Tiger Woods

Haskins Award Watch List: Oct. 13, 2017

We’re just two watch lists in, and the race for the 2018 Fred Haskins Award presented by Stifel is already hotly contested.

Defending Haskins winner Braden Thornberry of Ole Miss, fresh off his second win of the season, now tops the list, followed closely by Alabama’s Davis Riley, Oregon’s Norman Xiong and USC’s Justin Suh, all of whom have won at least once this fall. (Xiong, like Thornberry, has two wins in three starts.)

The Haskins Award is given annually to the best college player, as voted by players, coaches and media. Haskins Award winners over the years include such notable future professionals as Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Luke Donald, Graeme McDowell and Hunter Mahan.

Last season, Thornberry beat out LSU’s Sam Burns and Oregon’s Wyndham Clark for the Haskins Award.

Here is a look at the current candidates for this season’s Haskins Award:


1. Braden Thornberry

  • Year: Junior
  • School: Ole Miss
  • Golfweek/Sagarin Ranking: 6
  • Results: Won, Shoal Creek Intercollegiate; won, FAMC Intercollegiate; fifth, Erin Hills Intercollegiate
  • The buzz: The defending Haskins winner started his fall out with a victory and added another by successfully defending his title at the FAMC Intercollegiate. He really is a closing 75 at Erin Hills away from three victories this season.

2. Davis Riley

  • Year: Junior
  • School: Alabama
  • Golfweek/Sagarin Ranking: 2
  • Results: Won, Olympia Fields/Fighting Illini Invitational; T-3, Carpet Capital Collegiate; T-6, Jerry Pate National Intercollegiate
  • The buzz: His Haskins stock continues to be boosted by his win at Olympia Fields. At the Jerry Pate, he turned in two sub-68 rounds and finished solo sixth.

3. Norman Xiong

  • Year: Sophomore
  • School: Oregon
  • Golfweek/Sagarin Ranking: 9
  • Results: Won, Nike Golf Collegiate; T-1, Rod Myers Invitational; T-42, Trinity Forest Invitational
  • The buzz: There will be debate about whether Xiong should be this high right now. His T-42 finish at Trinity Forest certainly is a huge blemish on his Haskins resume. However, he has two wins, including one at the elite Nike event at Pumpkin Ridge, where he beat Haskins contenders such as Justin Suh, Brandon Wu and Bryson Nimmer, as well as notables Doc Redman, Brad Dalke, Will Zalatoris, Doug Ghim, Scottie Scheffler and Theo Humphrey.

Justin Suh USC

4. Justin Suh

  • Year: Junior
  • School: USC
  • Golfweek/Sagarin Ranking: 4
  • Results: Won, Trinity Forest Invitational; T-2, Nike Golf Collegiate Invitational; T-9, Olympia Fields/Fighting Illini Invitational
  • The buzz: Has gotten better each week and is building a nice Haskins resume. Three top-10s in as many events to start the season and the unquestioned leader of the Trojans.

5. Alex del Rey

  • Year: Sophomore
  • School: Arizona State
  • Golfweek/Sagarin Ranking: 3
  • Results: Won, Maui Jim Invitational; fourth, Gopher Invitational; T-19, Alister Mackenzie Invitational
  • The buzz: Followed his first collegiate win with an average performance – by Haskins standards – at the Meadow Club. He started out with a 73 before closing with consecutive rounds of 68 to finish 10 shots back of winner K.K. Limbhasut. Brandon Wu of Stanford is right on his heels to crack the top 5.

Next 5

  • Brandon Wu, Jr., Stanford (1)
  • Nick Hardy, Sr., Illinois (5)
  • Chandler Phillips, Jr., Texas A&M (10)
  • Bryson Nimmer, Jr., Clemson (8)
  • Dawson Armstrong, Sr., Lipscomb (11)

ANNIKA Award Watch List: Oct. 12, 2017