Oct. 23, 2006
The Stanford men's golf team will take part in the third annual Big Ten/Pac-10 Challenge this Monday and Tuesday in Bandon, Ore.
The Cardinal will be among six teams from the Pac-10 and another six from the Big Ten at the par-71, 6,633-yard Pacific Dunes Course at the Bandon Dunes Golf Resort. Teams will play 36 holes Monday and a final 18 on Tuesday. Play will start at 8 a.m. each day. The tournament is open to the public, and admission is free. Pairings will be determined by a blind draw held Saturday night.
Defending champion Northwestern leads a Big Ten contingent that also features Indiana, Illinois, Michigan State, Minnesota and Wisconsin.
The Pac-10 teams feature USC, currently ranked No. 1 in the latest Golfweek/Sagarin poll, as well as No. 9 Stanford, No. 12 UCLA, No. 28 Washington and the two local schools -- Oregon and Oregon State.
The event includes the defending champion from both conference tournaments -- UCLA from the Pac-10 and Northwestern from the Big Ten, as well as three teams that finished in the top 10 at last year's NCAA Championships -- Minnesota (third), the Bruins (seventh) and Washington (ninth).
Minnesota won the inaugural Big Ten/Pac-10 Challenge title in a tiebreaker with USC when the event was held on the Bandon Dunes course in 2004 and shortened to two rounds due to rain. Last year, the Wildcats, currently ranked No. 41, won the team title when the event was held at the Glen Club in Glenview, Ill.
The conference challenge series is tied at 1-1 with the Pac-10 winning in 2004 and the Big Ten last season. The conference challenge winner will be decided by each league's top five team scores from each round.
Designed by architect Tom Doak, the Pacific Dunes Course was rated the eighth-best course in the United States by Golf Magazine, and No. 22 by Golf Digest.
Golfweek rated Pacific Dunes as the No. 2 modern course; a ranking of golf courses built since 1960.
The Big Ten/Pac-10 Challenge was the idea of KemperSports Management of Northbrook, Ill., Northwestern golf coach Pat Goss and former Oregon head coach (and current assistant coach) Steve Nosler. KemperSports manages the Bandon property and owns the Glen Club.