GVSU golf team finds gem in Rosekrans
Bissell recruits high school teammate, Oakland transfer
Trevor Rosekrans stands alone on a green sprawl at the driving range of The Meadows Golf Course. A bucket of yellow practice balls sits off to his right, each one awaiting the fate of its brother before. A moment of calm ensues, followed by a sharp thwack, a zooming ascension and ultimately an unexpectedly soft landing. The ball rarely varies from its pin-straight path. Years of practice, taken day by day, are apparent.
Rosekrans knows what he’s doing, right down to the last detail – and that seems to be a familiar theme for this future medical student.
For the newest member of the Grand Valley State University men’s golf team, excelling on the course has become second nature over the years. Just as impressive, however, are his skills away from the links.
A biology major, Rosekrans earned his undergraduate degree in a mere three years at NCAA Division I Oakland University. He performed double duty, playing varsity golf as he whipped through the academic portion of his commitment.
Now, with his fourth year of NCAA eligibility, the Williamston, Mich. native is preparing to compete for GVSU. If past performances are an indication of his potential as a Laker, then men’s golf coach Gary Bissell will be pleased with his presence.
“It would be pretty shocking to me if he wasn’t a serious contributor for us,” Bissell said. “He’s an excellent ball striker, has a great iron game and is really good with his driver. I anticipate that he’s going to help us a lot.”
Bissell first became acquainted with Rosekrans many moons ago at Haslett High School. Rosekrans was getting his feet wet as a freshmen while Bissell, a senior at the time, was preparing for a bigger golf stage at Ferris State University. After Rosekrans said his goodbyes to Haslett, he made the short trip east to OU.
As a freshman, Rosekrans immediately displayed his value to the Golden Grizzlies. He competed in seven tournaments in his inaugural collegiate season, posting a scoring average of just over 77 strokes per round. His sophomore year was much of the same, as he participated in five tournaments while knocking his stroke average down to 75.83.
During his third year at Oakland, academics began to take over. Rosekrans competed in just one tournament while putting the finishing touches on his biology degree. He intends to attend GVSU for post-graduate studies, but the late manner in which he made his school selection barred him from admission to the program. During the fall semester, Rosekrans plans on taking classes to prepare him for his MCAT in hopes of achieving his looming goal of going to medical school.
His spare time will be filled with golf – and not much else.
“Trevor is basically going to live (at The Meadows),” Bissell said. “The more he can be seen out on the course and in the classroom, the more of a leader he can be. When he’s having success, he’s having success the right way.”
Despite being in Allendale for just a handful of weeks, Rosekrans said he feels a minimal sense of alienation or displacement. Summer tournaments and the familiar circuit of Michigan collegiate golfers has allowed him to develop a rapport with many of his current teammates prior to his arrival on campus. The squad’s Haslett triumvirate is finished off by junior Chris Beltzer, another one of Rosekrans’ high school teammates.
The experience, knowledge and age that Rosekrans brings to the course day in and day out make him a de facto leader for the talented club. Like most things that he faces, he intends to take his newfound leadership role with gusto and determination.
“I want to lead by example,” said Rosekrans, who rarely misses a day on the driving range. “(Redshirt senior Jack Rider) and I are the oldest and we have a lot of weight on our shoulders to lead and show what the right thing to do is.
“I think if everyone is on the same page, working hard and making this team a priority, then we can have an impressive year.”
The Lakers, a preseason candidate to win the GLIAC, feature a talented roster. Along with Rosekrans, GVSU added two more golfers in the offseason – freshmen Brent Marshall and Domenic Mancinelli.
For both freshmen and a host of Lakers eager to improve their game, Rosekrans figures to be an everyday model of success.
“Trevor having done it before at the D1 level is great,” Marshall said. “It’s good to have someone there who you can look up to as an example – to understand how to figure out how to manage your time with golf and school.”
Rosekrans and the Lakers open their season on Sept. 15 at the University of Indianapolis Invitational at Brickyard Crossings Golf Course.