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Golf NCAA Tournament Notes

Golf NCAA Tournament Notes

May 17, 2004

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Tigers in NCAAs for 23rd Straight YearPenley Leads Tigers into Tournament for 21st Consecutive Year Clemson received a bid to the NCAA East Regional at the Yale University Course in New Haven, CT on Monday, May 10. It marked the 23rd consecutive year that Clemson has been invited to the NCAA Tournament, the longest streak of any sports program in Clemson history.

The regional tournament will run Thursday, May 20 through Saturday, May 22nd. The top 10 teams in the 27-team field will advance to the national championship, which will be held at The Cascades Course at The Homestead in Hot Springs, VA. Clemson will be the number-two seed in the East Regional behind number-one Florida.

Clemson has played the par 70, Yale University Course twice previously in NCAA regional play. The Tigers finished fourth at the 1991 event, then won the East Regional in 1995. Clemson has won six NCAA Regional tournaments altogether, (including the last two) more than any other school in the nation. The regional tournament format has been in effect since 1989 and Clemson has qualified through regional play for the national tournament every year.

Clemson’s streak of 23 straight tournament bids is second to Oklahoma State’s 58. The Cowboys were also invited to the tournament on Monday. Clemson won the championship at Oklahoma State’s home course last year, finishing two strokes better than the host school.

This is Larry Penley’s 21st year as Clemson head coach and he has taken the Tigers to the NCAA National tournament all 21 years. Earlier this year, Penley was inducted into the College Golf Hall of Fame. His Tigers are ranked second in the nation in the latest polls according to the Golf Coach’s Association and the Sagarin Computer rankings.

This year’s Clemson team is coming off its best performance of the year, a championship victory in the ACC tournament, the second straight year Clemson has won that event. The Tigers have competed in 12 tournaments (11 stroke play and one match play) and finished in the top four 10 of those 12 events.

Leading the way from a stroke average standpoint is Matt Hendrix. A May, 7 2004 graduate and native of Aiken, SC, Hendrix has a 70.83 stroke average for his 29 rounds. He has scored under par in 19 of those 29 rounds, including a team best 11 rounds in the 60s. A first-team All-ACC selection each of the last two years, Hendrix was a finalist for the 2004 Ben Hogan Award.

Jack Ferguson, a junior from Seneca, has a 71.09 stroke average this year for his 32 rounds of competition. Ferguson has been Clemson’s most consistent golfer with 10 top 20 finishes for his 11 events. He finished second at the ACC Tournament with a 206 score and third at the Atlanta Intercollegiate with a 208 total. Ferguson, a second-team All-American last year, has a 71.97 career stroke average, fourth best in Clemson history.

Gregg Jones is a third first-team All-ACC selection on this year’s team that will be competing in the NCAA regional. Jones has been a starter on each of Clemson’s last three teams and the Tigers have finished in the top three all three years. He has a chance to become the first athlete in any sport in Clemson history to play on four different top three teams. Jones has a 72.84 stroke average this year and a 72.67 average for his career. Stephen Poole and Brian Duncan are a pair of sophomores who will be in Penley’s lineup. Poole has a 72.53 stroke average for his five tournaments this year. He has three top 10 finishes on his resume including a sixth-place finish at the ACC Tournament when he had a career best tying 210 total. Duncan has played in eight tournaments and has a 74.86 stroke average for the season. His score counted towards the team total in two of the three rounds at the ACC tournament.

Clemson Lineup for 2004 NCAA Regional Tournament
Player Hgt Cl Hometown Avg
Matt Hendrix 6-1 Gr. Aiken, SC 70.83
Jack Ferguson 5-10 Jr. Seneca, SC 71.09
Gregg Jones 5-11 Gr. Florence, SC 72.84
Stephen Poole 5-9 So. Spartanburg, SC 72.53
Brian Duncan 6-3 So. Greenville, SC 74.86

Jones Looking for Clemson First Clemson graduate Gregg Jones has had three top 15 finishes in his previous three trips to the NCAA Regional Tournament. Another top 15 finish at the regional and he will become the first Clemson golfer to post four top 15 individual finishes in that event for a career.

Jones had a 10th place finish at the 2001 regional at the Green Course in Williamsburg, VA. He had rounds of 71-68-71 to finish at six-under-par 210. He was Clemson’s top golfer for the event on a team that included current PGA Tour player Lucas Glover and current Nationwide Tour player D.J. Trahan.

