Neal Williams and Chris Garcia
Current Residence: Newton, Texas
Hometown: Arlington, Texas
College: Tarleton State University
Home Golf Course: Trophy Club, Denton, Texas
Profession: Professional Golfer, Owner, Golf Apparel Company
Marital Status: Single
Current Residence: Austin, Texas
Hometown: Austin, Texas
Home Golf Course: Jimmy Clay Golf Course, Austin, Texas
Profession: Professional Golfer / Construction Management
Marital Status: Married, four children
At a Glance: Best friends Neal and Chris come from two different backgrounds and have overcome incredible odds off the golf course.
Growing up in rural Texas, Neal worked for his father in the construction business building log cabins, and did not enroll in school until age 16. Wanting to prove his doubters and skeptics wrong (he enrolled with a first grade equivalency), he not only graduated on time as a senior, he also excelled in the athletic spotlight – baseball, basketball, football and track – earning All-American honors his junior and senior years.
“So many people told me there no way I was going to graduate high school or was going to do anything with my life. That pushed me even harder, and I was not going to give up,” Neal recalled.
Neal enrolled at Allen Community College in Kansas on a baseball scholarship before transferring to Tarleton State University. While at Tarleton State, Neal met Chris on the golf course. Chris was good friends with Neal’s teammate at Tarleton State.
Chris, unlike Neal who took up golf in college, was introduced to the game at a young age by his father. Golf and baseball were Chris’ two passions, a bond that ties him and Neal together in their friendship.
Chris wanted to pursue college baseball, but was not given the opportunity. Neal, who struggled with baseball his final two years at Tarleton State, switched to football and played three years in the Arena Football League. Golf, however, is the common bond between the two. They love the game and everything it stands for.
Two weeks before Neal and Chris were to travel to Jamaica for the production of Altered Course Montego Bay, Chris opened up to Neal. Finances were tight, and Chris’ golf clubs were in a pawn shop. He was nearly out of money, and had a family to feed.
The following day, Neal paid to get Chris’ clubs out of the pawn shop. Neal handed Chris his golf clubs, and said four words: “Let’s go win this.”