Tournament: The Prestige & Prestige Individual
Dates: Feb. 21-23, 2022
Co-Hosts: UC Davis and Stanford
Location: LaQuinta, Calif.
Course: PGA West Greg Norman Course / Coral Mountain Golf Club
Course Par/Yardage: Par 71 / 7,100 yds
Host Web Site: https://www.prestigepgawest.org
Live Scoring: https://csura.ms/3LLtFsH
Tournament Field (24): Colorado State, UC Davis, Stanford, Cal Poly, Denver, Iowa State, Kansas, Long Beach State, Loyola Marymount, LSU, North Texas, Northwestern, Oregon, Oregon State, Pepperdine, Princeton, San Diego State, San Francisco, Santa Clara, SMU, TCU, Texas Tech, UCLA, Vanderbilt
Next on the Tee: Colorado State will get back into team action at the nationally-renowned The Prestige in La Quinta, Calif. The three-day, 54-hole event, co-hosted by UC Davis and Stanford, will be played at the PGA West Greg Norman course. There will also be a Prestige Individual event at Coral Mountain Golf Club at the same time.
Fast Five On The Prestige:
This will be the first time that CSU will play in this top-level NCAA event.
Of the 24 programs competing, 22 had participants as either a team or individual in the 2021 NCAA Regionals (15 teams, seven schools with individuals), with eight teams and an individual rep that advanced to the NCAA Championships with Pepperdine winning the title.
In the field, 22 teams are ranked in the top 125 nationally, with 11 in the top 50, including No. 5 Pepperdine, No. 7 Texas Tech and No. 9 Stanford.
The Prestige has featured many of the world’s great players during their collegiate careers including the world’s #1 player Jon Rahm, #5 Viktor Hovland, and Olympic Golf Medalist and current #7 Xander Schauffele amongst many others.
In its 22nd year, The Prestige will be played for the 20th consecutive year at a PGA WEST managed course.
CSU History In The Prestige
Lineup for the Prestige: The Rams are in the traditional play-five, count-four event this week at PGA West Greg Norman Course. For CSU, the lineup will be:
1. Davis Bryant
2. Connor Jones
3. Rasmus Hjelm
4. Oscar Teiffel
5. Gunnar Broin
In the Prestige Individual event, Christoph Bleier, Jay Pabin and Gavin Hagstrom will be competing at Coral Mountain Golf Club.
Last Time Out: Junior Connor Jones posted his first collegiate top-five finish but Colorado State slipped in the final round and finished ninth at the 2021 Saint Mary’s Invitational, Oct. 9. The three-day, 54-hole tournament, hosted by Saint Mary’s (CA) College, was played at Poppy Hills Golf Club (Par 71 – 7,002 yards) in Pebble Beach, Calif.
A tightly-bunched group near the top of the leaderboard resulted in just a few shots making a difference, as fifth and 13th were separated by just eight shots. CSU had an 11-over 295 in the final round to finish at 11-over 863 in ninth. Oregon overtook second-round leader No. 6 Stanford for the team title, finishing at 19-under 833 as compared to Stanford’s 17-under 835. 28 San Francisco was third at 13-under 839, with No. 33 Nevada (7-under 845) and Loyola Marymount (5-over 857) competing the top five teams.
Jones put together his best tournament in his collegiate career, shooting a 4-under 67 in the final round and tying for fifth at 4-under 209. In his final round, the 67 tied for the second-lowest round of the day and included an eagle on the final hole as well as four other birdies contributing to the score.
“I’m very happy to see a top-five for Connor,” head coach Christian Newton said. “He works at it very hard and it was great for him to see the results.”
Freshman Christoph Bleier was next in a tie for 46th at 4-over 217, while fellow freshman Jay Pabin tied for 61st with a 7-over 220. Senior Davis Bryant finished at 9-over 222, tied for 71st, while sophomore Rasmus Hjelm was one stroke back at 10-over 223, tied for 73rd. Nevada’s Quim Vidal Mora earned medalist honors by three shots at 11-under 202.
Military Tribute Bag Continues: In 2021-22, CSU is continuing its tradition of honoring those who have served our country through the military. This year, the program is again US Army veteran Charles W. Williamson III, due to the shortened seasons in 2019-20 and 2020-21.
