Jim Socha is entering his fifth season as the V-Hawk men’s golf head coach. Last season, the V-Hawks put the Viterbo name in the national spot light as they spent most of the season ranked in the NAIA top-25 poll with their highest ranking coming at 17th. The V-Hawks finished third at the Midwest Collegiate Conference Men’s Golf Championships behind national tournament qualifiers Grand View University and St. Ambrose University. The third place finish at the MCC championships is the third straight season the V-Hawks have finished in the top three.
The 2010-11 season was also highlighted by having the programs first MCC individual champion and NAIA national championship qualifier. Senior Derrick Meier won the MCC title and competed at the NAIA national championships while also being named a NAIA Second Team All-American. As a team, the V-Hawks won four tournament titles and had six top three finishes.
This is Socha’s only experience as a head golf coach but he has had plenty of success as a player. Socha continues to play in several local tournaments and played in the 2001 Wisconsin State Open. One of Socha’s top finishes came when he finished third at the 2006 Wisconsin State Golf Association Father-Son tournament. Socha is also in his third season as the V-Hawks men and women’s bowling team.
When Socha is not playing or coaching golf/bowling, he is the president of Socha Marketing. Prior to his current duties, Socha worked for The Insurance Center from 2000-05 and was the former Sports Director at WKBT Television from 1993-2000. While with WKBT, Socha covered the Green Bay Packers in Super Bowl XXXI and the Wisconsin Badgers in the 1994 Rose Bowl.
Socha graduated from UW-Whitewater where he lettered four times in cross country and earned a speech communications degree. He and his wife, Tracey, have two children and live in Onalaska, WI. Their son Ben is 17 years old and their daughter Ellie is 13 years old.
Tom Knothe enters his fifth season as an assistant coach for the men’s golf program. Knothe is a familiar face to Viterbo University as he is the Dean of the Dahl School of Business here at Viterbo. He is also a 1986 graduate of Viterbo University with a degree in business.
As a player, Knothe has had plenty of success as he continues to play regularly. He won the 2000 La Crosse County Am Championship. Knothe played collegiate golf his first two seasons at St. Johns University before transferring to Viterbo. Both seasons at St. Johns, Knothe was an all conference performer twice as well as an all district player as a sophomore. His two seasons at Viterbo were just as successful as he was conference medalist his junior and senior seasons. Tom and his wife Diane reside in La Crosse, Wis. where they have three kids. Elizabeth (14), Mary (12), and Jack (7) keep the Knothe family very busy.