Athlete of the Week: James Dawson

by Erica Clark

You don’t have to look far to find talent, determination and a competitive spirit at Transylvania University. Look at the men’s golf team and you’ll find all three qualities in James Dawson, a junior from Bardstown, Ky.

As one of the team's low-score leaders, junior James Dawson aims to facilitate even greater success for the men's golf team.Dawson has played on Transylvania’s golf team for the past three years. In 2008, the graduation of some key players called for two replacements. Fresh out of high school, Dawson’s talent qualified him to take one of the spots.

“James is a tremendous competitor,” said head coach Brian Lane.

Dawson is an experienced collegiate player and a leader on the team. Since his first year, he’s picked up pointers from the older players.

“They taught me a lot,” Dawson said.

Now he feels that it’s his turn to do the teaching.

Dawson spoke highly of former player Matthew Martin, who is now the assistant coach.

“I’ve learned so much from him when it comes to golf, so I feel like it’s my duty to pass on everything I’ve learned from him and all the guys that recently graduated,” Dawson said.

He sees strength in the first-years, too.

“The new freshmen are great players. We are lucky to have them,” Dawson said.

This season looks hopeful for the golf team. With the right combination of instruction and skill, Dawson believes they have a great shot at success.

“We have the right guys, the talent, we have the right coaching, we have everything in place for these next years to make a serious run at the national title,” Dawson said.

For the past four years, Transylvania has won the Heartland Collegiate Athletic Conference title. Right now, they are a heavy favorite to win the conference again.

“(James) needs to continue to have a strong fall,” said Lane, “but most importantly (he) needs to work hard during the winter months to not lose all the momentum he has built up this fall. … This year he is going to be looked upon as a guy that can give us some consistent solid scores with an occasional really low number.”

Dawson put up one low number at the recent Anderson University Fall Invitational in Anderson, Ind., when Dawson shot a 69. Even with this score, Dawson thinks he could have done better.

“At one point I was five under par, on pace to shoot 67 or lower. Just a couple shots got out of my control,” Dawson said.

As for inspiration, Dawson looks up to Tiger Woods.

“No one compares to his competitive fire in sports,” Dawson said. “He’s the most mentally tough athlete ever. I’d definitely like to be like him.”

“Golf-wise,” Dawson clarified. “I’d like to be a little better of a husband.”

The men’s golf team was ranked No. 20 in the preseason Golf World/Nike Golf NCAA Division III Coaches’ Poll.

On Oct. 10-11 they will be playing in Greensboro, N.C., at the Greensboro-Gordin Classic.


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: