Conrad Ray, a former Cardinal standout student-athlete and touring golf professional, is Stanford’s Knowles Family Director of Men’s Golf. The 2018-19 season marks his 15th on The Farm.
During his tenure as head coach, Ray has led the Cardinal to 12 appearances in the NCAA Championships, including the school’s eighth national title in 2007.
Stanford student-athletes have been well decorated under Ray’s watch, as he has helped produce 24 All-Americans, four Pac-12 Players of the Year, three Pac-12 Scholar-Athletes of the Year, three Pac-12 Freshman of the Year and 19 All-Pac-12 first team selections.
“Stanford University and its men’s golf program are two things that I am very proud to be a part of,” Ray says. “The history of our program, the beautiful setting of the Stanford campus, the education that a student-athlete receives, the facilities we have at our disposal, and the people that make Stanford what it is are all things that I look forward to experiencing every day of the week.
“I feel fortunate to be able to try and do my part as the Knowles Family Director of Men’s Golf to continue to build upon our success and traditions, as well as have a hand in what the future holds for one of the all-time great collegiate golf programs in the history of the game.”
In 2017-18, Ray's squad earned six top-five finishes, including runner-up nods at the NCAA Pacific Regional in Stockton, California, the Nike Golf Collegiate Invite and the St. Mary's Invitational. The host Cardinal also secured a third at The Goodwin, a prestigious 26-team event held at Harding Park Golf Course in San Francisco, and wound up No. 14 nationally in the final Golfstat rankings,
Junior Isaiah Salinda sparked Stanford with a 15th-place showing at the NCAA Championships and was selected PING All-American honorable mention, marking the 14th-consecutive year a Cardinal has been recognized.
Junior Brandon Wu led the team with a 70.61 scoring average and recorded three top-5 finishes. He was named All-Pac-12 first team while, seniors Franklin Huang and Jeffrey Swegle made the second team, and Salinda was honorable mention. Five Stanford student-athletes were recognized by the conference for academic achievement.
The 2016-17 season featured a pair of team victories -- The Goodwin and NCAA Stanford Regional Championships -- and a top-20 finish at the NCAA Championships. The Cardinal ranked ninth in the final Golfweek poll after posting a 71.09 stroke average through 11 events.
Maverick McNealy, who finished his four years on The Farm with a school-record 70.13 career scoring average, earned All-America honors both on the course and in the classroom. The Ben Hogan Award winner also was named recipient of the Byron Nelson Award, given annually to the world's top amateur player. McNealy was the Pac-12 Scholar-Athlete of the Year and tied the Stanford record with 11 career wins.
Stanford shelved another highly successful season in 2015-16 under Ray's watch, highlighted by its third consecutive Pac-12 title. Heading into the NCAA Championships, Stanford was the nation's top-ranked team after finishing first in the NCAA Tucson Regional Championships, one of three wins on the season.
Ben Hogan Award finalist McNealy (4) and Franklin Huang (1) combined for five medalist honors and Stanford's 70.75 team stroke average was its best since the 2006-07 season (69.80). McNealy's 69.57 stroke average was second-best nationally, with David Boote (70.92) checking in at 20th. Seven different players logged at least one top-25 finish, led by McNealy (10) and Boote (9).
In 2016, McNealy was named the Pac-12 Men's Golfer of the Year with Ray copping Pac-12 Coach of the Year honors. Boote was named to the All-Pac-12 first team and Franklin Huang took home honorable mention accolades. Brandon Wu was named to the All-Pac-12 Freshman Team.
At the conclusion of the season, McNealy took over the top spot in the World Amateur Golf Rankings and Boote led Team Europe to the Arnold Cup Palmer title to wrap up his collegiate career.
The 2014-15 season was highlighted by back-to-back Pac-12 Conference titles for the first time in program history.
For the second consecutive season, the Cardinal produced the NCAA Division I Player of the Year, as McNealy followed in the footsteps of Patrick Rodgers by capturing the 2015 Jack Nicklaus Award and the Haskins Award, and was selected Pac-12 Player of the Year.
