Iowa Travels To Fighting Irish Golf Classic

Oct. 1, 2009

THIS WEEK The University of Iowa men’s golf team continues its fall competition Oct. 5-6, as it travels to Notre Dame, IN to compete in the fourth annual Fighting Irish Gridiron Golf Classic. Competition will consist of 54 holes played on the Warren Golf Course. Teams will play 36 holes Monday and conclude with the final 18 holes Tuesday.

WARREN GOLF COURSE Since its opening in 2000, Warren Golf Course has been hailed as one of the best new courses in America by Golf Digest and has been featured in Links Magazine and Golf Digest as a must-play venue. In addition, Golfweek has tabbed the Warren Golf Course as one of the nation’s top 15 on-campus collegiate layouts. The par 71, designed by Bill Coore and Ben Crenshaw, runs 7,023 yards from the back tees.

THE COMPETITION Arkansas, BYU, Cincinnati, Colorado, Georgetown, Houston, Lamar, Miami (OH), Missouri, Notre Dame, Ohio State, San Francisco, Saint Mary’s (CA) and UT-Arlington join Iowa to comprise the 15-team field.

TOURNAMENT HISTORY This will be Iowa’s third trip to the Fighting Irish Gridiron Golf Classic. The Hawkeyes placed 10th out of 12 teams in 2007, where Vince India, then a freshman, tied for eighth place individually. The following year, the Black and Gold placed seventh out of 16 teams as India tied for 12th place.

QUICK START The Hawkeyes have come out of the gate firing on all cylinders as they have finished at least top-five in every tournament this fall. They began the season with a second place finish in Golfweek’s Conference Challenge Aug. 30-Sept. 1. Then came a fifth place finish at the 12-team Golden Gopher Inviational Sept. 13-14, followed by a tie for fourth out of 14 teams at the VCU Shootout Sept. 28-29. Additionally, Iowa has had two golfers in the top-20 and one golfer in the top-five of every tournament this season. The Hawkeyes are currently ranked 36th in Golfweek’s collegiate team poll.

HEAD COACH Mark Hankins Hankins is in his third year as Iowa’s head men’s golf coach after spending seven years as the head coach at Michigan State University. Under Hankins, the Black and Gold won their first tournament title (2008 Landfall Tradition) since 2004 and placed sixth in the 2009 Big Ten Championships, their best finish in eight years. Iowa then made its first NCAA Regionals and NCAA Championships appearance since 1995. The Hawkeyes advanced through regional play a year ago and placed 17th in the nation at the NCAA Championships. Additionally, the Hawkeyes have improved their Golfweek ranking from 155th to now 36th with Hankins at the helm. He is a native of Mt. Pleasant, IA, and a graduate of Iowa State.

LOOKING AHEAD The Hawkeyes will travel to Dallas, TX, Oct. 26-27, as they wrap up their fall season at the Baylor Intercollegiate.