College golf is a team game within an overall individual sport.
That’s why The Haskins Award, presented by Stifel, 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 second 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
Wins: Isleworth Collegiate Invitational
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 yet. 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
Wins: T-1, Carpet Capital Collegiate, U.S. Collegiate
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
Wins: Jack Nicklaus Invitational; T-1, Arizona Intercollegiate
Worst finish: T-8, Isleworth Collegiate Invitational
Last finish: T-1, Arizona Intercollegiate
The skinny: HHagy 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. Patrick Rodgers, Stanford junior
Hometown: Avon, Ind.
Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 22
Golfstat Cup: 28
Wins: Erin Hills Intercollegiate, The Prestige at PGA West
Worst finish: T-21, OFCC/Fighting Illini Invitational
Last finish: Won, The Prestige at PGA West
The skinny: It was said that Rodgers needed more wins to be in the mix for POY honors. What does he do? He wins The Prestige at PGA West the following week to move up a few spots on the list.
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5. Ben Crancer, Texas AM sophomore
Hometown: Kirkwood, Mo.
Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 4
Golfstat Cup: 15
Wins: Dick’s Challenge Cup
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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6. Gavin Green, New Mexico junior
Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 19
Golfstat Cup: 33
Wins: T-1, William H. Tucker Championship; Western Refining College All-America Golf Classic
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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7. Scott Vincent, Virginia Tech junior
Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 17
Golfstat Cup: 5
Wins: T-1 Golfweek Conference Challenge, VCU Shootout, Bank of Tennessee Collegiate
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
Wins: Golfweek Program Challenge, Cardinal Intercollegiate, Hummingbird Intercollegiate
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
Wins: Invitational at Ocean Course
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. Greg Eason, Central Florida, senior
Golfweek/Sagarin College Ranking: 27
Golfstat Cup: 45
Worst finish: T-18, Shoal Creek Intercollegiate
Last finish: Third, Gator Invitational
The skinny: Eason made headlines last season when he became the first Knight to play in the NCAA Championship. And he didn’t disappoint with an eighth-place finish. He has continued his solid play this season. Two of Eason’s top-5 finishes this season are runner-ups, which came at the Northern Intercollegiate and the Adams Cup of Newport.