Oct. 7, 2005
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Columbus, Ohio – Ohio State will be one of 14 teams playing at the Duke Golf Club (par 72, 7,045) starting Sunday, Oct. 9 at the 2005 Coca-Cola Duke Classic in Durham, N.C. It will be the third tournament of the fall season for the Buckeyes, who finished ninth in the season opener at the Inverness Invitational and sixth most recently at the Big Ten/Pac-10 Challenge in suburban Chicago.
Teams will play practice rounds on Saturday, Oct. 8 with the tournament beginning with a shotgun start at 8:30 a.m. Sunday. After the teams play 36 holes Sunday, the Coca-Cola Duke Classic will conclude with 18 holes Monday.
Ohio State will take Colin Biles, Jack Tyler, Kevin Grabeman, David Vallina and Jared Jones to North Carolina for this event.
The Duke Classic Field
Joining the Buckeyes in the field will be Charlotte, Coastal Carolina, Duke, Florida Southern, Michigan State, Minnesota, North Carolina, N.C. State, Northwestern, Notre Dame, UNC Greensboro, UNC-Wilmington, Virginia and Virginia Tech.
The Big Ten/Pac-10 Challenge Recap
Ohio State finished sixth overall at the second annual Big Ten/Pac-10 challenge Oct. 3-4. The Buckeyes were led by junior Colin Biles, a Columbus, Ohio, native who finished tied for seventh in the individual standings. The Big Ten was the event winner to even the series at 1-1. The Pac-10 won the inaugural event in 2004. Seven teams from each conference competed in the tournament, held this year in suburban Chicago and hosted by Northwestern. The Wildcats claimed both team and medalist honors to lead the Big Ten to the conference victory. The scores of the six top teams from each league were used to determine the conference champion. The Big Ten finished +61 as a league while the Pac-10 shot +105, giving the Big Ten a 44-stroke winning advantage. The event will continue next year in Oregon. Ohio State at the Inverness
Ohio State’s Jack Tyler, a junior from Novi, Mich, tied for 10th with a score of 221 (77-69-75) to help Ohio State to a ninth-place finish at the Inverness Invitational in Toledo, Ohio, Sept. 19-20.
Matt Every, playing for the University of Florida, was the event medalist, shooting an even par 213 (74-71-68). The Gators also won the team title with a score of 880 (298-295-287) to outlast Southern California by three strokes (883).
Ohio State shot 302 in the opening round, good enough for a tie for the 10th position after 18 holes. The Buckeyes cut five strokes in the second round to finish tied for sixth at (302-297) 599. The Buckeyes finished the event with a 302 over the final 18 holes.
Colin Biles, a junior from Columbus, finished tied for 19th with a score of 224 (76-73-75).
Biles Leads Ohio State in Early Going
Junior Colin Biles has a pair of Top 20 finishes to his credit after two fall tournaments this year. Biles tied for seventh at the Big Ten/Pac-10 Challenge last week and opened the season tied for 19th at the Inverness Invitational in Toledo. Biles has played six rounds this year with a scoring average of 73.0. Newcomer Jack Tyler, a transfer from George Washington and a native of Novi, Mich., tied for 10th in the season opener at Inverness. His scoring average is 73.5 in the early going for the Buckeyes.
2005-06 Season Outlook
The Ohio State men’s golf team is ready to get back into national contention. Ohio State enters the 2005-06 campaign with hopes of capturing a second Big Ten title in three seasons, following a five shot victory over Illinois in the 2004 championship. With added depth and an influx of talented newcomers the Buckeyes are searching for a berth in the 2006 NCAA Championships.
This season, the Buckeyes return a group large in size but with limited experience. The Buckeyes lost only one player to graduation from a year ago, but that player was senior captain and All-Big Ten performer, Scott Anderson, a ninth-place finisher at the 2005 NCAA Central Regional Championship.
Ohio State will be led by top returnee Colin Biles, a junior who in 2004-05 held a scoring average of 73.2 and recorded five Top 15 finishes. Biles led the Buckeyes in scoring in five of the 10 tournaments played last season, including a team season low round of 65 in the final round of the Schenkel Invitational March 20. Biles, trailing only Anderson, played 31 rounds last season and recorded his best finish, a tie for fourth, at the Landfall Classic.
“Colin should be our No. 1 man this season,” Jim Brown, Ohio State men’s golf coach, said. “The schedule sets up well this year, where it’s so competitive, and if Colin plays the way we know he can then he could be an All-American.”
The Buckeyes also return Michael Haverfield, a sophomore who came on strong last spring and became a fixture in the Ohio State rotation for the six spring tournaments. Haverfield played 21 rounds for the Buckeyes, holding a 75.28 scoring average. His best finish came at the Marshall Invitational, where he placed in a tie for 19th. With a wealth of newcomers in the upcoming season, Brown figures to rely heavily on the second-year player from Louisville, Ky.
“Colin and Michael will be two of the leaders on this team,” Brown said. “They both played well last spring and we’re looking for big things this upcoming season. “
Also returning for the Scarlet and Gray will be redshirt freshman Kevin Grabeman. Although he was held out of competition last season, he will be in the mix for a Top 5 spot come fall.
“Kevin redshirted last season but he was good enough to play,” Brown said. “He was great in practice and could have contributed but we decided to hang on and redshirt him.”
Others returning players looking to crack the Top 5 include Nate Strong, Peter Riddell, Jared Jones, and David Vallina.
