Ethan Mangum is Collegiate Showcase's first Pathway Player
11 Feb 2022
by Conner Penfold of AmateurGolf.com

see also: Genesis Invitational Collegiate Showcase, Riviera Country Club, Ethan Mangum Rankings

Courtesy of William & Mary Athletics
Courtesy of William & Mary Athletics

Since 2015, the last spot in the Genesis Invitational’s field has been reserved for one final participant – the winner of the tournament’s Collegiate Showcase.

On Monday at Riviera Country Club, 17 talented collegians will look to join past winners Will Zalatoris (2015), Sahith Theegala (2017), and Scottie Scheffler (2018) in jumpstarting their potential professional careers with an opportune exemption to compete in PGA Tour event.

Highlighting this year’s field, which is the largest in the event’s eight-year history, is William & Mary graduate student Ethan Mangum, who was named the tournament’s inaugural Pathway Player. The native of Jackson, Miss. will be part of a diverse field that includes five of the top-100-ranked players in the Golfweek/AmateurGolf.com World Rankings.

“I’m grateful for this invitation to compete as the Pathway Player in the Collegiate Showcase and hope I can continue to empower the journeys of others in the game of golf like Tiger Woods has for me and so many of my confreres,” Mangum said. “There will continue to be advancements inequality in the great game of golf. In the words of the legendary Charlie Sifford, the game of golf is a wonderful sport. Love for sport and fellow competitors will continue to outweigh the prejudices and bigotry.”

The Pathway Player is a special invitation into the Collegiate Showcase awarded to a collegiate golfer with a minority background who is excelling on the golf course and academically. In addition to entry into the Collegiate Showcase, the tournament supports the player and his program’s travel to Riviera.

The Pathway Player invitation is intended to provide exposure and opportunity to high-level competition in support of the recipient’s professional golf aspirations. In conjunction with this initiative, the tournament will support select causes focused on providing minority golfers with access and opportunity to the game.

“We are excited to welcome Ethan to Riviera as the inaugural Collegiate Showcase Pathway Player,” Genesis Invitational tournament director Mike Antolini said. “The tournament has a proud history of inclusion and has provided many amateur players with opportunities early in their careers. We hope the experience in the Collegiate Showcase will help Ethan on his path to a professional golf career.”

Ethan Mangum
Mangum graduated magna cum laude from Florida A&M University before joining William & Mary’s squad, where he has two top-10 finishes to his name during the 2021-2022 season. He excelled at the Mid-Eastern Athletic Conference Championship with A&M in April of 2021, capturing the individual title while leading the Rattlers to their first MEAC title in their program’s history.

Arizona State’s David Puig leads the charge among the top-ranked players in the field, representing Spain and his Sun Devils at No. 14 in the Golfweek/AmateurGolf.com World Rankings. The junior from La Garriga, Spain successfully defended his title last month at the Southwestern Invitational Collegiate while leading Arizona State to a 13-stroke victory over host Pepperdine University, as well as a tournament record 54-hole total of 834 (30-under).

Finishing second to Puig at North Ranch Country Club was the 18th-ranked Michael Brennan, who is one of three Wake Forest Deacons in the field Monday. Brennan, a sophomore from Leesburg, Va., carded three consecutive rounds of 70 to miss winning what would have been his third individual title of the 2021-2022 season. Brennen, along with teammate and fellow Collegiate Showcase participant Alex Fitzpatrick, was recently named to the Ben Hogan Award Watch List.

Fitzpatrick, ranked No. 16 in the world, hails from Sheffield, England, and is the younger brother of seven-time European Tour winner Matt Fitzpatrick. The Demon Deacon senior reached the quarterfinals at the 2018 U.S. Amateur and secured his first collegiate victory in March at the Valspar Collegiate.

Rounding out the Wake Forest representatives is Mark Power, the highest-ranked Irish player in the World at No. 60. The Kilkenny native was a 2020 British Amateur semifinalist to go along with four additional top-10 finishes that year.

Washington fifth-year senior R.J. Manke is fresh off a red-hot 2021 with victories at the Fighting Irish Classic and the Oregon State Invitational, as well as the Washington Men’s Amateur.

Other members of the field include freshmen Wyatt McGovern (Columbia) and Justin Biwer (Colorado), sophomore Jimmy Dales (Wyoming), junior Max Ting (Princeton), seniors Lincoln Johnson (Minnesota), Garrett Wood (Kentucky), and Cameron Henry (USC), Texas Tech seniors Kyle Hogan and Andy Lopez and graduate students Jacob Cook (Kentucky) and Soren Lind (San Francisco).

The Collegiate Showcase also features a pro-am competition with teams composed of a PGA Tour professional and two additional amateurs representing the college athlete’s school. The pro-am teams compete against each other in better-ball play, with the winning team earning a $50,000 donation to the school’s golf program.

ABOUT THE Genesis Invitational Collegiate Showcase

The Genesis Invitational Collegiate Showcase was founded in 2015. It is a chance for collegiate players to play with PGA Tour alumni from their respective schools. Two simultaneous competitions take place:

In the individual competition, the collegiate players will play their own ball to record an 18-hole score. When the Collegiate Showcase was founded, the winner experienced the excitement of playing in the Genesis Invitational that same week at Riviera. With the status of the Geneisis Invitational changed to "elevated" the showcase changed to awarding a playing spot in the Genesis Scottish Open, a co-sanctioned PGA TOUR & DP World Tour event played in July.

In the team competition, the professional and the two amateurs (playing at a specified percentage of their most current and verified handicap) will team up to play a best ball format (one-ball). The low Professional and Amateurs team will take home the Champions Trophy for their school and a nice check going to their university's golf program.

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