A few weeks ago the Nationwide Tour was here in town to play the Utah Championship, just about a five minute drive from my house. I snagged a media cred and followed around a local kid who was on Golf Channel’s Big Break, Tony Finau.
In Finau’s group was a very young player (pictured above) who was very small in stature but caught my eye, Bud Cauley. I hadn’t seen him before. After watching him play for a few holes I was intrigued. After watching the power he had teeing off on the par-5 12th hole, I was amazed. This kid who makes me look tall and is about 40 pounds lighter, could crush it. I followed Bud for a few holes and snapped some pics with my big lens on my Nikon. Glad I caught this rising star on digital film.
Cauley would finish the Utah Championship T4.
Three months later I’m watching the Frys.com Open, and I see that Bud is in the field. I was stoked to see that he had the opportunity. Not only did he make the cut, he finished in solo 3rd place, collecting a massive $340,000. That is huge for a 21 year old player who just turned pro earlier this summer. With this prize money and his previous earnings, he looks good to make the jump to the PGA Tour without having to play his way in through the Tour’s qualifying tournament. He would join some rare company in doing so, like Tiger Woods and most recently Ryan Moore in 2005.
With the high finish at the Frys.com Open, Cauley has earned a spot at this week’s McGladrey Classic.
I was looking at my photos of Bud Cauley, and noticed on this one (pictured left) that you can clearly see he uses an interlocking grip. The first two players who come to mind which use(d) that grip are Tiger Woods and Jack Nicklaus.
Keep an eye on Bud Cauley, as I will be. It will be interesting to track the progress of this rising star.