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New Mexico State University

New Mexico State University

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Turf Bowl competition is more than watching grass grow

Students in New Mexico State University's burgeoning Turfgrass Science and Management program competed Feb. 23 in the Collegiate Turf Bowl in Anaheim, Calif. They were the first NMSU students ever to compete in the event.

Sponsored by the Golf Course Superintendents of America Association, 81 teams from universities across the nation competed in the event, which was held in tandem with the association's annual meeting.

"I am very proud of the students. They did very well for their first time in competition and gained experience that will help them compete next year," said Ryan Goss, coach.

Students Roy Johnson, of Silver City, N.M., Brett Thornsbury, of Clovis, N.M., and Matt Alcala and Jason Tomko, both of Farmington, N.M., identified plant, weed and insect species at the competition, along with solving business-related problems in the field of turfgrass management, such as budget and employee situations.

The students, also part of NMSU's turf club, set up an informational booth at the association meeting.

Goss said the students met twice a week to study in preparation for the competition. The students plan to do a significant amount of fundraising to finance next year's trip to compete, including hosting a golf tournament in the fall.

"This was a great opportunity for the students. In addition to competing, they got to meet with people in the industry, hand out resumes and go through informal interviews," Goss said.

Goss plans to coach a Turf Bowl team next year, and anyone who is interested in more information should contact him at (505) 646-3297.