It has been a while since I have blogged, so I have a lot to catch y’all up on.
It has been a fun and nice off-season as all of us on the team have been enjoying the time off. We are trying to finish off our semester the best we can and to try and win best male team GPA for the third straight year at Alabama.
As for golf, we have been hard at work. It has been nice for myself to put the clubs away for a few days after non-stop golf for about six months straight. It also has been a great time for me to work on many parts of my game that I feel I need to improve on for the spring.
A few weeks ago, Cory Whitsett and myself played in the Western Refining All-American Classic. Cory was the defending champion, so I was trying to pick his brain as much as possible leading into the event. The event was in El Paso, Texas, and it was an awesome week.
I was not very happy with my play, as I didn’t really have any parts of my game going well. I ...
I am back after playing in the Western Refining All American Classic in El Paso, Texas. This is a very prestigious invitational event featuring All-Americans from the previous year. To be honest, I was simply honored to be invited. It had been a big goal for me, so finally getting to play made me very excited. My teammate Brandon Hagy was also going so I knew it would be a great time.
After meeting our hosts upon arrival at the airport, we went straight to a cowboy boot store where we were given shop credit to pick out our own pair. This was a real shock for me seeing as how I’m from Los Angeles. I didn’t know where to start! After some laughs and countless questions, I found a pair that seemed like a good fit.
We then went to the hotel to get ready for the dinner at El Paso Country Club. If you were wondering, yes I did wear the boots, although I’m not so sure they are my style. Dinner was a blast. There was a hypnotist who had the players and sponsors laughing for at least an hour. There was ...
Alabama head coach Jay Seawell has been selected to coach the U.S. team at this summer’s Palmer Cup at Wilmington (Del.) Country Club. The annual Ryder Cup-style contest will he held June 7-9 on the South Course. First-year head coach Jim Anderson of Arizona will serve as Seawell’s assistant.
“First, it’s a great honor to be selected as coach, and I’m very thankful to be part of the Palmer Cup,” Seawell said. “I’ve had many players that have played in the Palmer Cup, and I’m aware of the magnitude it holds in college golf. I look forward to coaching the USA team. It’s a dream come true.”
Seawell is in his 11th season at the head men's coach at Alabama. He has led the Crimson Tide to six NCAA tournament appearances in the past eight years, including a runner-up finish in 2012.
Alabama men have qualified 54 players for the SEC Academic Honor Roll. Most recently, senior Cory Whitsett also received the 2012 NCAA Elite 89 Award, presented to a golfer annually with the highest GPA at the NCAA Championships.
Seawell has coached 19 All-Americans, including Justin Thomas, Whitsett, Bobby Wyatt ...
For any player who might be concerned that using a push cart on the golf course is considered uncool, thank the Oklahoma State women’s golf team for making a case for just the opposite. The Cowgirls recently created a music video that’s likely to give the push cart an instant status upgrade.
Oklahoma State, which ended the fall season No. 11 in the Golfweek/Sagarin College Rankings after winning the storm-shortened Landfall Tradition on Oct. 26, modified the popular Cali Swag District song “Teach Me How to Dougie.” The team appears on the golf course dressed in white caddie bibs and dancing with push carts as players sing and dance to “Teach Me How to Buggy.” The music video is posted on YouTube:
The selection process for the Palmer Cup, the annual Ryder Cup-style competition that features top collegiate players from the United States and Europe, will undergo its first change since the GB&I team expanded to include all of Europe for the 2003 event. Changes will be in effect for the 2013 event.
Each team will now be comprised of 10 players as opposed to the previous eight. The event will continue to feature 24 matches with every player required to compete twice. Players must participate in either the four-ball or foursomes matches and in one of the two rounds of singles matches.
The first six of these players will be selected according to the newly-created Palmer Cup Ranking, which uses Golfstat’s NCAA player ranking as a base. In that ranking, bonus points are awarded for high finishes and negative bonus points are given for poor finishes. Strength of schedule also is considered.
For the U.S. team, the remaining four players will consist of three committee picks and one coach’s pick. The final four spots on the European team will be the champion of The R&A Foundation Scholars Tournament, two committee picks and one coach’s pick ...
Don’t underestimate the power of college athletics. In an election year, it’s not unheard of for an NCAA Championship ring to come with a write-in nod for the leader of the free world.
At least in Alabama.
A picture of an election ballot containing the names of Alabama head football coach Nick Saban and men’s golf coach Jay Seawell as write-in presidential and vice-presidential candidates, respectively, made the rounds on Twitter on Tuesday, leading Seawell to a good chuckle. Saban led his team to the national championship in 2012. Seawell’s team lost to Texas in the final match of last spring’s NCAA Championship, and was Golfweek’s preseason No. 1 team.
“It just shows you the power of Coach Saban,” Seawell told Golfweek on Wednesday.
