University of Minnesota head women’s golf coach Katie Hanneman announced her resignation today effective January 2, 2007. Hanneman leaves her post after four-plus seasons at the helm of Golden Gopher Women’s Golf. Hanneman plans to devote more time to her family after she, and her husband Todd, had their first child in September. Assistant coach Kris Wessinger was named interim head coach for the rest of the season.
“This was a very difficult decision for me personally,” Hanneman said. “I don’t believe I can give the program the attention it deserves and take care of my family as well. Both are full-time jobs and I want what’s best for the University. I want to thank Joel for his understanding and his friendship during my tenure at Minnesota. Thankfully, I’m leaving the program in the very capable hands of Kris. I’m positive she will do a tremendous job.”
Hanneman rebuilt the Gopher Golf program after it was threatened with extinction in 2000. In Hanneman’s four seasons at Minnesota, the Gophers won a team title in each season and Gopher golfers won four individual crowns during her tenure.
“We understand Katie’s decision to leave coaching to spend full time with her young daughter,” said University of Minnesota Athletics Director Joel Maturi. “Katie took over the program at a time when it was scheduled to be eliminated and restored energy and respect to the program. We wish her and her family all the best.”
Wessinger has been Hanneman’s assistant since she took over the program. During the fall 2006 season while Hanneman was on maternity leave, Wessinger led the Gophers to a tournament victory at the DeBary Intercollegiate to end the fall season.
“I’m excited about the opportunity to lead the Golden Gopher Golf Program,” Wessinger said. “We have a great group of young players and we hope to carry the momentum we established in the fall over to the spring season. I’ll always be indebted to Katie for hiring me as her assistant, she’s a great friend, and will always be a part of Gopher Golf.”