Owner, Waterloo Farms, Jefferson County
GHIN Handicap: +4.2
How often do you play? Probably 30 times a year at the most, just casual rounds and tournaments. Probably average 3-4 times a month now, not like it was a few years back when I played twice a day. Last year I only played two tournaments. I have two boys who take up a lot of time.
When/why did you take up the game: I grew up in a little town called Sherrill near Pine Bluff. We moved to town when my sister was old enough to drive and my parents didn’t want her on the road driving to school every day. We moved near Pine Bluff Country Club and the junior golf program headed by George McKeown was where I started. He’s the one that got me interested in playing the game. Pine Bluff was such a huge baseball town, they didn’t like you to play golf, so that was my biggest obstacle, combining baseball with golf. My dad played golf occasionally on the weekends but he encouraged me to play and encouraged me to play both sports. George is the one who is still my mentor today and pretty much taught me everything I know about golf.
Where do you mostly play? Pine Bluff Country Club, and I play a lot with my friend Chris Jenkins at the Country Club of Arkansas.
What’s your best score in competition: 62, once. I want to say it was at PBCC in the final round of the PBCC Invitational. That was the last year I was an amateur before I turned professional in 1993. That’s my lowest score. I’ve shot 62 three times total.
Career holes in ones? Four. One at PBCC (No. 5), one at Maumelle (No. 8 for a $2,100 skin about 18 years ago), one at Morrilton CC as a junior and one at Big Creek (No. 13).
One amateur to choose for a one best-ball round? Chris Jenkins, hands down. He’s the fiercest competitor I’ve ever played with.
One PGA pro to pick for a best-ball round? Dustin Johnson. I’d just like to watch him hit it.
“Caddyshack” or “Tin Cup”: I’m “Caddyshack” all the way. Just call me Danny Noonan.
What’s your favorite golf memory? My sentimental favorite is playing in a couple of scrambles with my two boys. Winning the 2005 match play at Texarkana CC is special; I hadn’t played golf in five years and had just started playing amateur golf again. I had my real good friend Brent Winston caddying for me that week. It was real special. But really, No. 1 was winning the 2006 Arkansas Open at Burns. That came against professionals. Chris Jenkins and I are the only ones to have won the Arkansas Open as amateurs (Jim Balch may have won it in the 1970s as amateur). Winning your state open and playing against professionals is a big accomplishment.
If you couldn’t play golf, you’d be … Sad. Wouldn’t know what to do with my time. I guess I’d be bowling. Hunting, spending time outdoors with my kids. Coaching kids, baseball and basketball, because I really love to do that.
What type clubs do you play/prefer? Taylor Made driver and irons, Vokey wedges, Baskin-Robbins on the putters, just the flavor of the day, there’s no telling what I’ll show up with.
What’s the best course you’ve ever played? TPC at Sawgrass.
What course haven’t you played that you’d want to play: Augusta National, first. Cypress Point would be my second.
Hidden Gem? Opelika, Ala., on the Robert Trent Jones Trail. Grand National Lakes. To me that’s a hidden gem anybody can play. In Arkansas, Thunder Bayou in Blytheville when it’s in good condition is a very good golf course. My two favorites in Arkansas to play are Pleasant Valley and Texarkana Country Club.
Best hole in Arkansas? No. 6 at PBCC. That’s as tough a par-4 as there is in the state. The TOUGHEST hole in Arkansas is No. 2 at War Memorial. It may not be the best, but it’s the toughest. No. 9 at Pleasant Valley would be second to No. 6 at PBCC.
Has golf ever helped you in business? Absolutely. Just the contacts and knowing people. You meet such great, classy individuals through golf and there is no doubt that golf has helped me in business. Just getting to play with prominent businessmen and politicians and getting to call and talk to them afterward, it’s been a huge help.
Who is the best business exec golfer in Arkansas? Chris Jenkins.