Ben Portie, the winner of the 2011 Colorado Open who qualified for the 2002 U.S. Open, was named the new head coach of the NCAA Division I women's golf program at the University of Northern Colorado on Thursday.
Portie, who was the first women's golf coach at Metropolitan State University of Denver the last four seasons, replaces Stephen Bidne, who resigned from the UNC post to take the same job at the University of Hawaii.
Metro State hosted the NCAA Division II Championship Finals last year, and Portie played a key role as the women's tournament was played at CommonGround Golf Course and the men's at Green Valley Ranch Golf Club.
Prior to coaching at Metro State -- where he led the Roadrunners to Rocky Mountain Athletic Conference titles in 2015 and '16 -- Portie was an assistant coach for both the men's and women's programs at UNC from 2010 to '13. The 2012 squad won the Big Sky Conference tournament title.
"I feel extremely fortunate to be a part of the UNC Bear family again," Portie said in a UNC press release. "I am looking forward to jumping right in and helping our current Bear golf team be successful in the classroom, community and golf course."
Portie played his college golf at the University of Colorado, and the left-hander led the way indiviudally the last time the Buff men competed in the NCAA Finals, in 2002. As a pro, besides winning a Colorado Open, Portie has captured the title twice in the Rocky Mountain Open.
As an amateur, Portie was the CGA Les Fowler Player of the Year in 2001.
UNC is one of four NCAA Division I women's golf programs based in Colorado, along with CU, Colorado State University and the University of Denver.