FRIENDS OF GOLF HAS MISSION OF GROWING THE GAME
What began with college pride has evolved into a charitable boon.
Founded in 1978 by Southland golf icon Eddie Merrins and philanthropist John Anderson, the Friends of Golf organization has grown to being one of the most potent proponents of the game’s future.
When Merrins, then the UCLA men’s golf coach and head professional at Bel-Air Country Club, and Bruins’ alumnus Anderson began Friends of Golf (FOG), the aim was to raise funds for the university’s golf program. But the decades since have seen the charitable endeavor soar with all the rise of a perfectly struck iron shot. [READ MORE]
FOG IS PLEASED TO ANNOUNCE THE 2015 BEN HOGAN AWARD WINNER … JON RAHM FROM ARIZONA STATE UNIVERSITY
In a sold out black tie dinner, the 26th Ben Hogan Award was presented last night at The Colonial Country Club in Ft. Worth, Texas by Friends of Golf and The Colonial Country Club. With the three finalists all playing in the Big 12 there was certainly golf excitement in the west.
The night was kicked off by an uplifting speech by the great Bruce Lietzke directed to the three finalists: Jon Rahm from Arizona State University, Chen-Tsung Pan from University of Washington and Maverick McNealyfrom Stanford University. In his heartfelt remarks, Bruce emphasized… [READ MORE]
ONCE UPON A TIME, THERE WAS AN 8-YEAR OLD BOY WHO WANTED TO PLAY GOLF
He had only 4 golf clubs and little to no access to golf courses. He decided if he really wanted to play, the only way to do it was to get a job at a local club and be paid in range balls and an occasional round on the course. So he applied for a job. The pro told him they normally didn’t hire 8-year olds, but his determination clearly impressed the pro who gave him the job. He picked up balls and trash, cleaned clubs and whatever else his pro wanted him to do.
His father then told him, if he won a trophy he would get a set of clubs. The 8-year old entered a local 10 and under event, with a full field, and came in 2nd to a local 10-year old who always seemed to win. With trophy in hand his father fulfilled his promise, but only with a second hand set of ladies clubs.
This was clearly not a child of privilege, but one with desire and hard work ethics. His talent was recognized by a local golf professional who, along with many others, saw the potential in this boy and offered him opportunity, resources and support.
Who was this 8-year-old boy? None other than FOG’s 2015 Honoree, PHIL MICKELSON. [READ MORE]
LONGTIME SPORTSWRITER and Member of the Golf Writers Association of America Describes First FOG Tournament and Banquet Experience
Visit FOG’s “IN THE NEWS” page to read this and other newsworthy articles. [READ MORE]
THE KEN VENTURI “Spirit of Giving” AWARD
In 2012, for the first time in its history, Friends of Golf (FOG) created the inaugural Ken Venturi “Spirit of Giving” Award. This award was created to honor Ken Venturi and his lifelong commitment to be an inspiring and motivating force for young golfers everywhere. Ken was a Friend of FOG for many years—almost since its inception. Through the years, he graciously contributed his time and energy to support the mission of FOG by attending the event every year, conducting clinics for the players, and attracting many of the top professional golfers to contribute their time and interest to fostering good will for the young amateur and college golfer. Each new year, FOG honors another individual who represents similar values and devotes their life to giving and inspiring young golfers everywhere.
The 2015 “Spirit of Giving” Award recipients were founder Ely Callaway (posthumously) and Oliver “Chip” Brewer (CEO) of CALLAWAY GOLF.
The BEN HOGAN Trophy
What do Vince Lombardi, John Heisman, Bronco Nagurski, Chuck Bednarik, Dick Butkus, Ronnie Lott and Ben Hogan all have in common? They are all named for the most recognized college sports awards in the country. Ben Hogan was arguably the best golfer in history, yet few golfers (let alone ordinary Americans), are aware of the Hogan Trophy. See article at the top on the 2015 winner announcement.
Favorite FOG Memory!
Share YOUR favorite FOG memory or enjoy fond memories of others.