Thumbs up: D-II | Thumbs down: Rhode Island
Once again it’s time for three great things that happened in the world of college golf this past week, and three . . . well, not so much.
1. Florida Southern men win USF Invitational. How ‘bout them Mocs! A year ago, this Division II powerhouse almost won the event but lost in a playoff to Texas Tech. No playoff was needed this year as the Mocs earned a five-stroke victory over Middle Tennessee State. Consider this: Florida Southern beat North Florida, winner recently of the John Hayt, by eight shots. Who says D-II programs can’t play competitive golf? Not me!
2. Rio Verde Invitational. Last week on Wildman’s Corner, this was one of the three tournaments I said to keep an eye on. Entering this event, No. 68 Michigan definitely was considered a bubble team. The Wolverines can add 17 W’s to the win column, and perhaps some breathing room as we near the postseason.
3. University of Washington men’s golf. What did the purple pants-wearing Huskies do now? They hosted a Speed Golf Championship. Here were the rules:
- Score is determined by adding strokes and time together.
- Each player runs the course carrying whichever clubs he chooses.
- Normal golf rules apply except that most people will putt with the pin in the hole.
- A player tees off every two minutes and there is a passing procedure.
Charlie Hughes shot 72 in 54:32 to win the Speed Golf Championship. Now, I dare say to the coaches across America and to the NCAA, does a round of college golf really need to take more than five hours?
1. Rhode Island men’s team. The Rams finished 21st out of 23 teams at the USF Invitational. They have finished in the top 5 twice this year, both fourth-place finishes. Their other results were T-13 at the Adams Cup, 10th at the Firestone, 12th at the Herb Wimberly and 20th at the Hawaii Hilo . I know it has been a down year for Rhode Island, but wasn’t it only a few years ago that we were considering these guys a lock for the postseason?
2. Oklahoma women’s team. With a 10th-place finish at the Juli Inkster Spartan Invite, the Sooners continue to struggle. OU has only one top-5 finish this season, and that was at a rain-shortened MoMorial.
3. Chattanooga women’s team. The Mocs entered the JMU Eagle Landing Invite as a heavy favorite at No. 36 in the Golfweek/Sagarin College Rankings, but left with an eighth-place finish. Teams that defeated the Mocs were South Florida (ranked 87th), Illinois (68), Central Arkansas (93), Kennesaw State (74), East Carolina (69), Stetson (77) and Florida Gulf Coast (150).