The following year at Settindown Creek in Roswell, GA, Jones had a 220 score to finish in 13th place after rounds of 71-73-76. He was second among Clemson golfers and help the Tigers to a co-championship of the regional. Last year at the East Regional at Auburn, Jones again led the Tigers with a 208 score on rounds of 69-72-67. He finished second overall and Clemson won the event.

For his career, Jones has played nine NCAA regional rounds and has had 638 strokes for a 70.89 stroke average. He is 10-under-par for those nine rounds and has shot par or better seven of the nine rounds.

As it is, Jones, Joey Maxon and Richard Coughlan are the only golfers in Clemson history with three top 15 finishes at the NCAA regional level. Coughlan finished fourth in 1994, second in 1995 (at Yale) and was eighth in 1996. His senior year he broke the streak however with a 24th place finish. Coughlan is now on the Nationwide Tour. Maxon was 15th as a freshman, 18th as a sophomore, eighth as a junior and fifth as a senior. He is the only Tiger with four top 20 regional finishes on his resume.

Gregg Jones at NCAA Regional Tournament
Year Site Scores Tot vs. Par Finish
2001 Williamsburg, VA 71-68-71 210 -6 10th
2002 Roswell, GA 71-73-76 220 +4 13th
2003 Auburn, AL 69-72-67 208 -8 2nd
Totals 211-213-214 638 -10
(70.3-71.0-71.3) 70.89

Hendrix, Jones Earn Degrees Clemson golfers Matt Hendrix and Gregg Jones both earned their undergraduate degrees from Clemson on May 7. Hendrix earned his degree in economics, while Jones earned his in parks, recreation and tourism management. Hendrix was named to the CoSIDA Academic At-Large All-District team last year. That team has not been announced yet this year.

Most of Larry Penley’s players have stayed four years and received their degrees. In fact, in Penley’s 21 years as head coach the only golfer to leave early to attempt a professional career is Michael Hoey, who returned to his native Ireland.

Among Penley’s former Tigers who are playing professionally after having earned a Clemson degree are, Jonathan Byrd, Danny Ellis, Kevin Johnson, Charles Warren, Joey Maxon, Jani Saari, Tommy Biershenk, Elliot Gealy, Richard Coughlan, John Engler, and Ben Duncan. Byrd was a two-time academic All-American in addition to his on the course All-America honors.

Clemson at Yale This will be Clemson’s third appearance at the Yale University Golf Course in New Haven, CT and both of the previous appearances have been in the NCAA East Regional. Clemson finished fourth out of 23 teams at the 1991 event, while the 1995 Clemson team won the East Regional Championship from a field of 21 teams.

Clemson shot a 24-over par 875 score in 1991 on the par 70 layout. Clemson shot lights out in the second round that year with a 278 and that clinched the NCAA national tournament berth for the Tigers. Clemson had a 298 score for the final day, but still qualified with ease.

Nicky Goetze led the way for the Tigers with a 218 score, a performance that included a second round 66, tying his career low. Goetze finished 18th at the tournament with his +8 score. Bobby Doolittle had a 219 score for the three days after consistent rounds of 73-74-72. MarkSwygert finished 41st after a 223 score for the 54 holes. He had a wild ride with a 77-66-80 tournament. Danny Ellis, currently on the PGA Tour, had a 226 for the three days and finished 58th, while Bo Beard had a 233 score to finish 95th.

The victory in 1995 was Clemson’s third straight East Region championship. Mike Byce and Richard Coughlan both had second-place finishes after scoring 213 for the event. Clemson had a team score of 857 for the three rounds, 18 strokes better than it had scored in 1991. All five Clemson golfers scored between 213 and 218 and finished in the top 30 individually.

Clemson Faced Bush Led Yale Team in 1947 As stated above this is not the first time Clemson has traveled to Yale for an NCAA event. The history goes back to the spring of 1947 when the Clemson baseball team played at Yale in an NCAA quarterfinal game. A trip to the four-team College World Series was on the line. That game was played on June 20, 1947 and it ended Clemson’s season with a 24-5 record.

Yale defeated Clemson 7-3 that day behind the play of first baseman George Bush (President #41), who was 1-3 at the plate. Years later, when President Bush made a campaign stop at Clemson, then sports information director Bob Bradley presented him with a framed copy of the official scorebook pages from that game.

Clemson Has Been Successful in Connecticut While Clemson did lose that NCAA Tournament baseball game in Connecticut, the Tigers have had some success in the Nutmeg state over the years.

