ROOKIE ON TOUR by Carl Paulson


The Education of a Golfer
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An unusual perspective on the grinding routines of the pro golf circuit: A rookie player recalls his road to the PGA Tour and his first years’ experience playing with the big boys. Paulson was a moderately successful junior golfer, earning a four-year golf scholarship to the University of South Carolina, where he was an All-America selectee. Turning pro and winning big on the tour should be a piece of cake, right? Hardly. As Paulson and co-author Janda (Psychology/Old Dominion Univ.) explain, the level of competition on the PGA Tour is ferocious. And just getting on the Tour is a grueling experience. Paulson has played the PGA’s infamous Qualifying School event three times. The first time he qualified for his Tour card, barely, but failed to earn enough money to keep it. The second time, he won the event but still failed to make the threshhold needed to stay on the Tour. And his third time in the Q-School, he only finished well enough to make the Nike Tour, the minor leagues of men’s pro golf in America (which is where he is today). But in his first two seasons on that tour, Paulson acquired some hard-earned knowledge of himself, his game, and the grind that is pro golf. The picture of life on the tour that he presents is not glamorous—lost luggage, hauling your own bags, searching for a caddy for a tournament, forgetting what city you are in, eating in chain restaurants, and living in motels. Janda’s co-authorship is light enough to allow the basically likable Paulson to shine through without disguising his callowness and naivetÇ. However, the lengthy recounting of rounds good and bad in the most jargon-drenched lingo of golfers makes for less than stimulating reading. Serious golf fans will enjoy this. But for the more casual reader, this story awaits a better teller.

Pub Date: March 23rd, 1998
ISBN: 0-399-14378-5
Page count: 272pp
Publisher: Putnam
Review Posted Online:
Kirkus Reviews Issue: Feb. 15th, 1998