Seawell said he doesn’t know the name of the person who filled out the ballot, then took a picture of it before leaving the polls.
Suppose Seawell did win a vice-presidential nod – or a presidential one – in the world of college golf. What would his first act in office be?
“I would put a 24-second shot clock on college golf," he said without hesitation.
The field has been announced for the 2012 Western Refining All-America Golf Classic, the all-star game of the collegiate game. The field consists of last year’s Division I All-Americans (with a limit of two per team), as well as the U.S. Amateur champion, Chattanooga’s Steven Fox, and the NCAA Division II player of the year, Nova Southeastern’s Ben Taylor. The 54-hole tournament will be held Nov. 18-20 at El Paso (Texas) Country Club. Alabama’s Cory Whitsett, the defending champion, also is in the field. Here are the rest of the participants:
Anders Albertson, Georgia Tech
Anton Arboleda, UCLA
Zac Blair, BYU
Dominic Bozzelli, Auburn
Sebastian Cappelen, Arkansas
John Catlin, New Mexico
Corey Conners, Kent State
Pedro Figueiredo, UCLA
Steven Fox, Chattanooga
Brandon Hagy, Cal
Max Homa, Cal
Jeffrey Kang, USC
Will Kropp, Oklahoma
Keith Mitchell, Georgia
Cameron Peck, Texas A&M
Kevin Penner, UNLV
Thomas Pieters, Illinois
Patrick Rodgers, Stanford
Julian Suri, Duke
Benjamin Taylor, Nova Southeastern
Justin Thomas, Alabama
Cory Whitsett, Alabama
Joseph Winslow, Iowa
Former Notre Dame standout Chris Walker is now a SpeedGolf world champion.
The first-ever SpeedGolf World Championships took place Oct. 20-21 at Bandon Dunes in Bandon, Ore., with 14 players from around the world competing for the inaugural title.
The two-round event – Saturday at Old Macdonald and Sunday at Bandon Dunes – combined golf and running. A player’s total score is computed by adding the number of strokes to the time it took to complete the round. For example, Walker shot 77 in 53 minutes, 29 seconds, on the first day, then shot 76 in 56:59 for a two-day total of 263.28.
“You definitely have to be a certain kind of golfer for speed golf,” said Walker, a native of The Woodlands, Texas.
Walker had never heard of speed golf until he received an email from Tim Scott, who has been a top speed golfer for years.
Scott had sent an email to all players in the field at the Adams Pro Golf Tour stop in Oklahoma, asking if players were interesting in participating in the SpeedGolf World Championships. In that email he also mentioned that players had to be in top physical shape.
“I’m not a ...
Tim Mickelson’s passion – and job – is coaching the men’s golf team at Arizona State.
His second passion? Horses.
He started betting on the horses at Del Mar Race Track as a teenager. In 2003, he met a trainer and decided to own part of a horse. He owned 1/8 of Eightthehardway.
“She (Eightthehardway) never amounted much,” Mickelson said. “But the thrill of ownership had caught my attention."
About four years ago, Mickelson was playing golf with a few buddies and they decided on the spot to form a partnership where each friend would own one quarter of the partnership. Mickelson decided he wanted to be more involved, and became the managing partner of Magical Racing Stable.
They owned One Magical Girl before buying their current horse, Under Review, a Thoroughbred bred in Kentucky. He’d rather not disclose the other owners of Under Review, but the horse is special enough that they could only afford to buy 25 percent of the horse.
“He costs more because he has potential,” Mickelson said. “It also means next May he may be eligible for things like the Kentucky Derby.”
The horses for the Nov. 3 running of the 29th Breeders ...
As the Rutgers women’s team played its way through the second round of the Lady Paladin Invitational on Oct. 27, head coach Maura Ballard had to keep an eye on Hurricane Sandy as it approached the team’s home in Piscataway Township, N.J.
The team’s travel director and the Rutgers athletic department were doing the same, wondering how to get the team home safely, and if that would mean pulling the plug on one of the most prestigious tournaments on the Scarlet Knights’ fall schedule.
As Sandy made its way up the East Coast, Ballard had been communicating with her travel director back home about possible flight cancellations caused by the storm. Because the team arrived in Greenville, S.C., on Oct. 24 for the Lady Paladin, and already had missed three days of school, the concern was missing three more days of classes if air traffic to the Northeast ceased.
Rutger’s flight home was canceled at midday Saturday, and as Ballard coached, her travel director scrambled to book another flight. Ballard was pulling for any way to keep her team in the tournament, even if it meant driving home Sunday evening.
“If you get new ...
It has been a crazy couple of weeks for the Golden Bears.
First we hosted our home tournament, The Alister Mackenzie. It was played at Meadow Club GC, which was in pristine condition. The team has had a good success rate there and we were hoping for another good event. Fortunately, that’s what happened.
