The Loop

Campus buzz, Feb. 7

February 07, 2007

The men's Division I season gets rolling in earnest starting today with the 17th University of Hawaii at Hilo Intercollegiate at Waikoloa Resort GC on the Big Island, then with the 30th SunTrust Gator Invitational in Gainesville, Fla., this weekend (live scoring for the latter can be found at Meanwhile, a very wet Baja Invitational in Mexico kicked off the women's D-I calendar with Oregon winning by three shots over Louisville in a rain-shortened 36-hole event.

Here are a few more news tidbits for the interested:

In addition to the Ducks winning the team title in Mexico, Oregon senior Kim McCready won her first college tournament with a three-over 145 total, five strokes better than Louisville's Adrienne White and Birmingham Southern's Jordan Hardy. "I'm really ecstatic for Kim," Oregon women's coach Shannon Rouillard said. "She's had a lot of challenges and obstacles returning from some back injuries that slowed her last spring. I am really excited to see her come through today. She's been playing really well, and it was a continuation from a great fall season finale at Stanford (last October)."

A lot of school websites provide fun features on college players. Here is a recent Q&A at the Auburn women's website with senior Nicole Hage.

Also on the site is an update on construction of a new practice facility for the men's and women's teams. According to men's coach Mike Griffin, the teaching center is on schedule to open next October.  As he joked in an e-mail to me, "For the first time in 34 years of coaching, I am going to have my own parking place."

Here is a article that ran in Monday's Winston-Salem Journal about the Wake Forest women's golf team and how it succeeds nationally despite being located so close to Duke.

Here's a link to the results of last week's Jones Cup Invitational, an amateur event held at Frederica GC in Sea Island, Ga. Vanderbilt senior Luke List beat Kansas senior Gary Woodland in a one-hole playoff after shooting a final-round 66 for a 10-under 206 total. Interestingly, after the loss, Woodland than had to jump on an airplane to join his teammates as they begin the season at the Big Island event in Hawaii.

Congrats to Illinois men's coach Mike Small, who recently earned the the PGA of America's PGA Professional Player of the Year award for 2006. Small made the cut in five of nine PGA Tour events, won the Illinois Open and PGA titles for a second straight year and finished fourth at the PGA Professional National Championship.