CHAMPAIGN — Illinois junior Thomas Pieters, the 2012 NCAA individual champion, plans to turn pro after his 2013 spring season, men’s golf coach Mike Small said Tuesday.
“My experience at Illinois has been awesome and I feel like I have had a very good college career, but my dream has always been to become a professional golfer, and the time will be right after this season. I want to thank Coach Small and Coach (Zach) Guthrie for their incredible support and guidance over the past three years. I couldn’t be where I am today without them, and I know they will be a great resource for me as I move into professional golf,” Pieters said.
Pieters was the Illini’s top finisher in seven of 12 tournaments last year and was selected first-team All-American and first-team All-Big Ten.
“Thomas has had a great career at Illinois and has a number of impressive accomplishments,” Small said. “But it’s time for him to move on with his career and enter the world of professional golf.”