EL PASO, Texas – The field is finalized for the 2016 Sun Bowl Western Refining College All-America Golf Classic with the Sun Bowl Association and Western Refining announcing today that there are 21 of the nation's top collegiate golfers making their way to the Sun City for the prestigious tournament, which is scheduled for Friday through Sunday, Nov. 11-13 at the El Paso Country Club.
Among those scheduled to compete is Florida Southern junior John Coultas, a 2-time All-American who will be the only golfer from a Division II school in the field. Coultas was the 2016 Jack Nicklaus Award winner as the NCAA Division II National Player-of-the-Year and has already won two of the Moccasins' tournaments this fall. Both of those individual wins came in a playoff in tournaments loaded with some of the best Division II teams in the country. His 70.92 stroke average has helped Florida Southern hold the #2 position in the Division II national rankings throughout the fall portion of the schedule.
There are 12 All-Americans playing in this year's tournament that are ranked amongst the top 100 amateur golfers, according to World Amateur Golf Rankings. Among the top-ranked players are the following: UNLV senior John Oda (21), USC senior Rico Hoey (22), Arizona State senior Jared du Toit (29), Alabama sophomore Davis Riley (41), Vanderbilt sophomore Will Gordon (43), Vanderbilt sophomore Patrick Martin (57), LSU sophomore Sam Burns (66), Oklahoma State senior Stranton Nolen (67), Kentucky junior Tyler McDaniel (86), Oklahoma senior Max McGreevy (97) and LSU sophomore Luis Gagne (100).
The 2016 All-America field also includes the 2016 Jack Nicklaus Award winner as the NCAA Division II National Player-of-the-Year (Coultas), the 2016 LSWA Louisiana Freshman of the Year (Gagne), the 2016 Mountain West Men's Golfer of the Year (Nahum Mendoza III from San Diego State), a former two-time Hawai'i state champion (Oda) and a former Kentucky State Amateur Champion and a three-time GCAA All-American, GCAA All-West Region and All-Pac-12 first team performer (McDaniel).
USC senior Rico Hoey, who finished tied for second in 2014 and tied for seventh in 2015, is returning for one last chance at the Lee Trevino Trophy. He is the 19th student-athlete to compete in three College All-America Golf Classics.
"What I like about the tournament is that you get to play with the other guys who got All-American awards. Those guys are the best and I love competing with the best." said Hoey. "What I like about El Paso is that we all get the opportunity to win an exclusive event that not many can play but also the people we meet there are incredible."
Along with the opportunity to compete against the best-of-the-best from the collegiate level, each university represented at the Western Refining College All-Americans will receive a $1,000 scholarship.
"Western is proud to again team with the Sun Bowl Association to welcome college golf's most elite players in the country to El Paso," said Jeff Stevens, President and CEO of Western Refining. "For over 40 years, this tournament has showcased the best college golfers to our city. The alumni of this tournament are now the legends of the PGA Tour and this week El Pasoans will have the chance to see the future legends of golf perform at El Paso Country Club."
The Sun Bowl Western Refining College All-America Golf Classic is one of the premier college golf tournaments in the country. Some of golf's brightest stars have traveled to El Paso to compete in the tournament since its inaugural year in 1976.
"This tournament has become a pillar here in El Paso and in the golf community," said Tournament Chairman Gary Hanson. "The rich history of this tournament is a testament to the quality of our alumni that seem to win a PGA Tour event every week, and we are excited about the participants for this year's tournament. It will be another exciting conclusion to the fall college schedule."
Jordan Spieth, Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Davis Love III, Ricky Barnes, Notah Begay and Jerry Pate are just a handful of past participants who went on to have successful PGA careers. College All-America Golf Classic Alumni have combined to win 50 majors championships and have earned over $1.8 billion in career earnings.
To be eligible for competition student-athletes must have been named as an All-America team honoree during the previous year as well as the U.S. Amateur Champion or Runner Up who still have collegiate eligibility. The event is free and open to the public.
Friday (Nov. 11)
• 9 a.m. Titleist Long Drive
• 10 a.m. PING Putting Contest
Saturday (Nov. 12)
• 8 a.m. First & Second Rounds
Sunday (Nov. 13)
• 8 a.m. Final Round