A lot has changed since Tom Watson went off to college in the fall of 1967.
Watson recalls that tuition then for an entire year at Stanford University was $1,770. And college golf teams didn’t travel to numerous tournaments across the country like they do today.
“We didn’t play a lot of tournaments,” the 64-year-old Watson said. “We played a lot of individual competitions, sometimes against high schools.”
Watson played in the NCAA tournament three times during his career. His best finish was fifth in 1970 at Ohio State’s Scarlet Course, where future PGA Tour player John Mahaffey was the individual champion.
Watson is impressed with the job college golf programs are doing today.
“The colleges are doing a good job of producing good young players,” Watson said. “I am glad to see it.”
| Tom Smith, email@example.com
NCAA men’s golf tournament
WHEN/WHERE: Friday through May 28 at Prairie Dunes in Hutchinson, Kan.
TEAM CHAMPIONSHIP FORMAT: Teams will play 54-holes of stroke-play in the first three days of the tournament to qualify for the eight team championship playoff. Those eight teams will face off in quarterfinal and semifinal match play starting Tuesday, and the championship match is the next day.
INDIVIDUAL CHAMPIONSHIP FORMAT: The top 40 individuals (and ties) after the first three rounds will try and make it a memorable Memorial Day by winning the individual title on Monday.
ADMISSION: No ticket is required, but spectators will be charged for parking ($10 per car or $25 for vehicles holding more than 10 people). Parking will be at Westar Energy at 30th and Lucille in Hutchinson, and there will be shuttle service to the course.
TV: Golf Channel plans nine hours of live tournament coverage the final three days as well as updates.