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The Loop

Mid-season awards: Biggest spring question marks

November 23, 2009

Coaches, players and fans are all curious about how what is in store for some golfers as they gear up for spring. Here is a look at some who's fates could have a particular impact on the national scene.

Biggest spring question marks


__[#image: /photos/55ad722eadd713143b42399e]|||Charlie Holland.jpeg|||

A miserable end to his 2008-09 season, in which swing changes the 23-year-old Dallas native implemented were eventually scrapped because of poor results, seemed to fade away when Holland reached the semifinals of the U.S. Amateur in August (after reaching the quarterfinals in 2008). Yet upon returning to Austin for his senior year, Holland once again struggled with his game, qualifying to play in just two of five events for the Longhorns all fall. When Holland is on, he has an All-American caliber game. However, you start to wonder if all the mental baggage he's collected over the past two years might be getting a bit too heavy for him to carry.

*Honorable mention: Drew Kittleson, Florida State

*The 2008 U.S. Amateur runner-up won medalist honors in the fall's first tournament, the Golfweek Conference Challenge, only to finish no better than T-33 in the Seminoles next three starts, posting only one round under par. If the junior can turn things around, FSU is perhaps the favorite to win the ACC title.


__[#image: /photos/55ad722eb01eefe207f68c46]|||Belen Mozo.jpeg|||

Belen Mozo, USC

Trojan golf fans had to be pleased to see the senior from Spain, having had surgery on her left shoulder during the summer, return to the line-up at October's Stanford Invitational, where she shot a second-round 70 to finish T-33. Their joy was tempered, however, when she withdrew from the NCAA Preview in the middle of the third round after tweaking the shoulder a day earlier. Mozo skipped USC's final fall start and is going to take things slow during the winter break. Nevertheless, just how healthy she is this spring will have a major impact on the Trojans chances at claiming a third NCAA title in eight years.

*Honorable mention: Julia Boland, Texas A&M

*The Aussie playing on a one-year scholarship while enrolling in graduate school in college station, was impressive in her first semester, sharing the title at the rain-shortened Texas A&M Mo-Morial event and winning the Challenge at Onion Creek to close the fall. If Boland can keep the pace in the spring, Aggie women's coach Trelle McCombs deserves credit for rolling the dice on this one-and-done recruit.