Nick Dilio, Saint Peter’s University’s head men’s golf coach, is resigning from his position, according to Athletic Director Bryan Felt.
Felt said last week that Dilio, the four-year head coach, resigned to pursue a career in professional golf. This is the third reported leave within the university’s athletic department within the past two months.
"The support and commitment made to me over my entire seven-year career has been outstanding,” Dilio told SPU Athletics in a statement.
Dilio said that he’s thought about becoming a professional tour player for years, and now, it’s his time to take the steps to move up into golf’s professional ranks.
In August 2018, Dilio became the only player to win four consecutive Dutchess County Amateur tournaments and has won five of the past six tournaments. He is also the second player to win the amateur at least five times.
Dilio also competed in the summer of 2016 at the prestigious Porter Cup, which ranks as one of the top amateur tournaments in the world. The Porter Cup has hosted many world renowned players, including Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Davis Love and David Duval.
The Saint Peter’s alum, who took the reins just months after his graduation in 2016, led the Peacocks to a MAAC Team Championship in 2017 followed by an appearance in an NCAA Regional, as well as a runner-up finish in 2019. He has helped coached two MAAC Individual Champions, two MAAC Most Valuable Players and seven All-MAAC honorees.
He was also named as the MAAC Coach of the Year during his first season in 2017, becoming only the second Saint Peter's coach to claim the award. Previous head golf coach Peter Falloon was the first SPU coach to win the award.
But before he was an award-winning coach, he was an award-winning player, which helped the young coach create a connection with his team who had one of the top records among SPU’s athletic programs.
“There are many coaches that make their players do certain drills every time, but Nick lets everyone choose what drills they want to do,” Jose Cardona ‘19, Dilio’s former teammate and player, previously told The Pauw Wow. “There has been a stronger bond between Nick and the players than with our last coach.”
Dilio ended his collegiate playing career by claiming the 2016 MAAC Individual title -- the first ever for SPU. He was later the recipient of the McLeod Trophy as the tournament's most valuable player and qualified for the NCAA Regional tournament as an individual.
Dilio ranked within the MAAC throughout his collegiate career, making him a three-time All-MAAC recipient and four-time top-15 finisher at the MAAC Championships: finished as the MAAC individual runner-up as a junior, placed eighth as a sophomore and was 15th as a freshman. The three All-MAAC selections were a first for the program.
Dilio's teams won back-to-back MAAC Team Championships in 2014 and 2015, making him a three-time NCAA Regional participant during his four-year career. Dilio is the only person in MAAC history to win both the McLeod Trophy as a player and the Coach of the Year trophy as a head coach.
"I want to thank Coach Dilio for his time at Saint Peter's as both a student-athlete and head coach for the men's golf program," Felt told SPU Athletics in a statement. "He has brought a tremendous amount of success to the program in both capacities, and his presence as a coach and mentor for Saint Peter's student-athletes will be greatly missed."
The university will begin a national search for Dilio’s replacement.
“If I didn’t get this opportunity, all the accomplishments that did happen in college wouldn’t have happened,” Dilio previously told The Pauw Wow. “This coaching job wouldn’t have happened. A lot of things wouldn’t have happened if it didn’t start at St. Peter’s. Getting that scholarship was the biggest accomplishment.”