Thursday, Feb. 12, 2009 | 2:04 p.m.
Growing up a football coach's son has left a lasting impression on Matthew Grobe, even if he has focused on golf for the last two decades.
Grobe, the head golf professional at DragonRidge Country Club, said being part of a diehard football family has shaped his career.
He approaches his work like it is a team sport, working closely with club members and other professionals.
The PGA Southwest Section paid respect to Grobe's efforts at its year-end banquet on Jan. 6, when it presented him with the Bill Strausbaugh Award for his work with other golf professionals.
"This is probably the award I am most proud of for receiving," he said. "When you're looked at by other golf professionals as someone who gives back, it's quite an honor."
Grobe, 38, said what he learned growing up with his father, Wake Forest head football coach Jim Grobe, has been a major influence in his success.
Jim Grobe coached Ohio University for five seasons before taking over Wake Forest in 2000. He was named Associated Press' Coach of the Year with the team in 2006.
Matthew Grobe played high school football under his father in his native West Virginia. But injuries cut his football days short, leaving Matthew Grobe looking for a new sport.
"My dad's philosophy was a kid either has to play a sport or work when they're going through high school," he said. "When I got hurt again, he told me either I need to find another sport or get a job, so I found golf."
Matthew Grobe went on to play golf in college at Air Force and Marshall University. The reality of pursing a professional golf career as a competitor was slim, but he knew he wanted to stay involved.
He moved to Nevada in 1997 to work for Primm Valley Golf Club. After working in several local clubs, he went to DragonRidge in 2006.
"Every day Matt comes into work it's obvious that he has a love for golf and the PGA," said Chris Vossekuil, first assistant professional at DragonRidge. "He's an easy going guy. There are so many people in the Valley who want to work with him."
Matthew Grobe said his favorite part of his job is working with people.
The Las Vegas Chapter recognized him with its local Bill Strausbaugh award and as the local professional of the year in 2004.
But for all the honors, Matthew Grobe said, he is most proud that golf has helped keep his family together.
"I found a sport that all of us ended up loving," he said. "When we get together we probably play golf every day. This game has actually given my family a way to spend quality time together."
Sean Ammerman can be reached at 990-2661 or [email protected].