The second in our series of profiles of local college golf programs. Todd Hummel, head coach of the Canisius College men’s golf team, completed our questionaire, and we thank him for it.

1. What does your program provide that is unique to college golf?

The best part of college golf is that it is a way to be part of a team while earning your degree!  I would say that it is not about the coach and more about the program in which the coach runs.  Our program has and will continue to improve while graduating players to great jobs and furthering their education in medical schools.  We continue to recruit the best local players and look forward to assist these players to be successful out of school.

2. Where does your team have practice access and what does this course access contribute to your program?

We have an agreement to use Brierwood Country Club and Harvest Hill Golf Course.  The practice facility at Harvest Hill is tremendous for short game and for the most part that is what my players need.  Coming off summer the fall season is mainly geared in keeping the short game solid.

3. What fitness/non-golf activities do you employ and how do they make your team members better, fitter golfers?

We have a Strength and Conditioning Coach here at Canisius and he works with the guys over the off-season to keep up flexibility and core strength.  In addition to cardio work the team maintains a very good level of fitness.

4. What short-term goals do you have for your team and how will you reach them?

The team goal is to compete for the MAAC Conference Championships each and every year.

5. How much does a player’s potential go into the recruiting process?

Recruiting is the attempt to get the best possible player that we can get!  This process means that you look at both potential and current abilities.  Normally we are looking at whether they have it or not by the time they are a junior in high school.  This usually means that we are predicting that they will choose to make every attempt in continuing to improve.  So yes, potential is a factor.

6. What factor do golfing alumni play in your program?

Alumni can be a great asset to a program like golf.  The donations made to the program aid in doing the extra things to improve the team.

7. Golf is an individual sport that is played in team format at the collegiate level. How do you balance players’ individual and team goals?

While it is a team sport individual goals lead to a team outcome.  Each player should have goals.  When those goals are reached then the team will benefit from those goals.  When they are not met, then the team outcomes are not met as well.  Each player needs to find a way to keep the focus and make every shot count.  This will lead to good team results.

8. How does the weather affect your training program during the winter?  How do you combat it?

The weather is pretty critical in the Northeast.  We do use the golf domes in the area and even if it is not ideal the repetitions that this practice makes helps us get the rust off fairly quickly in the spring.

9. What areas of the country are your key recruiting areas?

I look at the entire state of NEW YORK but focus on the Western region of New York which includes Rochester and with some emphasis in Canada as well.

10.  What element besides weather could make collegiate golf in western New York better/How can the existing programs work together to make better college golf in WNY?

Western New York is a very good golf area.  I think that improved quality indoor practice areas would benefit the college golf community the best.