Joe Zubrick returns to coach the Owl’s Golf Team after a 13-year hiatus. Zubrick came to UMPI in 1982 to work in the Theater program. In 1999, he succeeded Brian Manter as Golf Coach, a position he held until 2004. In 2003, he accepted a Theater position at UMFK and successfully urged the campus to reinstate its Golf Program, becoming the coach in 2005. After five seasons, which included two conference titles, the program closed.
Zubrick was bitten by the Golf bug during his sophomore year in high school, owing, in part, to his fascination with Arnold Palmer. Palmer lived about 30 miles from Zubrick’s home town of Donora, PA. Later, during his college years at St.Vincent’s in Latrobe, PA, Joe got to meet Palmer, along with Jack Nicklaus, during a memorable first day of work at Laurel Valley Golf Club in Ligonier, PA. Arnie was the touring professional and ambassador for the club and his spirit and infectious good will characterized the best of the sport.
Zubrick was self-taught, involving his mother in filming his swing so he could study it. He never had a chance to play competitively while in high school or college but did seek out league and tournament play when he got his first coaching assignment to better understand what his team was experiencing. His coaching/teaching method stresses fundamentals, strategy and consistency. “Golf is a game for a lifetime” is both a motto and a philosophy, best exemplified by Zubrick’s experience with the St. John Valley Seniors Association. There one can see golfers in their late 60’s through early 80’s enjoying the camaraderie and excitement of competition.