In 1988 Clemson played Fordham in the first round of the NCAABaseball tournament at Beehive Stadium in New Britain. Clemson cameaway with the victory, 3-2 in a game that lasted 19 innings, stillthe longest NCAA Tournament game in history. In the 1990 NCAA men’sbasketball tournament Clemson defeated BYU and LaSalle in the firsttwo rounds in games played at the Hartford Civic Center. Clemsonovercame a 19-point deficit when it beat LaSalle. In the nextround, however, in a game played at the Meadowlands in New Jersey,UCONN ended Clemson’s dream of a run at the Final Four with a 71-70Huskie victory on Tate George’s last second shot. The same dayClemson beat LaSalle in men’s basketball in the NCAA Tournament atHartford, the Clemson women’s team defeated the UCONN women atGampel Pavilion, a rare NCAA Tournament home loss for GenoAuriemma’s program. Clemson’s last trip to Connecticut alsoresulted in a victory. The Clemson men’s basketball team defeatedthe University of Hartford in men’s and women’s basketball in adoubleheader at the Mohegan Sun Arena in Norwich, CT on December28, 2001.

Clemson Seeking 8th Straight top 10 Finishbr> Clemson will be seeking its eighth straight top 10 finish at the NCAA golf championship when it begins play in the NCAA East Regional. If Clemson can qualify for the NCAA Championship with a top 10 finish at Yale, then finish in the top 10 at the Homestead, it would break the school record for consecutive top 10 finishes in any sport. In addition to the Clemson golf team’s current streak, the men’s tennis program had seven straight top 10s from 1980-86, and the men’s soccer team had a seven-year streak from 1973-79.

Clemson has actually finished in the top three in the nation three straight years. The Tigers were second at Duke in 2001, third at Ohio State in 2002 and first at Oklahoma State in 2003. Gregg Jones started on all three of those Clemson teams. If the Tigers can get another top three finish this year, Jones would be the first athlete in Clemson history to start on four different top three Clemson teams in any sport.

Clemson vs. the East Regional Field Clemson has a 70-19-1 record against the other 26 schools in the NCAA East Regional field this year and a 301-62-3 record against the field over the last four years combined, or since Matt Hendrix and Gregg Jones have been active members of the Clemson golf team.

The only teams in the field with a winning record against the Tigers this year are Florida (0-7-1) and Georgia State (0-1). Clemson has an even record with South Carolina (3-3) and has a winning record against 14 other schools. Clemson is yet to face the other nine teams in a tournament this year.

Over the last four years, Clemson has a winning record against 22 schools in the field and no team has a winning record against the Tigers. The other four schools are yet to play Clemson over the last four years. The school in the East Regional field with the best record against Clemson is Florida, who has a 11-20-1 record against the Tigers over the last four years. In other words, Clemson has at least a 64.1 percent winning mark against every other school in the field over the last four years.

Clemson vs. the NCAA East Regional Field
Sd School 2000-01 2001-02 2002-03 2003-04 Totals
1. Florida 5-2 7-1 8-1 0-7-1 20-11-1 (.641)
3. Georgia 5-5 9-1 8-0 7-3 29-9 (.763)
4. Georgia Tech 4-6 2-6-1 9-0 7-1 22-12-1 (.643)
5. South Carolina 5-1 4-1 6-0 3-3 18-5 (.784)
6. Augusta St. 3-0 6-1 6-3 6-2 21-6 (.778)
7. Wake Forest 6-0 4-5 8-1 8-0 26-6 (.813)
8. Duke 5-0 4-0-1 7-0 4-2 20-2-1 (.891)
9. Tennessee 3-0 2-3 5-0 4-0 14-3 (.824)
10. North Carolina 6-0 7-0 5-0 7-0 25-0 (1.000)
11. LSU 2-0 2-0 2-0 2-0 8-0 (1.000)
12. Georgia State 1-0 2-0 0-1 3-1 (.750)
13. Jacksonville State 1-0 1-0 (1.000)
14. NC State 6-1 4-3 9-0 7-0 26-4 (.867)
15. UAB 3-0 4-0 2-0 1-0 10-0 (1.000)
16. Auburn 6-0 5-1 7-0 8-0 26-1 (.963)
17. Vanderbilt 3-0 3-0 6-0 (1.000)
18. Georgia Southern 2-1 4-0 3-0 2-0 11-1 (.917)
19. Penn State 1-0 1-0 1-0 0-0 3-0 (1.000)
20. Georgetown DNP
21. Towson DNP
22. Rhode Island 1-0 1-0 1-0 0-0 3-0 (1.000)
23. Maryland 1-0 1-0 2-0 1-0 5-0 (1.000)
24. Binghamton 1-0 1-0 (1.000
25. Yale 1-0 1-0 1-0 00 3-0 (1.000)
26. Army DNP
27. Long Island DNP
Totals 70-19-1 97-5 68-22-2 66-16 301-62-3
(.783) (.951) (.750) (.805) (.867)

