Oklahoma States Hunter Mahan

By Golf Channel DigitalMarch 10, 2003, 5:00 pm
Courtesy of OklahomaStateCowboys.com
Spring 2003: Finished 12th at the Mercedes-Benz Championship; third at the Puerto Rico Classic; sixth at the Las Vegas Intercollegiate
Hunter Mahan2001-2002 (Sophomore): Named a first-team All-American after registering three wins and nine top-10 finishes during his first season for the Cowboys ... was the third consecutive OSU player to be named the Big 12 Player of the Year ... was an All-Big 12 selection ... one of 10 finalists for the Ben Hogan, honoring the nations top player ... finished the season ranked No. 4 in the Golfweek/ Sagarin rankings ... also the top-ranked player in District V ... was named to the GCAA All-Central Region team ... earned a spot on the U.S. Palmer Cup squad, posting a 1-2-1 record to help the Americans capture their second straight win at the event ... tallied a 70.51 stroke average during the season, giving him the ninth-best average in NCAA history ... stroke average was tops in the Big 12 Conference and more than a stroke better than the second-best total ... won his first tournament as a Cowboy at the Jerry Pate Intercollegiate, posting scores of 68-72-65 for an eight-under total of 205 ... second victory came at the Ping Arizona Intercollegiate with a 10-under 203 score after firing rounds of 67-68-68 ... set the school 18-hole scoring record during the first round of the U.S. Collegiate, posting a 10-under 62 to break the old mark of 63 held by four players ... the 10-under-par total tied him for the third-lowest total in relation to par in NCAA history ... won the event with a 12-under 204 total with rounds of 62-73 and 69 ... recorded 16 sub-70 rounds on the season ... finished under par in seven of the squads 13 tournaments ... tied for nintha at the Long Cove Invitational with a one-over 214 total ... tied for third at the Morris Williams Intercollegiate with a two-under 213 score ... finished the season with four consecutive top-10 finishes, placing fourth at the Big 12 Championship (E), fifth at The Maxwell (E), seventh at the NCAA Central Regional (-2) and third at the NCAA Championship (-6) ... halved his match with Georgias Ryan Hybl at the 2002 East-West Match .. was the squads top finisher nine times ... was 30-under versus par on the year.
2000-20001 (Freshman): Played in five events for USC during the fall, finishing in the top five four times ... posted back-to-back wins at the Windon Memorial and the Red River Classic ... fired a career and school-best 63 during the second round of the Jerry Pate, where he finished fourth ... with his win at the Windon Memorial, Mahan became the first Trojan medalist since 1997 ... finished tied for fifth at the Northwest Classic ... three-round total of 204 at the Red River Classic was the lowest 54-hole total by a Trojan since 1985 ... best spring finish came at the Pac-10 Championships where he finished second after firing four consecutive sub-70 rounds ... also posted top-10 finishes at the U.S. Intercollegiate (t-4th) and The Maxwell (t-9th) ... finished the year with a 71.15 stroke average ... named the Freshman of the Year in the Pac-10 ... was a first-team all-conference performer as well ... named a second-team All-America.
