April 15, 2008
TALLAHASSEE, Fla. –
No. 8 ranked Florida State opens play in the 55th Annual Atlantic Coast Conference championship at the Old North State Club at Uwharrie Point in New London, N.C. on Friday April 18. The event, which includes 11 of the 12 ACC teams, runs from April 18-20 and is considered to be on of the most competitive conference championships in all of collegiate golf. The tournament includes eight of the top 35 ranked teams in the nation and five of the top-20 ranked individuals in all of Division I men’s golf. Florida State first participated in the ACC Championship in 1992 and earned its top finish of third at the 1994 championship at the Northgreen Country Club in Rocky Mount, N.C. The Seminoles have earned five top-five team finishes this spring and are looking to earn their way into NCAA Regional play for the third consecutive season.
THE ATLANTIC COAST CONFERENCE CHAMPIONSHIP FIELD
No. 8 Florida State is joined by No. 7 Georgia Tech, No. 15 Duke, No. 18 Clemson, No. 25 Wake Forest, No. 31 NC State, No. 32 Virginia Tech, No. 34 North Carolina, Boston College, Maryland and Virginia in the 55th annual ACC Championship a the Old North State Club at Uwharrie Point in New London, N.C. The ACC Championship is being played at the Old North State Club for the 12th time in the events history. The course has been named as the top private course in the state of North Carolina for the last six years.
FLORIDA STATE’S ATLANTIC COAST CONFERENCE HISTORY
Florida State finished in a tie for fourth place in the 2007 ACC Championship to mark its best finish in the event since finishing in fourth during the 1996 championship event. The Seminoles finished third in the 1994 ACC Championship, fourth in the 1996 event and tied for fourth in 2007 for its three best finishes since joining the conference. The Seminoles participated in their first ACC Tournament in 1992 and this season will mark their 17th ACC tournament as a member of the conference. Jonas Blixt (medalist, 208 score in 2007), Bobby Cochran (second place, 212 score in 1994), Christian Raynor (second place, 211 score in 1995) and George McNeil (second place, 212 score in 1996) have earned the top individual finishes for the Seminoles during ACC Championship play.
Seminoles' Team Finishes At The ACC Championship 1992 9th, 880 1997 5th, 897 2002 6th, 868 2007 T4th, 863 1993 8th, 895 1998 7th, 866 2003 8th, 917 1994 3rd, 877 1999 9th, 919 2004 7th, 875 1995 5th, 870 2000 9th, 911 2005 7th, 898 1996 4th, 873 2001 8th, 897 2006 6th, 863
FLORIDA STATE AT THE 2007 ACC CHAMPIONSHIP
Jonas Blixt shot a career-best seven-under par 65 in the third round and became the first Seminole to win the individual Atlantic Coast Conference men’s golf championship in last years event at the Old North State Club. Blixt finished with a career-best eight-under par tournament score of 208 to defeat Georgia Tech’s Cameron Tringale by one stroke to claim individual championship. His outstanding performance led the Seminoles to a tie for fourth place finish in the team standings – the best for Florida State since finishing in fourth in the 1996 conference championship. Georgia Tech and Virginia Tech finished tied for the team championship.
FLORIDA STATE IN THE NATIONAL RANKINGS
Florida State is ranked 10th in this week’s Golf Week Magazine national rankings and eighth in the most recent GolfStat Head to Head rankings entering the ACC Championship. The Seminoles were ranked eighth in last week’s national rankings by GolfWeek – its highest ranking of the fall 2007 and spring 2008 season. Florida State has earned five top five team finishes this spring including the team title at the Seminole Intercollegiate and second place finishes at the Gator and General Jim Hackler Invitationals.
SEMINOLES IN THE NATIONAL RANKINGS
Senior All-American Jonas Blixt (Hammaro, Sweden), who leads the Seminoles with a career-low 71.70 stroke average during the fall 2007 and spring 2008 seasons, is ranked seventh nationally in the individual rankings of Division I men’s players by GolfWeek Magazine. He is the second ranked player in the ACC behind Chesson Hadley of Georgia Tech. Junior All-American Matt Savage (Louisville, Ky.), is ranked 47th nationally among all Division I golfers.
DOMINANT TEAM PLAY-THE SEMINOLES THIS SPRING
The Florida State men’s golf team is playing as well as any team in the nation. The Seminoles have yet to finish outside of the top five in any of their five events. This year the Seminoles are one of the hottest teams in the nation with a first place finish (Seminole Intercollegiate), two second place finishes (Gator Invitational General Jim Hacker Invitational) and two fifth place finishes (U.S. Collegiate and River Landing Intercollegiate). The Seminoles won their first event of the year during the fall season (Inverness Intercollegiate) and have won two events in the same year for the first time since the fall 1994 and spring 1995 seasons. The last time the Seminoles won three or more events in the same year was in 1994-95.
