Kevin Williams returns as ECU men’s golf coach

ECU Pirates

Kevin Williams (ECU Sports Information photo)

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GREENVILLE, N.C. – Kevin Williams, a North Carolina native and East Carolina alum who owns a combined 23-plus years of head coaching experience, will return to his alma mater for a third tenure and provide leadership to the Pirate men’s golf program according to an announcement from director of athletics Jon Gilbert on Tuesday.

“We are excited to welcome Kevin Williams back home,” Gilbert said. “Kevin has all the characteristics we were looking for in a coach. He brings a winning mentality, he is an outstanding recruiter, and our team will benefit from his leadership and expertise on and off the course. He has a deep passion and loyalty for East Carolina University and the community. We are poised to take the next step for our program and I’m confident Kevin is the right leader to move us forward.”

His most recent appointment at ECU will end a two-year stay as assistant women’s coach at South Carolina where he helped the Gamecocks to six team titles and an overall top seed in the 2021 NCAA Championships. The Gamecocks won a program-record four tournaments in 2021. Four players earned All-Southeastern Conference honors, including league champion and player-of-the-year Pauline Roussin-Bouchard, who also was a First-Team All-American choice by both Golfweek and the Women’s Golf Coaches Association (WGCA).

Williams served as East Carolina’s head men’s golf coach from 1995 to 2005 and led the women’s program on two separate occasions from 2000 to 2005 and again from 2006 to 2019. Collectively, the Pirates recorded a .710 winning percentage, captured 35 team titles, 44 individual championships and produced 23 Academic All-America selections under his tutelage.

“I am beyond grateful to Jon Gilbert, Ryan Robinson and East Carolina University for the opportunity to once again serve as the head coach for the men’s golf program,” Williams said. “This opportunity provides the chance to take care of some unfinished business from my first stint as the men’s coach. We have a tremendous, yet exciting challenge ahead of us and I cannot wait to get started. Go Pirates!”

After replacing long-time coach and Golf Coaches Association of America (GCAA) Hall of Fame member Hal Morrison on August 1, 1995, Williams led the men’s team to six tournament trophies, 12 individual medals and five Academic All-America performers in 10-plus seasons.

During his two-tenure, 17 campaigns heading ECU’s women’s squad, Williams guided the Pirates to 12 overall NCAA at-large bids, including 10 regional appearances since 2008, and 29 overall team championships. He was a two-time Conference USA Coach-of-the-Year selection, earning the honor in 2003 and 2008.

Williams started the East Carolina women’s program from scratch in the fall of 2000 and had 18 student-athletes capture 52 of the school’s 56 WGCA All-America Scholar selections. In addition, Williams’ players accounted for 35 all-conference picks, four player-of-the-year awards and four freshman-of-the-year honorees.

Prior to his hire at ECU in 1995, Williams was the head golf professional and director of golf operations at the Kinston (N.C.) Country Club for eight years beginning in 1987. While at Kinston CC, Williams was active as a junior golf coordinator/teacher and a player in the Carolinas PGA Section.

Williams’ playing career highlights include victories in eight Carolinas PGA Pro-Am Championships. He also qualified for and competed in the 1989 and 1992 PGA Club Professional Championship. Most recently, he teamed up with Greenville’s Brady Pinner to win the 2019 Carolinas PGA Senior Pro-Pro Championship. He additionally served as a member of the board of directors and later as a chairman of the tournament committee with the Carolinas PGA Section for a combined six years until 1997.

Williams, who earned a bachelor’s degree in history from East Carolina in 1985, is married to the former Lori Sutton of Goldsboro, N.C. and is the father of son Patrick and daughters Anniken, Whitley and Lacey.

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