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This Week's Syllabus: Oct. 7-13

THE FAB FIVE
MEN
OSU Pistol Pete logo.jpg1. Oklahoma State (Last week: 1)
The Cowboys play their final tournament of the fall with their full team available up in Columbus, as Peter Uihlein will be playing for the U.S. at the World Amateur Team Championship when OSU competes at Isleworth. Thus, we've got one more chance, then, to get a sense of just how good this group is before next February.
Next event: Jack Nicklaus Invitational, Scioto CC, Columbus, Ohio, Oct. 11-12

Florida logo.gif2. Florida (2)
The Gators aren't necessarily known as a team that starts out quick. The last time coach Buddy Alexander's squad won a fall tournament was in 2006, which makes the Olympia Fields win that much more impressive.
Next event: Jerry Pate National Invitational, Old Overton Club, Birmingham, Ala., Oct. 11-12

Alabama logo.gif3. Alabama (3)
It's still early in the season, but Crimson Tide fans have to love how the team's freshmen (Bobby Wyatt and Cory Whitsett) have been playing. The duo have a combined 71.33 average thus far, a number that may well go down when they compete on the player friendly Old Overton course for the JPNI.
Next event: Jerry Pate National Invitational, Old Overton Club, Birmingham, Ala., Oct. 11-12

Augusta State logo.jpg4. Augusta State (4)
The Jaguars have had a solid start finish-wise with a T-2 and T-4 at Olympia Fields and the Preview, respectively. One stat they could improve on, though, is fairways hit. Thus far the team is averaging only 51.9 percent off the tee according to Golfstat.
Next event: Brickyard Intercollegiate, The Brickyard at Riverside, Macon, Ga., Oct. 8-10

Iowa logo.gif5. Iowa (5)
OK, I would have definitely lost a bet to anyone who would have asked me in August whether the Hawkeyes would have been in my Fab Five for three straight weeks in the fall. Still, it's hard to find fault with what Mark Hankins is doing in the heartland right now.
Next event: Rod Myers Invitational, Duke University GC, Durham, N.C., Oct. 10-11


WOMEN
LSU logo.gif1. LSU (1)
LSU football coach Les Miles could learn a thing or two from how Karen Bahnsen's squad closes out a golf tournament. Impressive final-round performances mean the Tigers aren't going to be creeping up on anybody anymore after their solid start to 2010-11. So now, lets see how they handle being the favorite in a tournament. My guess is they make out OK this weekend in North Carolina.
Next event: Tar Heel Invitational, UNC Finley Course, Chapel Hill, N.C., Oct. 8-9

Alabama logo.gif2. Alabama (2)
Three impressive stats from the Crimson Tide this fall: they have the lowest drop score average (75.15) of any team in the country, they have hit 90.1 percent of fairways as a team and they have hit 76.5 percent of their greens in regulation as a team. Can you say depth?
Next event: Tar Heel Invitational, UNC Finley Course, Chapel Hill, N.C., Oct. 8-9

Purdue logo.gif3. Purdue (4)
The Boilermakers now return to the winning portion of the 2010-11 broadcast, three-peating as champions at the Windy City Collegiate this past week with Numa Gulyanamitta become the third straight Purdue player to claim the individual title as well. Look for more of the same at the Lady Northern.
Next event: Lady Northern, Lake Shore CC, Glencoe, Ill., Oct. 11-12

USC logo.gif4. USC (3)
The Trojans shut things down for roughly a month with players competing at the Women's World Amateur Team Championship. Must admit, I thought they'd have a team title already at this point in their season. Still, no worse than a third-place finish in three starts isn't bad and the team set the 18-hole school record in the final round (13-under 275) of their second-place showing at Edean Ihlanfeldt.
Next event: Pac-10/SEC Challenge, Stanford GC, Palo Alto, Calif., Nov. 5-7

Virginia logo 2008-09.gif5. Virginia (5)
The Cavalier program can make a statement with a solid performance this weekend at coach Kim Luellen's alma mater. To follow up the final round surge from the Golfweek Conference Challenge would be suggest the pre-season optimism in Charlottesville was for a reason. 
Next event: Tar Heel Invitational, UNC Finley Course, Chapel Hill, N.C., Oct. 8-9


STAT OF THE WEEK (BELATED EDITION)
12
Number of playoff holes needed to decide the individual champion at the Rose City Collegiate Sept. 28 at Langdon Farms GC outside Portland. Oregon State's Whitney French and North Texas' Kelsey Kipp had finished the 54-hole event tied at one-under 215, then played for almost three more hours in a "sudden-death" playoff. Kipp came out the winner as the Mean Green also won their second team title in two starts this season.


