Oct. 30, 2013
Norman, Okla. – Georgia Tech head golf coach Bruce Heppler is one of six coaches who have been chosen for induction into the Golf Coaches Association of America’s 2013 Hall of Fame Class, the organization announced Wednesday.
Heppler, who took over the Yellow Jackets’ program in 1995, joins Central Alabama’s Dave Jennings, Bud Marsee of Broward Community College, John Means of Colorado State, Army, Minnesota and Idaho, Jim Owen of Oglethorpe and Michigan’s Thomas Trueblood in the class. Additionally, Guy Spears, who spent 25 years at Eaton Golf Pride as Aftermarket Sales Manager and Director of Special Programs/Collegiate Golf will be honored for his contributions to college golf. The group will be officially honored at the GCAA Hall of Fame Reception and Awards Banquet Monday, Dec. 9 in Las Vegas.
Heppler has guided the Yellow Jackets to the NCAA Championship every year since 1998, and helped author 10 top-8 finishes in the Finals, including three runner-up showings. During his tenure, Tech has won or shared nine Atlantic Coast Conference titles. Only two ACC coaches have led their teams to more ACC titles than has Heppler. The Yellow Jackets have captured or shared 39 team titles overall. He has done this while supporting the operation of the Tech program primarily through his own fund-raising efforts and making it self-sustaining.
He was named ACC Coach of the Year in 2012 for the seventh time, more than any coach in ACC history except one. The Yellow Jackets have had at least a pair of All-Atlantic Coast Conference honorees in 15 of the last 16 years, and landed four members of the team on the squad twice (2005, 2011). Tech has had at least two players earn All-America honors 13 of the last 15 years, and James White became the Jackets’ 19th first-team selection in 2011. Three of his players, Matt Kuchar, Bryce Molder and Troy Matteson, have been named national players of the year. Heppler has served as GCAA treasurer since 2006.
“This is certainly not something you set out to achieve, but it’s a sign you work at a wonderful place that has tremendous support,” said Heppler. “We had a group of guys early on who took a chance and came to play at Tech, like Matt Kuchar and Bryce Molder among others, which means a great deal. We were able to re-establish this program with them, and from there it took off. When you have the support that we have, you can do some great things, and I want to thank all the players who have come through here and achieved a lot for this program. I also want to thank the Golf Coaches Association for giving me this honor. It’s a great thrill.
“I also want to thank Dr. Homer Rice, who took a chance with me back in 1995 and put me in charge of a program here that had already had a lot of success. I will always be indebted to him for his support.”
About Georgia Tech Golf
Georgia Tech’s golf team is in its 19th year under head coach Bruce Heppler. The Yellow Jackets have won 14 Atlantic Coast Conference Championships, made 26 appearances in the NCAA Championship and been the national runner-up four times.