McNealy’s record-breaking season saw him claim medalist honors a nation-best six times. He set a single-season school record by averaging an NCAA-best 69.05 per round. It represented the second-lowest scoring average in NCAA Division I history behind Bill Haas of Wake Forest, who averaged 68.93 in the 2004.
McNealy won the NCAA Chapel Hill Regional, Southwestern Intercollegiate, Olympia Fields/Fighting Illini Invitational, The Prestige at PGA West, The Goodwin and the Pac-12 Championship. In the latter, he tied a school record by shooting a bogey-free final-round 61 at Palouse Ridge Golf Course in Pullman, Washington, to help Stanford overcome a nine-stroke deficit and win by 14 over runner-up Oregon.
McNealy pulled away for a 10-shot individual victory, with his 61 matching the previous best Cardinal round shared by Tiger Woods and Cameron Wilson. He also established a Pac-12 scoring record of 262, bettering the old mark of 265 set by Paul Casey of Arizona State in 1999 and 2000.
Ray led the 2014-15 unit to 11 top-10 finishes in 13 events. The Cardinal tied for 22nd at the NCAA Championships.
Ray, the 2014 Pac-12 Coach of the Year, directed Stanford to the semifinals of that season’s NCAA Championships after leading the field through the stroke-play portion of the event. The landmark roster featured Rodgers, the world’s top-ranked amateur, NCAA individual champion Cameron Wilson, NCAA bronze medalist David Boote and U.S. Open participant McNealy.
A Cardinal golfer claimed medalist honors in each of that season’s last seven events, as the team won six times during the campaign. Rodgers tied Tiger Woods’ school-record 11 career wins before pursuing a professional career after wrapping up his junior season.
Wilson, the third Cardinal ever to win the NCAA individual title, was the highest ranked United States player in the Palmer Cup rankings and copped the Arnold Palmer Individual National Champion Award.
Rodgers took home plenty of hardware during his junior campaign, including the Jack Nicklaus National Player of the Year, Haskins Award, Ben Hogan Award and Stanford’s Al Masters Award, given to the student-athlete who displays the highest standards of athletic performance, leadership and academic achievement
Wilson along with Rodgers, who was the Pac-12 Player of the Year and individual champion, earned All-America laurels for their performances both on the course and in the classroom.
In 2012-13, Ray guided Stanford to a seventh-place finish at the NCAA Regional. Rodgers tallied six top-10 finishes and three victories en route to his second consecutive PING first team All-America selection. Rodgers and three of his teammates earned Pac-12 all-academic honorable mention honors while Andrew Yun was named Pac-12 Scholar-Athlete of the Year.
Ray guided the Cardinal to a season-opening victory at Olympia Fields to open the 2011-12 campaign, where Rodgers won his first collegiate tournament after competing in the 2011 Walker Cup. Rogers would record five top-three and 10 top-10 finishes on the season.
Rodgers and Yun were named PING first-team All-Pac-12, and first- and second-team All-America, respectively. Rodgers won the Western Intercollegiate as Yun was victorious at the Pac-12 Championships along with his six top-10 finishes. Yun also posted a 4-0-0 record for the United States team that won the 2011 Palmer Cup.
Ray led the 2010-11 Cardinal squad to a pair of second-place finishes in the fall, one at The Prestige at PGA West where PING first team All-American Andrew Yun captured the individual championship.
Stanford enjoyed three top-four finishes in the spring, highlighted by a third-place finish at the Linger Longer Invitational. The team reached the NCAA regionals for the seventh consecutive season.
The 2009-10 edition of the Cardinal earned a preseason No. 1 ranking by Golfweek and enjoyed a trio of top-three finishes during the fall, including a first-place showing at the Gifford Invitational. Stanford also finished atop the leaderboard at the Mauna Lani Invitational to start the spring campaign.
Stanford finished second at the 2010 Pac-10 Championships and advanced to the NCAA Championships after winning the NCAA Regional. The Cardinal survived a three-way playoff to earn the final spot in the match play field, but was ousted in the first round by Oklahoma State.
David Chung and Sihwan Kim were named PING second team All-America, while Steve Ziegler was an honorable mention selection. Chung also earned first team all-Pac-10 honors, while Ziegler and Kim were second-team choices.
