Augusta State's Reed will turn pro this summer

Patrick Reed hits a shot at the 2010 NCAA Championship.

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Right now, Patrick Reed is focused on one thing and one thing only - doing what he can to help his Augusta State team successfully defend its NCAA Championship title.

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Patrick Reed, seen here holing a crucial putt during the 2010 NCAA Championship, is an integral part of Augusta State's success.

The reasons are obvious, but the one that isn’t so obvious is that the Jaguars junior will be completing his final season of college golf.

Reed told Golfweek on April 22 that he is planning on bypassing his senior year of college and will turn professional late this summer and begin his journey through the PGA Tour’s Qualifying School process.

Reed, a 2008 U.S. Amateur semifinalist, says he will play amateur golf through the summer, with his sights set on being selected to the 10-man U.S. Walker Cup team that will face Great Britain and Ireland on Sept. 10-11 in Aberdeen, Scotland.

“I just feel I’m ready to make the transition (to pro golf), to take that step up,” Reed said. “That’s when the dream I’ve had just about all my life becomes a reality.”

Still, he won’t be rushing into it, not in a Walker Cup year.

“The Walker Cup means everything in the world to me. Since I was growing up, I’ve always thought about playing on the Walker Cup team,” said Reed, who earlier this year was among those who participated in a U.S. Walker Cup practice session in Tampa, Fla.

“To make the team and to represent my country would be totally awesome, another memorable moment in my life. I love match play, so to play for my country in an international competition like the Walker Cup would be the highlight of highlights for me,” said Reed, who was 3-0-0 in the match play portion of last season’s NCAA Championship, which sparked Augusta State to the team title.

“It was a bit of a tough decision (to turn pro), but I’ve gotten a lot of support from my coach (Josh Gregory), my teammates, my school and, most of all, my family. That helped make it a little easier.”

Reed is having a solid college season and is No. 8 in the Golfweek/Sagarin Rankings. Earlier this year, he tied for sixth at the Jones Cup and tied for fourth at the Terra Cotta Invitational.

Last year, in addition to leading Augusta State to its first NCAA golf title, Reed won the Jones Cup, had top-10 finishes at Terra Cotta, the NCAA Southwest Regional and Sunnehanna Amateur, tied for second in the stroke-play portion of the U.S. Amateur Public Links and advanced to the Sweet 16 of the APL.

In 2009, he had top-20 showings at the Jones Cup, Azalea Invitation, Terra Cotta and Southern Amateur, was a quarterfinalist at the North & South Amateur and tied for second in the 72-hole stroke-play portion of the Western Amateur, where he went on to make the semifinals.

During the past two years, including college and amateur events, Reed has posted 17 top-10 finishes in 23 starts.

And this summer will again be a busy one for him. After the NCAAs, he plans to play in the Sunnehanna, Monroe, Northeast, North & South, Players, Southern, Western and U.S. Amateur, along with trying to qualify for the U.S. Open.

Already with an impressive resume, Reed hopes another solid summer will land him a spot on the U.S. Walker Cup squad.

“The Walker Cup is the goal for all of us amateurs,” Reed said. “I would love to end my amateur career that way.”

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