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The IN's and OUT's of COLLEGE GOLF


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#1 Golfer1659

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Posted 07 August 2012 - 10:13 AM

Where, what, when, how and WHY??


Where do I want to play:  Division 1, 2, 3

The top Elite programs now adays do not even accept in a "scrambling scratch golfer".  You need to be avergaing under par and winning all national junior and national events and or placing top 3.  If you don't have a plus handicap, forget the likes of Texas, Florida.....etc


The misconception commonly had by many juniors is that a Division 1 team is always better then Division 3 teams, on average yes, but there are PLENTY of schools in lower divisions that would and could compete with the top level division 1 teams.

Research and the internet is your friend. Unless you are winning AJGA invitationals and or US Junior Amateur events or placing consistently and shooting 73 (highest par for a course) and below constantly in tournaments then you are not going to be recruited by 100's of schools.  You need to look for schools or places that you can play.




Average Junior golfer looking to college: I SHOOT IN THE 70's (can have a bad round in low 80's)

You are a dime a dozen, you need to create a resume.  By creating a resume you need have some sort of formated excel sheet showing all your tournaments and how you performed at each.  Highlighting your local wins and top finishes also showing your ACADEMIC CREDENTIALS, academics are JUST as important as the sport that is giving you that "Red Card" when your college application goes in saying, he or she is here to play a sport.




What do I want to play and why:  

Do you want to play at a school that you may just "ride the bench" or do you want to be a top player and play every tournament.  Just because you go to college doesn't mean you will play in tournaments.  Normally there is a pecking order once at the college you chose.  Lots of time there is a qualifying round during the week to see who will go and stay for the last several spots..




What makes the best college golfer:



The MENTALLY STRONG.  I can't relay to you how important the mental aspect of the game is.  What took my game to the next level was working with a sports psycologist and developing Zen meditation techniques and ways to trust your swing, putt, chip shot....etc.

Not to plug anything but I worked with a gentlemen by the name of Dr Tom Ferraro, http://a.drtomferraro.com/index.htm.

He worked both professional and amateur athletes.  This changed my game from 77 on a bad day and 72 on a good day to shooting par everytime out and winning tournaments.  This change is the difference between being recruited by a few schools to being a top recruit going into your school.

This preperation is missed by 85-90pct of junior golfers out there, you want to make yourself better work on your mental game.  Keep that double bogey to a bogey and then birdie the next hole instead of going down that negative road that can ruin a round.

(If you are telling yourself, this isnt important then you are crazy, if you think, well I hit a LONG ball and that will be my difference maker then you are crazy, everyone at top schools hit a LONG ball, or are VERY acurate, the major difference once everyone has the same athletic talent is the MENTAL game, you see this day in and day out on the PGA tour, speaks for itself)





HOW do I get to play college golf:

HARD WORK.  No one is going to give this too you.  Your preparation is what matters the most, then that leads to the course and tournaments:

When I was playing golf in 99/2000 my resume of tournaments was as followed (i know i am missing things):

AJGA
PJGT
IJGT
Junior MetropolitainGA
US Amateur Qualifier
US Open Qualifier
MGA (not junior)
Invitationals (ie: Match Play at Ardsley country club, Florida events)
I TRAVELED FOR GOLF (maryland, NJ, NY, PA, Long Island,CT, FL, dont be afraid to travel for tournaments, especially bigger ones)
Highschool Golf (this is least regarded by college coaches, fyi everyone trying to get to college is usually first man on the team, dont think to yourself that makes a difference, lol)



The other part of the resume: ACADEMICS

I received the Scholar Athlete Award by Newsday (this is something I put in my golf resume and academic resume and was given, I did the work to get the award)
GPA (this should always be on your resume)




LAST BUT NOT LEAST:

Take everything on the internet with a grain of salt (not my post of course, haha), but if some kid/guy/girl is claiming to have shot 66/69/67 and shows no record on any site and or hits the ball 350yds every drive and sticks it to 5 feet with every iron, this is the least of your worries.  I see these countless threads of how long do you hit your "driver, 7 iron...etc" these are the biggest BS threads on the internet.  Let these "internet golfers" do what they want, when you should be out on the course.

STAY HUMBLE................I can't stress this enough, let other people do the talking for you.




(This was a quick post but I will add to the original post within the next few days, these are the bare basics)

Edited by Golfer1659, 07 August 2012 - 10:14 AM.


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#2 KILLEDBYASHANKEDWEDGE

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Posted 07 August 2012 - 10:19 AM

Nothing better than hands on experience/advice. My son will be reading this today. Thanks.

#3 Goldenhawk

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Posted 07 August 2012 - 10:36 AM

This is very helpful.  From reading this, I can't help but agree with you on the mental aspects of the game.

I need to work on the mental aspect of the game with my 11 year old.  He'll go out and shoot pars and bogeys on most holes, with a birdie here and there.  But there's always that one hole were the wheels fall off.  He needs to learn how to let it go and work on how to hit the next shot.

