Haskins Award Watch List: Feb. 14, 2014

College golf is a team game within an overall individual sport.

That’s why The Haskins Award, given out annually to the best college player voted on by the players, coaches and media, is so important to the players.

Winning the Haskins Award puts players on the same list as Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Luke Donald, Graeme McDowell and Hunter Mahan, to name a few.

Here is Golfweek’s first spring edition of the Haskins Award Watch List, which takes a look at some favorites heading into the spring season. If a player is not on the list, he can most certainly play his way onto the list during the spring season.

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1. Trey Mullinax, Alabama senior

Hometown: Birmingham, Ala.

Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 1

Golfstat Cup: 2

Events: 4

Wins: Isleworth Collegiate Invitational

Top-10s: 4

Top-5s: 2

Worst finish: T-6, Gifford Collegiate

Last finish: T-6, Gifford Collegiate

The skinny: Mullinax may be the most unlikely Crimson Tide player at the top of the Haskins list to start the season, but he proved in the fall that he is playing his best golf of his young career. Just like the 2013 Haskins Award winner Michael Kim, Mullinax hasn’t finished outside the top 10 in four starts this season and holds the prestigious Isleworth Collegiate title.

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2. Ollie Schniederjans, Georgia Tech junior

Hometown: Powder Springs, Ga.

Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 10

Golfstat Cup: 7

Events: 6

Wins: T-1, Carpet Capital Collegiate, U.S. Collegiate

Top-10s: 4

Top-5s: 4

Worst finish: T-30, The Amer Ari Invitational

Last finish: T-30, The Amer Ari Invitational

The skinny: Schniederjans had two big wins in the fall, including the U.S. Collegiate – one of the top fields in the country all season. When he’s on with his game, he’s arguably the best in college golf, and that’s why he has picked up four top-5s in six starts this season.

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3. Brandon Hagy, California senior

Hometown: Westlake Village, Calif.

Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 3

Golfstat Cup: 3

Events: 6

Wins: Jack Nicklaus Invitational; T-1, Arizona Intercollegiate

Top-10s: 6

Top-5s: 5

Worst finish: T-8, Isleworth Collegiate Invitational

Last finish: T-1, Arizona Intercollegiate

The skinny: Hagy has an incredibly consistent game and hits it a long way. He has two wins on the season and has finished inside the top 5 in five of six events. If the Bears are going to win back-to-back Haskins Awards, Hagy will likely be the one to do it.

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4. Ben Crancer, Texas AM sophomore

Hometown: Kirkwood, Mo.

Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 4

Golfstat Cup: 13

Events: 5

Wins: Dick’s Challenge Cup

Top-10s: 4

Top-5s: 2

Worst finish: T-23, U.S. Collegiate Championship

Last finish: T-3, Sea Best Invitational

The skinny: Crancer’s game has shaped up nicely for his second season with the Aggies. He made headlines in September when he picked up his first collegiate win at the Dick’s Challenge Cup, showing that he has the game to play with the best in the country. His record against the top-100 in the rankings is 34-31-5 with the 76th-best schedule in the country.

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5. Gavin Green, New Mexico junior

Hometown: Malaysia

Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 18

Golfstat Cup:

Events: 7

Wins: T-1, William H. Tucker Championship; Western Refining College All-America Golf Classic

Top-10s: 4

Top-5s: 3

Worst finish: T-28, Arizona Intercollegiate

Last finish: T-28, Arizona Intercollegiate

The skinny: His second victory of the season at the Western Refining Golf Classic lifted him into the fifth spot on the Watch List. Green has played in the most events out of anyone thus far this season and is the Lobos’ unquestioned leader on the course.

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6. Patrick Rodgers, Stanford junior

Hometown: Avon, Ind.

Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 22

Golfstat Cup: 24

Events: 6

Wins: Erin Hills Intercollegiate

Top-10s: 3

Top-5s: 1

Worst finish: T-21, OFCC/Fighting Illini Invitational

Last finish: T-7, The Amer Ari Invitational

The skinny: Rodgers, a name you can always find on the Haskins Award Watch List, finished inside the top 10 in half his starts this season for the Cardinal, and picked up a win at the Erin Hills Intercollegiate. He’ll need to gather a few more wins and top finishes this spring to make his way up the list.

• • •

7. Scott Vincent, Virginia Tech junior

Hometown: Zimbabwe

Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 16

Golfstat Cup: 5

Events: 5

Wins: T-1 Golfweek Conference Challenge, VCU Shootout, Bank of Tennessee Collegiate

Top-10s: 4

Top-5s: 4

Worst finish: T-36, UNCG Bridgestone Collegiate

Last finish: T-36 UNCG Bridgestone Collegiate

The skinny: One of two players with three wins after the spring season. The advantage he has over J.T. Poston? His strength of schedule is 422nd, but will still need more wins to grab the honors.

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8. J.T. Poston, Western Carolina junior

Hometown: Hickory, N.C.

Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 11

Golfstat Cup: 1

Events: 5

Wins: Golfweek Program Challenge, Cardinal Intercollegiate, Hummingbird Intercollegiate

Top-10s: 5

Top-5s: 5

Worst finish: T-4, Wolfpack Intercollegiate

Last finish: Won, Hummingbird Intercollegiate

The skinny: Poston and Vincent have the most wins this season. He has also finished in the top 5 in all five of his fall tournaments, but his strength of schedule (1,025th) hurts him, although his consistency is impressive.

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9. Joey Garber, Georgia senior

Hometown: Petoskey, Mich.

Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 2

Golfstat Cup: 4

Events: 4

Wins: Invitational at Ocean Course

Top-10s: 3

Top-5s: 3

Worst finish: T-19, Brickyard Collegiate Championship

Last finish: Won, Invitational at Ocean Course

The skinny: Garber, who has been a top college player at Georgia, finally picked up his first collegiate win in the fall at Kiawah. He also had a runner-up finish at the Dick’s Challenge Cup. He has a 33-14-0 record against the top 100.

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10. Wyndham Clark, Oklahoma State redshirt freshman

Hometown: Denver, Colo.

Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 6

Golfstat Cup: 12

Events: 5

Wins: 0

Top-10s: 4

Top-5s: 4

Worst finish: T-21, OFCC/Fighting Illini Invitational

Last finish: T-5, The Amer Ari Invitational

The skinny: Clark doesn’t have any wins yet in his college career, but he’s not far off. He has finished inside the top 5 in his last four tournaments. Taking a redshirt year as a freshman has proven wise for Clark at OSU, as he has looked comfortable all season. Look for him to possibly have a big spring season and garner a couple of wins to remain in the race.

• • •

Winners from the last five years

2013: Michael Kim, California

2012: Justin Thomas, Alabama

2011: Patrick Cantlay, UCLA

2010: Russell Henley, Georgia

2009: Matt Hill, North Carolina State

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