Georgia Bulldogs: Hudson Swafford

DawgNation on the radio

May, 8, 2012
DawgNation’s Radi Nabulsi was on ESPN’s Athens affiliate 960 The Ref this morning to talk about Georgia recruiting, golf and baseball. Some of the questions answered:
  • What does Robert Nkemdiche’s postponed announcement mean for Georgia?
  • Who are some of the next targets for the Bulldogs?
  • Which Georgia recruits were recently invited to The Opening?
  • Who should fans look for at the state track championships this week?
Listen to the radio show here.
ATHENS, Ga. -- Being superstitious sorts, Georgia golf coaches Chris Haack and Jim Douglas missed nearly all of Hudson Swafford’s final round in the Stadion Classic at UGA.

In fact, they went out of their way to do so.

Although their former player shot a course-record 9-under 62 Sunday to win the Nationwide Tour event by a single stroke over Luke List and Lee Janzen, Haack and Douglas gleefully admitted that they abandoned Swafford after his bogey on the first hole and didn’t watch another of his shots the rest of the day.

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Swafford's chip-in wins Stadion Classic

May, 6, 2012
ATHENS, Ga. -- A Georgia player won the Nationwide Tour's Stadion Classic at UGA for the second straight year.

All it took was for Hudson Swafford to shoot a course-record 9-under 62 -- capped by a chip-in for birdie out of the sand on the 18th hole -- to finish at 17 under and win by one stroke over Luke List and two-time U.S. Open winner Lee Janzen in Sunday's final round.

"I heard it hit the pin and then I heard everybody just go nuts so I just had a feeling when I went up there and saw it disappeared," Swafford said. "I don’t know, I just kind of blacked out to be honest with you. I didn’t expect it, but I was pretty fired up when it was in the hole."

The former Bulldog entered the day in a tie for 15th place at 8 under, five strokes behind leader Tyrone Van Aswegen. He fell even further behind with a bogey on the first hole Sunday, but that turned out to be his one and only bogey of the day.

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ATHENS, Ga. -- If a Georgia player is to win the Nationwide Tour’s Stadion Classic at UGA, one of the three remaining Bulldogs will have to mount a charge from the exact same position in the final 18 holes.

Ex-Georgia players Hudson Swafford, Paul Claxton and Justin Bolli are all tied for 15th at 8 under after Saturday’s third round at the UGA Golf Course, trailing leader Tyrone Van Aswegen by five strokes.

That’s a sizable margin to overcome, but they hope their home-course knowledge might be worth a stroke or two in a potential comeback.

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ATHENS, Ga. -- Hudson Swafford admits he glanced at the leaderboard before playing his final hole Friday, but said that was not the reason he double bogeyed to complete an otherwise solid second round at the Stadion Classic at UGA.

“There’s so much golf to be played, [the chance to tie for the lead] wasn’t really registering,” Swafford said. “I was just kind of looking to see what other guys were doing to be honest with you. I just had a kind of unfortunate finish.”

At 8 under through 17 holes, Swafford was a stroke behind then-leader Luke List before plugging his second shot on 18 in the greenside bunker. He chipped out and three-putted to finish with a 1-under 70 and head into the weekend in a tie for 13th at 6 under.

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ATHENS, Ga. -- Believe it or not, Russell Henley views a bogey as the highlight of Thursday’s opening round at the Stadion Classic at UGA.

The tournament’s defending champion -- the Georgia grad was still in college when he won a year ago, becoming only the second amateur ever to win on the Nationwide Tour -- Henley rolled in a 10-foot putt on No. 1 to save bogey after burying his drive under a big tree.

“I hit it right at it and I knew it was going to go under there,” Henley said of the tree. “It always does. It’s like a magnet.”

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ATHENS, Ga. -- Russell Henley knew the odds were not in his favor, but he told anyone who would listen before last year’s Stadion Classic at UGA that he was playing in the Nationwide Tour event to win.

[+] EnlargeRussell Henley
Courtesy Stadion Classic at UGAIn the six Nationwide Tour events he played in this season, UGA alum Russell Henley made the cut in three. His best result so far was a tie for 23rd at the Chile Classic.
Only one amateur golfer had won an event since the satellite tour launched in 1990, but Henley followed through on his plan at his home course. Then a senior at Georgia, he shared the 54-hole lead with Troy Kelly and went on to beat Kelly by two strokes in front of a partisan gallery at the UGA Golf Course.

Now a professional rookie, Henley’s approach will remain the same when he attempts to defend his title in two weeks -- and he’ll be hoping for a similar outcome.

“I think I’ve changed a little bit as a person. As a player, I feel pretty similar,” said Henley, 23. “I think you’ve always got to play to win no matter what it is and what your chances are. You’ve got to play to win the thing, so I’m sure my approach will be the same and I hope I’ll have just as much fun.”

Henley flew across the country from California -- he finished tied for 42nd over the weekend at the TPC Stonebrae Championship -- and made it early Monday morning to Athens in order to participate in media day for the Stadion Classic at UGA. Joining him were Hudson Swafford, his former Georgia teammate and fellow Nationwide Tour rookie, and former Georgia all-American Richard Scott, who will compete in the event on a sponsor’s exemption if he does not qualify outright.

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Four Bulldogs claim PGA Tour cards 

December, 5, 2011
Four former University of Georgia golfers -- led by winner Brendon Todd -- claimed PGA Tour cards Monday by placing in the top 25 in the final stage at PGA Tour Qualifying School at La Quinta, Calif.

Todd did his fellow former Bulldogs one better, completing the grueling six-round final stage with a one-stroke victory. (Scoreboard)

Todd shot a 4-under 68 Monday to finish at 17 under, one stroke better than Stephen Gangluff and two ahead of Bobby Gates and Seung-yul Noh.


Peach State: Top Tier Recruiting Ground?
California, Florida and Texas are largely considered the "Big Three" in college football recruiting. But national recruiting analyst Gerry Hamilton joins ESPN's Phil Murphy to explain why Georgia deserves to be in the top tier and has numbers to prove it.