Glover Caps Off Breakout Year with College Degree
'Nobody knew who I was,' Glover said Friday, chuckling. 'It was actually kind of nice.'
Glover was more than satisfied with the simple handshake and congratulations he got from Clemson University President James F. Barker at Thursday's ceremonies.
The cap-and-gown walk capped a landmark year for the 26-year-old Glover - he married his high-school sweetheart a few weeks ago and won his first PGA Tour event along with more than $2 million in a breakthrough pro season.
'Yeah, this year was pretty special,' Glover said.
With the help of Barker and Glover's former Clemson academic adviser, Joe White, the golfer wrapped up a better 2005 than he hoped for.
When Glover finished his eligibility in 2001, he was four credit hours shy of a degree. Glover, who grew up about a half-hour from Clemson in Greenville, wanted his diploma. But he was also ready to start his golf career.
In 2003, Glover finished 17th on the Nationwide Tour - sort of the Triple A of golf - to qualify for the PGA Tour. Despite winning $557,454 in 2004, Glover had to survive qualifying school to keep his card for this past year.
And Glover made it a remarkable season.
Glover had five top 10 finishes, including a third at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans, between February and May to all but guarantee he'd escape Q-school. Then he fulfilled a longtime dream with his first tour victory at the FUNAI Classic in October that earned him $792,000 and vaulted him into the year-ending Tour Championship.
The success also got Glover thinking again about his degree.
He arranged to take a biology course online, sometimes coming after practice or a tournament round to read up on multi-celled organisms. Glover finished up soon after his final tournament and passed. The degree was his and he was ready for Clemson's December graduation.
That's when Glover discovered he missed the deadline to register for his cap and gown. Glover was only weeks away from marriage - and the plans that typically takes - so he figured he'd just skip the ceremony.
But at a Clemson golf gathering, Barker had heard of Glover's predicament and told the prospective graduate that he could borrow one of the president's ceremonial robes.
'That was a pretty tough offer to turn down,' Glover said. 'So I did it.'
Glover picked up his garb on the way to Littlejohn Coliseum and joined about 1,300 graduates, including football stars Tye Hill and Charles Bennett, for the ceremony.
The cynics out there might wonder why Glover even bothered with his studies with his growing bank account and limitless potential. 'It's something I always wanted to do,' he said. 'That's the only reason.'
With marriage and a degree behind him, Glover's free to prep for the expectations sure to follow him on tour next year.
He leaves next week for Hawaii where he'll open his year at the Mercedes Championships and the Sony Open.
Glover's goals are simple - to win again, make some noise in a major and try and make a run at the U.S. Ryder Cup team.
'You know golf though,' he says. 'You can't be sure what happens out there.'
Glover made sure he took the uncertainty out of finishing college.
'Well, it'll be one less thing to worry about forever,' Glover said. 'I think it will help me because the thing is, I did it.'
Just like several other feats for Glover in 2005.
Copyright 2005 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Cabreras take 1-shot lead in Father/Son
ORLANDO, Fla. - Two-time major champion Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. birdied their last three holes for a 13-under 59 to take a one-shot lead Saturday in the PNC Father-Son Challenge.
Cabrera, a Masters and U.S. Open champion, is making his debut in this popular 36-hole scramble. His son said he practiced hard for 10 days. What helped put him at ease was watching his father make so many putts.
''We combined very well,'' Cabrera said. ''When I hit a bad shot, he hit a good one. That's the key.''
They had a one-shot lead over Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara, who are playing for the first time. That included a birdie on the last hole, which O'Meara attributed to the strength of his son.
''My little man hit it 58 yards by me on the 18th,'' said O'Meara, the Masters and British Open champion in 1998. ''It's a little easier coming in with a 6-iron.''
Defending champions David Duval and Nick Karavites rallied over the back nine at the Ritz-Carlton Golf Club for a 61. They are trying to become the first father-son team to repeat as winners since Bernhard and Stefan Langer in 2006. Larry Nelson won two years in a row in 2007 and 2008, but with different sons.
''I'd imagine we have to break 60 tomorrow to have a chance to win, but hey, stranger things have happened,'' Duval said. ''I've even done it myself.''
Duval shot 59 at the Bob Hope Classic to win in 1999 on his way to reaching No. 1 in the world that year.
Duval and his stepson were tied with Bernhard Langer and 17-year-old Jason Langer, who made two eagles on the last five holes. This Langer tandem won in 2014.
Jack Nicklaus, playing with grandson G.T., opened with a 68.
Woods' 2018 schedule coming into focus ... or is it?
Two weeks after his successful return to competition at the Hero World Challenge, Tiger Woods’ 2018 schedule may be coming into focus.
Golfweek reported on Saturday that Woods hopes to play the Genesis Open in February according to an unidentified source with “direct knowledge of the situation.”
Woods’ agent Mark Steinberg declined to confirm the 14-time major champion would play the event and told GolfChannel.com that Woods – who underwent fusion surgery to his lower back in April – is still formulating his ’18 schedule.
Woods’ foundation is the host organization for the Genesis Open and the event supports the Tiger Woods Learning Center in Anaheim, Calif.
The Genesis Open would be Woods’ first start on the PGA Tour since he missed the cut last January at the Farmers Insurance Open.
Rose weathering delayed Indonesian Masters
JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead after eight holes of the third round Saturday when play was suspended for the day due to bad weather at the Indonesian Masters.
Rose was 3-under on the day and led his playing partners Kiradech Aphibarnrat and Scott Vincent. The Englishman led both players by a stroke after the second round was completed Saturday morning due to weather delays on Friday.
Brandt Snedeker withdrew with apparent heat exhaustion on Friday on the 11th hole of the second round. Ranked 51st in the world, he flew to Jakarta looking to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters.
Lexi (wrist) WDs from Diamond Resorts Invitational
Lexi Thompson on Friday withdrew from the Diamond Resorts Invitational, citing inflammation in her wrist. Thompson, who teamed with Tony Finau to finish tied for fourth place in last week's QBE Shootout, said she is under strict doctor's order not to hit golf balls until mid-January.
The Diamond Resorts Invitational is scheduled Jan. 12-14 at Tranquilo Golf Club in Orlando, Fla. The field for te 54-hole event includes LPGA and PGA Tour Champions players, as well as celebrities from the worlds or sports and entertainment.