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ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. --- Play is underway at the 56th annual William H. Tucker Intercollegiate, hosted by the University of New Mexico men's golf team at UNM's Championship Golf Course. The Lobos are welcoming a 16-team field that includes five schools ranked in Golfweek's Top 50.
One of the nation's most prestigious and selective in-season collegiate golf tournaments in the country, the Tucker is the second-oldest men's college tournament in the country, behind only the New England Intercollegiate Golf Tournament.
Named in honor of English golf course architect and former University of New Mexico groundskeeper William H. Tucker, the Tucker is taking place at the Championship Course at the University of New Mexico, just as it has since 1967. It was held at the University of New Mexico North Course from 1955-66.
This year's field boasts No. 6 ranked Pepperdine, No. 21 San Diego State, No. 28 North Texas and No. 45 Baylor, as well as No. 43 New Mexico.
Lobos' head coach Glen Millican has two squads - a varsity and jayvee - competing this year. The varsity consists of Travis Ross, John Catlin, Samuel Chavez, Tom Carlson and Ryan Gay. The jayvee five is Shane McDonald, Sam Saunders, Tom Richardson, Ryan Barry and Alex Estrada.
The Tucker is a three-round, 54-hole event, with today's play consisting of the first two rounds. All 16 teams teed off at 7:45 a.m. MT, with play running continuously through both rounds 1 and 2, until either the conclusion of the second round or until play is suspended due to darkness.
Saturday's final round will also begin with a 7:45 a.m. shotgun start.
UNM Championship Course History
The UNM Championship Course plays 7,566 yards long from the championship tees and is a par-72 course. Since it was officially opened in 1967, The Championship Golf Course has been one of the finest facilities of its kind nationwide.
It has been nationally recognized by Golf Digest Magazine as one of the top-25 public courses in the country, and in January of 1991 Golfweek Magazine rated all public and private courses in the country by state, and dubbed The Championship Course the number one course to play in New Mexico.
The Course is still holding strong in the rankings seven years later, and in 1998, Golfweek tabbed the Championship Course No. 2 in the West, behind only the Stanford University Golf Course in Palo Alto, Calif. The Championship Course is no stranger to major tournaments. It was the site of the 1950, 1976 and 1992 NCAA Division I Men's Golf Championships as well as the 1998 NCAA Championships. In 1987 the course was the sight of the women's NCAA tourney.
Some quick facts about the Tucker...
UNM Championship Golf Course
Round 1: shotgun format, 7:45 a.m. MT
Round 2: Immediately following Round 1
Round 3: Shotgun format, 7:45 a.m. MT
The Field (+ Number of individuals)
1. Arizona (+3)
2. Baylor (+1)
3. BYU (+1)
4. Colorado (+1)
5. New Mexico (Varsity)
6. New Mexico (J.V.)
7. New Mexico State
8. North Texas
9. Northern Colorado
11. San Diego State (+1)
12. University of Texas - El Paso
13. University of Texas - San Antonio
15. Utah (+1)
Team Champion: UNLV (282-273-288=843, -21)
Individual Champion(s): Derek Ernst (-8) UNLV and Colby Smith (-8), UNLV
Team Champion: UNLV (277-292-283=852, -12)
Individual Champion: Eddie Olson (-5), UNLV and Derek Tola (-5) Colorado
The 1983 invitational marked a first for the Tucker and collegiate golf when the William H. Tucker Invitational became associated with the American Cancer Society - the first collegiate golf tournament to be associated with a charitable organization. The American Cancer Society has been a beneficiary of tournament profits for the past 24 years. Since 1986, the William H. Tucker Foundation and the American Cancer Society have helped fund a program called Camp Enchantment, which benefits child cancer patients in the state of New Mexico.