Amateur: Received an exemption into the PGAs Texas Open for 2002 ... was named to the 2002 U.S. World Amateur Team along with Arizonas Ricky Barnes and Clemsons D.J. Trahan ... capped a busy summer schedule by reaching the championship match at the 2002 U.S. Amateur .... defeated Brent Wanner 4 and 3 in the first round, John Merrick 2 and 1 in the second round, Conner Robbins 1-up in the third round, Henry Liaw 3 and 2 in the quarterfinals, and Dustin Bray 1-up in the semifinals before falling 2 and 1 to Ricky Barnes in the title match ... became the first OSU player since Trip Kuehne in 1994 to reach the finals ... finished tied for 28th during stroke play at the event with scores of 70 and 71 (+1) ... moved up to No. 3 from the No. 8 spot in the Golfweek/Titleist Amateur rankings after his finish at the U.S. Amateur ... claimed medalist honors at the U.S. Amateur sectional qualifying with a two-round 141 total for a three-stroke victory ... recorded a five-under total to finish seventh in the stroke play portion of the Western Amateur before losing 2 and 1 in the first round of match play ... finished tied for 19th at the Porter Cup with a two-over 282 total after posting rounds of 67-74-69-72 ... lost on the 21st hole during the first round of match play at the U.S. Amateur Public Links Championship ... shot a six-under 66 to hold the first-round lead and a one-under 71 to finish tied for third during stroke play at the Pub Links ... his round of 66 set a new course record at The Orchards Golf Club ... finished fifth at the 2002 Sunnehanna Amateur after carding a two-under 278 total that included rounds of 70, 70, 64, 74 ... won two of his three matches, defeating Taichiro Kiyoto (71 to 72) and Takuya Taniguchi (72 to 76), last summer at the 2001 Fuji Xerox USA vs. Japan Collegiate Golf Championship en route to helping the U.S. to its seventh consecutive victory ... advanced to the second round of match play at the 2001 U.S. Pub Links with a 2 and 1 victory over Thomas Halla ... qualified for the 2001 U.S. Amateur missing the cut with a 147 total ... carded a six-over 286 total to finish tied for 25th at the 2001 Porter Cup ... finished tied for 27th at the 2001 Northeast Amateur with a 71-71-73-70'285 total ... played in his first PGA event in 2000, firing a 36-hole total of 140 (E) at the Canon Greater Hartford Open to miss the cut by one shot ... defeated Aaron Pellegrom 2-up and Ricky Barnes 3 and 2 to advance to the quarterfinals of the 2000 U.S. Amateur before falling 3 and 2 to eventual champion Jeff Quinney ... was the top-ranked junior golfer in the country in the 1999 Golfweek/Titleist rankings ... was the 1999 USGA Junior champion, defeating Camilo Villegas 4 and 2 in the final ... medalist at the 1998 Scott Robertson Memorial Tournament ... named McKinney Highs MVP all four years ...1999 Texas 5A state champion after posting scores of 70 and 68 for a one-stroke victory ... posted more than 100 victories during his junior golf career ... also won the 1999 Western Junior Championship, 1999 North South Golf Championship, 1999 AJGA Polo Golf Championship ... victorious at the 1999 World Golf Team Championship in Japan ... tabbed as the 1999 American Junior Golf Associations Player of the Year after posting back-to-back AJGA wins at the Polo Golf Junior Classic and the Scottsdale Junior Classic to go along with three non-AJGA wins and five runner-up finishes ... finished the season with a 71.04 stroke average in 16 national tournamentes ... earned AJGA second-team All-America status in 1998 ... competed internationally as a member of the USA World Team in 1999 ... was a member of the 1998 USA Junior Ryder Cup squad. posting a 1-0-1 record ... also was on the 1997 U.S. squad that competed against Canada ... finished second at the 1999 AJGA Rolex Tournament of Champions with a four-round total of 284 that included a second-round 64 to set the course record at the Scarlet Course.
Personal: Hunter Myles Mahan ... born May 17, 1982 in Orange, California ... parents are Cindy and Monte Mahan ... pursuing a business degree at Oklahoma State.
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Teenager Im wins Web.com season opener