Ohio State welcomes three newcomers to the roster this season; freshmen Dan Rush and Brandon Markiw, along with transfer Jack Tyler.
Rush, an AJGA All-American, was a member of two state championship teams at St. Ignatius (Ohio) High School in 2002 and 2003. Rush held a 2004 scoring average of 71.0 and was the medalist in an impressive 12 tournaments. In the other six tournaments, he placed second five times and third once. Rush was named to the All-Ohio team and set two St. Ignatius 18-hole scoring records.
Markiw comes to Ohio State with an impressive resume as well. The Edmonton, Alberta native placed runner up in the 2004 Alberta High School Championship as well as the CPGA Provincial Jr. Championship. Markiw won the Alberta Open with a two round score of 138 and was a six-time CJGA (Canadian Junior Golf Association) tournament winner.
The last newcomer of the group, Jack Tyler, comes to Ohio State after two years of competition at George Washington University. In his first collegiate event, Tyler posted a first-round 69 en route to a 10th place finish among 74 individuals. Tyler posted nine Top 15 finishes at George Washington including a first place score of 144 at the 2004 Rehoboth Beach Fall Invitational. In his sophomore season, Tyler played in 14 tournaments and held a scoring average of 74.98. Tyler hails from Novi, Mich., where he was the Michigan state runner-up in 2002.
The strength of the team this year could rely heavily on the newcomers and Brown is excited to see them in action.
“We are really excited about these three and we feel like all of them can contribute right away,” Brown said. “They have all shot low scores this summer, lots of 60’s. What is so impressive about this group is their tournament success. Dan has played in a lot of AJGA events and has placed in the Top 5. Markiw won a big junior tournament in Canada and Jack has been successful at the collegiate level. These three are going to help us right away.”
Ohio State has added six new tournaments to the schedule this season, which began Sept. 19-20 with the Inverness Invitational in Toledo. Ohio State will travel to Chicago, Ill., to take part in the Big Ten / Pac-10 Challenge Oct. 3-4. Other new destinations for the Buckeyes include trips to the Duke Intercollegiate, The Prestige at PGA West, the Lexus Intercollegiate and the Morris Williams Invite.
“This is the best schedule I’ve had in 33 years at Ohio State,” Brown said. “The fields are so deep and so competitive. We always try to play a tough schedule because you have to see where you stand. It is important to play tough competition. And we expect to do well. You don’t get any points for showing up. We have to take advantage of these opportunities.”
The Big Ten Championships will be held in Chicago, April 28-30, with Michigan State looking to defend its 2005 title.
“We are excited about all the tournaments but the Big Ten Championship is the most important,” Brown said. “If we play the way we can we can be up there in every tournament we play.”
Scarlet on the Mend
The Ohio State Scarlet golf course is currently in the midst of a year-long construction overhaul. It is on schedule to re-open for the women’s NCAA tournament in May of 2006. Former Buckeye and PGA great Jack Nickalus is over seeing the construction process.
“If it’s not the No. 1 collegiate course in the country after reconstruction, I’d be disappointed,” Brown said. “They’ve been working on the condition of the greens, the placement of bunkers, the length, and are even constructing a new practice facility. We are very happy that Jack is doing this project and his goal is to make it the best college course in the nation. They’ve done a lot of extra things and I’m sure they’ll be showing off this course to the rest of the country. It’s making great progress and we are very excited to see how it turns out.”
Things to Look for in 2005-06
Close to home- Ohio State plays two tournaments in the state of Ohio this season, and possibly a third if the Buckeyes qualify for the NCAA Central Regional.
The Buckeyes open the season Sept. 19-20 in Toledo at the Inverness Invitational. Ohio State will host the Robert Kepler Intercollegiate at Muirfield Village Golf Club, April 15-16. The NCAA Central Regional will be held in Chagrin Falls, Ohio, and if the Buckeyes qualify that would mean three tournaments in the Buckeye state.
Meet Coach Brown
Now in his 33rd year as the Buckeyes’ head coach, Jim Brown has built the Ohio State golf into one of the finest and most respected collegiate programs in the nation.
The numbers are impressive. Under Brown’s guidance, the Buckeyes have qualified for the NCAA tournament 30 times, 11 times finishing in the Top 10, while claiming one national championship in 1979.
Ohio State also has dominated Big Ten play, winning 23 conference titles. The Buckeyes claimed their 23rd title in 2004 with a five stroke victory over Illinois. Ohio State also claimed the team title at the 2004 Marshall Invitational to give Brown 156 tournament wins during his tenure.
When the Buckeyes won the national title in 1979, it marked the first time in nearly two decades a northern school claimed the championship. Brown proved the 1979 season was no fluke as the program finished fourth in the NCAA’s in 1980, 1983, 1987, and again in 1997.
Brown earned National Coach-of-the-Year honors in both 1979 and 1986, and was named District IV Coach of the Year in consecutive seasons from 1977 through 1980 and again from 1982 through 1987. Most recently, Brown was named 2004 Big Ten Coach of the Year for the third time in his career. Prior to his 2004 Big Ten honor, Brown captured back-to-back coach of the honors in 1995 and 1996. He also coached the NCAA All-Star Team that competed in Japan in 1979 and the 1999 Palmer Cup team that defeated a team of top collegiate players from Great Britain and Ireland.
Ohio State travels to Palm Springs, Calif., to participate in The Prestige at PGA West Oct. 17-18.