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Can I play college golf?

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 
So my senior year is coming to an end. I am attending the University of Redlands in California (D3 Athletics) and I really want to try out for the golf team. I did not play in high school, I played football and track. I do play a fair amount of golf, I live on the golf course tht I'm a member of so I can easily practice everyday over the summer. I would say my handicap is around a 14, but recently I've been playing closer to a 12. I plan on playing everyday and hitting the range and work my short game. My goal is to be around a 5 handicap and consistently break 80. Is there any chance of me making the golf team?

If it helps at all, I hit my 7 iron around 175 and driver average around 270, but I can hit some good ones around 310. My putting is probably my best part of my game.

Any tips would or advice would be great!

Thanks!
post #2 of 15

I don't know anything about the college that you will be attending, but you will most likely need to be able to shoot consistently in the mid to low 70s to have a shot (and it has to be legitimate i.e.: counting every penalty correctly).  You also have to take into account how the courses at that level will be set up. I don't know what your home course is like or what tees you're playing  from so that needs to be accounted for as well.  If your home course was Bethpage Black and you played from the tips shooting in the 80's is a lot different than playing at Wide Open Fields Muni, that's only 5800 yards with flat greens running 3 on the stimp.

 

If you really want to be able to play in college though, you certainly could, but it's going to take a lot of work.  Another thing you'll want to do between now and then is get as much exposure to competitive golf as you can.  Find as many local tournaments to enter as you can, like the Golfweek ones or the Golf Galaxy Am Tours.  Since you've never played in HS, I'm assuming you've never played in that environment.  It's much different than playing a casual round.  The more experience you get with that the better your chances of playing in college. 

 

I think given the limited info you posted, you would probably have a better shot of getting to that level by your second year of college, which is probably more realistic.  Either way it's going to take a lot of practice and time.  In golf, every marginal stroke gets harder and harder to shave the better you get.  Making the jump from a 16 capper to a 8 capper will be faster/easier than the jump from an 8 to scratch or even a 2-3.

post #3 of 15

Another obstacle for your goal of playing college golf is one out of your control. Many school teams don't have walk-ons or "tryouts" anymore. They put so much time and money into recruiting that they don't need to. So just a heads up on that end. 

post #4 of 15
Thread Starter 
I usually play from the blues at my home course. It is a challenging course. It hosts one of the qualifiers for the tour. I believe from the tips it plays close to a par 75.
post #5 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by BostonBrew View Post

Another obstacle for your goal of playing college golf is one out of your control. Many school teams don't have walk-ons or "tryouts" anymore. They put so much time and money into recruiting that they don't need to. So just a heads up on that end. 

He said it's a D3 school, they don't really recruit or give any scholarships for athletics. I would think if you got to a 5 you might have a shot of making the team, but its hard to tell without knowing the level of competition they play against. Look at the scores posted online from the current team and see how you stack up. In the end the only way you'll really find out is to show up and see if you make the cut. 

post #6 of 15

I'd focus on your grades, and school work.  Get a good job.  Then you can afford to play golf on your free time.  Trying to chase something that you have spent little to no time - when others have spent thousands of hours and are considerable better than a 14 HDCP, seems like a waste of time to me?  I mean, go play a ton of golf and have fun doing it.  But why put the added stress of trying to make a college golf team?  Even if it is D3?  The guys on the D3 team aren't going to be 5 Handicaps... I can assure you.

post #7 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beachcomber View Post

I'd focus on your grades, and school work.  Get a good job.  Then you can afford to play golf on your free time.  Trying to chase something that you have spent little to no time - when others have spent thousands of hours and are considerable better than a 14 HDCP, seems like a waste of time to me?  I mean, go play a ton of golf and have fun doing it.  But why put the added stress of trying to make a college golf team?  Even if it is D3?  The guys on the D3 team aren't going to be 5 Handicaps... I can assure you.

I agree with this. However, if chasing your dreams and goals is not going to negatively impact your long-term career, grades, finances, etc. then I say go for it. If this is a case where you truly have nothing to lose and everything to gain, why not?

