Men's golf coach O.D. Vincent will retire from coaching less than two years after he arrived at Duke to become senior associate athletic director at his alma mater, the University of Washington, Duke announced Sunday.
"Leaving our team, Duke University and the coaching profession is the most difficult decision I have ever faced," Vincent said in a statement. "I feel blessed to have coached the sport I love for the past 13 years. I feel so good about the future of our program here at Duke and the future of the young men on the team. I will miss everyone a great deal and always look back on my time at Duke with tremendous fondness."
Vincent, who came to Duke from UCLA to replace the late Rod Myers in 2007, coached the Blue Devils in just one spring season. Duke posted one win in the spring season and two fall wins under Vincent. He coached at Washington before moving to Los Angeles, where he led the Bruins to four Top-10 appearances in the NCAA championship in six years. UCLA won the national title last year.
Vincent was perhaps best-known for being named as a defendant in Andrew Giuliani's lawsuit against the University for his allegedly wrongful termination from the golf team. The Chronicle first reported that Giuliani sued the school and Vincent July 23. The son of former New York City mayor Rudy Giuliani alleged that he was released from the team for unsound reasons and that Vincent made it impossible for him to return. In September, Duke and Vincent filed a motion to dismiss the lawsuit.
Vincent's departure had "nothing to do" with the lawsuit, a Duke spokesman told The Chronicle Sunday.
Ryan Ressa, an assistant coach, will assume day-to-day head coaching responsibilities until Duke finds its next coach. A national search will begin immediately.
Vincent's departure might have implications on Duke's incoming recruiting classes. Vincent secured a commitment from one of the top 10 golfers in the Class of 2010, South Carolina's Austin Cody, earlier in December.