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Golf's Thomas and Wyatt on Ben Hogan watch list

  • Chris Walsh

    TUSCALOOSA, Ala. – University of Alabama golfers Justin Thomas and Bobby Wyatt were named to the 2013 watch list on Wednesday for the prestigious Ben Hogan Award presented by Crowne Plaza Hotels and Resorts, in conjunction with Colonial Country Club, The Friends of Golf (FOG) and the Golf Coaches Association of America.

    The award is presented annually to the top men’s NCAA Division I, II or III, NAIA or NJCAA college golfer, taking into account all collegiate and amateur competitions during a 12-month period. The Ben Hogan Award selection committee represents the leaders in amateur and collegiate golf.

    Thomas, a sophomore from Goshen, Ky., was a semifinalist for the award a year ago. He then went on to win the Nicklaus Award and the Haskins Award, which are presented to the National Collegiate Player of the Year. Thomas leads the Crimson Tide in 2012-13 with a 70.40-stroke average and ranks eighth in the most recent Golfweek/Sagarin Performance Index. He has equaled the Alabama career record with five victories, including the 2012 Jerry Pate National Intercollegiate.

    Wyatt, who was the medalist at the 2012 U.S. Amateur at Cherry Hills and advanced to the round of 16 in match play, is a junior from Mobile, Ala. He is second on the team with a 71.83-scoring average with two top-five finishes in the fall of 2012 for the Crimson Tide. Wyatt ranks 19th in the in the most recent Golfweek/Sagarin Performance Index.

    The 2013 The Ben Hogan Award Watch List includes, in alphabetical order: Daniel Berger (Florida State, Soph.), Julien Brun (TCU, Soph.), Albin Choi (North Carolina State, Jr.), Corey Conners (Kent State, Jr.), Scott Fernandez (Iowa State, Soph.), Steven Fox (Chattanooga, Sr.), Ben Geyer (St. Mary’s, Sr.), Talor Gooch (Oklahoma State, Jr.), Brandon Hagy (California, Jr.), Max Homa (California, Sr.), Michael Kim (California, Soph.), Jace Long (Missouri, Sr.), Tyler McCumber (Florida, Sr.), Cheng-Tsung Pan (Washington, Soph.), Kevin Penner (UNLV, Sr.), Thomas Pieters (Illinois, Jr.), Patrick Rodgers (Stanford, Soph.), Trevor Simsby (Washington, Jr.), Brandon Stone (Texas, Fr.), Julian Suri (Duke, Sr.), Ben Taylor (Nova Southeastern, Jr.), Thomas (Alabama, Soph.), T.J. Vogel (Florida, Sr.), Michael Weaver (California, Jr.), Pontus Widegren (UCLA, Sr.), Chris Williams (Washington, Sr.) and Wyatt (Alabama, Jr.).

    The 10 Hogan Award semifinalists, which could include individuals not on the current list, will be unveiled on Thursday, April 18, with three finalists chosen on May 8. The three finalists will be invited to Colonial Country Club in Fort Worth, Texas, for the black-tie Hogan Award presentation on the evening of May 20.

    Marten Olander won the 1993 Ben Hogan Award and is the only Alabama player to claim the honor.

    The award, which was first issued in 1990 and included academic achievement in its original list of standards, revised its criteria for the 2001-02 collegiate season to its current standard of honoring the outstanding amateur collegiate golfer.

    To find the latest information on The Ben Hogan Award, its candidates and it

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    Christopher Walsh covers Alabama football for BamaOnline, 247Sports, and is the author of 18 books.

  • Expect big things from both of them.