College Review: Illinois tops first Golfstat ranking

By Ryan LavnerOctober 15, 2014, 4:49 pm

Each week on, we’ll take a look back at the main storylines in college golf.

Biggest takeaway: Illinois is the clear-cut No. 1 team 

The first Golfstat ranking of the season was released Wednesday and – no surprise – the Illini are ranked No. 1. They cemented their place at the top with a rain-shortened victory over No. 8 Auburn at the Sagamore Fall Preview, the team’s third in a row to begin the fall. (Oregon is the only other team with three wins so far.)  Junior Thomas Detry finished first in the 36-hole event in Indiana, with Brian Campbell (T-2) and Charlie Danielson (T-5) also in the top 5. All three of those players are ranked inside the top 11 nationally. This years bunch will look to join the 1988-89 Illinois team – which featured both Steve Stricker and current head coach Mike Small – as the only squad in school history with four fall victories when it heads to Florida this weekend for the Tavistock Collegiate Invitational.

Team of the week: Cal

The Golden Bears erased a final-round deficit to win the Alister MacKenzie Invitational – the team’s home event – for the sixth consecutive season (and ninth time in the last 12 years). Playing in wind, cold and fog in Northern California, freshman Sebastian Crampton finished third to record his third consecutive top 10, while Keelan Kilpatrick closed with 69 to sit joint sixth. Cal has now twice and finished in the top 4 in all four starts this fall. 

Player of the week: Max Rottluff, Arizona State

The Sun Devils junior finished solo sixth in the team’s first event, then shot 9-under 204 (68-66-70) to earn medalist honors by two shots at the Alister MacKenzie. It was the German’s first career victory, after a trio of top 10s a year ago. Rottluff, now ranked No. 12 by Golfstat, was the only ASU player to finish in the top 10, helping the Sun Devils to a season-best runner-up finish.

Biggest disappointment: Rain wiping out 54-hole events

What a rough weather week in college golf, as the Sagamore Fall Preview, Bank of America at Blackthorn, Rod Myers Invitational and Collegiate Classic, among others, were reduced to 36 holes because of inclement weather. Heck, the final round of the AutoTrader was scrubbed because of a tornado watch!

Keep an eye on: U.S. Collegiate Championship 

This is the big daddy in the fall schedule: 11 top-30 teams, including four of the top 10. Oklahoma State and Texas – teams I had ranked Nos. 1 and 2, respectively, heading into this season but have gotten off to slow starts – are here, and so are the likes of UCLA, Stanford, Washington, Auburn and LSU. I’ve written often here that fall success isn’t always a predictor of postseason play, but the final leaderboard at the U.S. Collegiate should hint at where this season is headed.  

What you may have missed: Wake Forest freshman Will Zalatoris shot rounds of 66-68 to beat Virginia’s Denny McCarthy by two shots at the rain-shortened Bank of America event. Zalatoris, remember, is the reigning U.S. Junior champion. Seems some freshman transitions are shorter than others. … Just days after advancing to the final stage of LPGA Q-School, USC junior Annie Park returned to school to capture the school-record sixth victory of her career. … The new No. 1-ranked player in college golf is probably not who you’d think: Jacksonville’s Franck Medale, who earlier this week won the Donald Ross Intercollegiate. Stanford’s Maverick McNealy, Georgia Tech’s Ollie Schniederjans, Georgia’s Lee McCoy and Illinois’ Charlie Danielson are Nos. 2-5, respectively. That’s more like it. 

Getty Images

Rose leads halted Indonesian Masters; Snedeker WDs

By Associated PressDecember 15, 2017, 2:04 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead at the Indonesian Masters when bad weather stopped play Friday during the second round.

The Englishman, who shot a 10-under 62 on Thursday, had completed 13 holes and was 5 under on the day at the Royale Jakarta Golf Club course.

Kiradech Aphibarnrat (64) was in second place.