In 1977, the Tucker also made history by hosting Nihon University from Tokyo, Japan. In doing so, the Tucker was the first National Collegiate Athletic Association-sanctioned tournament to have a foreign team compete - in any sport. Nihon took fifth place, finishing behind tournament champion UNM, Weber State, Brigham Young and Arizona State. Masahiru Kuramato posted Nihon's best score, finishing fourth with a 4-round total of 294, two strokes ahead of fifth-place Payne Stewart from Southern Methodist University.
Throughout the storied history of the Tucker, some of the game's greatest players from the last half-century have made the trip to Albuquerque to take part. The roster of Tucker participants includes winners of literally hundreds of Professional Golf Association tournaments and over 20 Majors titles. Names such as Tiger Woods ('94), Phil Mickelson ('91), Ben Crenshaw ('72), Colin Montgomery ('84), Johnnie Miller ('65-68), Fuzzy Zoeller ('72), Cory Pavin ('79) and Payne Stewart ('77-78) headline a star-studded list of golfing greats that have competed at the Tucker.
Tiger Woods - Stanford
1994 - 68-72-68= 208 - 1st
Easily the most decorated golfer to play in the Tucker, Woods took part once - his freshman year while at Stanford. It was both the first collegiate tournament and first collegiate win for Woods. He has gone on to post 65 PGA Tour wins (3rd all-time), including 14 Majors.
Phil Mickelson - Arizona State
1991 - 72-70-70=212 - 2nd (tied)
Mickelson, winner of the 2004 and 2006 Masters championships and the 2005 PGA Championship, has won a combined 34 PGA Tour events (13th all time). Mickelson finished tied for second place in the 1991 Tucker, losing to South Carolina's David Sewell by two strokes while finishing tied with ASU teammate Todd Demsey and Fresno State's Kevin Carissimi.
Ben Crenshaw - Texas
1972 - 72-77-75-70=294 - 4th
Crenshaw competed in a star-studded field that included Florida's Andy North and Gary Koch and Houston's Fuzzy Zoeller and Bruce Lietzke. Crenshaw bested all but three participants - UNM's Jack Sommers (1st), teammate Warren Chancellor (2nd) and Florida's Kip Minter. Crenshaw's collegiate achievements were capped with three straight NCAA Championships from 1971-73. He would go on to win The Masters twice - in 1984 and 1995 - and total 19 PGA Tour wins.
Johnny Miller - BYU
1965 - 74-72-72-73=291 - 2nd
1966 - 71-77-75-77=300 - 4th
1967 - 74-68-70-73=285 - 1st
1968 - 74-72-76-72=294 - 2nd
Miller, an All-American for BYU from 1965-68, played all four years in the Tucker, winning the '67 invite and never finishing worse that fourth. Miller has the 1973 U.S. Open and 1976 British Open titles to claim among his 25 PGA Tour wins. Miller is currently the lead golf analyst for NBC Sports.
Bruce Lietzke - Houston
1972 - 78-71-75-74=298 - 11th (tied)
1971 - 77-67-73-71=288 - 2nd
1970 - 70-79-75-74=298 - 1st
1969 - 74-78-75-88=315 - 16th (tied)
Lietzke came to Albuquerque to compete in the Tucker four times with the University of Houston, winning the invite in 1970 and finishing a one stroke behind BYU's Ray Leach to finish second in '71. A winner of 13 PGA Tour events, Lietzke has also claimed seven titles thus far on the Champions Tour, including the U.S. Senior Open in 2003.
Cory Pavin - UCLA
1978 - 73-74-70-72=289 - 5th (tied)
Nicknamed `The Bulldog' for his aggressive style of play on the PGA Tour, Pavin has captured 15 PGA Tour wins since joining the tour in 1984, including the 1995 U.S. Open. Pavin tied UCLA teammate Mickey Yokoi in the '79 Tucker, finishing fifth behind BYU's Bob Clampett, Arizona's Dan Meyers, UNM's Jeff McMillen and Weber State's Mike Borich.
