Alan Cress, an App State alum who worked as an assistant coach for his alma mater during the 2021-22 season, has been named the head coach of App State’s men’s golf program, Director of Athletics Doug Gillin announced Monday.
“We are excited to welcome Alan and his wife, Nancy, back to Boone,” Gillin said. “We did a comprehensive national search to identify the best leader for the future of the App State men’s golf program. Alan is committed to App State, he is an App State alum, and he was instrumental in helping our student-athletes last season. He has proven that he gives his all for App State. His values align with our athletics department’s core values. We’re excited for the future of App State men’s golf.”
App State will hold a press conference Tuesday on the fifth floor of the Ricks Athletics Complex to introduce Cress. The press conference is scheduled for 11 a.m., and lunch will be provided afterward for media members, staff, students and fans who would like to attend.
Since graduating from App State in 1991, Cress has made a well-respected name for himself in the coaching, teaching, business, administrative and event-planning sides of golf.
He served as a volunteer assistant for the Mountaineers last season, contributing to several record-setting accomplishments, while still fulfilling his responsibilities as the general manager of The Club at Irish Creek in Kannapolis and also coaching both golf teams at Concord High School.
“This is the opportunity of a lifetime,” Cress said. “I’d like to thank Doug Gillin, Spencer Bridges, Heather Brown and everyone involved in the search committee for entrusting me to lead the men’s program at my alma mater. Being an alum, I’ve always kept close ties with App State, and almost everyone in our family attended App State, so we are all extremely excited.
“We will create an environment that allows our student-athletes to compete on a national level. We have the talent pool and resources to make that happen. This is an amazing opportunity, and I can’t wait to get up there and do something special.”
Cress began his long-running tenure at The Club at Irish Creek shortly after his graduation from App State and worked as an assistant professional, head professional and general manager during his time at a club that ranked as a top-five course in the Charlotte area and top-200 residential course in the United States. He managed and improved a sizable operational budget while also coordinating community events and supervising five departments that included a staff of 40 people.
As a coach, in addition to overseeing team and individual champions at Concord High School, he had an important role in App State’s achievements in the 2021 fall season and 2022 spring season, which included a coaching transition.
Applying his knowledge in both the technical and mental aspects of golf, Cress helped the Mountaineers post four top-three finishes as a team (all in fields with more than a dozen teams) and enjoy several individual breakthroughs.
After working with Cress to improve his putting stroke, Sverrir Haraldsson made eight birdies in a school-record 63 as App State set a program record with a team score of 272 in the final round of the Bash at the Beach event in mid-March. The Mountaineers placed second in the 15-team field with a 22-under total, with Ryan Marter shooting a 65 in the second round of that tournament.
Jake Lane was a medalist and co-medalist in back-to-back events during the fall, and Timothius Tirto Tamardi repeated as an All-Sun Belt selection following his eighth-place finish at the Sun Belt Championships. App State was two shots out of fourth place in the team standings through 36 of 54 holes in Arkansas.
Cress graduated from App State with a degree in commercial recreation management, plus minors in business management and marketing.
Cress and his wife have two daughters (Kevyn and Katherine, both App State alums) and one son (Walker, an All-CAA golfer during his time at James Madison). Cress has a grandmother (Helen), mother-in-law (Betty) and son-in-law (A.J.) who are also App State graduates.