By Will GrayJanuary 16, 2018, 10:23 pm

South Korea's Sungjae Im cruised to a four-shot victory at The Bahamas Great Exuma Classic, becoming just the second teenager to win an event on the Web.com Tour.

Im started the final day of the season-opening event in a share of the lead but still with six holes left in his third round. He was one shot behind Carlos Ortiz when the final round began, but moved ahead of the former Web.com Player of the Year thanks to a 7-under 65 in rainy and windy conditions. Im's 13-under total left him four clear of Ortiz and five shots ahead of a quartet of players in third.

Still more than two months shy of his 20th birthday, Im joins Jason Day as the only two teens to win on the developmental circuit. Day was 19 years, 7 months and 26 days old when he captured the 2007 Legend Financial Group Classic.

Recent PGA Tour winners Si Woo Kim and Patrick Cantlay and former NCAA champ Aaron Wise all won their first Web.com Tour event at age 20.

Other notable finishes in the event included Max Homa (T-7), Erik Compton (T-13), Curtis Luck (T-13) and Lee McCoy (T-13). The Web.com Tour will remain in the Bahamas for another week, with opening round of The Bahamas Great Abaco Classic set to begin Sunday.

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Mickelson grouped with Z. Johnson at CareerBuilder

By Will GrayJanuary 16, 2018, 8:28 pm

He's not the highest-ranked player in this week's field, but Phil Mickelson will likely draw the biggest crowd at the CareerBuilder Challenge as he makes his first start of 2018. Here are a few early-round, marquee groupings to watch as players battle the three-course rotation in the Californian desert (all times ET):

12:10 p.m. Thursday, 11:40 a.m. Friday, 1:20 p.m. Saturday: Phil Mickelson, Zach Johnson

Mickelson is making his fourth straight trip to Palm Springs, having cracked the top 25 each of the last three times. In addition to their respective amateur partners, he'll play the first three rounds alongside a fellow Masters champ in Johnson, who tied for 14th last week in Hawaii and finished third in this event in 2014.

11:40 a.m. Thursday, 1:20 p.m. Friday, 12:50 p.m. Saturday: Jon Rahm, Bubba Watson

At No. 3 in the world, Rahm is the highest-ranked player teeing it up this week and the Spaniard returns to an event where he finished T-34 last year in his tournament debut. He'll play the first two rounds alongside Watson, who is looking to bounce back from a difficult 2016-17 season and failed to crack the top 50 in two starts in the fall.

11:40 a.m. Thursday, 1:20 p.m. Friday, 12:50 p.m. Saturday: Patrick Reed, Brandt Snedeker

Reed made the first big splash of his career at this event in 2014, shooting three straight rounds of 63 en route to his maiden victory. He'll be joined by Snedeker, whose bid for a Masters bid via the top 50 of the world rankings came up short last month and who hasn't played this event since a missed cut in 2015.

1:10 p.m. Thursday, 12:40 p.m. Friday, 12:10 p.m. Saturday: Patton Kizzire, Bill Haas

Kizzire heads east after a whirlwind Sunday ended with his second win of the season in a six-hole playoff over James Hahn in Honolulu. He'll play alongside Haas, who won this event in both 2010 and 2015 to go with a runner-up finish in 2011 and remains the tournament's all-time leading money winner.

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Mackay still a caddie at heart, even with a microphone

By Doug FergusonJanuary 16, 2018, 7:34 pm

HONOLULU – All it took was one week back on the bag to remind Jim ''Bones'' Mackay what he always loved about being a caddie.

It just wasn't enough for this to be the ultimate mic drop.

Mackay traded in his TV microphone at the Sony Open for the 40-pound bag belonging to Justin Thomas.

It was his first time caddying since he split with Phil Mickelson six months ago. Mackay was only a temporary replacement at Waialae for Jimmy Johnson, a good friend and Thomas' regular caddie who has a nasty case of plantar fasciitis that will keep him in a walking boot for the next month.

''The toughest thing about not caddying is missing the competition, not having a dog in the fight,'' Mackay said before the final round. ''There's nothing more rewarding as a caddie, in general terms, when you say, 'I don't like 6-iron, I like 7,' and being right. I miss that part of it.''

The reward now?

''Not stumbling over my words,'' he said. ''And being better than I was the previous week.''

He has done remarkably well since he started his new job at the British Open last summer, except for that time he momentarily forgot his role. Parts of that famous caddie adage – ''Show up, keep up, shut up'' – apparently can apply to golf analysts on the ground.

During the early hours of the telecast, before Johnny Miller came on, Justin Leonard was in the booth.

''It's my job to report on what I see. It's not my job to ask questions,'' Mackay said. ''I forgot that for a minute.''

