NCAA Golf News

Men’s Golf Assistant Chad Kurmel to Play in Senior PGA Championship

Men’s Golf Assistant Chad Kurmel to Play in Senior PGA Championship

East Lansing, Mich. – Like many golfers, when he was growing up, current Michigan State men’s golf assistant coach Chad Kurmel dreamed in playing in one of the majors.

On Thursday morning at Harbor Shores in Benton Harbor, Kurmel will get just that chance when he tees off at 7:15 a.m. in the Senior PGA Championship.

It’s something that became a reality for him last October, when he shot a 2-over par 289 and tied for 20th place at the Professional Golf Association (PGA) Senior Professional Championship, punching his ticket for the Senior PGA this week.

“Playing in a major is the next step up and it happened a little bit later than what I had anticipated,” Kurmel said on Tuesday after a practice round, “but I’m finally glad to be able to put a major on my resume.”

Kurmel, a Nebraska native who played collegiately at Southeastern Louisiana University, has been coaching at Michigan State for the last six years, first as a volunteer for four years and as a full-time assistant over the last two years.

A PGA Professional for more than 20 years, Kurmel has had the experience of playing in PGA events before, first at the Honda Classic in 2007 and then at the Puerto Rico Classic in 2012.

Since joining the Spartans full-time, Kurmel has had to balance his coaching duties while trying to stay ready for events leading up to the Senior PGA.

“One of the unique things is I can go out and play with the guys if they’re doing qualifying rounds or practicing,” Kurmel said. “During their class schedules, I’d squeeze a little time in here and there before they got to practice so I could work on my game in the mornings.  Once we came home from regionals (last) Wednesday, I’ve been pretty full-go at it since Thursday.”

Kurmel does have some familiarity with Harbor Shores, as his Michigan chapter championship was played there in 2019 and with the course just two hours away, he had the opportunity to play recently, including rounds over the weekend.

On Thursday, however, Kurmel will get his first start in a major, starting on the first hole and the first tee time, playing alongside England’s Simon Khan, a two-time winner on the European Tour, and Gene Sauers, who won three PGA events.

“It’s going to be right at the top” Kurmel said when asked where that moment would rank in his career. “You get to compete against the best in the world in the…


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