Tulane names longtime Michigan State assistant Don women's head coach
NEW ORLEANS -- Tulane athletic director Rick Dickson announced the hiring of Lorne Don as the Green Wave’s new head women’s golf coach Friday. Don becomes the fifth head coach in the 24-year history of the Tulane women’s golf program.
Don, 33, brings 14 years of experience as a coach and player to the Green Wave program. He comes to Tulane from Michigan State, where he spent the past 10 seasons as an assistant coach.
“Throughout the search process, his impressive work in all phases of helping build his former program into a consistent national contender, along with his dedication and longevity were traits that stood above the rest," Dickson said. "We look forward to Lorne sustaining and enhancing the success of our golf program.”
Don will take over a Green Wave program coming off the best season in school history with a ninth-place finish at the NCAA Championships, a runner-up effort at the NCAA East Regional, a Conference USA title and a final national ranking of No. 13. Tulane returns four letterwinners, including three all-conference performers, and will feature a pair of newcomers for the 2013-14 campaign. In the past five seasons, the Green Wave have won three C-USA titles, made five regional appearances and advanced to the NCAA Championships three times.
“I am very excited about the opportunity to lead such an outstanding program and become a part of the Tulane family,” Don said. “Tulane golf has a history of success, first under Sue Bower, and the five years since the program was re-instated. The team plays at a high level and has four great players returning and two outstanding incoming freshmen. Tulane had everything I was looking for in becoming a first-time head coach.”
During his time at Michigan State, Don helped the Spartans to 19 tournament wins, six NCAA Championship appearances, 10 consecutive NCAA regional berths and three Big Ten titles. Michigan State tied Tulane for ninth place at the 2013 NCAA Championships, which marked the Spartans highest finish at the national championships, and Don helped guide MSU to a school-best third-place effort at the 2004 NCAA regionals. Michigan State never finished outside the top three teams in the Big Ten during his tenure.
Individually, he assisted in the recruitment and coaching of four golfers who earned All-America honors a combined seven times, and 13 different golfers earned All-Big Ten Conference honors on 21 occasions. Two Spartan golfers achieved Big Ten Player of the Year honors and five golfers were tabbed the MSU Female Athlete of the Year.
Off the course, Don helped 21 golfers achieve Women’s Golf Coaches Association Scholar All-American status and five MSU golfers represented their respective country at the World University Games.
Along with his coaching duties at Michigan State, Don also directed two nationally competitive Division I golf tournaments, including the Mary Fossom Invitational (East Lansing, Mich.) and the Central District Invitational (Parrish, Fla.). He also played a role in hosting the 2007 Big Ten Championship was the annual co-director of the Spartan Golf Classic and Spartan Golf Camps.
Before he entered the coaching ranks, Don was a four-year member of the Spartan men's team from 1999-2003. He earned MSU's Best First-Year Player award in 1999-2000 and received MSU's Leadership Award during his senior campaign in 2002-03.