Leonard was part of a booth discussion on how a comfortable pairing can help players trying to win a major. That prompted Mackay to ask Leonard if he found it helpful at the 1997 British Open when he was trying to win his first major and was paired with Fred Couples in the final round at Royal Troon.

''What I didn't know is we were going to commercial in six seconds,'' Mackay said. ''I would have no way of knowing that, but I completely hung Justin out to dry. He's now got four seconds to answer my long-winded question.''

During the commercial break, the next voice Mackay heard belonged to Tommy Roy, the executive golf producer at NBC.

''Bones, don't ever do that again.''

It was Roy who recognized the value experienced caddies could bring to a telecast. That's why he invited Mackay and John Wood, the caddie for Matt Kuchar, into the control room at the 2015 Houston Open so they could see how it all worked and how uncomfortable it can be to hear directions coming through an earpiece.

Both worked as on-course reporters at Sea Island that fall.

And when Mickelson and Mackay parted ways after 25 years, Roy scooped up the longtime caddie for TV.

It's common for players to move into broadcasting. Far more unusual is for a caddie to be part of the mix. Mackay loves his new job. Mostly, he loves how it has helped elevate his profession after so many years of caddies being looked upon more unfavorably than they are now.

''I want to be a caddie that's doing TV,'' he said. ''That's what I hope to come across as. The guys think this is good for caddies. And if it's good for caddies, that makes me happy. Because I'm a caddie. I'll always be a caddie.''

Not next week at Torrey Pines, where Mickelson won three times. Not a week later in Phoenix, where Mackay lives. Both events belong to CBS.

And not the Masters.

He hasn't missed Augusta since 1994, when Mickelson broke his leg skiing that winter.

''That killed me,'' he said, ''but not nearly as much as it's going to kill me this year. I'll wake up on Thursday of the Masters and I'll be really grumpy. I'll probably avoid television at all costs until the 10th tee Sunday. And I'll watch. But it will be, within reason, the hardest day of my life.''

There are too many memories, dating to when he was in the gallery right of the 11th green in 1987 when Larry Mize chipped in to beat Greg Norman. He caddied for Mize for two years, and then Scott Simpson in 1992, and Mickelson the rest of the way. He was on the bag for Lefty's three green jackets.

Mackay still doesn't talk much about what led them to part ways, except to say that a player-caddie relationship runs its course.

''If you lose that positive dynamic, there's no point in continuing,'' he said. ''It can be gone in six months or a year or five years. In our case, it took 25 years.''

He says a dozen or so players called when they split up, and the phone call most intriguing was from Roy at NBC.

''I thought I'd caddie until I dropped,'' Mackay said.

He never imagined getting yardages and lining up putts for anyone except the golfer whose bag he was carrying. Now it's for an audience that measures in the millions. Mackay doesn't look at it as a second career. And he won't rule out caddying again.

''It will always be tempting,'' he said. ''I'll always consider myself a caddie. Right now, I'm very lucky and grateful to have the job I do.''

Except for that first week in April.

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The Social: The end was nigh, then it wasn't

By Jason CrookJanuary 16, 2018, 7:00 pm

The star power at the Sony Open may have been overshadowed by a missile scare, but there were plenty of other social media stories that kept the golf world on its toes this week, including some insight on Tiger Woods from a round with President Obama and some failed trick shots.

All that and more in this week's edition of The Social.

By now you've undoubtedly heard about the false alarm in Hawaii on Saturday, where just about everyone, including most Sony Open participants, woke up to an emergency cell phone alert that there was a ballistic missile heading toward the islands.

Hawaiian emergency management officials eventually admitted the original message was mistakenly sent out, but before they did, people (understandably) freaked out.

As the situation unfolded, some Tour pros took to social media to express their confusion and to let the Twittersphere know how they planned on riding out this threat:

While I would've been in that bathtub under the mattress with John Peterson, his wife, baby and in-laws (wait, how big is this tub?), here's how Justin Thomas reacted to the threat of impending doom:

Yeah, you heard that right.

