Meet the Coach: Tom Oppedisano, Men's Golf
Tom Oppedisano grew up in the Saratoga Springs area, and to this day considers himself a Saratogian at heart. He started playing golf at a young age at the Ballston Spa Country Club and attended Amsterdam High School. After high school, Coach Oppedisano graduated from Clemson University with a degree in business management and economics.
After college, Oppedisano turned pro and entered the PGA Apprentice Program, working as an Assistant Professional at Oneonta, Pinehaven and McGregor Links Community Colleges in 1997, under longtime friend and mentor, Mike Shpur, where he witnessed arguably the best Skidmore team to date.
Oppedisano earned his Class “A” PGA Membership in the fall of 1996 and served Commonwealth National Golf Club in Philadelphia and Woodlake Golf & Community College on the Jersey Shore as Head Professional, before returning to the area as Head Professional at Orchard Creek GC in Altamont. Finally, Oppedisano found himself back at McGregor Links Community College, here in Saratoga – the traditional home of Skidmore Golf, this time as Head Professional.
In the fall of 2013, Tom Oppedisano received his opportunity to enter the world of college coaching as the Assistant Coach of the Skidmore College Golf Team. Now the head coach, Oppedisano served as the Assistant Coach for two years under Coach Fred Fruisen before taking over the reins in 2015. When asked about the past success of the program, Coach Oppedisano credits it mainly to former athletic director Tim Brown who has had a tremendous amount of influence on Skidmore sports.
In his first act as a Head Coach during Coach Fruisen’s leave, Coach Oppedisano led the Thoroughbreds to a win at the Myrtle Beach Shootout. He followed that up with a great showing at the Marine Federal Credit Union Intercollegiate Golf Championship, at Camp LeJeune Marine Base in Wilmington, NC, and a win at the NYU Fall Invitational.
Coach Oppedisano takes his role very seriously, whether it relates to grooming great players or great people. When it comes to coaching great players, Oppedisano believes it comes down to having a healthy culture of competition within the team as well as with other teams. Internal competition keeps everyone sharp and fighting for starting positions. Helping his players become great people is equally important to Oppedisano, and he believes this is done with support, guidance and a healthy culture off the course.
Looking to the future, Coach Oppedisano has big expectations for the Skidmore Golf Program. His goals include stabilizing the coaching staff, engaging alumni, upgrading facilities and amenities, as well as obtaining quality Assistant Coaches that will help the players grow both on and off the course. Current Assistant Coach, Scott Berliner, is one of the best players ever to come from upstate NY, and just earned his fourth in five years NENY PGA Player of the Year Award.
Achieving these goals will not only help the current team, but will do a lot in the way of recruiting future great players.
The Skidmore Men’s Golf Team already had a great fall season and is looking forward to having a successful spring. If you would like to follow the golf team, they can be found at the new Facebook page “Skidmore College Golf” (https://www.facebook.com/SkidmoreGolf?fref=ts ). The team’s matches are also available on the Skidmore Athletics website (http://www.skidmoreathletics.com/)