Michael Beard Returns to Pepperdine as New Men's Golf Coach
Beard, a former assistant coach, competed for the Waves between 1999-2002 and earned GCAA All-American honorable mention status twice.
Nov. 20, 2012
MALIBU, Calif. - After spending the past season and a half at Arizona State, former Pepperdine All-American Michael Beard is returning as the Waves' new men's golf head coach, Director of Athletics Steve Potts announced today.
"I am extremely excited to be returning to Pepperdine as head coach," Beard said. "This program has great potential to be one of the best in the country. I'm looking forward to recruiting top-notch players, developing the talents of the current players and connecting with the program's former players. It's a privilege to coach at a university that has had such an impact on my life and the lives of many others. I truly believe in everything Pepperdine stands for. I am grateful for this opportunity at such a special place."
Beard competed for the Waves between 1999 and 2002 (earning Golf Coaches Association of America All-American honorable mention status in 2000 and 2002). After graduating, he played professionally for several years before going into coaching. Beard joined Pepperdine for one season (2010-11) as assistant coach before departing to be an assistant at Arizona State.
"I am very excited that Michael Beard will be leading our men's golf program," Potts said. "He has an intense passion for Pepperdine golf and the ability to return our program to national prominence. We have high expectations for our men's golf team and Michael is committed to meeting those expectations. Most importantly, Michael is committed to the academic success of our student-athletes as well as the Christian mission of our institution."
During his one season as an assistant at Pepperdine, Beard helped the Waves qualify for the 2011 NCAA Championships, where they finished 25th. It was Pepperdine's first trip to the NCAA Championships since 2006. The squad also placed second at the West Coast Conference Championships and tied for fourth at the NCAA Southwest Regional.
Beard then left Pepperdine in August 2011 to join Tim Mickelson at Arizona State.
"From the moment I hired Michael I knew he would someday become a D-I head coach," Mickelson said. "He has the makeup to be a very successful head coach and I'm sure he will do just that at Pepperdine. While I am sad to see him go, I could not be happier for him and his family for the opportunity to return to Pepperdine where they have so many fond memories. We wish Michael all the success in the world in his next endeavor as head coach of Pepperdine."
As a player for the Waves, Beard was the medalist at the 2000 NCAA West Regional and the 2002 WCC Championships, and was a four-time All-WCC first teamer between 1999 and 2002.
He is well-represented on Pepperdine's career records lists, ranking first in total rounds played (162), tied for first in top-10 finishes (22), tied for third in top-20 finishes (31) and fourth in career scoring average (72.72). He averaged 72.07 strokes per round as a 2001-02 senior, which at the time was the school record and now stands sixth.
Pepperdine won WCC titles all four of his seasons and went to the NCAA Championships twice, including an eighth-place finish in 2002 where Beard tied for eighth in the individual standings.
After graduating from Pepperdine in 2002 with a degree in organizational communications, Beard turned professional and went on to play on the Gateway Tour (2003), Nationwide Tour (2004) and Canadian Tour (2005) as well as other various mini-tours. He played in two PGA Tour events: the 2004 Bob Hope Classic and 2005 Buick Open.
From 2008-10, Beard spent time teaching golf at Pronghorn Golf Club in Bend, Ore., and the Palms Golf Club in La Quinta, Calif.
He has had the opportunity to learn from some of the best teachers in the game, including Butch Harmon, Phil Rodgers and Stan Utley.
He and his wife Susannah have two sons, Clark and Graham. Beard attended Palm Desert (Calif.) High School. His father, Frank, is a former PGA player.
Beard's first tournament in charge will be in the spring season when the Waves take part in the Arizona Intercollegiate on January 28-29. He will start at Pepperdine on December 1.