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Mickelson's brother resigns as Arizona State coach

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Former Arizona State Sun Devils men's head coach Tim Mickelson.  - 

Tim Mickelson has resigned after five seasons as the head coach of the Arizona State men’s golf team, the school announced Wednesday.

Mickelson said in a statement that he left to “pursue other business opportunities outside of the college athletics world.”

Assistant Judd Easterling was named the interim coach until a replacement is hired by the school.

With two-time Hogan Award winner Jon Rahm leading the way, Mickelson, the younger brother of PGA Tour player Phil Mickelson, positioned Arizona State as a top-10 team the past few seasons. The Sun Devils finished the 2015-16 season at No. 7 in Golfstat’s rankings, and the head-coaching vacancy will be the most sought-after opening in college golf.

There was speculation this spring that Mickelson would join Rahm in the pros and become the Spaniard’s agent – the path taken by former ASU coach Steve Loy, who coached Phil Mickelson in the early 1990s and has worked as his manager since 1992 – but Tim Mickelson said in a text message to GolfChannel.com on Wednesday night that “nothing is finalized right now.” 

“I wanted to step away the right way first,” he said. “Now I will pursue some options.”

Prior to arriving at Arizona State, Mickelson spent eight years at San Diego, where he built the program into a national contender.

“ASU has always been a special place for collegiate golf,” he said in a statement, “and it has been an honor to serve as the head coach of the Sun Devil men’s golf program.”