Former Player, Coach Karen Bahnsen In 2023 Alabama Sports Hall Of Fame Class – LSU

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Baton Rouge – Karen Mason Bernsen, LSU Women’s Golf’s first recruit and later longtime LSU team coach, was announced this week as a member of the 2023 induction class of the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame in Birmingham.

The announcement was made by the HOF Board of Directors following a vote by a statewide selection committee. This would be his 55th class to be inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame. His eight newly elected inductees bring the total number of members to 393.

The Hall of Fame Induction Dinner and Ceremony will be held on May 13, 2023 in the Birmingham Ballroom at the Sheraton Birmingham Hotel.

Joining Bernsen’s class are footballers Carlos Dansby, Roman Harper, Roddy White and coach Jackie Sherrill. Representing the class basketball are Larry Kennon, Theo Ratliff and Gerald Wallace.

Bahnsen was inducted into her home state’s Hall of Fame through the Mobile Sports Hall of Fame and in 2009 into the Women’s Golf Coaches Hall of Fame. She was inducted into the Mobile Hall of Fame alongside her late mother, who was an Alabama state game coach and also her four-time champion of the state.

In his hometown of Mobile, Bernsen prepared for All-American at McGilturen High School and led the school to two state titles, winning a state individual championship and a national high school tournament title in 1979.

She was the initial recruit for the fledgling LSU Women’s Golf program launched for the 1979-80 season and helped form the team that would make the first tees in LSU Women’s Golf.

Bernsen graduated from LSU in 1984 and was later named the women’s head coach prior to the 1984-85 season. In her second year, she was the number one player in the country, five teams her titles, top 10 she won the NCAA championship. She continued that success until her retirement following her 2018 season.

Its number one player, Jenny Ridback, won seven college titles with LSU in 1986, adding a major LPGA title to her resume.

Bernsen has become a historian of the sport of college golf in many ways, especially in the LSU and Southeastern Conferences. She has seen the sport improve in so many ways with better equipment, better scores and better players. As she dedicates hours of coverage to wall-to-wall coverage of that exciting match-play final, she’s seen the sport she loves progress into the age of television.

The Tigers have participated in postseason play more than 20 times. Her team has made her top 10 seven times, including her impressive third-place finish in 2011 and her 2012. She coached her NCAA champion in 2011. She won the LPGA Tour three times.

Bahnsen’s love and desire for a program to which she has devoted more than half her life is what gave her the smiling satisfaction of a program she helped design virtually from the ground up. It rose to the light, a position it maintains to this day.

Once again, in May 2023, she will be in the spotlight and inducted into the Alabama Sports Hall of Fame.

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