RANDOM THOUGHT OF THE WEEK
Watching San Diego men's coach Tim Mickelson advance to the quarterfinals of the U.S. Mid-Amateur last week and seeing Florida's Buddy Alexander win a two matches at the USGA Senior Amateur this week, got me thinking that a tournament I think might be fun to watch is one exclusively for coaches of college teams. Would be pretty entertaining to see who might win, no?


WHAT TO WATCH FOR
* The Mercedes-Benz Women's Collegiate Championship that Tennessee hosts each year has become one of the more high profile tournaments of the fall season. Coach Judi Pavon and the Lady Vols are using this to help a good cause this weekend, as the team has partnered with the Knoxville chapter of the Susan B. Komen Rally for the Cure to support breast cancer awareness. 

Each participating team in the tournament will receive pink ribbons to display on its bags, while the Lady Vols will sport pink polo's during the event. On Saturday, every team will wear pink for a "Pink Out" promotion. Additionally, fans will be able to donate money to the foundation during the tournament either in bins or by pledging an amount for every birdie the Lady Vols record over the weekend in a "Birdies for Breast Cancer" effort.

Last Sunday, the Lady Vols hosted a free women's golf clinic at the brand new Mack and Jonnie Day practice facility. Over 80 participants attended the event at the scenic three-hole facility that also includes a putting green and driving range on the banks of the Tennessee River. Each participant also received literature on breast cancer awareness from the Knoxville affiliate of Susan G. Komen for the Cure and a voucher for a Lady Vol hat clip/ball marker to be redeemed at the tournament.

"We had a great turnout for the golf clinic," Pavon said. "It was awesome to see so many young women excited about golf. We're hoping the golf clinic and this weekend's tournament can help raise awareness about breast cancer, as well. It's a disease that affects so many women and we need as many people as we can to help in the fight."


* In the recent past, the Florida men haven't been a team that's gotten off to a quick start to the college season. It's why the Gators victory at Olympia Fields caught some, including me, a bit off guard. It's not that I thought the team wasn't talented; it's just Buddy Alexander's group usually needs a little time to find its way. (To wit, this was the first time Florida has won a fall tournament in the past four seasons).

Meanwhile, it's been since 2005 that Florida has won multiple events in the fall, making the outcome of this week's Jerry Pate National Invitational that much tougher to predict. There's not much of a recent track record to look at when trying to figure this out; Alexander's teams have played in the event only once since 1999, finishing fifth in 2007. I think the low scores that frequently are posted at Old Overton, however, will work in the Gators favor.


* There's been a lot of talk of Division II programs beating Division I teams in recent tournaments, but how about a junior college squad getting in on the action. The Daytona State College women won the USF/Waterlefe Invitational yesterday, beating 17 Division I programs as well as coming back from a eight-shot deficit to beat reigning Division II national champion Nova Southeastern.

It was Falcons second win of the season, the first coming at their home event held at LPGA International's Legends Course last month. That's the same course where they will play this coming week in the LPGA Xavier Invitational, where the team is actually the defending champion.



TOURNAMENT PREVIEWS
MEN
Philadelphia Big 5 Invitational
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
Plymouth CC, Plymouth Meeting, Pa.
Oct. 8-10
Host: Temple
Field: Binghamton, Brown, Campbell, Cornell, Dartmouth, Drexel, Fordham, Francis Marion, Furman, Harvard, Kentucky, LaSalle, Penn, Princeton, Rhode Island, Seton Hall, St. Joseph's, St. John's, Temple, Villanova, Yale
Defending champion: Campbell (19-over 587) by four strokes over Richmond; Campbell's Zak Drescher (two-under 140) by three strokes over St. John's Mike Ballo Jr.
Skinny: Any intriguing mix of schools. Wonder if interlopers Furman and Kentucky might "spoil" this otherwise Northeast party.

