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Former New Mexico State Head Coach, GCAA Hall of Famer Herb Wimberly, Dies at 89

 Coach Herb Wimberly left his mark in various ways throughout his time at New Mexico State and touched the lives of many. He will always be a legendary figure in the game of golf and will be deeply missed by many. The NMSU Men’s Golf Team and all of NMSU send thoughts and prayers to the Wimberly family as we all have lost a true inspiration.

The family of Coach Wimberly will hold a service on February 24th at St. Paul United Methodist Church at 11am. The service will be open to the public. More information will be announced closer to the service date.

Wimberly was inducted into the PGA of America Hall of Fame in October 2023, adding another Hall of Fame honor to his resume which includes the University of New Mexico Hall of Fame, the New Mexico State University Hall of Fame, and the Golf Coaches Association of America Hall of Fame, which he was inducted in in 1985.

Below is a snapshot of Coach Wimberly’s successes throughout his amazing career:

Herb was out front leading the way for golf in our area throughout the 60s, 70s, 80s and 90s.  His inspiration to his fellow PGA members has been laid out by demonstration and action.  Building the New Mexico State University Golf Course and the NMSU Division I Men’s Golf Program from the ground up and leading them for more than 30 years as Head Golf Professional and Head Men’s Golf Coach. He is also the brother of NMSHOF member, Guy Wimberly.  He was one of the more well-rounded PGA members of his time or any other.  There were guys who built courses, or built programs or focused on education, etc.  Not as many however made a serious impact in all of these areas.  Serving as the Southwest Section President despite living in the rural New Mexico Chapter some six hours from the metropolitan hub of the Section, Phoenix, AZ.  Herb was also one of the founding fathers of the newly created Sun Country PGA Section and was elected as its first President in 1974.  He was also the first PGA member to serve as the President of two different PGA Sections.  In 1988  brought the PGA Golf Management Program to NMSU, one of only three such programs at the time and served as its Co-Director and Assistant Professor from 1987-93.  Herb was also one of the forefathers of the College Golf Coaches Association of America having served as its President from 1972-73 and he spent six years serving on the NCAA Golf Committee, two of which were as its Chairman from 1975-77. Herb has also been recognized by his former employer, New Mexico State University on several occasions, including receiving the 2011 Traders Award and an honorary Ph.D., both from the NMSU Business Department. Despite being retired from NMSU for more than 20 years, Herb continues to give golf lessons to individual students and consult for the NMSU PGA Golf Management program.  Herb was a very accomplished player in his day, which included winning the 1960 & 1962 New Mexico Opens and the 1960 Hilton Open.  In the Sun Country Section Herb claimed the 1974 Match Play Championship, the 1967 & 1971 Pro-Pro Championship and the 1987 Senior-Junior Championship.  In college, at the University of New Mexico, the former UNM Lobo won the inaugural Tucker Intercollegiate in 1955 (which has since become one of the oldest and most prestigious collegiate events in the country hosted by the University of New Mexico) and was the Skyline Conference Champion in 1956. Herb is a member of the University of New Mexico Hall of Fame, the New Mexico State University Hall of Fame and the Golf Coaches Association of America Hall of Fame. Herb has achieved Half-Century club membership in the PGA having been elected to membership in 1963.  As NMSU Head Coach, Herb’s teams won six Missouri Valley Conference titles and one Big West Conference title. Herb was also a six-time Missouri Valley Conference Coach of the Year and the Big West Conference Coach of the Year once. Herb coached 18 All-Americans at NMSU and his teams won more than 20 tournaments, finishing second more than 20 additional times while competing in more than 200 events. Herb’s teams qualified for 13 NCAA Championships including 10 in a row at one point. Herb and his committee hosted the 1968 NCAA Championships at the NMSU Golf Course.  The event was so well received; it changed the negative perception that came with hosting the NCAA Championship showing value to future host facilities.  That event was also the first NCAA Championship to use computerized results. Herb is a recipient of the Rolex Golf Coaches Association Honors Award. Herb has a collegiate event (the Herb Wimberly Intercollegiate), two scholarships and a street named after him.  The Sun Country Amateur Golf Association named their Senior Four Ball Championship after Herb and his brother Guy in 2013, officially calling it The Wimberly Cup.

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