Edited by Goldenhawk, 07 August 2012 - 10:37 AM.

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#4 italianstallion

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Posted 07 August 2012 - 12:27 PM

I'm going to pin this, fantastic post. Thanks for your insight

#5 Bombn

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Posted 07 August 2012 - 01:02 PM

Great post!  Thanks for the insight.

The only thing I would add about high school golf is that the only thing the coaches seem interested in is how you performed at your state tournament or if you were selected "1st team All state" or conference on your resume. They always seem to have this on the players BIO. Other than that, you will never been found by schools without results in national events like Junior AM, AJGA, PGA Junior, Callaway Junior Worlds, America's Cup and Hogan Cup.  

Some great resources to check on schools:

NCAA Men's & Women's Division 1 Golf Schools - http://www.mindirect...-golf-info.html

GolfWeek Rankings - NCAA Men's Teams - http://rankings.golf...efault.asp?t=mt


#6 semi

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Posted 07 August 2012 - 03:50 PM

Really good post...looking forward to your next.  Just a couple of questions:

Do handicaps really matter? I've also heard that handicaps mean squat...

GPA - should that be only core classes? I think that's what the colleges use...

Thanks

#7 Bombn

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Posted 07 August 2012 - 04:32 PM

Handicap have zero influence or weight.  The reason is that to play at a good college (D1 or even DIII) you have to be at a minimum scratch or a zero or better.  So they are only considering players that have plus handicaps, if they even keep them. If you are scratch or better there is no reason to keep a handicap since you are playing only true golf or no-BS handicap tournaments anyway.  Many of the best juniors don't even keep a handicaps.

#8 Golfer1659

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Posted 07 August 2012 - 04:57 PM

View Postsemi, on 07 August 2012 - 03:50 PM, said:

Really good post...looking forward to your next.  Just a couple of questions:

Do handicaps really matter? I've also heard that handicaps mean squat...

GPA - should that be only core classes? I think that's what the colleges use...

Thanks


Handicap is irrelevant considering how easy it is to have a false handicap.  Its all about results at tournaments and having alot of tournaments is best, especially national ones, NOT just junior tournaments.

The GPA should just be your current GPA for your highschool career, so just put on the resume ie:  GPA: 3.8

You can list your scholar awards and or honor society and stuff like that.

#9 generaljhc

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Posted 08 August 2012 - 09:06 PM

I would add that you should be playing in your state junior championship, state am, state open as well. These tournaments in some states, GA for example, are very competitive and results are respected by college coaches. If you live in a state with SJGT events play in them. It is a competitive regional tour that is respected by college coaches and has 15-20 tournaments where the winner receives an AJGA exemption and 2-5 receive AJGA performance stars.

Resumes are important. Unless you are a top 50-100 player you will have to do some marketing of yourself to the coaches. College coaches know your scores. They can look them up on National Junior Golf Scoreboard..make sure you are honest about your scores. As stated above they do not care what your handicap is, the look at your scoring in 2-3 events.

Grades are important. Often you can receive more money for college for your GPA/SAT than your tournament scoring average.

Link to some basic college recruiting info:

http://www.juniorgol.../ss_4_start.asp


http://coachthurmond.tumblr.com/

Edited by generaljhc, 10 August 2012 - 12:02 PM.


#10 Titleist876

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Posted 20 September 2012 - 10:17 AM

Another point beyond playing in State Amateurs would be looking to play in some Mini-Tour events as an Amateur. Obviously, the field will be mixed with Hopeless 'Uncle Rico' type Dreamers that are hackers, some freshout of college players, and some golf tour journeymen.

Even if your son/daughter isnt good enough to contest at the top of smaller mini-tourevents, making a cut, finishing in a top 20, etc will be a resume booster! Ive known several of my younger high school teammates whom Ive shared that idea with and theyve gone on to finish in a couple top 10's on the Fairway Tour (A Handicapped tour in the DFW/Oklahoma region) and while that really isnt that impressive, its an achievement they can state on a resume or conversation with coaches! Again, dont show up if you are going to finish DFL (Dead F&^%# Last) because that will obviously hurt your chances. Im sure somewhere there are stories of high school kids missing a Hooters/Adams Tight Lies/Nationwide Tour Monday Qualifer event by a stroke or two, and that in itself would be a huge accomplishment!

I feel a college coach would respect the fact that your son/daughter is taking the initiative to go out and look beyond the "college golf realm' to improve and gain "professional-like" experience. Just remember to declare playing as an Am, otherwise there will be issues!

Best of Luck!


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#11 JorgeGomez

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Posted 23 October 2012 - 11:00 PM

Hello,

I try to read your post, but i'm still looking at your profile pic! Isn't she nice?

By the way really nice post. I love the "stay humble" part. Very important these days of competition.

Good Golfing.