But, naturally, the time necessary would surely have some type of impact on your education, relationships, finances, etc. Just make sure you're not making unjust sacrifices to chase that 1% chance.

post #8 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by millencolinman View Post

He said it's a D3 school, they don't really recruit or give any scholarships for athletics. I would think if you got to a 5 you might have a shot of making the team, but its hard to tell without knowing the level of competition they play against. Look at the scores posted online from the current team and see how you stack up. In the end the only way you'll really find out is to show up and see if you make the cut. 

One of my high school golf teammates was nearly a scratch golfer... Shot 36/37 regularly in our team matches, was our #1 man on the team, and set our school record in 1993 by shooting a 31 on a par 36 during a match (pretty cool as I witnessed the round as I was our #2 man).  My point is, this kid made it through the Regional and into Districts, but didn't make State.  He went on and played D3 college golf at Otterbein on a partial scholarship (D3 didn't - at least at that time offer full ride scholarships - this may have changed??).  

 

I can tell you a 5 Hdcp would not make the Otterbein team in 1995... At least this was the case back in the mid 90's.  And with the Tiger effect, I believe competition has gotten better?  As there is more junior tournaments, etc.  So I'd think D3 standards have gotten higher with whom can make a team?  I don't know anything about the University of Redlands, but here is one of their recent tournaments:

http://www.goredlands.com/sports/mgolf/2012-13/releases/20130408roq3g6

 

These kids play all their courses from the tips... And La Purisima is a legit course.  Very difficult track - and if the wind is blowing off the coast, it is even harder.  7,105yds from the tips at sea level.  75.6/143.  The course isn't a joke.  So while some of those guys shot in the 80's and one guy 92/87.... I'm willing to bet they are low digit handicappers who just struggled on a very difficult track?

 

Here is another example of the type of players in Junior tournament golf in 2012...

http://scpgajt.bluegolf.com/bluegolf/scpgajt12/event/scpgajt12197/contest/4/leaderboard.htm

 

Also, playing tournament golf is so much harder than just going out and scoring low with your buddies.  Maybe try a few amateur tournaments in your area, and see how you do under real tournament pressure.  If you exceed your own expectations in performance and play.... Then maybe invest the time and money and try and make the team.  If you fail miserably in the amateur tournaments... Then maybe you should consider focusing on something else?

post #9 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjtomo View Post

So my senior year is coming to an end. I am attending the University of Redlands in California (D3 Athletics) and I really want to try out for the golf team. I did not play in high school, I played football and track. I do play a fair amount of golf, I live on the golf course tht I'm a member of so I can easily practice everyday over the summer. I would say my handicap is around a 14, but recently I've been playing closer to a 12. I plan on playing everyday and hitting the range and work my short game. My goal is to be around a 5 handicap and consistently break 80. Is there any chance of me making the golf team?

If it helps at all, I hit my 7 iron around 175 and driver average around 270, but I can hit some good ones around 310. My putting is probably my best part of my game.

Any tips would or advice would be great!

Thanks!

 

 

So chances are your 7i is really about 150, and your drives, 250-60. That means little though, its not just practice. You need to practice correctly and understand every part of your swing from the waggle to the end of the follow through. At a 12-14, without coaching, the realistic chance that you will make the college golf team is very, very low. 

post #10 of 15
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by ApocG10 View Post


So chances are your 7i is really about 150, and your drives, 250-60. That means little though, its not just practice. You need to practice correctly and understand every part of your swing from the waggle to the end of the follow through. At a 12-14, without coaching, the realistic chance that you will make the college golf team is very, very low. 

Actually, I do hit my 7i 175.... I live in colorado at a high altitude so the ball goes farther. I do not know my distances at sea level though. And I workout a lot. I'm not trying to go pro here. And I understand the whole grade thing. But I know I have great grades, and academics won't be an issue for me in college. It's not like I don't play sports. I'm pretty athletic, I could play both football and track in college, but I love golf more. I'm just asking where I would need my game play to be at to play division 3.

