A native of Valley Hill, ND and a graduate of Ohio State University, Joseph E. Carlson joined the UC Davis department of physical education faculty in 1962. He took over as head coach of the Aggie men's basketball program for the 1963-64 season and, one year later, guided the program to its first winning season since 1952. In 1967, his final year at the helm of the basketball program, he led UC Davis to its first-ever NCAA postseason appearance. The Aggies went 21-7, a record for victories that stood for almost three decades.
Carlson turned over the basketball program to Bob Hamilton, then took the reins of the UC Davis golf program. He brought the Aggies to national prominence during his 24-year career, making 16 team appearances at the NCAA Championships. Carlson reached the pinnacle of success in 1979, when his team captured the Division II title -- the first-ever national championship in any UC Davis sport.
Carlson stepped down as golf coach in 1992 and retired from the P.E. (now exercise science) department one year later. He was inducted into the Cal Aggie Athletics Hall of Fame in 2000.
Carlson Scholar-Athletes: 2016-Ryan Han; 2015-Mike Brockington; 2014-Mike Brockington; 2013-Mike Brockington; 2012-Joshua Granger; 2011-Austin Graham; 2010-Thomas Brent Booth; 2009-Thomas Brent Booth; 2008-Ramie "Ray" Sprinkling; 2007-Louis Bishop; 2006-Louis Bishop; 2005-Louis Bishop; 2004-Eric Restrepo