Williamson served almost 17 years on active duty before medically retiring as a Sergeant First Class in 2007. He was part of a tank effort in Operation Desert Storm and through his first nine years of service, he was an Armor Crewman and held every position on a tank, including tank commander. During his military career, he also served as a Platoon Sergeant and Head Cadre, the instructor for the Individual Readiness Training for Bosnia rotations. He also served as a recruiter for the Army, retiring as Commander of a six-man recruiting station. From his service, he received numerous awards, bags, ribbons and commendations, including for meritorius service, His daughter Katelyn was a Folds of Honor Scholarship recipient at CSU, earning her degree in bio-medical sciences.
The bag was carried by the top CSU finisher from the previous tournament during the 2019-20 season. AJ Ott carried it the 2020-21 season due to COVID protocols, taking it all the way to the NCAA Championships as an individual. This year, senior Davis Bryant carried the bag during the fall and Connor Jones will have it for The Prestige as CSU’s top finisher in the team’s last fall event.
In 2019-20, the military tribute bag debuted, honoring former golfer and late US Army veteran James “Jerry” Jackson. Jackson had served as a First Lieutenant in the US Army during the Vietnam War, eventually passing away from lasting effects from exposure to Agent Orange from his service.
Bryant, Bleier Earn MW Monthly Awards: Colorado State Davis Bryant and Christoph Bleier have been named Mountain West Golfer and Freshman of the Month, respectively, for September, the league announced today. This is the second conference monthly/weekly award in Bryant’s career and the first for Bleier.
Bryant and Bleier led the Rams to their seventh consecutive Ram Masters Invitational in come-from-behind fashion after weather conditions on the first day led to higher-than-average scores. Bryant tied for runner-up honors in the event for the second time in his career, including a final-round 3-under 67 to help the Rams post a 5-under 275, the only under-par round of the tournament. In his first collegiate event, Bleier also shot a 3-under 67 in the last round to tie Bryant for the low score of the tournament and finish in a tie for sixth in the tournament.
Fast Five On The Rams:
CSU will have its third different lineup of the season, as sophomore Gunnar Broin makes his season debut for the Rams.
The Rams have had representation in the last four NCAA Regionals competed — twice by individuals (2017, 2021) and twice with a full team (2018, 2019). The 2020 regionals were not played due to COVID, but CSU was ranked in the top 30 nationally when the season ended early.
The Rams will play in seven different states for their 11 scheduled tournaments this year, with 10 of them in the Mountain or Pacific time zones. The only trip out of those was the third tournament of the year, when CSU competed in the Golf Club of Georgia Collegiate.
Davis Bryant is currently second in career scoring at CSU.
head coach Christian Newton now has 13 tournament victories in his nine-plus years as leader of the Rams.
On the World Stage: Two Rams on the current roster are ranked among the top 400 players in the current World Amateur Golf Rankings, as of Feb. 19. The rankings are based on their average performance in selected counting events over the past two calendar years.
Christoph Bleier 255
Davis Bryant 363
Newton Named to GCAA National Advisory Board
head coach Christian Newton was named to the Golf Coaches Association of America National Advisory Board, effective July 1, 2020. This is the first time that a CSU coach has been named to this prestigious position.
Newton was elected by his fellow coaches at the GCAA National Convention in December of 2019 and will become the Third Vice President on July 1, 2020.
It is a 10-year commitment, where every two years he will move up the ranks after each President’s term is up. He will become the Second Vice President from 2022-24, First Vice President from 2024-26 before becoming President in 2026-28. Following that, he will serve a two-year stint as the Past President from 2028-30.
Rams on Tour: Former Colorado State standout Martin Laird, a PGA tour veteran, has made a statement already in the 2021 season with his fourth career victory on tour, a playoff win at the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open. This was his second in the event as he also captured the title in 2009.
He made the cut in 14 events, with the win and two other top-25 placings as his top finishes. He earned $1.81 million this season after the 2020 season was halted due to the pandemic. In 2021, his efforts during the regular season earned him a spot in the FedExCup Playoffs for the 11th time in 13 seasons.
This year, he has made the cut in four of six events and has three top-25 placings.
For his career, he has surpassed $19.95 million in official PGA Tour winnings and made the cut in almost two-thirds of his 332 PGA Tour starts in his 14-plus years on the top golf tour. Laird was inducted into the CSU Athletic Hall of Fame in the fall of 2017.
Recent standout Jake Staiano earned a spot on the Korn Ferry Tour this year and made the cut in his first event at the Astara Golf Championship presented by Mastercard in Columbia in mid-February. He moved up the rankings and will have additional guaranteed starts now due to his result.