PERKINSTON — Mississippi Gulf Coast golfer Brice Wilkinson has signed a letter of intent to continue his collegiate career at Division I Southern Miss.
"Being down here and close to Hattiesburg got me the recognition I needed to be able to go play D-I," he said. "With Coach (Tommy) Snell helping me all the way, that got me to where I'm going."
Wilkinson, a sophomore from Madison Central, won the Phil Mickelson Award last season, presented to the top freshman in NJCAA Division II. He helped lead the Bulldogs to the national championship by finishing tied for sixth in Foley, Ala.
"It's always good to see our guys go D-I, of course. We have so many of them," Snell said. "I think USM is a great fit for him. I don't really push my players one place or another. He was the one who came back and was emphatic about it. He said, 'This is a great fit for me, Coach.'"
Wilkinson was also one of six finalists for the Jack Nicklaus Award, given to the national player of the year. He was named to the PING Division II All-American First Team, the NJCAA Division II All-American First Team and All-MACJC First Team. He had seven top-five finishes and won medalist at the NJCAA District D Tournament.
In 2018, he has shared the individual championship at the second MACJC event and has three top-five finishes in four outings.
Southern Miss is coached by Eddie Brescher, who is in his first season as men's coach in Hattiesburg. Southern Miss participates in Conference USA.
"I like the coach a lot. He's a really nice guy," Wilkinson said. "They offered me a tremendous scholarship which was almost impossible to turn down. Their facilities, the team, everything about it seems like it would be good for me."
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