In 2008-09, Ray guided Stanford to the NCAA Championships, where the Cardinal tied for 20th and finished the season ranked fifth overall. During the season, the Cardinal posted four top-three finishes, capped off by winning the USC/Ashworth Invitational. Stanford golfers were well decorated with Ziegler earning PING All-America second-team honors. David Chung and Ziegler were all-Pac-10 selections. Ziegler, Dodge Kemmer and Daniel Lim earned all-academic Pac-10 honors with Kemmer also earning an Academic All-American citation.
Ziegler went on to represent the United States at the Palmer Cup.
Ray led his 2007-08 team to a fourth consecutive postseason appearance and third NCAA Championship since his start in 2004. On the extremely difficult Kampen Course at Purdue, the Cardinal improved four places on the leaderboard with each day of the tournament, but fell one stroke short of claiming its ninth NCAA title.
Sihwan Kim earned first-team PING All-America honors as a freshman, while four-year veteran Rob Grube earned third-team All-America marks. Grube and Kim were first-team all-Pac-10 selections, while Ziegler earned honorable mention nods.
Grube was named the men’s golf Pac-12 Scholar-Athlete of the Year.
Ray directed one of the most successful Stanford teams ever in 2006-07, guiding the Cardinal to its first national title since 1994. Ray, a member of that 1994 squad, became one of the elite few NCAA head coaches to have won an NCAA title as both a student-athlete and coach.
Under Ray’s guidance, the Cardinal led wire-to-wire at the 2007 NCAA Championships and claimed an eighth national title for the program in Williamsburg, Virginia.
The 12-stroke victory capped an impressive season during which the squad won seven tournaments and earned a No. 1 national ranking. All five Stanford golfers were named All-America at the conclusion of the season, the highest total in a single season in program history.
The squad produced one Academic All-American, three Pac-10 all-academic honorees, five all-conference selections, five all-region selections and one Golf Coaches Association of America All-Freshman honoree.
Ray was named the 2007 Pac-10 Coach of the Year, Pacific Regional Coach of the Year and the Dave Williams/Eaton Golfpride National Coach of the Year.
During Ray’s second season at the helm of the program, the Cardinal posted 10 top-10 finishes and advanced to the NCAA West Regional. Rob Grube was tabbed 2006 Pac-10 co-Player of the Year and was honored as an All-American for a second time.
In his first season on The Farm, Ray led the 2004-05 Cardinal to its first NCAA Championship appearance since 2001. Stanford tied for 18th overall while Grube tied for fifth individually, becoming the first Stanford golfer to record a top-five finish since 1998.
A three-year letterwinner for the Cardinal golf team, Ray was a member of the 1994 NCAA Championship squad and a teammate of Tiger Woods, Casey Martin and Notah Begay. He captained the team in 1997 and was an all-Pac-10 choice both on the course and in the classroom.
As a senior, Ray posted six top-10 finishes and nine under-par rounds. Ray’s 73.95 stroke average was second-best on the squad.
Ray qualified for the U.S. Open at Pinehurst in 2005. He has played on the Nationwide Tour and other world tours since 1998, achieving 12 top-10 finishes.
Ray has worked extensively with numerous golf instructors throughout the country, and has organized and administered various pro-am and fundraising golf tournaments, including the Karl Potach Memorial Tournament for children’s cancer research and the Bart McCormick Classic.
Ray has been a member of the Golf Coaches Association of America National Advisory Board since 2006 and was named the association’s president in 2014. When the two-year term as GCAA president ended in 2016, he began serving on the organization's board of directors as past president.
Ray was one of the three coaches selected by the Golf Coaches Association of America to lead the United States for the 2008 Palmer Cup in Scotland. The Americans led going into the last round of the tournament, but were edged out by the Europeans on the final day of play.
Ray is a 1997 graduate of Stanford where he earned a bachelor’s degree in public policy. He was a member of Sigma Chi fraternity, and received the 2017 Significant Sig Award by the Sigma Chi national fraternity.
Ray hosts a weekly radio show -- Golf U -- on SiriusXM PGA Tour Radio.
In 2011, Ray was inducted into the NCGA Hall of Fame.
Conrad and his wife, Jennifer, are the parents of three daughters -- Ella, Emerson and Jillian.