Brickyard Collegiate Championship
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
The Brickyard, Macon, Ga.
Oct. 8-10
Host: Mercer
Field: Augusta State, Boston College, Chattanooga, Clemson, Colorado State, Florida State, Georgia, Georgia Tech, Gonzaga, Mercer, Mississippi, North Florida, Oklahoma, UT Arlington, Virginia Tech
Defending champion: Augusta State (13-under 563) by 13 strokes over Chattanooga and Clemson; Georgia's Russell Henley (10-under 134) by five strokes over Georgia Tech's J.T. Griffin
Skinny: The start of the Jaguars' national championship run can be traced back to last year's rain-shortened Brickyard, where the eventual NCAA champs won the first of four team titles.

Rod Myers Invitational
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
Duke University GC, Durham, N.C.
Oct. 10-11
Host: Duke
Field: Charlotte, Duke, East Tennessee State, Iowa, Michigan, Middle Tennessee State, Minnesota, N.C. State, Rice, Tulsa, UNC Greensboro, VCU
Defending champion: New event
Skinny: Duke's home tournament has been renamed in honor of the Blue Devils former head coach, Rod Myers, who oversaw the program from 1973-2007.

The Prestige at PGA West
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
PGA West (Stadium Course), La Quinta, Calif.
Oct. 10-12
Host: UC Davis/Stanford
Field: Arizona State, California, Long Beach State, Michigan State, Oregon, Pacific, Pepperdine, San Diego, Stanford, TCU, UC Davis, UCF, UNC Wilmington, Washington, Vanderbilt
Defending champion: TCU (14-under 850) by 16 strokes over Stanford; TCU's Daniel Jennevret (12-under 204) by six strokes over UCLA's Pedro Figueiredo
Skinny: The tournament celebrates its 11th anniversary in 2010. Three times TCU has claimed the title (2003, 2008, 2009), a mark matched only by UCLA.

Jack Nicklaus Invitational
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
Scioto CC, Columbus, Ohio
Oct. 11-12
Host: Ohio State
Field: Arkansas, Baylor, Illinois, Kent State, LSU, Ohio State, Oklahoma State, Purdue, Texas, USC
Defending champion: New event
Skinny: Scioto CC officials have interest in a USGA event. Seeing how some of the top college players do on the re-designed gem where the tournament's namesake learned to play the game could help make their argument.

Jerry Pate National Intercollegiate
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
Old Overton GC, Birmingham, Ala.
Oct. 11-12
Host: Alabama
Field: Alabama, Auburn, Florida, Georgia State, Memphis, Mississippi State, SMU, Samford, South Alabama, Southern Mississippi, UAB, UNLV
Defending champion: Alabama (seven-under 273); Alabama's Hunter Hamrick (five-under 65) by one stroke over Texas' Cody Gribble
Skinny: If history holds, you better go low if you want to win this event. The team winner has been over par just twice since the event moved to Old Overton in 1997 (Clemson, 1997; Oklahoma State, 2001).

Mizuno Savannah Intercollegiate
Savannah Quarters CC, Savannah, Ga.
Oct. 11-12
Host: Georgia Southern
Field: Arkansas State, Armstrong State, Charleston Southern, Davidson, Elon, Florida Gulf Coast, Gardner Webb, Georgia College, Georgia Southern, Jacksonville, Samford, Troy, Winthrop, Wofford
Defending champion: East Carolina (12-under 852) by 19 strokes over Wofford; East Carolina's David Watkins (11-under 205) by six  strokes over Furman's Daniel Bowden and Georgia Southern's Ryan Zabroske
Skinny: Host Georgia Southern lookingto make it three wins in four editions of the tournament.

The Firestone Invitational
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
Firestone CC (North), Akron, Ohio
Oct. 11-12
Host: Akron
Field: Akron, Eastern Michigan, Illinois State, Indiana, Iowa State, Kansas State, Maryland, New Mexico State, Notre Dame, St. Mary's (Calif.), Toledo, Wichita State, Xavier
Skinny: This is the second iteration of the Firestone Invitational under fourth-year coach Nick Goetze.

WOMEN
CU Heather Farr Memorial Invitational
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
Colorado National GC, Erie, Colo.
Oct. 8-9
Host: Colorado
Field: Colorado, Colorado State, Eastern Michigan, Fresno State, Montana State, Nevada, Northern Colorado, Northern Iowa, Portland State, Weber State, Wyoming
Defending champion: Texas Tech (18-over 882) by 12 strokes over Nebraska; Texas Tech's Alex Gibson (three-under 213) by five strokes over Colorado State's Kasey Claussen
Skinny: Heather Farr was childhood friend of CU women's coach Anne Kelly. Second year the event is being held at Colorado National.