Also, most of you don't realize that D3 does NOT give athletic scholarships, so I doubt what you really know.
post #11 of 15

You can play D3 golf.  A friend of mine did and he's easily a double-digit handicap.  I'm not saying he was #1 man or that his school is exactly a golf powerhouse, but he played.

post #12 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjtomo View Post


Actually, I do hit my 7i 175.... I live in colorado at a high altitude so the ball goes farther. I do not know my distances at sea level though. And I workout a lot. I'm not trying to go pro here. And I understand the whole grade thing. But I know I have great grades, and academics won't be an issue for me in college. It's not like I don't play sports. I'm pretty athletic, I could play both football and track in college, but I love golf more. I'm just asking where I would need my game play to be at to play division 3.

Also, most of you don't realize that D3 does NOT give athletic scholarships, so I doubt what you really know.

I'm 35... Gonna be 36.  D3 schools that really want you can find ways to supplement your tuition.  They will and can do that.  Yes.  It's not a scholarship, but they can get you books, waive lab/parking fee's, etc. etc..  That is why I said partial.  My cousin played basketball for Wittenberg (D3).  And I had several friends play golf various D3 places.  I already told you about the kid who was our #1 man on our golf team who went to Otterbein.

 

Also, I've only played golf in Denver once... But I was hitting my clubs ~ 15yds further than normal.  And I play most of my golf at sea level.

post #13 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by Beachcomber View Post

One of my high school golf teammates was nearly a scratch golfer... Shot 36/37 regularly in our team matches, was our #1 man on the team, and set our school record in 1993 by shooting a 31 on a par 36 during a match (pretty cool as I witnessed the round as I was our #2 man).  My point is, this kid made it through the Regional and into Districts, but didn't make State.  He went on and played D3 college golf at Otterbein on a partial scholarship (D3 didn't - at least at that time offer full ride scholarships - this may have changed??).  

 

I can tell you a 5 Hdcp would not make the Otterbein team in 1995... At least this was the case back in the mid 90's.  And with the Tiger effect, I believe competition has gotten better?  As there is more junior tournaments, etc.  So I'd think D3 standards have gotten higher with whom can make a team?  I don't know anything about the University of Redlands, but here is one of their recent tournaments:

http://www.goredlands.com/sports/mgolf/2012-13/releases/20130408roq3g6

 

These kids play all their courses from the tips... And La Purisima is a legit course.  Very difficult track - and if the wind is blowing off the coast, it is even harder.  7,105yds from the tips at sea level.  75.6/143.  The course isn't a joke.  So while some of those guys shot in the 80's and one guy 92/87.... I'm willing to bet they are low digit handicappers who just struggled on a very difficult track?

 

Here is another example of the type of players in Junior tournament golf in 2012...

http://scpgajt.bluegolf.com/bluegolf/scpgajt12/event/scpgajt12197/contest/4/leaderboard.htm

 

Also, playing tournament golf is so much harder than just going out and scoring low with your buddies.  Maybe try a few amateur tournaments in your area, and see how you do under real tournament pressure.  If you exceed your own expectations in performance and play.... Then maybe invest the time and money and try and make the team.  If you fail miserably in the amateur tournaments... Then maybe you should consider focusing on something else?

I went to school with the guy in 2nd on that junior golf tour, Great player he would light up these public courses out here 

post #14 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by cjtomo View Post

So my senior year is coming to an end. I am attending the University of Redlands in California (D3 Athletics) and I really want to try out for the golf team. I did not play in high school, I played football and track. I do play a fair amount of golf, I live on the golf course tht I'm a member of so I can easily practice everyday over the summer. I would say my handicap is around a 14, but recently I've been playing closer to a 12. I plan on playing everyday and hitting the range and work my short game. My goal is to be around a 5 handicap and consistently break 80. Is there any chance of me making the golf team?

If it helps at all, I hit my 7 iron around 175 and driver average around 270, but I can hit some good ones around 310. My putting is probably my best part of my game.

Any tips would or advice would be great!

Thanks!


OP:  Copy your above post in an e-mail to the golf coach at the University of Redlands.  You will get the appropriate response.

post #15 of 15

Your school's match results are on their web pages. Here's one.|

 

http://www.goredlands.com/sports/mgolf/2012-13/files/2013_West_Cup_Men.pdf

 

Aw man, that's a pretty school by the mountains.

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