Brandt Snedeker withdrew wit on the 11th hole at 2 under for the day after shooting an opening 72.

There was no reason given for his withdrawal, but the American has been affected by a rib-sternum injury for most of the season. 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.

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 2, Donald Trump

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 1:00 pm

Even away from the White House, President Donald Trump generated plenty of headlines this year.

Trump’s first year in office didn’t dim his enthusiasm for the game, as he made splashy appearances at two big events, tweeted about golf to his more than 44 million followers, teed it up with some of the sport’s biggest stars, including Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Lexi Thompson, and fired a few eyebrow-raising scores. Logging more than 75 rounds since his inauguration, the 3-handicap has only bolstered his reputation as the best golfing president, particularly after his alleged 73 with Sen. Lindsey Graham.

None of his appearances created a bigger stir than when he attended the U.S. Women’s Open. Despite protests and calls for the USGA to move its premier women’s event from Trump Bedminster – the president reportedly threatened to sue – his weekend there went off without incident, as Trump watched the action and hosted players in his private box near the 15th green.

Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year

Despite his controversial rhetoric on a variety of national issues, Trump has remained a staunch supporter of women’s golf, and he became the first sitting president to attend the U.S. Women’s Open.

An honorary chairman of the Presidents Cup, Trump also flew to Liberty National for the biennial team event, where he presented the trophy to the U.S. team and dedicated the victory to the hurricane victims in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.

In late November, amid tweets about the national anthem, Turkey, Egypt and Time Magazine, Trump announced that he was playing a round in South Florida with Woods and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson.

Yes, that too became a headline, just like everything else Trump did in 2017.

Playing with the pros

Tiger, DJ and Faxon

Article: Video, images from Tiger, DJ's round with Trump

Article: After DJ and Tiger, Trump plays golf with Jack

Rory faces criticism

Article: Rory: Round with Trump about respect for presidency

Article: Rory: Round with Trump not a 'political statement'

President at the Presidents Cup

Video: President Trump makes the rounds at Liberty National

Article: President Trump presents trophy to U.S. team

Article: Stricker: 'Great thrill' to get trophy from Trump

Purported round of 73 with Lindsey Graham

Article: Senator tweets Trump shot 73 in windy, wet conditions

Article: Graham offers details on Trump's round of 73

Cart on the green

Article: Trump appears to drive cart on Bedminster green

Presence and protests at U.S. Women's Open

Article: Trump makes presidential history at Women's Open

Article: Trump supporters, protesters clash near Women's Open

Article: UltraViolet takes protest inside Trump National

Photo gallery: President Trump at the U.S. Women's Open

Trump golf properties


Article: Environmental group vandalizes Trump golf course

Article: Man accused of vandalizing four Trump courses


Article: Two Trump courses in Scotland losing millions

Article: Eric Trump denies Russia helped fund golf courses

Article: Trump company ordered to pay $5.77M in dues dispute

Reportedly fake TIME covers

Article: Trump clubs display fake Time magazine cover

Trump apologizes for voter-fraud story

Report: Trump's voter fraud claim tied to Langer

Langer: Trump 'apologized' for story mix-up

Pros comment on the president

Article: Players defend Trump at Senior PGA Championship

Article: Trump congratulates Daly; Daly congratulates Trump

Getty Images

Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 12:30 pm

Spieth, Thomas headline winter break trip to Cabo

By Grill Room TeamDecember 15, 2017, 1:05 am

Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth. Really good at golf. Really good at vacationing.

With #SB2K18 still months away, Thomas and Spieth headlined a vacation to Cabo San Lucas, and this will shock you but it looks like they had a great time.

Spring break veteran Smylie Kaufman joined the party, as did Thomas' roommate, Tom Lovelady, who continued his shirtless trend.

The gang played all the hits, including shoeless golf in baketball jerseys and late nights with Casamigos tequila.

Image via tom.lovelady on Instagram.

In conclusion, it's still good to be these guys.