Portions of this release is courtesy of Penn Athletic Communications
PHILADELPHIA – The University of Pennsylvania’s Division of Recreation and Intercollegiate Athletics is pleased to announce the hiring of Jason Calhoun, a PGA professional with over two decades of experience in the golf industry and as a college coach, as its new head men’s golf coach.
“We are thrilled to have Jason join us to lead the Penn men’s golf program,” said Jake Silverman, Assistant Athletic Director and the sport administrator for men’s golf. “I want to thank our search committee who devoted their time to help us select the most qualified candidate from a national pool. Jason has extensive experience in the game of golf as a player, collegiate coach and professional which will provide structure and expertise to enable our student-athletes to maximize their potential on and off the golf course. Ultimately, he met all of the criteria that our men’s golf student-athletes were looking for in the next coach and we are excited to have him lead our team.”
This will be Calhoun’s second stint as head coach of an Ivy League men’s golf program, as he was head coach at Dartmouth College from 2001-05. The Big Green had a pair of top-five finishes at the New England Intercollegiate Golf Association (NEIGA) Championship under Calhoun, and a third-place finish at the 2002 Ivy League Championship. Four of Calhoun’s golfers earned Academic All-Ivy.
“I have been fortunate to hold a variety of positions in the golf industry, but the most rewarding was when I held one of the eight prestigious positions of head men's golf coach at an Ivy League institution,” Calhoun said. “I could not be more excited to lead the men’s golf program at the University of Pennsylvania, a place that I consider to be the most special of all of the Ivies due to its location and tradition of strong intercollegiate athletics. I would like to thank Jake Silverman and the rest of the search committee for this opportunity and I can’t wait to get started.”
Calhoun joins Penn after serving the past year as the first head women’s golf coach at La Salle University. In that position, he was charged with starting the women’s golf program, including recruiting a full roster of players, negotiating conference membership, and securing a home course. He also spent one season as the head men’s and women’s golf coach at Arcadia University in 2014-15.
“We are so excited to have Jason leading the men's golf program and are confident that his high level of passion, energy and enthusiasm will continue to enhance the experience for our student-athletes, alumni, and friends of the program,” men’s golf sports board co-chairs David Posnick W’88 and Mark Junewicz W’74 WG’75 said. “Jason was the clear standout of the candidates and we are thrilled to have someone with his experience and capabilities as the new coach.”
He also served as head coach of the women’s golf program at Loyola University Chicago from 2011-13 where he led the Ramblers to their best finish at the Horizon League Championship in 2012, tying for second. Ann Vrdolyak tied for first place before losing medalist honors in a one-hole playoff.
Calhoun’s college coaching career started at Saint Francis (Pa.) College, where he was women’s golf coach from 1994-97. He took the program from its infancy to a finish among the top third in the ECAC in three seasons while also assisting the men’s team.
Calhoun has been certified as a Class A PGA Golf Professional since 2004, and was on the PGA of America President’s Council on Growing the Game from 2006-14. A TPI Certified Golf Instructor and Certified Club Fitter, Calhoun was named PING Regional Club Fitter of the Year and also was a Play Golf America Top 100 Performer in 2010. Calhoun has been Head Golf Professional and/or Director of Golf at numerous courses in the Northeast and Midwest over the last two decades, including Glen Flora Country Club (IL), Cascades Golf Club (IN), Otis Park Golf Course (IN), Indiana University Golf Course (IN), and Hanover Country Club at Dartmouth College (NH). He was an Assistant Golf Professional at nearby Philadelphia Country Club, Boonsboro Country Club (VA) and Immergrun Golf Club (PA).
Also an active player, Calhoun has ranked in the top 100 on the PGA Philadelphia Section (2015, 2016) and PGA Illinois Section (2011-14) points lists. He was a three-time champion of the Bloomington Open and a three-time top-20 finisher in the PGA Indiana Section.
He received a bachelor's degree in history/secondary education from Saint Francis (Pa.) where he was a three-sport athlete for the Red Flash, earning All-NEC honors in golf and football while also running track. He was also named a Small College All-American in football.