The NCAA Player of the Year may have played his last competitive round of 2016.
Texas star Beau Hossler is expected to miss at least four months after he undergoes surgery to repair a torn labrum in his left shoulder.
“I’ve got a good outlook about it,” Hossler told GolfChannel.com on Tuesday afternoon. “I’m not down and out. It’s disappointing that I have to take time off, because I was getting some good momentum and a nice summer schedule lined up, but at the same time I have full confidence that my shoulder will be better than it’s ever been.”
Hossler suffered the injury while hitting a 4-iron off a downhill, sidehill lie on the 15th hole during the semifinals of last week’s NCAA Championship. Despite dislocating his shoulder four times on the last three holes, he was able to finish the match, and win, after putting out of a greenside bunker and saving par.
The next day, about an hour before the championship match against Oregon, Hossler ruled himself out for the finals and conceded his point. Short-handed, the top-ranked Longhorns lost, 3-2.
“Awful timing,” Hossler groaned.
The labrum tear was confirmed after an MRI exam earlier this week. He will undergo surgery Friday in Dallas.
“I absolutely made the right decision,” he said of not playing, “because I could have done some really serious damage.”
Still, it’s an unfortunate situation for Hossler, who was coming off the best stretch of his young career. The fourth-ranked amateur in the world, Hossler posted a winning record at the Walker Cup, won an NCAA-best five college events and captured the prestigious Jones Cup in February. On Tuesday, he was named the winner of the Haskins Award, given to the top player in men’s college golf.
Though he has not made his plans public, Hossler, 21, was expected to turn pro after NCAAs and receive a handful of PGA Tour exemptions this summer as he attempted to earn his card for the 2016-17 season.
Hossler will begin rehabilitation five days after the arthroscopic surgery, but he won’t be able to hit balls until October. That likely rules him out for Web.com Tour Q-School, as well as any fall events.
“I wanted to make sure I was making a smart decision for a 30-year career and not just getting back as soon as possible,” he said.
The next few weeks and months should help provide clarity to Hossler’s future plans. Though it’s possible that he could return to Texas for his senior season, the more likely scenario is that he would begin pursuing starts on the PGA Tour in early 2017. As a non-member, he’s allowed to receive a maximum of seven sponsor exemptions on Tour, so he won’t be able to ease his way back into competition.
“In the long-term, I’m not worried at all,” he said. “Short-term, I’m not going to close the chapter on a college or amateur career because I want to feel comfortable and be ready to play my best when the time comes for a pro career.”