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If we hid the names and only gave you stats, who would you take as college golf's players of the year?

April 25, 2020

Walt Beazley

The surreal nature of the 2019-’20 college golf season was highlighted once more this week when the Golf Coaches Association of America and Women’s Golf Coaches Association revealed first-team All-Americans for the abbreviated campaign, honors given roughly a month before they would have been announced in an ordinary year.

Here are the men’s players who received the honor:

John Augenstein, Vanderbilt, Sr.
John Axelsen, Florida,
Ricky Castillo, Florida, Fr.
Quade Cummins, Oklahoma, Sr.
Cooper Dossey, Baylor
Peter Kuest, BYU
William Mouw, Pepperdine
Trent Phillips, Georgia
Garett Reband, Oklahoma
Sahith Theegala, Pepperdine
Davis Thompson, Georgia

And here are the women’s players:

Ana Belac, Duke
Linn Grant, Arizona State
Vivian Hou, Arizona
Rachel Kuehn, Wake Forest
Ingrid Lindblad, LSU
Emilia Migliaccio, Wake Forest
Kaitlyn Papp, Texas
Pauline Roussin-Bouchard, USC
Emma Spitz, UCLA
Natalie Srinivasan, Furman
Kaleigh Telfer, Auburn

It was, of course, no fault of the players’ that the season came to an early and abrupt end due to the COVID-19 pandemic. Shortly after the NCAA Championship was canceled, both coaches associations announced that they would still recognize players for their accomplishments through early March. It was a decision many applauded as a means of trying to salvage something from the year and recognizing the hard work that thousands of student-athletes from across the country had put in.

Similarly, the various organizations that award national player-of-the-year honors in men’s and women’s college golf are also moving forward with recognizing winners. On Friday, the WGCA gave out the Ping D-I award to Furman senior Natalie Srinivasan.

Augusta National Women's Amateur - Round One

David Cannon

Srinivasan is also a finalist for a second year-end honor, the Annika Award, along with Arizona freshman Vivian Hou and LSU freshman Ingrid Lindblad. The winner will be announced May 8.

Ahead of that formal recognition, we thought it might be fun to allow you to make the call as to which player you feel is the most deserving of the award. Without revealing the players’ names, here are the golf resumes of the finalists so that you can make a blind objective decision.

Player A:
6 starts
0 wins
5 top-five finishes
5 top-10 finishes
Finishes outside top-10: T-35
70.94 scoring average
Low round: 67 5 rounds in the 60s

Player B:
6 starts
3 wins 4 top-five finishes
4 top-10 finishes
Finishes outside top-10: T-16, T-26
70.8 scoring average (broke school’s single-season record)
Low round: 67
4 rounds in the 60s

Player C:
7 starts
2 wins
5 top-five finishes
5 top-10 finishes
Finishes outside top-10: T-23
70.33 scoring average (broke school’s single-season record)
Low round: 66
9 rounds in the 60s

So who would you pick? Trickier than you thought, isn’t it?

On the men’s side, Vanderbilt senior John Augenstein, Florida freshman Ricky Castillo and Pepperdine senior Sahith Theegala have been named finalists for the Ben Hogan Award while the final three for the Fred Haskins Award are Augenstein, Theegala and Georgia junior Davis Thompson. The Hogan Award accounts for not only college results but also performances in amateur competitions.

In the same way, here are the raw stats of our finalists and we’ll let you decide who you would give the honor.

Player A:
8 starts
2 wins
4 top-five finishes
6 top-10 finishes
Finishes outside top-10: T-15, T-19
69.04 scoring average
Low round: 64
15 rounds in 60s

Player B:
7 starts
2 wins
2 top-five finishes
3 top-10s finishes
Finishes outside top-10: T-21, T-24, T-15, T-22
70.1 scoring average
Low round: 63
7 rounds in 60s

Player C:
7 starts
1 win
2 top-five finishes
5 top-10 finishes
Finishes outside top-10: T-12, T-32
69.95 scoring average
Low round: 66
9 rounds in 60s

Player D:
7 starts
1 win
3 top-five finishes
4 top-10 finishes
Finishes outside the top 10: T-13, T-24, T-14 69.95 scoring average
Low round: 63
8 rounds in 60s

2018 NCAA Division I Men's Golf Championship - Stroke Play

Shane Bevel

All right, so you can figure out who you picked, here are the names behind all the players.

For the women: A is Hou, B is Srinivasan and C is Lindblad.

For the men, A is Theegala, B is Castillo, C is Thompson and D is Augenstein.

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