Mike Weir - BYU
1991 - 78-68-76=222 - 39th (tied)
1989 - 78-74-76=228 - 49th (tied)
1988 - 77-81-72=230 - 55th (tied)
The 2003 Masters Champion, Weir competed at the Tucker three times, with his best finish, a tie for 39th, coming in 1991. The 1991 Tucker included among others, Arizona State's Phil Mickelson, NMSU's Rich Beem and UNM's Tim Herron in the field. Including the '03 Masters, Weir has won eight PGA Tour events to date.
Bobby Clampett - BYU
1978 - 72-70-67-70=279 - 1st
1979 - 75-68-65-70=278 - 1st
Clampett joined fellow BYU Cougar Ray Leach as the only players to win the Tucker twice, picking up both the 1978 and '79 titles. Now a fixture of CBS's PGA golf coverage, Clampett is still the only Tucker Participant to win back-to-back titles. With over three dozen top-10 finishes, a win at the 1982 Southern Open and a third-place finish at the 1982 U.S. Open highlight his PGA career.
Notah Begay III - Stanford
1993 - 75-73-68=216 - 12th (tied)
A graduate of nearby Albuquerque Academy and three-time All American while at Stanford, Begay placed 12th at the 1993 Tucker. Having earned a place on the PGA Tour in 1999 after a successful Nike Tour stint, Begay went on to win four tournaments in his first two years.
Tim Herron - New Mexico
1992 - 68-71-62=201 - 1st
1991 - 71-73-76=220 - 30th (tied)
1990 - 71-76-69=216 - 11th (tied)
1989 - 74-70-77=221 - 17th (tied)
With four PGA Tour wins to his credit, Herron capped off his four appearances at the Tucker with a win in 1992. Herron, a UNM graduate, turned pro in 1993 and claimed his first PGA Tour win, the Honda Classic, in 1995. Herron's 201 is still the record for lowest score at the Tucker since its change to a 3-round tournament in 1989. His third-round 62 in 1992 is still the course record.
Colin Montgomery - Houston Baptist
1984 - 77-79-79-77=312 - 47th
Scotland's Montgomery took part in the 1984 Tucker with Houston Baptist University. `Monte' is one of the most decorated golfers in European Tour history, having notched 31 European Tour wins. Montgomery has five second-place finishes at the major championships, most recently at the 2006 U.S. Open. He finished 47th at the Tucker in 1984, with UCLA's Duffy Waldorf winning the '84 crown.
Paul Casey - Arizona State
1997 - 70-76=146 - 32nd (tied)
Casey, a native of Cheltenham, England, joined the PGA European Tour in 2001 and has won eight tournaments since. The 3-time PAC-10 Champion managed to place 32nd at the 1997 Tucker. Casey has finished in the top 10 in three of the Majors - sixth at the 2004 Masters, 10th at the 2007 U.S. Open and seventh at the 2008 British Open.
Fuzzy Zoeller - Houston
1972 - 77-71-76-77= 301 - 18th (tied)
A winner of two Majors, Zoeller competed in the 1972 Tucker, taking on the likes of Texas' Ben Crenshaw, Florida's Gary Koch and Andy North, and teammate Bruce Lietzke. Zoeller's pro career includes wins at the 1979 Masters and 1984 U.S. Open among his 10 PGA Tour wins. Zoeller joined the Champions Tour in 2002, claiming the Senior PGA Championship that same year. He finished 18th in the '72 Tucker, With Crenshaw (4th) Koch (5th) and Litzke (11th) each getting the better of him.
Duffy Waldorf - UCLA
1984 - 73-67-73-76=289 - 1st
A two-time NCAA All-American, Waldorf played in only one tucker, winning the championship in 1984. Waldorf has gone on to claim four PGA Tour wins, most recently the 2000 National Car Rental Classic Disney. Waldorf has placed as high as fifth at the Masters, his best finish at any of the Majors.
