The Loop

Oklahoma men's golf team plays an epic golf prank on one of its own


The University of Oklahoma men’s golf team is two years removed from winning an NCAA title and ranked No. 2 in the latest Golfweek Bushnell Coaches’ poll. But coach Ryan Hybl’s bunch isn’t all business, all the time. They can enjoy a good golf prank, too.

Case in point: The Sooners had just played in the National Invitational Tournament at Omni Tucson National in Tucson earlier in the week, and were spending some extra time in the Arizona desert before returning to campus in Norman, Okla. Hybl’s squad was playing at Scottsdale National's Bad Little Nine course when they decided to have a little fun with freshman Patrick Welch. The team was playing an uphill par 3 where the hole was not visible from the tee box. Welch was last to hit and had the moment every college golfer longs for—a hole in one.

Or so he thought.

What makes this such a dagger so good is how his teammates celebrate with Welch, jumping up and down, dog-piling the naïve young man who is about to learn he is the punchline of one of the great pranks in recent college golf history.

The crazy part about the video? Welch's shot actually really did almost go in, as Hybl himself notes in the description accompany the tweet.

Hybl told Golf Digest he's done this with about five different players over the years. "It's beautiful if pulled off," he noted.


Oh yeah, it was pulled off alright. Make no mistake about it. He really believed he made an ace. Poor, poor kid.

The Sooners finished third in the 16-school tournament, 22 strokes behind eventual winner Arizona State. It was Oklahoma's sixth top-three finish so far in the 2018-'19 season as the squad prepares for next month's conference championship and the NCAA postseason. As for Welch, who was playing in his fourth tournament of the season? The native of Providence, R.I., finished third on the team with a three-under 213 score, which left him in a tie for 26th individually.