St. John's University golf coach Bob Alpers has stepped down from his duties after 28 years to increase his focus on his duties as Athletic Director with the school.

"It's tough to let go as a coach, but the last year in particular has made it very clear that our department needs a full-time athletic director, and our golfers deserve a head coach that can be there for them and care for them every day," Alpers said on the SJU website. "I'll be helping and supporting Michael and the student-athletes the best I can this spring, but Michael will be leading the program."

Alpers, who graduated from St. John's University in 1982, had held the coaching position with the golf team since the early 1990's and has been the AD since 2016.

Under his guidance, the Johnnies racked up 11 MIAC titles and 18 NCAA appearances, including national championships in 2007 and 2008. Only one DIII school has more appearances in the national tournament over the last 20 years.

Alpers' teams produced 33 All-Americans in the last 20 years and 41 GCAA Scholar All-Americans since 1997. Personally, Alpers was named National Coach of the Year in 2007 and has been inducted into the Golf Coaches Association of America's Hall of Fame.

Alpers named current SJU assistant coach Michael Whitlock as his successor, effective immediately. Whitlock, a Bay Area native, turned pro at the age of 18 and is the head of instruction at Blackberry Ridge Golf Course in Sartell.

The Johnnies will open their golf season on April 7th in Sauk Centre, their first match since October of 2019.

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