RALEIGH, N.C. - Saint Augustine's University (SAU) has announced that it will re-institute the men's golf program, beginning with the 2014-2015 season. The head coach will be Robert Hinton.
"I am very happy we have golf back," said George Williams, the SAU Athletic Director and iconic Track & Field Head Coach. "I would like to give thanks to our [Interim] President Dr. [Everett] Ward for bringing back the sport. I think we have a young man [Hinton] who can get the job done for us."
With the addition of men's golf, Saint Augustine's University increased its number of varsity sports to 14. The other sports are baseball, men's and women's basketball, women's bowling, men's and women's cross country, football, men's and women's indoor and outdoor track & field, softball and women's volleyball.
"I want to thank [Interim President] Dr. Ward and Coach Williams for allowing me to lead this program," Hinton said. "I am very excited about the opportunity to help our student-athletes be successful in the classroom as well as on the golf course."
The men's golf program was started in the 1960s by Earl Curry, a coach at then Saint Augustine's College. The sport was a staple in the athletic department before it was put on hiatus in 2013.
Men's golf rose to prominence under Head Coach Lawrence Coleman. He guided the Falcons to five PGA National Minority Golf Championships and six CIAA conference titles. The long-time coach retired in 2009 and was inducted into CIAA Hall of Fame in 2014. It was the second hall of fame honor for Coleman, who was inducted in the National Black Golf Hall of Fame in 2002.
Hinton is now in charge of coaching the historically successful program. The Garner, N.C., native is a familiar sports figure in Raleigh, N.C. and surrounding areas. He was a wide receiver on the legendary 1987 state championship football team at Garner High School and played football at N.C. State University. After an outstanding collegiate career, Hinton's NFL career was cut short due to injuries.
After his football playing days ended, Hinton excelled at another sport – golf. He was an assistant golf pro in Raleigh, N.C. for five years and a pro golfer on the Hooter's Tour for another two years. Hinton is currently the general manager of Meadowbrook Country Club, a position he has held since 2011. Meadowbrook, located in Garner, N.C., is owned by Saint Augustine's University.
Hinton says he plans to seek advice as he prepares for his first season as Falcons' golf coach.
"I'll lean heavily on Coach Coleman's expertise as I move the program forward," Hinton said. "I want to continue the tradition of excellence that he built."