Off the Course with Retiring Golf Coach Bob Molt

Molt reflects on his 41 years as golf coach at Holy Cross as he heads into his final season
April 28th, 2017 by 

Bob Molt coached the men's golf team at Holy Cross for 41 years, and the women's team for 13 years.
Bob Molt coached the men's golf team at Holy Cross for 41 years, and the women's team for 13 years.

Golf coach Bob Molt will retire this spring after more than four decades with the College. Under Molt’s leadership, the program experienced great success, with the men’s team making two consecutive appearances in the NCAA Tournament in 1982 and 1983, as well as winning numerous Worcester City Championships. In addition to coaching the men’s team for 41 years, Molt also served as head coach for the women’s golf team from 2000-2013. In total, Holy Cross golfers have earned 13 spots on the All-Patriot League teams under his direction.

Molt understands well the student-athlete experience, having attended the University of Arizona on a golf scholarship and graduating in 1972. He became a member of the Professional Golfer’s Association (PGA) of America, earning his PGA Tour card in 1982 and playing in tournaments overseas from 1983 to 1996. For 22 years, he served as the resident golf professional at Pleasant Valley Country Club in Sutton, Massachusetts, and has owned and operated the Solomon Pond Golf Center in Berlin, Massachusetts, since 1996.

With his wealth of experience and dedication to the game, Molt has been an essential part of the Holy Cross golf program. We sat down with him as he reflected on his tenure with the College.

Holy Cross Magazine: What initially brought you to Holy Cross?

Bob Molt: I was the director of golf at Pleasant Valley Country Club in Sutton. Fr. Markey [then-vice president of student affairs and dean of students, and current associate director of Jesuit relations in the Office of Admissions] played at Pleasant Valley Country Clu.b occasionally and was a close friend. He suggested that I apply for the coach’s job at Holy Cross, when Gerry Anderson ’38 [men’s golf coach from 1966-1976] retired. I applied for the position and was hired in 1976.

HCM: Is there any moment that stands out to you over your coaching career that was particularly special?

Molt: Yes, there are two moments that are very special to me. One is receiving the Gordon McCullough Award in 2006, naming me the Coach of the Year in New England. The second is coaching my daughter, Alicia ’09, at the Big South Championship in May 2009 in Charleston, South Carolina.

HCM: What is the best piece of advice that you can give your players?

Molt: I learned the game from Paul Harney ’52, Holy Cross Hall of Famer and a top player on the PGA Tour. Paul told me to work very hard on my short game and said, “Anyone can shoot good scores when they are hitting the ball well; good players can shoot good scores when they are NOT hitting the ball well.” I have given this advice to every player that I have coached at Holy Cross since 1976, both men and women.

HCM: Are there any traditions that have developed over the years or is there anything you do for luck before a tournament?

Molt: We always leave from the Hogan Center. I believe that we have left from Hogan for all tournaments during my 41 years of coaching. When his schedule permits, Fr. Markey often sees us off from Hogan and wishes us good luck.

HCM: What do you most want to accomplish in this last season?

Molt: I would like to win the Patriot League Championship.

HCM: What will you miss about coaching at Holy Cross?

Molt: The student-athletes. A great deal is written about how the “millennials” are totally different to coach than their predecessors. I do not find this to be the case. The student-athletes that I coach now and that I coached 40 years ago are extremely motivated to compete and to exceed both on the golf course and in the classroom. They understand that the coach has a job to do and adhere to any rules put forth by the coach. The sport they have chosen to play is based on integrity and adherence to rules and they accept it. In 41 years I have never had a player not graduate.

HCM: What do you plan to do in retirement?

Molt: I own and operate the Solomon Pond Golf Center in Berlin, Massachusetts, which is a large outdoor golf driving range. I have been a PGA Professional for 44 years and do a great deal of teaching and have clients from all over New England. A very large percentage of my former players stop in at the range and visit with me over the summer. This contact and friendship with former players is very important to me.

Written by Caroline Shannon ’17 for the Spring 2017 issue of Holy Cross Magazine.


About Holy Cross Magazine

Holy Cross Magazine (HCM) is the quarterly alumni publication of the College of the Holy Cross. The award-winning publication is mailed to alumni and friends of the College and includes intriguing profiles, make-you-think features, alumni news, exclusive photos and more. Visit magazine.holycross.edu/about to contact HCM, submit alumni class notes, milestones, or letters to the editor.

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