DURHAM, N.C. – The Duke men’s golf team is hosting the fourth annual Rod Myers Invitational Oct. 12-13 at the Duke University Golf Club. The Blue Devils have captured the tournament championship in each of the last two years. The 54-hole event is slated to begin on Saturday with eleven teams playing 36 holes before returning to the course on Sunday for the final round.
This weekend's tournament is named in honor of Rod Myers, who passed away on March 30, 2007 after a battle with an acute form of leukemia. Myers was a 34-year mentor of the Duke men's golf program and one of the mainstays of the Duke University athletic department. Very well respected across the golf community, Myers guided Duke to 30 tournament victories, the 2005 ACC Championship and seven NCAA Championship appearances. In 2005, he was selected as the ACC Coach of the Year and Golfweek's National Coach of the Year after leading Duke to its first ACC Championship since 1966 and an eighth-place tie at the NCAA Championships.
While at the helm of the Duke men's golf team, Myers coached 16 All-Americas, nine Academic All-Americas, 24 All-ACC selections and three ACC individual champions. In 2007, the university named the golf training center after him and an endowed athletic scholarship was created in his honor.
“It’s an honor for us to be able to have an event with Rod’s name on it with Nancy, his wife, still being in town and having family nearby to come out and support the team,” said head coach Jamie Green. “It’s a great privilege for us just to be able to hold the event here. Obviously we’ve got some new things going on with our greens being rebuilt this past summer, so it’s a great opportunity for us to showcase our golf course and have other golf teams and coaches see what we’re proud of.”
The Duke University Golf Club, host of the 1962 and 2001 NCAA Championships, will play as a 7,154-yard, par 72 for the 2013 Rod Myers Invitational. The course is in terrific condition after undergoing a half million dollar greens and tee box restoration over the summer. The greens now feature Champion Bermuda grass and have been expanded by roughly 33 percent, back to the size they were originally designed by Trent Jones, Sr. nearly 60 years ago. The approaches to all 18 greens were resurfaced and replanted with Tifgrand Bermuda to create a smooth playing surface. The Duke University Golf Club reopened to the public on Sept. 2, 2013.
“You never know when you’re putting new greens in, just how quickly they’re going to adapt and be ready, but I can tell you, every player on our team, just about every person we’ve talked to that’s played the golf course has said it’s in as good of shape as they’ve ever seen,” added Green. “We’ve been really lucky with Billy Weeks and his staff the past couple years. When they’ve faced tough summers, they’ve quickly gotten the greens ready for our events, so they’ve done a great job in the past, but with these new greens, they’re just phenomenal. The coverage on every square inch is perfect and I know all the teams are really looking forward to seeing something new.”
Green will send out a lineup of Max Greyserman, Motin Yeung, Turner Southey-Gordon, Alexander Matlari and Yaroslav Merkulov for the 2013 RMI, while Andrew Bieber, Michael Ricaurte and Austin Cody will also compete as individuals. Duke, ranked 25th in the Golf World / Nike Golf Coaches’ Poll, opened the season with a tie for sixth finish at the Tar Heel Intercollegiate before placing ninth at the Dick’s Sporting Goods Collegiate Challenge Cup. Greyserman, a freshman from Short Hills, N.J., leads the team with a 73.8 stroke average with Southey-Gordon and Yeung tied for second at 74.3. Greyserman has recorded three rounds of even-par or better golf, while Merkulov has recorded a pair of even-par efforts.
“We just have to keep getting better at learning and executing a game plan that’s well thought out,” said Green. “I know that our first couple of events weren’t what we wanted to have, in terms of results, but sometimes when your expectations are high and you come up a little bit short from that, you don’t always rebound well. Right now, that’s what we’re looking to do from a staff and team perspective. How well are we going to come back and rebound? We’ve spent a lot of time focused on the golf course, not as much time on the range trying to tweak or change anything, but really getting a good game plan for each guy on each hole. If we’ve done a good job of that, it’s all about execution.”
Duke, ranked 25th in the Golf World / Nike Golf Coaches’ Poll, is joined in the Rod Myers Invitational Field by Baylor, Charlotte, East Carolina, Iowa, Liberty, North Carolina, Northwestern, Ohio State, Pacific and Tulsa.
Friday, October 11
8:00 AM - Practice Facilities Open
11:00 AM - Practice Rounds Begin
Saturday, October 12
7:00 AM - Practice Facilities Open
7:50 AM - Opening Round Tee Times Begin
* Second Round Begins Immediately Following First Round
Sunday, October 13
7:00 AM - Practice Facilities Open
8:05 AM - Final Round Tee Times Begin
3:30 PM - Awards Ceremony