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July 1, 2013

Mike Small Coaches Clinic a Success

CHICAGO, July 1, 2013 – In an effort to strengthen the quality of golf programs at the high school level, Wilson Golf sponsored a seminar for Illinois high school coaches on Friday, June 28, 2013. The clinic was hosted by University of Illinois Head Men’s Golf Coach Mike Small, who has brought national recognition to the Illinois golf program in his thirteen years leading the program.

Taking place at the largest, most intricate university golf structure in the nation ­­– the Demirjian Facility in Champaign, Illinois – Coach Small counseled the attendees on various aspects of running a successful program: establishing a strong culture with a unified goal, practice procedures and drills, as well as off-season preparation.

The day’s events commenced with Tim Clarke presenting Coach Small an award highlighting his induction into the Illinois Golf Hall of Fame as well as his recent coaching success of finishing second place at the NCAA National Championships in May and playing success of qualifying for his ninth PGA Championship that will occur in August.

Small began thanking the coaches in attendance for their noteworthy role in fostering the sport: “With all your efforts, young players at an extremely influential age are introduced to this great game and if you can make it fun and competitive, they are bound to continue playing recreationally or competitively throughout their lives. Collegiate coaches, golf manufacturers, retail stores and the PGA of America rely on you and your programs.”

The clinic continued as Small toured the coaches through the facility that his former teammate at Illinois, Steve Stricker, helped to erect. Stopping at the chipping area and driving range to demonstrate drills and the building’s resources, Small explained how working individually with his players on distance control and ball flight has been the key to the team’s success.

“Small was able to shed light on what a victorious program expects out of its players,” commented Tim Clarke, General Manager of Wilson Golf. “He modified his seminar to speak to high school coaches whose teams consist of both avid competitors and players simply seeking a fun extra-curricular activity in high school and in life. We are truly proud of what this class-act coach does to represent the Wilson Staff brand and what he does to grow the game of golf."