Rich Beem - NMSU
1991 - 74-73-74=221 - 33rd (tied)
1990 - 70-80-80=239 - 85th (tied)
1989 - 78-74-75=227 - 41st (tied)
1988 - 82-87-72=241 - 80th (tied)
The 2002 PGA Champion, Beem has three PGA Tour wins to his credit. The former Aggie capped off his fourth appearance at the Tucker in 1991 with his best finish, tying for 33rd.
Andy North - Florida
1971 - 73-75-70-76=294 - 5th
1970 - 69-78-78-73=298 - 3rd
A two-time winner of the U.S. Open, North is best known today as a golf analyst for ESPN. North was a 3-time All-American at Florida, including both years the Gators took part in the Tucker. Of North's three PGA Tour wins, two came in the 1978 and 1985 U.S. Open. Still active in the Champions Tour, North has notched five wins at the Liberty Mutual Legends of Golf tournament - two with partner Jim Culbert in 2000-01 and three partnered with Tom Watson from 2005-07.
Scott McCarron - UCLA
1983 - 82-85-73-82=322 - 71st (tied)
McCarron's 71st-place finish in 1983 belies his talent. He's gone on to post PGA Tour wins in 1996, '97 and 2001 and has pulled in over $10 million in career PGA Tour earnings, including over $900,000 in 2008 alone. BYU's Robert Mayer claimed the '83 Tucker championship, scoring a 281 over four rounds.
Adam Scott - UNLV
1999 - 74-75-74=223 - 38th (tied)
Scott's professional career took off in 2001, as he notched three European Tour wins, and he has gotten better since then. He has won three more times on the European Tour to go with six PGA Tour tournaments and a third place finish at the 2006 PGA Championship. Scott has earned roughly $17 million in PGA Tour purses over the past five seasons.
Tommy Armour III - New Mexico
1979 - 82-74-68-67=291 - 3rd
A Lobo for two years, Armour III first qualified for the PGA Tour in 1981. His lone appearance at the Tucker came in 1979, a third-place finish behind BYU's Bob Clampett and teammate Mike Putnam. Armour III has two PGA Tour wins to his credit, and recently finished second at the 2008 Traveler's Championship.
Bob Gilder - Arizona State
1972 - 71-73-N/A-N/A - N/A
1971 - 81-77-72-86=316 - 70th (tied)
Gilder has won six tournaments on the PGA Tour and currently plays on the Champions Tour, where he has nine wins. Glider's highest finish at the Majors was fourth at the 1981 PGA Championship. Unfortunately, UNM's official records for the '72 Tucker only include the scores from the first two rounds of the then four-round tournament.
Andrew Magee - Oklahoma
1983 - 70-73-72-71=286 - 2nd
A three-time All-American while at Oklahoma, Magee's only appearance at the Tucker netted him a second-place finish. He went on to three PGA Tour wins after turning pro in 1984 and joining the PGA Tour in '85. BYU's Robert Meyer bested Magee by five strokes in the '83 Tucker for the championship.
Scott Verplank - OK State
1983 - 71-73-76-69=289 - 7th
Verplank, the first amateur to ever win a PGA Tour event with his win at the 1985 Western Open, also owns a U.S. National Amateur Championship and five total PGA Tour wins to his credit. Verplank has top-10 finishes in each of the four Majors and also holds the distinction of being the only person to hit a hole-in-one during Ryder Cup play. Verplank most recently won the 2007 EDS Byron Nelson Classic.
Jim Furyk - Arizona
1990 - 73-74-77=224 - 41st (tied)
1989 - 77-71-73=221 - 17th (tied)
The 2003 U.S. Open Champion, Furyk has 13 total PGA Tour wins to his credit. Furyk is a member of the 2008 United States Ryder Cup team, now totaling six appearances on the U.S. squad. Furyk's best finish at the Tucker came in 1989 when he tied for 17th with eight others, including UNM's Tim Herron. Furyk's 1990 Tucker appearance netted him a 41st-place finish, while teammate Christian Pena claimed the championship by shooting a 209.
