Three Walker Cup teammates will vie for the Ben Hogan Award
13 May 2021
by Golf Coaches Association of America

L-R: Pierceson Coody, John Pak, Davis Thompson
L-R: Pierceson Coody, John Pak, Davis Thompson

The Hogan Trophy Award Foundation, Friends of Golf (FOG) and Golf Coaches Association of America (GCAA) have announced the 2021 finalists for The Ben Hogan Award are Pierceson Coody of Texas, Florida State’s John Pak and Davis Thompson of Georgia. All three were teammates on the victorious United States Walker Cup over the weekend.

Coody, Pak and Thompson are first-time finalists for the award, which is given annually to the top men’s college golfer taking into account all collegiate, amateur and professional competitions over the past 12-month period. The award’s selection committee, which votes during each stage of the process, is made up of more than two dozen leaders and experts in professional, amateur and collegiate golf both domestically and internationally.

Coody, a junior, is the fourth different Longhorn in the past decade to be named a finalist, joining 2018 winner Doug Ghim, as well as Beau Hossler (2016) and Jordan Spieth (2012). Coody is ranked among the top five in all four major college and amateur rankings, including No. 2 in the World Amateur Golf Ranking (WAGR) and No. 3 in the Scratch Players World Amateur Ranking (SPWAR).

Last summer, the product of Plano, Texas, was crowned champion at the 118th Western Amateur Championship at Crooked Stick. He also had a ninth-place showing at the Southern Amateur. In addition to the 2021 Walker Cup, he also played in the 2020 Arnold Palmer Cup and is a 2021 Team USA selection.

In college events this season, Coody has six top-6 placements and a 70.96 stroke average, highlighted by a win at the George Hannon Collegiate. He also has collected three runner-up finishes, including at the Colonial Collegiate Invitational.

Pak, a senior from Scotch Plains, N.J., is the first-ever The Ben Hogan Award finalist from the Seminoles’ program. He ranks among the top 10 in all four major ranking systems, including No. 1 according to Golfstat and No. 2 by Golfweek/Sagarin. He also is ranked No. 1 in the PGA TOUR University rankings.

Pak earned the silver medal at the 2020 U.S. Open at Winged Foot as the low amateur, placing 51st overall. The Ben Hogan Award’s September Golfer of the Month was a member of the United States 2020 Arnold Palmer Cup as well as the 2021 winning Walker Cup side. In other amateur action, Pak tied for sixth place at the 2020 Southern Amateur.

This college season, Pak owns one victory, which came at The Calusa Cup, and has registered top-12 finishes in all eight tournaments while posting a 69.38 scoring average. He was named the Atlantic Coast Conference Player of the Year.

Thompson is the fourth different Bulldog finalist ever, following 2007 winner and 2006 finalist Chris Kirk as well as Russell Henley (2010) and Ryan Hybl (2002). The native of Auburn, Ala., currently ranks among the top 10 in all four major college and amateur ranking systems, highlighted by a No. 3 ranking in the WAGR and a No. 5 listing by SPWAR. He also is ranked second in the PGA TOUR University listing.

Last summer, Thompson advanced to match play at the U.S. Amateur, Western Amateur and North and South Amateur. He also competed at the 2020 U.S. Open, missing the cut by just one stroke. In addition to playing for Team USA in the 2021 Walker Cup, he also was a member of 2020 United States Arnold Palmer Cup team.

In 2020-21, Thompson owns one collegiate victory, which came at the Tiger Invitational, as well as five top-6 and seven top-20 finishes in eight college events. He has logged a 69.75 stroke average over 24 rounds.

The three finalists will travel to Fort Worth, Texas, to attend a luncheon at Colonial Country Club on Friday, June 4, where the winner will be crowned. The 2021 recipient will earn the first invitation into the PGA TOUR’s 2022 Charles Schwab Challenge.

The Ben Hogan Trophy was first issued by FOG in 1990 at Bel-Air Country Club in Los Angeles and also included academic achievement in its original list of standards. In 2002, the award moved to Hogan’s hometown and the site of five of his PGA TOUR victories and began recognizing the top amateur and collegiate golfer. Since then, The Ben Hogan Award winners have combined to accumulate 44 PGA TOUR victories and more than $265 million in prize money on the tour.

Three winners are currently ranked in the top 15 in the Official World Golf Rankings—Jon Rahm (No. 3), Viktor Hovland (No. 11) and Patrick Cantlay (No. 13). Other recipients include: Ricky Barnes, Matt Every, Rickie Fowler, Doug Ghim, Bill Haas, Chris Kirk, Hunter Mahan, Maverick McNealy, Ryan Moore, Patrick Rodgers, Kyle Stanley, Nick Taylor, Sahith Theegala, D.J. Trahan, Peter Uihlein and Chris Williams.

In addition, finalists attending the ceremony over the past decade include some of the game’s biggest stars, including three players currently ranked among the world’s top 30—No. 6 Collin Morikawa, No. 27 Matthew Wolff and No. 28 Jordan Spieth.

Since 2002, the Hogan Trophy Award Foundation has awarded over $825,000 in scholarships to more than 30 universities.

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