The Landfall Tradition

The 16th Annual Collegiate Golf Tournament

The History Of The Landfall Tradition

Supporting UNCW Scholarships and Golf Programs Since 2002

The inaugural Landfall Tradition was held in 2002, but the idea of creating a major fall collegiate golf tournament in Wilmington, NC featuring 24 of the nation's top teams began as a dream many months before. In the fall of 2001, Pete Hexter, a local entrepreneur and avid supporter of the golf programs at the University of North Carolina in Wilmington, had taken the idea to Jan Mann, then the UNCW women's golf coach. Hexter's concept was to hold a fall tournament on the Nicklaus and Dye courses at the Country Club of Landfall, invite the top college teams in the country, and have the proceeds benefit the golf programs at UNCW. He asked Jan and Grant Robbins, the men's coach, for "Wish Lists" of teams they would like to invite, sold the idea to the Country Club of Landfall whose members eagerly embraced the concept, and started making phone calls. And, as they say, "The rest is history."

2010 Championship at Landfall Still Ranked Tops

From the recent 2012 NCAA Women’s Championship held at Vanderbilt University came two terrific compliments from Golfweek writers covering the event but still remembering the Championship of 2010 at Landfall.  

First, from Golfweek's Senior Writer, Beth Ann Baldry:

May 22, 2012 - The best NCAA Championship of the past decade took place two years ago in Wilmington, N.C., at the Country Club of Landfall. The community support in Wilmington was tremendous. The NCAA Championship should feel like a grand stage; there should be a buzz. The residents of Landfall were filling bleachers, their backyards and a local trolley that dropped off fans just outside the clubhouse. The Pete Dye Course provided plenty of drama, and the sweet tea and lunch spread provided for the media didn't hurt either.”

And then, from Golfweek's Assistant Editor, Lance Ringler who rated the past ten championships:

May 24, 2012 - "However, the Vanderbilt Legends Club has a tough recent act to follow. Two years ago, UNC-Wilmington hosted the NCAA Championship at Country Club of Landfall in Wilmington, N.C., by far the best venue we have seen – at least in my 13 years. And, though this week is good – very good – I am sticking with the 2010 event at the top of the list.

It was extremely close, and I even consulted with my colleagues from Golfweek before making a final choice, but the deciding factors came down to the size and intensity of the galleries, to Landfall being a bit more demanding as a golf course and, of course, the food.

A total of 5,034 tickets were sold at Landfall, and there were probably more fans than that at the course. The homes surrounding the course that week are what made the championship a spectacle. There were numerous "tailgate" parties, complete with school flags waving and people cheering the players on as they came by. Also, the fried chicken and sweet tea in Wilmington will be hard to top by any future venue."

Ringler's "Championship Feel Test" Rankings

  1. 2010 at Landfall Tradition (UNCW)
  2. 2012 at Vanderbilt Legends Club
  3. 2004 at Auburn (Grand National)
  4. 2003 at Purdue's Kampen Course
  5. 2008 at University of New Mexico GC
  6. 2002 at Washington National GC
  7. 2011 at Traditions Club at Texas A&M
  8. 2006 at Ohio State's Scarlet Course
  9. 2001 at Mission Inn Resort, Howey-in-the-Hills, Fla.
  10. 2009 at Caves Valley Golf Club (Georgetown)
  11. 2000 at Sun River Crosswater GC
  12. 2005 at Sun River Meadows GC
  13. 2007 at LPGA International