Texas golfer Beau Hossler, the top-ranked player in both sets of weekly collegiate player rankings, joins Arizona State’s Jon Rahm and Stanford’s Maverick McNealy as finalists for the 2016 Ben Hogan Award.
The three finalists for the honor, presented annually to the nation’s top college golfer during tournament week activities at the Dean & DeLuca Invitational in Fort Worth, were announced Tuesday.
Hossler, the No. 1 player in the current Golfweek/Sagarin and Golfstat rankings, is a first-time finalist for the award. The winner will be announced May 23 during a live presentation at Colonial Country Club.
Hossler, a junior, owns a 69.73 scoring average and leads the nation with five victories in college tournaments during the 2015-16 season. He was the individual runner-up at the 2016 Big 12 Championship.
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Rahm, who seeks to become the first repeat winner of the Hogan Award, captured the honor last season and is the top-ranked player in the latest World Amateur Golf Ranking. He has three victories in college events this season and carries a 69.26 scoring average. He won the 2016 Pac-12 Championship individual title by four strokes.
McNealy, a 2015 finalist, has a 69.19 season scoring average and ranks second in both sets of college rankings as well as the World Amateur Golf Ranking. McNealy, a junior, made the cut at two PGA Tour events in 2015 (Greenbriar Classic, Barbasol Championship) and finished in a tie for 46th at the Arnold Palmer Invitational in March.
Members of the Hogan Award selection committee are asked to consider a player’s performances over the past 12 months in all amateur, college and professional events when casting ballots for the winner. All three finalists are among the top six in all four major ranking systems used to gauge amateur golfers: the two weekly college rankings, plus the World Amateur Golf Ranking and the Scratch Players World Amateur Ranking.
Champions Choice selections named
Bryson DeChambeau, the former SMU golfer who won the 2015 NCAA individual golf title as well as the 2015 U.S Amateur, joins Kramer Hickok, a former Texas golfer and Web.com Tour rookie, as Champions Choice invitees to the Dean & DeLuca Invitational, May 23-29 in Fort Worth.
Both exemptions are reserved for promising newcomers who have yet to play in the tournament at Colonial Country Club who are added to the field in balloting by past tournament champions.
DeChambeau, 22, caught the attention of golf fans in his final amateur appearance when he tied for 21st at last month’s Masters Tournament in Augusta, Ga. The next week, he made his professional debut at the HBC Heritage event and tied for fourth in Hilton Head, S.C. DeChambeau earned $259,600 with that finish, one of seven sponsor’s exemptions he can accept at PGA Tour events this season in efforts to earn enough money to secure full-time playing privileges next season.
Because of a loophole in tour policy related to Champions Choice exemptions, Colonial tournament chairman Bobby Patton said DeChambeau’s spot in Fort Worth will not count against his maximum of seven sponsor’s exemptions this season at tour events. Hickok, 24, missed the cut in his lone PGA Tour appearance of the season at the Houston Open.
2016 Dean & DeLuca Invitational commitments
Aaron Baddeley, Ricky Barnes, Zac Blair, Jonas Blixt, Jason Bohn, Steven Bowditch, Angel Cabrera, Alex Cejka, Kevin Chappell, K. J. Choi, Keith Clearwater, Ben Crane, Brendon de Jonge, Bryson DeChambeau, Jason Dufner, Harris English, Matt Every, Tony Finau, Steve Flesch, Jim Furyk, Fabian Gomez, Emiliano Grillo, Adam Hadwin, James Hahn, Brian Harman, David Hearn, J. J. Henry, Jim Herman, Charley Hoffman, John Huh, Fredrik Jacobson, Zach Johnson, Matt Jones, Smylie Kaufman, Jerry Kelly, Chris Kirk, Kevin Kisner, Patton Kizzire, Colt Knost, Jason Kokrak, Matt Kuchar, Anirban Lahiri, Martin Laird, Scott Langley, Danny Lee, Marc Leishman, Davis Love III, Hunter Mahan, Peter Malnati, Ben Martin, Hideki Matsuyama, William McGirt, George McNeill, Troy Merritt, Bryce Molder, Kevin Na, Geoff Ogilvy, Sean O'Hair, Louis Oosthuizen, Ryan Palmer, Corey Pavin, Carl Pettersson, Scott Piercy, Chez Reavie, Patrick Reed, Kyle Reifers, Rory Sabbatini, Adam Scott, John Senden, Vijay Singh, Brandt Snedeker, Jordan Spieth, Shawn Stefani, Robert Streb, Kevin Streelman, Steve Stricker, Daniel Summerhays, Vaughn Taylor, Brendon Todd, David Toms, Cameron Tringale, Harold Varner III, Jhonattan Vegas, Boo Weekley.
NOTE: Player commitments are not official until 5:00 p.m. on Friday, May 20.