June 11, 2013
ARDMORE, Pa. - Cal's trio of golfers Max Homa, Michael Kim and Michael Weaver from its historic 2012-13 team participating in the U.S. Open as amateurs played practice rounds at the Merion Golf Club's East Course on Tuesday, each with an impressive set of pro golfers.
Homa played with Russell Henley and Jordan Spieth, while Kim's partners were K.J. Choi, Padraig Harrington and John Huh. Weaver teed it up with Bill Haas, Kyle Stanley and Nick Watney.
Their practice-round playing partners have combined to win 25 PGA TOUR events and career earnings of just over $97 million.
All three Cal players agreed they would make the most of this opportunity to play with the best golfers in the world.
"We all agreed that we can play with each other any time we want, and we do that half the school year all the time," Kim said. "We're going to play with the pros [here at the U.S. Open], and we're all fine with that."
"It was cool," Kim added. "I was pretty nervous on the first tee playing with guys that I have watched growing up. They're obviously unbelievable players. It is cool to be playing in the same tournament they are and in the same group with them today [in a practice round]. It was awesome."
"It was a blast to tee it up with the pros in front of so many fans," Homa said.
All three will play practice rounds again Wednesday before beginning the 2013 U.S. Open on Thursday.
Kim will be the first Cal player to get underway at 8:24 a.m. ET/5:24 a.m. PT, teeing off from the first hole along with Shawn Stefani and Nicholas Thompson.
Weaver will start from the 11th hole Thursday at 1:29 p.m. ET/10:29 a.m. PT. He will play with Michael Thompson and Casey Wittenberg.
Homa begins from the first hole Thursday at 2:20 p.m. ET/11:20 a.m. PT. He will play with Russell Knox and Matt Bettencourt.
All groups will play together again Friday.
Weaver's group will be the first off from the first hole at 7:29 a.m. ET/4:29 a.m. PT. Homa's threesome will start from the 11th hole at 8:50 a.m. ET/5:50 a.m. PT, while Kim's group starts from the 11th hole at 2:24 p.m. ET/11:24 a.m. ET.
The pairings and tee times for Saturday's third round are announced after the cut following the completion of second-round action Friday.
Homa and Kim earned spots in the 2013 U.S. Open during sectional qualifying, while Weaver received an exemption by finishing as the 2012 U.S. Amateur runner-up.
The three are believed to represent the first time three players off the same collegiate team will play in the same U.S. Open.
Each member of the trio was instrumental in Cal's 2012-13 season when the Bears won 12 of 14 stroke-play tournaments to set a modern-era NCAA single-season win record previously established with the 10 victories recorded by the 1985-86 Oklahoma State team. Cal was ranked No. 1 in the final 2012-13 team rankings by both Golfweek and Golfstat despite losing to Illinois in the semifinals of the NCAA Championship.