#12 OptionlessM

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Posted 30 October 2012 - 11:30 PM

I went through this whole thing, played at a top 5 DI school (at the time, I think we are top 15 still)

- Forget the word Handicap.  That is what old retired people use to compete at their country club best ball
- Play in regional and national multi-day junior events.  You don't have to play well every time, but show that you can compete and have solid finishes
- Play some amateur golf tournaments.  Southern Am, Western, if you are really big time or state am, small regional etc if you are like most.  I never played in the big ones until I was a senior in HS
- Work on maintaining composure when you hit poor shots or get bad luck.  Nobody wants to hear how your round would have been great if you didn't 3 putt, blah blah.  That type of stuff is a major turn off for recruiting coaches
- Coaches do not really care how far you hit the ball. at all.
- Demonstrate skill in short game and putting.  Everyone in college hits the ball well.
- Behave like a grown up on the golf course, dress appropriately, etc

#13 The General

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Posted 31 October 2012 - 12:16 AM

you forgot......don't be a d***** bag. You can be a great player without being an a**hole.

Edited by The General, 31 October 2012 - 12:16 AM.


#14 TMAdidas

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Posted 05 May 2013 - 07:11 PM

Thanks, good post.

#15 dgould91

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Posted 09 May 2013 - 09:02 AM

Thanks for the great post!


#16 sonomaca

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Posted 13 October 2013 - 12:50 AM

Why go through the whole AJGA/college song and dance?  Why not just go ahead and turn pro at age 16 or 18 and spend the next 6 or 7 years learning how to be a pro on various mini tour circuits.  That's where you'll probably end up after college anyway, which means you'll be 30 before you know whether you're PGA material rather than 23 or 24.  Some might argue, "well, what about Koepke or Homa or whoever."  These guys were great before they went to college, and most likely would have become top pros without the benefit of college golf.

#17 Mitchell

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Posted 13 October 2013 - 01:31 AM

View Postsonomaca, on 13 October 2013 - 12:50 AM, said:

Why go through the whole AJGA/college song and dance?  Why not just go ahead and turn pro at age 16 or 18 and spend the next 6 or 7 years learning how to be a pro on various mini tour circuits.  That's where you'll probably end up after college anyway, which means you'll be 30 before you know whether you're PGA material rather than 23 or 24.  Some might argue, "well, what about Koepke or Homa or whoever."  These guys were great before they went to college, and most likely would have become top pros without the benefit of college golf.
The fact of the matter is that most, not all, teenagers do not have the financial resources or emotional maturity to be able to handle the grind that comes from trying to make it on the professional level. While I may not agree with the expense of traveling to AJGA events, there are other tournaments available and if you are good enough and choose events wisely as well as discipline yourself in studies opportunities are available. My question would be why not play college golf and get invaluable experience that you may not have to pay for plus a degree to use towards a career if golf doesn't work out? Considet two case examples as well, Ty Tryon and Matt Kuchar
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#18 Birdies&Eagles

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Posted 18 October 2013 - 08:16 AM

View Postsonomaca, on 13 October 2013 - 12:50 AM, said:

Why go through the whole AJGA/college song and dance?  Why not just go ahead and turn pro at age 16 or 18 and spend the next 6 or 7 years learning how to be a pro on various mini tour circuits.  That's where you'll probably end up after college anyway, which means you'll be 30 before you know whether you're PGA material rather than 23 or 24.  Some might argue, "well, what about Koepke or Homa or whoever."  These guys were great before they went to college, and most likely would have become top pros without the benefit of college golf.
I would agree with you on this one the distractions college can present to certain golfers. However college golf will give you the maturity to keep chasing your dream. So in OP I think the most important part is mental aspect.

#19 bub72ck

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Posted 29 October 2013 - 10:01 AM

1. Have realistic expectations.  If you aren't fighting for wins on AJGA, major amateur events, USGA events, you probably aren't going to a top school.
2. Pick a school based on your ACADEMIC goals.  What's the % of people that earn a living playing professionally?  Odds are it's not you or your child.  If you are doing #1 above, your odds are better than the rest.  Otherwise, think about the rest of your life.
3. Be a good person.  If you have a good game but you're an a-hole, coaches will find somebody else to sign.
4. You don't have to go to the #1 school to be the #1 player.  Western Carolina (my alma mater) isn't exactly known as a golf powerhouse.  But, according to Golfstat the best player in the nation as I type this plays there.  It's true opportunities are probably better at a big school, but most of the chances to get better are on the shoulders of the individual.
5. Work on your game now and be ready to work on your game even more once you get into college.  College life is as good as it gets especially if you are playing golf.  But, its hard work.  Class responsibilities (remember #2?), living away from home for the first time, and a fulltime golf schedule can be tough.  I also worked on weekends and in the summers but it was worth it.
6.  Probably the most important to me.  PAY ATTENTION TO LIFE AND LEARN SOMETHING!  Learn to be a contributing member of society, not a moocher.  Be a professional and learn to shake hands with a firm grip.  Have some integrity when representing your school.  Get involved in community activities.  Make the school and athletic department a better place than when you came.  Be an active alumni when you graduate.  Alumni of colleges and universities are a great community to be a part of, but the former athlete alumni creates an even more special bond.  Don't ever let that go!
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