College

Thursday, Apr 25 2013 11:45 PM

CSUB golf coach Barber set to retire after season

BY JEFF EVANS Californian staff writer jevans@bakersfield.com

Dave Barber, who has been Cal State Bakersfield's head golf coach since 2001, will retire from that position at the end of this season, he said Wednesday night.

Barber, 66, said he wants to remain with the CSUB men's and women's golf programs in a reduced role.

"I'd like to be in retirement but I want to be involved," Barber said. "I won't be employed by the school. I'll be a volunteer assistant."

He led the Roadrunners through their transition from NCAA Division II to Division I.

Barber has been responsible for both the men's and women's programs. In 2011, he hired longtime local high school coach Tony Bernardin to oversee the women's program. Bernardin has also agreed to remain with CSUB as the coaching change moves forward.

"The best hire I ever made," Barber said.

The women's season ended in mid-April and the men's season will conclude Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday at the American Sky Conference Golf Championships in San Antonio.

It appears CSUB plans to replace Barber with Glendale Community College coach Greg Osbourne, who was hired as the Vaqueros coach when that program was re-started in 2007 and built Glendale into one of the top programs in the state within four seasons. Glendale had dropped golf in the early 1980s for budget reasons.

Osbourne has not officially been hired by CSUB but is in line to become what will be called CSUB's director of golf.

Kenneth "Ziggy" Siegfried, CSUB's associate athletic director for development and major gifts, oversees the men's and women's golf programs. He would not confirm that Osbourne will be Barber's successor.

"The hard thing is to comment on him specifically because the offer sheet is not complete," Siegfried said Thursday. "We interviewed six people and out of those six people, there was one person who I felt had the best chance to be successful. That's where we put our focus."

Siegfried said the plans all along have been for Barber to remain active with CSUB golf in a reduced role.

"The great thing is: He's willing to help us, whenever we need help," Siegfried said. "There will be a transition period. The new director of golf needs to understand the complexities of running a golf program. It's not just going out and teaching guys how to swing a club."

Barber's job became more difficult in the spring of 2010 when CSUB announced that the men's and women's golf teams, plus wrestling and women's tennis, were being eliminated.

A fierce fundraising campaign prompted CSUB President Horace Mitchell to reinstate the sports two months later. None receive financial support from CSUB and are supported by public fundraising.

Women's tennis failed to meet its financial requirement and was eliminated last August.

"This position is very unique," Siegfried said. "We need someone who can fundraise and we need someone who would come in and basically be creative and beat the competition, who can beat people with more resources than we have."

Barber said the fundraising aspect of the CSUB job "has been pretty challenging. I've filled Greg in on all of this. He's very much aware of it."

Barber said Osbourne "is very enthusiastic. He wants to get into Division I coaching.

"He has some ideas and some plans. I'll help me as long as he wants me to."

Barber was a pro golfer for several years and played on the PGA Tour from 1972-76. He was hired by the Bakersfield Country Club in 1977 and was BCC's head pro from 1980-96. He was elected into the Bob Elias Kern County Sports Hall of Fame in 1993.

CSUB won five California Collegiate Athletic Association championships in Barber's first five seasons with the Roadrunners, the first golf titles in CSUB's history. In 2006, CSUB's final season in Division II, CSUB won its second West Regional title and placed third at the Division II national championships.

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