Three Clemson Players Named All-ACCPenley Named Coach of the Year for Sixth Time Clemson, SC-Clemson golfers Matt Hendrix and Jack Ferguson were named to the ACC’s All-conference team on May 4. Additionally, Clemson head coach Larry Penley was named the league’s Coach of the Year.

Clemson, Georgia Tech and Wake Forest all had three selections to the All-ACC team. It marked the eighth time in the last nine years that Clemson has had at least three players named to the 12-man team. It was the third year in a row that Jones had been selected, the second year in a row for Hendrix and Ferguson.

Hendrix leads the Clemson team in stroke average this year with a 70.83 figure. He has finished in the top 10 in six of his 10 events and has a team best 19 rounds under par. The native of Aiken, SC won the Puerto Rico Classic in February and the Augusta State Intercollegiate in April. A member of the 2003 United States Walker Cup team, Hendrix is a finalist for the Ben Hogan Award. He is currently ranked ninth in the nation by the Sagarin computer ranking.

Jones has a 72.84 stroke average this year for 11 tournaments. The native of Florence, SC has three top 10 finishes and 13 rounds at par or better. His final round 69 was a key to Clemson’s ACC Tournament championship this year. If Clemson can finish in the top three at the NCAA Tournament this year he will become the first Clemson athlete in history to start on four teams that finished in the top three in the nation.

Ferguson is a junior from Seneca, SC and has been Clemson’s most consistent golfer this year. He has finished in the top 20 in 10 of his 11 events, including four top six finishes. He had a 10-under-par 206 at the ACC Tournament, Clemson’s low score. He also finished third at the Atlanta Intercollegiate when he shot a 208 for the three rounds. His 71.09 stroke average is second best on the Clemson team. He is currently ranked as the 11th best collegiate golfer in the nation by the Sagarin computer ranking.

All three of Clemson’s All-ACC selections are ranked in the top seven in Clemson history in career stroke average. Ferguson is fourth (71.97), Hendrix is fifth (72.18) and Jones is seventh (72.67). Clemson is off until May 20-22 when it will compete in the NCAA Tournament at a regional site to be announced on May 10.

Penley was named ACC Coach of the Year for the sixth time. He was also selected in 1987, 1996, 1997, 1998, and 2003. He guided Clemson to the ACC Championship last month, the second straight year and eighth time the Tigers have won the league title under his direction. The ACC tournament victory was Penley’s 55th as Clemson head coach.

Clemson Second in Both Golf Polls Heading into NCAAsMay 13, 2004 Clemson, SC-Clemson is ranked second in the nation in both major collegiate golf polls heading into regional play. The Tigers are second to Florida in both the Sagarin Computer ranking and the GCAA (Golf Coaches Association of America). Clemson has been ranked second in the nation according to both polls since the Fall.

Clemson is the defending NCAA Champion and will start defense of that crown next Thursday at the NCAA East Regional at the Yale University Course in New Haven, CT. Clemson is the number-two seed in the regional field behind the Gators. Clemson has a 70-19-1 record against the other 26 teams in the East Regional field.

Individually, three Clemson golfers are ranked in the top 25 in numerous NCAA statistics as published this week by Golfstat. Matt Hendrix is fifth in the nation in birdie conversion (.339) and is 10th in greens in regulation (.738). Gregg Jones is 12th in the nation in greens in regulation (.724) and is 25th in fairways hit (.768).