After the 36-hole day we had a nine-shot lead over another local team, the University of San Francisco. Both teams had played some great golf, but the lead we had was in big part because of redshirt junior Brandon Hagy’s incredible 16-under-par performance in the first two rounds. Seeing those kinds of scores being shot was truly inspiring. We knew we had our work cut out for us in the final round. In the team meeting, coach really reinforced the idea of staying in the moment and making the most of every shot because a good team, such as USF, would pounce on any mistake we made. I felt like we came out that next round very motivated and focused. This allowed us to play great as a unit in the strong winds on that Tuesday. Not only did we get a great team ...
Jace Long just keeps on winning. The Missouri senior was medalist at his site of PGA Tour Q-School’s first stage, which wrapped up Friday. He now has won his first two stages of Q-School, as well as three of four college starts this season.
Long shot 6-under 282 (70-69-69-74) at The Lakes at Castle Hills in Lewisville, Texas, to finish three shots ahead of Henrik Norlander and Jaxon Brigman. Norlander was an All-American member of Augusta State’s 2010 and 2011 NCAA title teams. Brigman may be best known for signing an incorrect scorecard at the 1999 Q-School that cost him his PGA Tour card; he’s trying to make it on Tour for the first time.
Four first-stage sites wrapped up Friday. North Florida senior Sean Dale finished T-10 at Deerwood Golf Club in Kingwood, Texas, to move on to Q-School’s second stage. North Carolina State All-American Albin Choi failed to advance out of Pensacola (Fla.) Country Club. He was four shots too high.
Stanford’s Andrew Yun is competing in Q-School’s first stage at Oak Valley in Beaumont, Calif. That site ends Saturday. Yun, the Pac-12 champion, was in second place through 36 holes.
The Atlanta area serves as the crossroads of men’s college golf, from this fall’s Ping/Golfweek Preview and the recent U.S. Collegiate to the spring’s NCAA Championship at the Capital City Club’s Crabapple Course. Golfweek caught up with Bob Covington, a Capital City Club member who is in charge of preparations for the May 28-June 2 NCAAs, during the U.S. Collegiate in Alpharetta.
How did hosting this season’s Ping/Golfweek Preview help prepare for the NCAA?
It helped a great deal, especially from a member and volunteer standpoint. We said we absolutely wanted the Preview, and were very committed to do it. The membership was 100 percent for it. It gave the players an opportunity to see and play the course, and it gave the volunteers a chance to see some outstanding young players. I think the volunteers are really excited about helping for the NCAA.
How will the course be set up?
Very similar to the Preview. We’ll play it to a par 70 (normally a par 72), with the ninth and 16th holes playing as par 4s rather than par 5s. It should be around 7,400 yards. The tees ...
The last two weeks have been pretty hectic. We basically went back-to-back tournaments to finish our fall season. We got back from our home tournament (Jerry Pate Intercollegiate) on Tuesday afternoon, then we had to get caught up on school work in just two days as we left on Friday for the Isleworth Collegiate Invitational.
The Jerry Pate is played in Birmingham, Ala., and it is our host event so it is very important to us. Not that any of the other events aren’t, but with the event being so close to home where Alabama alumni can come and support us, it really means a lot.
We had a very intense showdown with Florida coming down the stretch. Due to frost issues the first day, we were not able to complete all 36 holes that we intended on playing. Because of that, we had to finish the next morning then play with the same groups with a 30 minute break between our 2nd and 3rd rounds. That meant Florida and us were on opposite sides of the course to finish.
We fought back extremely hard, as Scott Strohmeyer was 5-over thru 5 holes and fought back to shoot 1-over ...
WINDERMERE, Fla. – Texas sophomore Jordan Spieth finished fifth in his title defense at the Isleworth Collegiate Invitational. His victory here last year was the first of his college career. This edition of the Isleworth event just may be Spieth’s final stroke-play event as a collegian. He shot 68-74-74 to finish four shots behind winner Michael Kim of Cal.
“I didn’t have my swing this week,” said Spieth, a sophomore. “I’ve been working on some stuff getting ready for a few weeks from now.”
Spieth is playing with his Texas teammates at next week’s Stanford Classic at Cypress Point. That tournament, held at historic Cypress Point Club in Pebble Beach, Calif., will be a team match-play format. That will mark the end of Texas’ fall season. Spieth’s next event will be the second stage of PGA Tour Q-School on Nov. 13-16 at TPC Craig Ranch in McKinney, Texas, near Spieth’s Dallas home.
Spieth is attending Q-School in an attempt to earn a PGA Tour card before the Tour’s wholesale changes to its qualifying structure are put in place. Spieth would have to turn pro after Q-School – and forgo the spring college season – to accept ...
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