Charles Howell III - Oklahoma State
1997 - 69-78=147 - 41st (tied)
One of the up-and-coming stars of the PGA Tour, Howell has two tour wins to his credit - the 2002 Michelob Championship at Kingsmill and the 2007 Nissan Open. Howell was the 2001 PGA Tour Rookie of the Year, earning over $1.5 million. He also won the NCAA Tournament Championship earlier that year, a repeat title for the Cowboys. In 2000, Howell shot a record 23-under par at the NCAA Championships to bring home the individual title. For his career, Howell has earned over $15 million in PGA Tournament purses.
Rickey Barnes - Arizona
2002 - 71-69-74=214 - 3rd (tied)
2001 - 73-75-69=217 - 10th (tied)
2000 - 73-74-72=219 - 25th (tied)
1999 - 74-76-71=221 - 26th (tied)
Barnes finished his four-year run at the Tucker with a third-place finish in 2002. That same year he captured the 102nd U.S. Amateur Championship and finished as the Low Amateur at The Masters, finishing 21st.
Ryan Moore - UNLV
2004 - 71-69-65=205 - 1st
Moore not only won the 2004 Tucker, he also captured the 2004 NCAA Championship and U.S. Amateur Championship that same year. Moore has already claimed nearly $4.5 million in PGA Tour earnings in his four years on tour and finished second at the 2008 EDS Byron Nelson Classic.
Rory Sabbatini - Arizona
1997 - 68-73=141 - 7th (tied)
1996 - 69-72-72=213 - 10th (tied)
1995 - 71-78-72=221 - 13th (tied)
Sabbatini, having joined the PGA Tour in 1999, has four career tour wins to his name, most recently the Crowne Plaza Invitational at Colonial in 2007. Sabbatini finished seventh in his second shot at the Tucker in '97, shooting 141 in the two-round shortened invitational. He finished second in the 2007 Masters, marking his highest finish in any of the four majors.
Todd Hamilton - Oklahoma
1983 - 72-75-73-74=294 - 12th (tied)
Hamilton won the 2004 British Open, which went a long way to his being named the PGA Rookie of the Year that season. Hamilton has one other PGA Tour win to his name - the 2004 Honda Classic - and has 14 top-25 finishes since.
Ted Purdy - Arizona
1995 - 73-76-71=220 - 11th (tied)
1994 - 71-72-78=221 - 14th
1993 - 76-74-75=225 - 44th (tied)
Purdy was inducted to the University of Arizona's Sports Hall of Fame in 2005. He's notched three professional tournament wins, including the 2005 EDS Byron Nelson Championship. Purdy finished
Kevin Carissimi - Fresno State
1991 - 68-72-72=212 - 2nd (tied)
The 1991 runner-up at the Tucker, Carissimi, who finished tied with Phil Mickelson, won the 1998 Bank Austria Open, a European Tour event.
Howard Twitty - ASU
1971 - 82-72-77-72=303 - 25th (tied)
1970 - 71-81-73-76=301 - 7th (tied)
Twitty has three PGA Tour tournament wins, including the 1980 Sammy Davis Jr. - Greater Hartford Open, and a fifth-place finish at the 1980 PGA Championship to his name. He's done some golf course design in recent years.
Robert Gamez - Arizona
1988 - 69-72-71=212 - 3rd
1987 - 72-70-76-75=293 - 14th (tied)
Gamez won the first PGA Tour tournament he entered - the 1990 North Telecom Tucson Open. He wouldn't win again until the 2005 Valero Texas Open, a record 15-year, six-month span. Gamez finished in the top-125 every year between 2001-05.
Hank Haney - Tulsa
1975 - 76-88-87-82=333 - 104th
Haney is widely considered one of the top golf coaching minds, having tutored the likes of Tiger Woods and Mark O'Meara. Haney finished fourth-to-last in the '75 Tucker, with UNM's Monty Carrico shooting a 288 to capture first place.