Hall of Fame Focus: Head Golf Coach Steve Prothero

By Robert McKinney, Athletics Communications Director, (503) 370-6110

SALEM, ORE. -- Each day between Oct. 10 and the Willamette University Athletic Hall of Fame induction ceremony on Saturday, Oct. 19, the Hall of Fame Focus will highlight one of the individuals or teams being inducted. Former men's and women's head golf coach Steve Prothero, who will be induced posthumously, is featured today.

Prothero, plus five former Bearcat student-athletes, two teams, and one individual selected for meritorious service will be inducted into the WU Athletic Hall of Fame this fall.

The induction ceremony will be held at the Salem Convention Center. A social hour will start at 6 p.m. (PDT), with the banquet and induction ceremony starting at 7 p.m.

Steve Prothero
Head Golf Coach
Coached:  1966-09
Posthumous

Steve Prothero was the head coach of the Willamette men's golf team for 44 seasons (1966-2009) and head coach of the Bearcat women's golf team for seven seasons (1995-2002).  Prothero also served as a professor of mathematics for 46 years.

He recorded the second longest tenure for a Northwest Conference head coach in one sport, trailing only WU’s Lestle Sparks, who coached the Bearcats in men’s tennis for 50 years (1925-74).

He led the Bearcat men’s team to six NWC championships, eight NAIA District 2 titles and eight trips to the NAIA National Tournament.  In 1975 and 1976, the Bearcats finished 14th in the nation. Six of his athletes won a total of eight NWC individual titles in men’s golf.

Prothero guided the women’s team to conference titles in 1995, 1996, 1998 and 1999. WU also claimed the NWC women’s individual title in 1999. The Bearcat women advanced to the NCAA Division III National Tournament in 1998 and 1999.

Steve Prothero coached the Willamette men's golf team for 44 years and the Bearcat women's golf team for seven years.

Steve Prothero coached the Willamette men's golf team for 44 years and the Bearcat women's golf team for seven years.