BLIXT NAMED TO NICKLAUS AWARD WATCH LIST
Florida State University All-America golfer Jonas Blixt is one of 20 men’s golfers who has been named to the Jack Nicklaus Award Watch list as the nation’s top Division I golfer by the Golf Coaches’ Association of America. The Nicklaus Award is presented to the Player of the Year in NCAA Divisions I, II and III, as well as the NAIA. The recipients will be named immediately following the final round of each respective national championship. All four Nicklaus Award honorees will be invited to Muirfield Village for the final round of the Memorial Tournament presented by Morgan Stanley at Muirfield Village Golf Club in Dublin, Ohio, just outside Nicklaus’ hometown of Columbus to receive their trophies from Mr. Nicklaus. Additionally, a 20-player All-Nicklaus Team – which will include outstanding players from NCAA Divisions I, II and III and the NAIA – will be named June 10.
FLORIDA STATE’S LINEUP AT THE ACC CHAMPIONSHIP
Florida State’s lineup at the ACC Championship will consist of senior Jonas Blixt (the defending ACC champion), junior Matt Savage, sophomores Seath Lauer (Huntington, Ind.) and Cameron Knight (Wesley Chapel, Fla.) and freshman Drew Kittleson (Scottsdale, Ariz.). Blixt is making his fourth ACC Championship appearance while Savage, Lauer and Knight are making their second ACC appearances. Kittleson is competing in the ACC Championship for the first times in their careers marking the third consecutive season the Seminoles have played with two freshmen in the starting line-up.
SEMINOLE INDIVIDUALS ARE BETTER THAN AVERAGE
Entering the 55th Annual ACC Championship at the Old North State Club this week, three of the players in the Seminoles’ starting lineup have 2007-08 averages lower than their career averages entering the season. All-America Jonas Blixt leads the way as he has lowered his average by nearly 1.5 strokes per round as a senior as compared to his first three seasons of his career.
Seminoles Going Low Player 07-08 Avg. Career Avg. Difference Jonas Blixt 71.70 73.11 -1.41 Matt Savage 72.58 73.31 -0.73 Seath Lauer 73.92 74.45 -0.53 Cameron Knight 75.42 74.65 +0.77
BLIXT GOING FOR BACK TO BACK CHAMPIONSHIPS
Senior All-America Jonas Blixt enters the 2008 ACC Championship looking to become the first repeat medalist in the event since the 1997 and 1998 seasons when Clemson’s Charles Warren won the event in consecutive seasons. Only three players in ACC history – Ronnie Thomas of Wake Forest, Scott Hoch of Wake Forest and Warren have earned ACC individual medalist honors in consecutive years.
ACC's Back-To-Back Winners Player School Years Ronnie Thomas Wake Forest 1959, 1960 Scott Hoch Wake Forest 1977, 1978 Charles Warren Clemson 1997, 1998
FLORIDA STATE MEN’S GOLF BY THE NUMBERS…
…Senior All-America Jonas Blixt is two-over par for the entire spring 2008 season. He has finished three of his five tournaments this spring under par;
…Junior All-America Matt Savage carded the Seminoles’ best round of the 2007-08 season – a four-under par 66 in the second round of the fighting Illini Invitational on Sept. 30.
SEMINOLES EARN VICTORY AT INVERNESS
Florida State won its first team championship since 1998 as it claimed the title of the Inverness Intercollegiate at the Inverness Club on Sept. 11. The team championship was the first for the Seminoles since winning the U.S. Collegiate Championship during the spring of 1998. Seminole senior All-America Jonas Blixt finished in a tie for first place in the individual standings to earn the fourth individual championship of his collegiate career. Junior All-America Matt Savage (Louisville, Ky.) finished in a tie for fifth place as he closed the event with a team-leading 71 in the third round. Florida State took the lead late in the first round and held the top spot for most of the remainder of the event to win the first team championship for Head Coach Trey Jones in his five-year career at Florida State. The win marked the ninth career championship for Jones and first since he led his Georgia State Panthers to the 2001 Trans Atlantic Athletic Conference tournament championship. The team championship was the first for the Florida State men’s golf program since the spring of 1998 — a span of 109 events — without claiming a team championship.
FLORIDA STATE SINGNS TOP FIVE RECRUITING CLASS
Seminole Head Men’s Golf Coach Trey Jones has announced that Wesley Graham and Brooks Koepka have signed National Letters of Intent to play golf and earn their academic degrees at Florida State University. Graham is the No. 1 ranked junior golfer and Koepka is ranked 23rd giving the Seminoles the No. 5 ranked recruiting class in the nation according to GolfWeek Magazine. “I am excited to welcome two great individuals and talented golfers into our golf program,” said Jones. “Both players have many intangibles that have not only allowed them to achieve at the highest level of junior golf but give them a solid foundation to continue to improve. I am looking forward to the competitive spirit and athleticism that Brooks and Wesley will bring to our team on a daily basis.”
FLORIDA STATE MEN'S GOLF STATISTICS (FALL 2007/SPRING 2008 COMBINED) Name Tourn. Rds Par -75 Low Strokes Avg Jonas Blixt 9 27 13 24 67 1,936 71.70 Matt Savage 8 24 12 19 66 1,742 72.58 Seath Lauer 8 24 7 17 67 1,774 73.92 Drew Kittleson 9 25 6 16 68 1,847 73.88 Nicholas Smith 1 3 0 2 72 222 74.00 Song Jeon 3 9 1 5 72 677 75.22 Cameron Knight 4 12 2 6 71 905 75.42 Tommy Rymer 4 12 1 4 70 909 75.75