NCAA Golf Polls
Sagarin GCAA
1. Florida 69.93 1. Florida (29) 746
2. Clemson 70.56 2. Clemson (1) 697
3. Georgia 70.74 3. UCLA 653
4. Arizona State 70.80 4. Georgia 632
5. UCLA 70.84 5. Arizona State 615
6. Georgia Tech 71.01 6. Arizona 574
7. Arizona 71.09 7. Georgia Tech 565
8. Oklahoma State 71.17 8. Texas 520
9. Texas 71.17 9. Oklahoma State 517
10. TCU 71.27 10. TCU 442
11. Southern Cal 71.40 11. Minnesota 406
12. South Carolina 71.45 12. South Carolina 392
13. Minnesota 71.48 13. UNLV 352
14. Augusta State 71.55 14. BYU 308
15. UNLV 71.56 15. California 293
16. Wake Forest 71.63 16. Southern Cal 277
17. Oklahoma 71.68 17. New Mexico 254
18. Duke 71.68 18. Augusta State 250
19. California 71.70 19. Oklahoma 213
20. New Mexico 71.71 20. Duke 203
21. BYU 71.77 21. Wake Forest 202
22. Kentucky 71.78 22. Washington 109
23. Arkansas 71.82 23. Arkansas 88
24. Washington 71.83 24. Kansas 76
25. Kansas 71.89 25. Kentucky 74

Clemson Players in National Golf Stat rankings throughMay 7, 2004 Matt Hendrix, Grad, Aiken, SC *8th inoverall player ranking by Sagarin computer *5th in BirdieConversion Percentage, .339 *9th in Par 3 Greens in Regulation,.708 *10th in Greens in Regulation, .738 *13th in Sub/parHoles/Round, 4.45 *16th in scoring average vs. par, -0.93 *17th inFewest Bogeys/Round, 2.45 *17th in Par Three Scoring Average, 3.05*19th in scoring average, 70.83 *21st in Fewest Putts on GIR, 1.781*25th in par 5 scoring average, 4.62

Jack Ferguson, Junior, Seneca, SC *10th in overall player ranking by Sagarin Computer *1st in Fewest Putts on GIR, 1.740 *2nd, Birdie Conversion, .343 *4th in Par 3 Scoring Average, 3.02 *15th in Total Birdies, 134 *16th in Par 3 GIR, .698 *16th in Subpar Strokes/Round, 4.38 *20th, Fewest Putts/Round, 29.38 *21st, Scoring Average vs. Par, -0.69 *23rd in Scoring Average, 71.09

Gregg Jones, Graduate, Florence, SC *12th in Greens in Regulation, .724 *18th in Par 3 Greens in Regulation, .688 *25th in Fairways Hit, .768

Clemson Team Rankings *First in par 3 greens reached in regulation, .649 *First in par three scoring, 3.13 *2nd in greens in regulation, .691 *3rd in fewest bogeys/round, 3.03 *3rd in subpar strokes/round, 3.42 *3rd in birdie conversion, .279 *3rd in putts on greens in regulation, 1.822 *4th in putting for par, .55 *4th in scoring average compared to par, +0.89 *5th in scoring average, 72.67 *7th in fewest 3-putt holes, .88 *7th in final round scoring average, 73.09 *7th in par 4 scoring, 4.12 *10th in fairways hit, .706 *13th in first round scoring average, 73.07 *14th in pars/round, 11.04 *17th in par 5 scoring average, 4.79 *17th in birdies, 524

Hendrix has Two Wins in 2004 Clemson senior Matt Hendrix already has two tournament victories on his resume this year. Both took place in the Spring season. The native of Aiken, SC had never won a tournament prior to this spring, and now is just the second Clemson golfer in the last seven years to win at least two in the same academic year. D.J. Trahan was the last to do it, as the current Nationwide Tour pro won three events as a junior in 2001-02.

Overall, seven different Clemson players have won at least two tournaments in one season. Kevin Johnson and D.J. Trahan, who won three tournaments in 2001-02.

It is interesting to note that one of the seven Clemson players do win at least two events in the same year is Clemson head coach Larry Penley, who won the Iron Duke Classic and the Southeastern Intercollegiate in 1980-81.

Hendrix won two events, both this spring with the same score, 207. He had rounds of 70-67-70 to shoot 207 in winning the Puerto Rico Classic on Feb. 22-24 by one shot. He then captured the Augusta State Invitational with rounds of 72-67-68 for a 207 score on April 4. He had to win a playoff over Nathan Smith of Duke to win at Augusta. Hendrix is from nearly Aiken, SC, so his entire family watched him win that tournament.

Hendrix is not the first All-American to come to Clemson from Aiken, SC. It is also the home of William and Michael Dean Perry, who both led Clemson to prominence on the gridiron in the 1980s.

