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A View From the Cheap Seats

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Big thanks to Michael Reis (you might know him on Twitter as Pokelahoma) for this report from Colorado on OSU’s performance Saturday. Unfortunately “a weekend trip to the Rockies to watch college golf” is not currently in the PFB budget and until it is I totally appreciate reader contributions like this one.

I moved to Colorado in January and have loved every minute of , save the lack of Orange in college sports. Last week when I learned that OSU was placed in the South-central Regional at Colorado National golf club I immediately made plans to attend. I’ve attended a handful of PGA events but this was my first college golf tournament.

Talor Gooch finished 3rd at Regionals

Colorado National is about 30 minutes from my house. I made it out to the course at about 10. The first thing you’ll notice about the course is the clear views of the Rockies. The second thing OSU fans will notice: no trees. Despite the weather on Thursday and Friday it’s a course worthy of an NCAA tournament.

Kevin Tway, the final Cowboy to tee off was on the 5th hole when I caught up to the Pokes. His tee shot on the 225 yard par 3 landed in a green side bunker. “Kevin Tway and I are a lot alike” I joked to myself. And then as if he heard me and wanted to make sure I understood, “No Mike, We’re not” he rolled his sand save 20 feet out to 6 inches from the cup. Touche Kevin.

One thing I’ve never really appreciated is the work of caddies. These guys are serious golfers and they have to do all the extra work that goes into hitting quality shots themselves. You end up in awe of the repetitive, emotionless nature of successful college golfers. It’s a slow paced game with all the yardage books and extra time to read greens. It’s not spectator friendly and wouldn’t work on TV. That’s a post for another time.

I followed Tway’s group for a while and when he 10th I stopped by the clubhouse for food and eavesdropping. My impression from today is that we’re universally respected, but not well liked. I couldn’t help but feel like many folks don’t think we’re supposed to be this good. Somehow Boone’s donations to the football program have seeped into the public perception of our golf team. I didn’t have the interest or the time to correcting all the people who think Boone is the only reason we’re transcendent in college golf. Let the haters hate, it adds to my pride knowing it drives others nuts.

After lunch I camped out on a hill near the 18th green and waited for the Pokes to roll in. Everyone parred 18. Morgan Hoffman was pushing his bag on an orange cart. Was there an injury I missed or is this just a personal choice? I hope he hasn’t mentally checked out after his decision to turn pro at the end of the year. We’re going to need him at Karsten.

After Tway putted out for our 8th win in 12 tournaments this year we walked with the team up to the club house. I shook hands with Sean Einhaus and walked out the door. I don’t know what happened after that, there was still one or two groups left on the course. I’m sure they had some recognition of our record 9th NCAA regional win but I didn’t stick around; I was tired of all the funny looks from people. In their defense, face paint may have been a bad choice by me.

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