Golf Academy of America Introduces a Competition Team through NCCGA
Golf has a healthy presence in high school sports, with more than 150,000 students playing on a school-sanctioned team. But only 12,000 players are active in varsity golf at the collegiate level. The National Collegiate Club Golf Association (NCCGA) is a place for those who don’t play varsity golf in college, but desire to continue competing. Golf Academy of America in Dallas sponsors an NCCGA club team.
The NCCGA program is run by NextGenGolf, which focuses on helping grow the game for 18-29 year olds. More than 300 teams are found at colleges and universities across the country, with 1,500 club players active in the program.
NCCGA divides the country into 27 regions. Each region has two tournaments per semester. Winning qualifies a team for the national championship.
Golf Academy of America in Dallas is a part of the Texas region, according to Mike McDonald, Campus Director.
“Golf Academy of America students are accustomed to a competitive environment,” he said. Each week, students divide into groups and take to the greens in hopes of improving their score.
“The NCCGA introduces our top players to a higher level of tournament competition outside of our own students,” McDonald said. “It’s also done wonders for our comradery on campus. Because you have eight players in the regional tournament, and you count the low five scores, everyone is pulling for each other.”
McDonald also noted that the NCGAA is a social network where friendships and professional relationships are built. “We are competing against like-minded golfers,” he said. “It’s networking for our students, and also an opportunity to introduce our program to students from other schools.”
The Golf Academy of America in Dallas has appointed two of its teaching professionals to be coaches for the NCCGA squad. David Estabrook is one of them. “The NCCGA is exactly what the students were looking for competitively speaking,” he said. “It gives the players something extra to work towards.” A conversation with Estabrook regarding the Dallas team was recently featured on the NextGenGolf blog.
The Golf Academy of America is the only two-year golf management program that offers this competitive experience.