Cole, a junior from Aliso Vejo, Calif., led the Thunderbirds with a 72.3 stroke average – the third-best mark in SUU history – this past season, when he had an SUU-best seven top-20 finishes, including a team-high four in the top-10. He closed the year very strong, with top-10 finishes in four of the team’s six spring tournaments. His season also left him with a 73.7 career stroke average, the second-best in school history.
An economics major, Cole was also named SUU’s Male Scholar-Athlete of the Year in 2014 after maintaining a perfect grade point average throughout his collegiate career.
"We're very proud of Sammy," SUU head golf coach Richard Church said. "He has worked hard on his golf fame and hard in the classroom since he came to school here and it's nice to see it pay off with recognition like this."
Cole will now be placed on the national ballot for Academic All-America consideration. He is joined on the team by 11 other athletes from District 8, which encompasses Utah, Arizona, California, Oregon, Washington, Alaska and Hawai’i.
To be eligible for the award, student-athletes must maintain a minimum 3.30 cumulative GPA, be a significant contributor to the team, must have reached at least sophomore status at his or her institution and must be in at least their second season at their current institution.