Steve Nosler was unable to make the trip with the Oregon men’s golf team to Riviera Country Club for the NCAA Championship in May.
The former Ducks coach, who retired from coaching in 2006, was suffering from an undisclosed illness, but the Oregon players honored him by inscribing “NOS” on their golf balls – a tribute to a man who spent 20 years as a head coach, assistant coach and director of operations for the Ducks.
Nosler died Friday at the age of 74.
“Our hearts are saddened today by the loss of one of our own athletic family,” said Director of Athletics Rob Mullens. “Steve Nosler not only was a vibrant member of the golfing community, but he was an avid fan of all the Duck teams and he truly touched the lives of every single person he encountered during his long and distinguished career. Our thoughts and prayers go out to Steve’s wife, Bunny, and his family.”
He was a vital fixture for a program that has twice finished T-3 at the NCAA Championship the past three seasons. Before handing the reins over to Casey Martin in 2006, Nosler led the Ducks to 11 tournament titles and nine regional appearances. Oregon reached three NCAA Championships under Nosler.
He was also named Pac-10 Coach of the Year in 1997.
“Steve Nosler has been a great friend and a huge part of this department, community and golf in Oregon for many years,” said Oregon Associate Athletic Director Jim Bartko, who is the Ducks’ administrator for men’s golf. “We will miss him immensely.”