Clemson Players With Multiple Wins in a Season
Year Player Tournaments Won
1974-75 Jimmy White S.C. Intercollegiate, College of Charleston
1980-81 Larry Penley Iron Duke, Southeastern Intercollegiate
1986-87 Kevin Johnson S.C. Intercollegiate, Gamecock Invitational
1987-88 Kevin Johnson ACC, Schenkel
1988-89 Chris Patton Hancock, Wachesaw
1989-90 Chris Patton Hancock, Palmetto
1996-97 Charles Warren ACC, NCAA
2001-02 D.J.Trahan Carpet Classic, Jerry Pate, NCAA East
2003-04 Matt Hendrix Puerto Rico, Augusta State
Note: Trahan is only player to win three in same academic year

Ferguson Model of Consistency While Matt Hendrix has two victories under his belt this Spring, you can make a case that junior Jack Ferguson has had the most consistent year of any Clemson golfer. The native of Seneca does not have an individual victory at Clemson, but has four finishes in the top seven and 10 in the top 20 out of 11 events. Ferguson is working on a team best streak of nine consecutive top 20 finishes, including a second place finish at the ACC Tournament, an event he lost by just one shot.

For the year, Ferguson has a 71.09 stroke average, second on the team behind the 70.83 by Hendrix. Ferguson has 21 rounds at par or better to lead the team and he has nine rounds in the 60s. Ferguson’s five top 10s are one behind the six achieved by Hendrix. Seven of the 11 tournaments, Ferguson has been under par.

Ferguson has been consistent his entire career, not to mention a clutch performer. He has 12 top 10 finishes in 30 events and has shot 75 or better in 74 of his 89 rounds. He has 51 rounds at par or better out of his 89 total rounds. His career stroke average of 71.97 is fourth best in Clemson history, trailing only Lucas Glover.

Poole has Three Top 10 Finishes One player who has had a major impact on Clemson this Spring is sophomore Matt Hendrix was out of the lineup to recover after the long trip to the Walker Cup.

Poole then returned to the lineup at the Schenkel in the spring and shot an even par 216, the top Clemson performer in the event. He finished10th individually. He followed that with a sixth-place finish at the Atlanta Intercollegiate after rounds of 73-67-70 for a 210 total. He then finished sixth at the ACC tournament with another 210 score. That gave Poole three top 10 events in his first five outings as a Tiger and three of four in the spring.

Poole is the first Clemson golfer to record two top 10s within his first three events since Michael Hoey did it in the fall of 1998. Hoey finished sixth at the Jerry Pate and ninth at the Golf World in his first two events as a Clemson freshman in the fall of 1998.

Poole has played 15 rounds this year and his score has counted towards Clemson’s team score 14 times.

Three Current Tigers in top 10 in Career Average List Three current Clemson golfers rank in the top seven in Clemson history in career stroke average. The list below includes golfers who have played at least 50 rounds for the Tigers. Matt Hendrix, who has played 105 career rounds, stands fifth with a 72.18 figure, while classmate Gregg Jones is seventh at 72.67.

Clemson Career Stroke Average Leaders
(Minimum 50 rounds Played)
Rk Name Years Rds Stks Avg
1. D.J. Trahan 1999-04 143 10,223 71.49
2. John Engler 1997-01 153 10,983 71.78
3. Lucas Glover 1997-01 147 10,579 71.95
4. Jack Ferguson 2001-04 89 6405 71.97
5. Matt Hendrix 2001-04 105 7579 72.18
6. Jonathan Byrd 1996-00 155 11,234 72.477
7. Gregg Jones 2000-04 136 9,883 72.67
8. Chris Patton 1986-90 139 10,106 72.71
9. Matt Hendrix 2000-04 63 4,587 72.81
10. Kevin Johnson 1985-89 147 10,711 72.86

Three Clemson Golfers on Hogan Award Watch ListHendrix, Ferguson and Jones Candidates for National Award March 25, 2004 Clemson, SC-Clemson golfers Matt Hendrix, Jack Ferguson and Gregg Jones were all among 34 NCAA Division I, II or III golfers named to the Watch List for the 2004 Ben Hogan Award. The Award is presented by the Friends of Golf and Colonial Country Club of Fort Worth, TX in cooperation with Bank of America and the Collegiate Golf Coach’s Association.

The award, named in honor of golfing legend Ben Hogan, takes into account all collegiate and amateur competitions during the previous 12 months. Clemson and UCLA were the only schools with three players on the 2004 Watch List.

Hendrix, a senior from Aiken, SC, won the Puerto Rico Classic with a 207 score February 24 and has the top stroke average on the Clemson team this year. He won the Sunnehanna Amateur and was a member of the United States Walker Cup team.