“I was like ‘there’s nothing I can do,'” Thomas said. ”I sat on my couch and opened up the sliding door and watched TV and listened to music. I was like, if it’s my time, it’s my time.”

Hmmm ... can we just go ahead and award him all the 2018 majors right now? Because if Thomas is staring down death in mid-January, you gotta like the kid's chances on the back nine Sunday at Augusta and beyond.

Before the Hawaiian Missile Crisis of 2018, things were going about as well as they could at Waialae Country Club, starting with the Wednesday pro-am.

Jordan Spieth might have been the third-biggest star in his own group, after getting paired with superstar singer/songwriter/actor Nick Jonas and model/actress Kelly Rohrbach.

You'd be hard-pressed to find a more photogenic group out on the course, and the "Baywatch" star has a gorgeous swing as well, which makes sense, considering she was a former collegiate golfer at Georgetown.

As impressive as that group was, they were somehow outshined by an amateur in another group, former NFL coach June Jones.

Jones, who now coaches the CFL's Hamilton Tiger-Cats, played his round in bare feet and putted with his 5-iron, a remedy he came up with to battle the yips.

Former NFL and current CFL coach June Jones: A master of 5-iron putting?

A post shared by PGA TOUR (@pgatour) on

Considering he made back-to-back birdies at one point during the day, it's safe to say he's won that battle.

With Tiger Woods' return to the PGA Tour about a week away, that sound you hear is the hype train motoring full speed down the tracks.

First, his ex-girlfriend Lindsey Vonn told Sports Illustrated that she hopes this comeback works out for him.

“I loved him and we’re still friends. Sometimes, I wish he would have listened to me a little more, but he’s very stubborn and he likes to go his own way," the Olympic skiier said. "I hope this latest comeback sticks. I hope he goes back to winning tournaments.”

Vonn also mentioned she thinks Woods is very stubborn and that he didn't listen to her enough. That really shouldn't shock anyone who watched him win the 2008 U.S. Open on one leg. Don't think there were a lot of people in his ear telling him that was a great idea at the time.

We also have this report from Golf Channel Insider Tim Rosaforte, stating that the 14-time major champ recently played a round with former president Barack Obama at The Floridian in Palm City, Fla., where he received rave reviews from instructor Claude Harmon.

The Farmers Insurance Open is sure to be must-see TV, but until then, I'm here for all of the rampant speculation and guesses as to how things will go. The more takes the better. Make them extra spicy, please and thanks.

These poor New Orleans Saints fans. Guess the only thing you can do is throw your 65-inch TV off the balcony and get 'em next year.

Here's two more just for good measure.

Farts ... will they ever not be funny?

Perhaps someday, but that day was not early last week, when Tommy Fleetwood let one rip on his European teammates during EurAsia Cup team photos.

Fleetwood went 3-0-0 in the event, helping Europe to a victory over Asia, perhaps by distracting his opponents with the aid of his secret weapon.

Also, how about the diabolical question, "Did you get that?"

Yeah Tommy, we all got that.

Ahhh ... golf trick shot videos. You were fun while you lasted.

But now we’ve officially come to the point in their existence where an unsuccessful attempt is much more entertaining than a properly executed shot, and right on cue, a couple of pros delivered some epic fails.

We start with Sony Open runner-up James Hahn’s preparation for the event, where for some reason he thought he needed to practice a running, jumping, Happy Gilmore-esque shot from the lip of a bunker. It didn’t exactly work out.

Not to be outdone, Ladies European Tour pro Carly Booth attempted the juggling-drive-it-out-of-midair shot made famous by the Bryan Bros, and from the looks of things she might have caught it a little close to the hosel.

PSA to trick-shot artists everywhere: For the sake of the viewing public, if you feel a miss coming on, please make sure the camera is rolling.

Seriously, though, who cares? Definitely not these guys and gals, who took the time to comment, "who cares?" They definitely do not care.