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CACC golf coach Dave Jennings (third from right) and his team with their championship trophy.

It’s no secret Central Alabama Community College golf coach Dave Jennings has a lot of connections. The man is in three separate halls of fame, and he’s also coached in several international tournaments.

But after the Trojans won the NJCAA Division-I men’s golf national championship last month, it wasn’t just Jennings getting a moment in the spotlight.

“I got blown up by every state in the union and four other countries from people that were congratulating us,” Jennings said. “We have already made international news. This is very, very good for our college and for the recognition for our athletics and what we can do.”

With this being the seventh overall national championship for Central Alabama and after Jennings was inducted into the Alabama Community College Conference Hall of Fame earlier this year, it’s becoming more clear that CACC is one of the top places in the junior college world for young golfers.

Golf in general is on the rise in Alexander City, as Benjamin Russell’s boys’ team has now advanced to the state tournament two years in a row.

“I feel like it shows you can do anything even if you’re from a small town,” said CACC freshman Dylan Moncus, a BRHS graduate. “Even if you’re from Alex City, you can still win a national championship, and you can still be great.”

Although Jennings and the Trojans have put Alexander City on the golfing map, the longtime coach knows it’s going to take continued participation and continued motivation from youngsters in the area to keep the sport alive and well.

Moncus was a product of Gary Hines, a golf professional who previously worked for the city course, and Jennings said Hines was constantly promoting the sport to area youth.

“A golf program is fun if they make it fun for the 6- and 7-year olds,” Jennings said. “Gary also had a program that developed good young golfers and made them want to play better and made them want to practice. We need someone to step in who’s a golf professional in this town and promote that.”

CACC has certainly done its part by making it easier for kids to dream about one day being national champs – just look at its record of wins.