Ferguson, a junior from Seneca, SC, is second on the team in stroke average. He has five top 10 finishes this year, including a fifth-place at the Carpet Classic in Dalton, GA last fall and a second place at the ACC tournament in the spring. Jones, a senior from Florence, SC, has three top 10 finishes including a season best third-place at the North Florida Collegiate. He also won the Jones Cup in 2003.

Penley Named Head Coach of United States Palmer Cup TeamFerguson Named to Team March 22, 2004 Clemson, SC–Clemson Head Golf Coach Larry Penley has been named the head coach of the United States team in the 2004 Palmer Cup presented by Monster announced the Golf Coaches Association of America (GCAA). This annual Ryder Cup-style competition will be played at Ballybunion Golf Club in County Kerry, Ireland, August 6-7.

The 2003 Eaton Golf Pride Dave Williams National Coach of the Year and a recent inductee into the GCAA Coaches Hall of Fame, Penley has spent the past 20 years as the head coach of the Clemson golf program. He led the Tigers to the 2003 NCAA Championship and his teams have finished in the top five seven times and in the top 20 on 17 occasions. Penley,s squads have also won seven ACC titles and six NCAA Regional crowns.

Penley has coached 46 All-Americans – including 13 first-team selections – and 10 All-America Scholars. He has been named the ACC Coach of the year and District Coach of the Year five times each. In 2003, Penley,s Tigers became the first program in NCAA history to win its conference, regional and national championship in the same year. Clemson was the nation’s top-ranked team by the Precept Coaches poll the entire 2003 season and captured a school record six team titles. The Tigers are currently ranked third in the nation.

“I am honored to serve as the United States coach of the Palmer Cup team,” said Penley. “It has been a very rewarding last 12 months for our program at Clemson and for me personally and this certainly adds to it because this is annually one of the top amateur golf events in the world. Coaching a United States team at an event named in honor of Arnold Palmer is one of the greatest honors I can experience as a golf coach

“We have had seven former players participate in this event and they all said it was one of the highlights of their amateur careers. To have the Palmer Cup matches at Ballybunion, one of the top courses in the world will only add to the experience. I accept this appointment with great pride.” Penley has played the Ballybunion course previously, on a vacation in 1999 with former Clemson golfers, and he shot a 66. The U.S. team leads the Palmer Cup Series, 4-2-1.

Penley Inducted into GCAA Hall of Fame Clemson golf coach Larry Penley was inducted into the Golf Coaches Association of America Hall of Fame in Orlando, FL on January 28, 2004. The induction ceremonies were conducted at the GCAA Hall of Fame. Penley is the first coach in any Clemson sport to be inducted into a hall of fame while he was still coaching at Clemson. Penley joins former Clemson football coaches John Heisman, Frank Howard and Jess Neely to be named to a national Hall of Fame as a coach. Penley was one of three golf coaches inducted this week. The others were Herb Page of Kent State and Fred Warren of East Tennessee State.

The GCAA Hall of Fame began in 1980. Selection criteria not only includes a coach’s record on the golf course, but his contributions to the game, student-athletes and school.

“This is a great honor,” said Penley. “It is a reflection of our players and the program in general. I can’t say enough about the players and the families we have had in our program over he years. I just happen to be the guy who has reaped the benefits.

“I don’t feel like a Hall of Fame coach,” said Penley, who is just 44-years-old. ” I still have a lot to accomplish.”

Penley led the Tigers to the school’s first National Champion in 2003. He was named the Eaton Golf Pride Dave Williams National Coach of the Year. He led the Tigers to victories in the ACC tournament, the NCAA East Regional and the NCAA Championships, the first coach to win his conference, regional and national tournaments in the same year.

The 1984 Clemson graduate and former All-ACC golfer for the Tigers has guided Clemson to eight ACC titles, and six NCAA regional championships and 55 tournament titles overall. His teams have finished in the final top five of the NCAA Tournament seven times and he has had 17 top 20 finishes in his 20 seasons at the helm. He has been named ACC Coach of the Year six times and NCAA District Coach of the Year five times.

Clemson’s NCAA Regional HistoryTigers Have Six Regional Titles Clemson has won the NCAA East Regional six times in its previous 15 appearances. Clemson has won the East Regional more than any other school. Georgia Tech has won four times (including co-championship with Clemson in 2002), while Florida and Auburn have all won the event twice. East Tennessee State won the event in 2001 at Williamsburg, VA with a -36 score, the lowest score vs. par in East Regional history. Clemson is the two-time defending champion.

