledge will further enhance the strength of our golf program."
A 1998 graduate of Auburn, Cabbage was a member of the Tigers men's golf team from 1996-98 and played on the 1997 Auburn squad that reached the 1997 NCAA Championships.
"I'm very excited about the opportunity," Cabbage said. "It's a great golf program and a great university and I look forward to continuing to build on the traditions that have been put in place here. At the same time, I'm looking forward to raising my kids and having my family in a place that's great personally but professionally as well with the wonderful golf that is in the Charlotte area. I've heard nothing but great things about the city of Charlotte."
This past year, under head coach Kim Evans, Cabbage helped the Tigers women's team to the SEC Championship, a national rank of 13th and an appearance in the NCAA East Regional. In 2010, Cabbage helped the Tigers an 11th-place finish at the NCAA Championship.
The Tigers men's team reached the NCAA Regional in nine of Cabbage's 10 years as an assistant coach and advanced to the NCAA Championship seven times. In 2004 Cabbage was runner-up for the Assistant Coach of the Year Award, presented by TaylorMade-Adidas golf. Cabbage coached with former Tigers head coach Mike Griffin in each of those 10 seasons, winning the 2002 SEC Men's Championship.
"We will focus on the process and doing the little things that will allow us to be successful and take care of the big picture one step at a time," Cabbage said.
A native of Rutledge, Tenn., Cabbage played his first two years at Walters State Community College in Morristown, Tenn., where he was the 1995 National Junior College Individual Champion. Cabbage lettered at Auburn from 1996-98 and competed in the 1997 NCAA Championship at Conway Farms Golf Club in Lake Forest, Ill.
Before coming back to Auburn, Cabbage spent a year with the Southeastern Junior Golf Tour in Opelika as a tournament director.
"I want to thank Judy Rose and Darin Spease for their confidence in me and for giving me this opportunity," Cabbage added. "I'd also like to thank coach Mike Griffin and Kim Evans, along with all the other coaches who have helped me along the way to allow me to be the coach I am today."
Cabbage is married to the former Jennifer Falkner of Marietta, Ga. They are the proud parents of three boys, twins Carson Sawyer and Maddox Falkner, born Feb. 16, 2004; and Davis Ryan, born Dec. 19, 2005. He is a 1998 Auburn University graduate with a B.A. in Communications.
The Charlotte 49ers golf team has won a conference-record six straight Atlantic 10 Championships dating back to 2006 and has advanced to a school-record seven straight NCAA Tournaments dating back to 2005. The 49ers posted back-to-back NCAA Top 10 finishes in 2007 (Ttied, 3rd) and 2008 (tied, 8th).
WHAT THEY ARE SAYING:
Kim Evans, Auburn University Head Women's Golf Coach -
"You're getting one of the best people I've ever known in my life. You're looking at a very prepared golf coach. who will bring a top work ethic and an attitude that is unmatched.
He's got strength in working with swings, he has incredible relationships with his players, he's a tireless recruiter, and he's extremely organized. He does it all well. As a role model that you want your players to follow - I don't think there's anyone better. He's going to have a great relationship with his team and he will bring a great attitude and a great work ethic."
Mike McGraw, Oklahoma State Head Men's Golf Coach -
"I've spent a lot time recruiting against him and spent time with him on the recruiting trail and I love the way he conducts himself. He's a professional and he's worked for some really good coaches in Mike Griffin and Kim Evans. He's a quality person. You can feel pretty comfortable if you're a parent sending your boy to go to play with him. Your relationships with those recruits and those families - that's what makes a coach successful. First and foremost, he's a very good person. If I had a son going to college who said he wanted to play for coach Cabbage I said say 'go for it'."
Nick Clinard, Auburn Men's Golf Coach -
"Number one, he's a great person and a great family man. He represents the moral values and core values any athletic dept strives for. He's a great coach and he's going to do a fantastic job. He's very organized and very structured - he brings a lot to the table from a personality standpoint and a competitive standpoint."
Mike Griffin, Former Auburn Head Coach --
"Ryan was a strong, loyal assistant for 10 years and our team had alot of success. He's got all kinds of experience. He should have been a head coach a long time ago. Your university is going to be fortunate to gain his experience, knowledge and his high energy. He's not afraid to go to work. He's going to bring a lot to the table.
"He played for us and played on some outstanding teams. He has the experience of being a player on being on a really good team. He was an individual national champion as a competitor (1995 National Junior College Individual Champion at Walters state Community College). I think he had a good influence on the rest of the team. Ryan was able to mix and work well with all those people. He put everyone else at ease and helped everyone else do better. Every time I look at a picture with our team holding a trophy he was always in there."