Tar Heel Invitational
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
UNC Finley GC, Chapel Hill, N.C.
Oct. 8-10
Host: North Carolina
Field: Alabama, Auburn, Denver, Duke, Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Louisville, LSU, Michigan State, North Carolina, N.C. State, South Carolina, Texas A&M, Tulane, Vanderbilt, Virginia, Wake Forest
Defending champion: Michigan State (four-under 860) by 12 strokes over Auburn; Louisville's Sara-Maude Juneau (10-under 206) by six strokes over Michigan State's Laura Kueny and Vanderbilt's Marina Alex
Skinny: Tournament is celebrating its 35th anniversary this year. Of the Golf World/NGCA top 25, 14 teams are in the field.

LPGA International Xavier Invitational
LPGA Legends Course, Daytona Beach, Fla.
Oct. 8-10
Host: Xavier
Field: Campbell, Daytona State, Florida Atlantic, Georgetown, Jacksonville, Lamar, McNeese State, Mercer, Montana, North Dakota State, Samford, South Dakota State, Stetson, Xavier
Defending champion: Daytona State (17-over 881) by seven strokes over Campbell; Daytona State's Amy West (three-under 213) by six strokes over Xavier's Rachel Levi
Skinny: A year ago, the host Musketeers broke their 54-hole school record (41-over 905) despite finishing in fourth place.

Mercedes-Benz Women's Collegiate Championship
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
Holston Hills CC, Knoxville, Tenn.
Oct. 8-10
Host: Tennessee
Field:
Defending champion: Tennessee (four-over 868) by 19 strokes over Louisville; Louisville's Laura Anderson and Tennessee's Nathalie Mansson (three-under 213)
Skinny: Event moves to Holston Hills for first time. … Lady Vols have opened new $4.5 million short-game practice facility dubbed "The Mack" and named after Mack and Johnnie Day.

Lady Northern
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
Lake Shore CC, Glencoe, Ill.
Oct. 11-12
Host: Northwestern
Field: Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Iowa State, Michigan, Minnesota, Northwestern, Ohio State, Penn State, Purdue, Texas Tech, Wisconsin
Defending champion: Purdue (three-over 867) by 13 strokes over Michigan State; Purdue's Maude-Aimee LeBlanc (six-under 210) by three strokes over Purdue's Numa Gulyanamitta
Skinny: Tournament serves as a preview for next spring's Big Ten Championship for most in the field. Only conference school missing from the field is Michigan State, which is defending its team title at the Tar Heel.

Lady Pirate Intercollegiate
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
Greenville CC, Greenville, N.C.
Oct. 11-12
Host: East Carolina
Field: Augusta State, Charleston Southern, East Carolina, Elon, Gardner-Webb, Georgetown, Longwood, Memphis, Miami (Fla.), Maryland, Old Dominion, Penn, Radford, Richmond, UNC Wilmington, USF, William & Mary
Defending champion: Georgia State (27-over 879) by two strokes over East Carolina; Elon's Tara McFadden (two-under 211) by two strokes over East Carolina's Abby Bools
Skinny: Host East Carolina hasn't won its home event since 2002. Meanwhile, Georgia State hasn't finished out of first since 2006, winning in 2008 and 2009 while no event was held in 2007.

Price's Give 'Em Five Intercollegiate
New Mexico State GC, Las Cruces, N.M.
Oct. 11-13
Host: New Mexico State
Field: Baylor, Boise State, CSU Northridge, Central Arkansas, Cincinnati, Hawaii, Kansas State, Mississippi State, New Mexico State, Northern Arizona, North Texas, Seattle, UC Irvine, UTEP
Defending champion: Idaho (seven-over 871) by seven strokes over UC Irvine; San Diego State's Christine Wong (10-under 206) by four strokes over Idaho's Kayla Mortellaro
Skinny: Lady Aztecs' home course has hosted men's and women's NCAA Championship (1968, 1988) as well as he AIAW Championship (1971)

Dale McNamara Invitational
   (For live scoring, click here to link to Golfstat)
Patriot GC, Owasso, Okla.
Oct. 11-13
Host: Tulsa
Field: UALR, Kansas State, Kennesaw State, Long Beach State, Middle Tennessee State, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Oklahoma State, Oral Roberts, SMU, Texas, Texas A&M-Corpus Christi, Tulsa, UNLV, Wichita State
Defending champion:
Skinny: School honors long-time Hall of Fame coach with tournament in her name.
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