Clemson has been to 15 previous regional tournaments and made the cut all 15 times. The closest Clemson has come to missing the cut came in 1999 when the Tigers finished in the final spot, 10th. Clemson defeated Mississippi State in a five-man one-hole playoff at Barrington, RI for the last spot in the national event. Clemson went on to an eighth-place finish at the nationals. That Clemson team featured future All-Americans Lucas Glover and Jonathan Byrd and future British Amateur champion Michael Hoey.

In addition to the six championships, Clemson has finished second twice and fourth four times. Clemson has finished in the top five 12 of its previous 15 appearances at the East Regional.

While the Clemson team has six championships, only two Clemson players have taken medallist honors at a regional. Mark Swygert did it in 1994 at Opelika, AL when his 213 score won the event. He had a 67 in the final round. D.J. Trahan took the title last year with a six-under par 210 score last season. Overall, Clemson has had 21 individual top 10 finishes. Clemson has had at least one top 10 finisher in 12 of the 15 previous East Regional tournaments, including last year when three Tigers finished in the top 10.

Clemson’s best single round team score at the NCAA regional took place in 2001 at Williamsburg when the Tigers had four players in the 60s and all five players under par in shooting a final round 273. Clemson had two rounds of 277 last year at Auburn, AL when it won by nine strokes.

Clemson at the NCAA East Regional
Year Site Team Champion Clemson Score Vs. Par
1989 N. Myrtle Beach, SC Florida 4th of 19 886 +22
1990 Wilmington Island, GA Auburn 7th of 23 865 +1
1991 New Haven, CT Georgia Tech 4th of 23 875 +35
1992 Hamilton, NY Florida 4th of 22 879 +15
1993 Charlottesville, VA Clemson 1st of 23 849 -15
1994 Opelika, AL Clemson 1st of 23 868 +4
1995 New Haven, CT Clemson 1st of 21 857 +17
1996 West Point, NY NC. State 8th of 23 907 +43
1997 Hot Springs, VA Auburn 2nd of 23 876 +36
1998 Daufuskie Island, SC Georgia Tech 2nd of 23 844 -20
1999 Barrington, RI Georgia Tech 10th of 23 876 +12
2000 Moosic, PA Clemson 1st of 27 871 +19
2001 Williamsburg, VA ETSU 4th of 27 842 -22
2002 Roswell, GA Clemson 1st of 27 876 +12
2003 Auburn, AL Clemson 1st of 27 839 -25
Clemson Top Five Individual Finishes at East Regional
Year Player Site Fin Score
1992 Danny Ellis Hamilton, NY 4th 218
1993 Bobby Doolittle Charlottesville, VA 2nd 210
Danny Ellis 5th 213
1994 Mark Swygert Opelika, AL 1st 213
Richard Coughlan 4th 217
1995 Mike Byce New Haven, CT 2nd 213
Richard Coughlan 2nd 213
1997 Charles Warren Hot Springs, VA 3rd 213
1998 Joey Maxon Daufuskie Island, SC 5th 209
2000 John Engler Moosic, PA 4th 215
Jonathan Byrd 4th 215
Lucas Glover 4th 215
2002 D.J. Trahan Roswell, GA 1st 210
2003 Gregg Jones Auburn, AL 2nd 208
Matt Hendrix Auburn, AL 4th 209

Clemson Golf Last Five Seasons How good has Clemson been the last five years? Just look at the record in terms of wins and winning percentage. Clemson has 13 wins over the last five years in 63 tournaments. There have been 18 other tournaments in which Clemson has finished second, meaning the Tigers have finished first or second in nearly 50 percent of their events the last five seasons. Clemson has 46 top three finishes in the last five years and 56 top fives. Seventy-three percent of the time Clemson has finished among the top three.

In terms of overall winning percentage in stroke play tournaments, Clemson has a .870 mark for the last five years combined. That includes the incredible 183-8-3 record turned in by last year’s National Championship team that finished in the top two in 13 of the 14 events.

Clemson Record the Last Five Years
Year Record Pct. Trns Wins Top 2 Top 3 Top 5
1999-00 156-26-3 .850 12 3 7 7 9
2000-01 161-21-3 .878 13 1 5 10 13
2001-02 156-29-3 .830 12 2 3 8 10
2002-03 183-8-3 .951 14 6 13 14 14
2003-04 126-27-4 .815 12 1 3 7 10
Totals 782-111-16 .870 63 13 31 46 56