In July 2009, Mack Rhoades made his first hire as athletics director by bringing in former Texas A&M assistant golf coach Jonathan Dismuke to be the new head coach at UH.
“Jonathan is regarded as a rising star in the business, a quality individual and will serve as a great role model for our student-athletes as he helps to prepare them to be champions for life,” Rhoades said. “He truly cares about the total well-being of his student-athletes and demands excellence from them in all areas of their lives.”
Dismuke was handed the task of developing a young squad and restoring a program two and a half decades removed from its 16th and last team NCAA national championship.
“Much of what attracted me to the University of Houston is the past success of the golf program,” Dismuke said. “It is one of the most decorated programs in collegiate golf history, and I am excited to have the opportunity to be a part of this special program.”
During his fourth tournament as head coach, Dismuke made the first big splash with the Cougars by winning a rain-shortened Husky Invitational — UH’s first tournament victory since 2007.
Since that time, Dismuke’s ability to develop young golfers has been instrumental in the team’s growth. At the core of that development has been sophomore Roman Robledo — a Harlingen native who won four straight District 31-5A individual championships in high school.
“We have a job to do,” Robledo told The Daily Cougar in 2011. “Our job is to bring that NCAA championship back to UH to bring that legacy back.”
Dismuke is also credited with the recruiting of juniors Curtis Reed and Jesse Droemer who immediately began playing intricate roles in putting UH golf back on the map. During this week’s Lone Star Invitational, Droemer led all golfers with a third round 67.
“Jesse just hit a lot of really good shots. He holed two wedge shots and hit so many quality shots throughout the day,” Dismuke said. “It was the best round I have seen him play in tournament action.”
Throughout four fall tournaments, the Cougars have finished no lower than third, and three times now have finished in first after completing a round — a feat that should be attributed to Dismuke.
UH is still a long shot away from being on par with the field of storied greats this program has produced, but with Dismuke at the helm and a talented squad in place to help mature, it may not take as long as some believe.