The Wyoming Cowboy golf program is in its' 10th season under the direction of Joe Jensen. In addition to serving as the head coach of the men’s golf program, Jensen is in his sixth year as Director of UW Men’s & Women’s Golf.
Jensen has directed the Cowboy golf program during one of the most competitive eras in UW's 70-year men's golf history. Under Jensen's direction the Cowboys have set school records for low individual round and event score, as well as low team round and event score.
The 2009-10 season was a banner year for the Cowboys as they sent their first golfer to the NCAA Regional Tournament since 2002, as well as being named a Golf Coaches Association of America All-Academic team. Cowboy Gabe Maier earned UW's first NCAA Regional Tournament berth since 2002 with his 12th place finish at the Mountain West Conference Championship.
Also during the 2009-10 season the Cowboys were named a GCAA All-Academic Team with a combined GPA of 3.18. Cowboy golfers Phil Henzlik, Maier, Zach Zaremba and Casey Ruff were all named Academic All-MWC. Henzlik and Ruff also earned MWC Scholar-Athlete Awards.
In addition to the numerous school records, the Wyoming golf program added two individual tournament championships in 2009. Cowgirl Jonelle Martinez won the 2009 Mountain West Conference Championship and Cowboy Gabe Maier won the 2009 University of Wyoming Desert Intercollegiate.
A native of Lander, Wyo. and a former member of the UW golf team, Jensen earned his bachelor’s degree in arts and sciences from the University of Wyoming in 1998 and completed his MBA at UW in December of 2006.
In addition to his coaching duties, Jensen manages and is the head golf professional at Glenn “Red” Jacoby Golf Club at the University of Wyoming. Jensen, 39 (born April 10, 1970) was hired as the Cowboy golf coach on Dec. 7, 2001 and named Director of Wyoming Golf on Aug. 18, 2005.
“I’m excited about my role as director of both Wyoming Golf programs,” Jensen said. “We are working hard and I’m pleased with the direction of both the men’s and women’s programs.
“It’s such a privilege to be a part of the Wyoming Athletics program and to bring student-athletes to UW and Laramie. I enjoy working at the school I graduated from, in my home state, and in a place where I have so many friends and family.”
Jensen was a member of the Cowboy golf team during the 1992-93 season, but turned professional in 1993, and became an assistant golf pro at the Jacoby Golf Club. During his six years in that position, he was responsible for the daily operation of the course. His duties also included serving as an assistant coach with the golf team.
In 1999, Jensen moved to the Pelican Lakes Golf and Country Club in Windsor, Colo., where he was a golf assistant. There he assisted in the daily operation of the golf course and coordinated a number of golf tournaments. He also taught group and junior golf lessons. In addition to his golf club duties, he was a financial representative for Northwestern Mutual Financial Network and later worked for the Bank of Colorado/Raymond James Financial Services in Fort Collins, Colo.
He has organized the Wyoming-CSU Border Fore Golf Tournament since 2001, as well as the Old Baldy Cowboy Golf Classic. Proceeds from these events are given to charity and used as fundraisers for UW Athletics. Both tournaments have been established as annual events.
In 2003, Jensen initiated the UW/Cleveland Golf Cowboy Classic collegiate tournament. The event is held each spring in Scottsdale, Ariz., and hosts many of the top college golf programs in the country. In 2005 Jensen’s Cowboy squad placed second of 20 teams in the event.
In 2007, the Cowgirls hosted the first annual Cowgirl Classic during the same week as the men's event. The Cowgirls' event will be held for the fourth consecutive season during the spring of 2010 at the Ocotillo Golf Club in Chandler, Ariz.
In addition to the Cowboy and Cowgirl Classics held each spring in the Phoenix area, the Cowboys began hosting a fall tournament in 2008. The second annual Wyoming Desert Intercollegiate was held on Oct. 5-6, 2009 at the Classic Club in Palm Desert, Calif. The Classic Club is the host course of the PGA's Bob Hope Chrysler Classic.
Jensen’s teams annually excel in the classroom, as evident in 2005 and 2006 when Cowboy golfer Dan Silva was named a Cleveland Golf All-America Scholar by the GCAA in back-to-back years.
During his first two seasons as head coach, Jensen coached All-Southwest Region selection Mike Urbatchka in 2002 and All-America Scholar honoree Kurt Kowaluk in 2003. His teams have also been recognized for their efforts off of the course by winning the Athletics Director Award two times. The annual award, which is based on excellence in athletics, team GPA and community service, was given to the Cowboy golf team in 2001-02 and 2002-03.
In the summer of 2009, Jensen was involved in the Palmer Cup, which is college golf's version of the Ryder Cup. The event, which pits 10 American college players against 10 college players from Europe, was played at Cherry Hills Country Club in Denver, Colo. For his efforts with the Palmer Cup, Jensen was recognized by the Golf Coaches Association of America this past December.
Active within the community, Jensen is currently on the University of Wyoming Academic Planning Committee. He is also Chairman of the Board of the UW First Tee Chapter, a nationally recognized junior golf program primarily supported by the PGA and USTA with a curriculum of life skills and golf skills. Jensen was instrumental in organizing UW's First Tee program and served as the chapter's executive director for a year.