• Blayne Barber shoots 1-under 69 in round three of the Wyndham Championship

    In his third round at the Wyndham Championship, Blayne Barber hit 10 of 14 fairways and 14 of 18 greens in regulation, finishing at 4 under for the tournament. Barber finished his day tied for 61st at 4 under; Brandt Snedeker is in 1st at 16 under; Brian Gay and David Hearn are tied for 2nd at 15 under; and C.T. Pan and D.A. Points are tied for 4th at 14 under.

    On the 174-yard par-3 third, Barber’s tee shot went 184 yards to the left intermediate rough and his chip went 14 yards to the green where he rolled a two-putt for bogey. This moved him to 1 over for the round.

    On the 529-yard par-5 fifth, Barber had a birdie after hitting the green in 2 and two putting. This moved Barber to even-par for the round.

    At the 223-yard par-3 seventh, Barber hit a tee shot 208 yards at the green, setting himself up for the 22-foot putt for birdie. This moved Barber to 1 under for the round.

    On the par-par-4 eighth, Barber’s 81 yard approach to 7 feet set himself up for the birdie on the hole. This moved Barber to 2 under for the round.

    Barber got a bogey on the 416-yard par-4 ninth, getting on the green in 3 and two putting, moving Barber to 1 under for the round.

    After a drive to the left side of the fairway on the 440-yard par-4 10th hole, Barber had a 105 yard approach shot, setting himself up for the birdie. This moved Barber to 2 under for the round.

    On the 486-yard par-4 11th hole, Barber reached the green in 2 and sunk a 17-foot putt for birdie. This moved Barber to 3 under for the round.

    On the 235-yard par-3 12th, Barber’s tee shot went 216 yards to the left rough and his chip went 24 yards to the green where he rolled a two-putt for bogey. This moved him to 2 under for the round.

    At the 501-yard par-4 14th, Barber got on in 2 and missed his par putt from 5 feet, finishing with a 3-putt bogey. This moved Barber to 1 under for the round.

    On the 545-yard par-5 15th hole, Barber reached the green in 3 and sunk a 29-inch putt for birdie. This moved Barber to 2 under for the round.

    At the 507-yard par-4 18th, Barber got on in 2 and missed his par putt from 6 feet, finishing with a 3-putt bogey. This moved Barber to 1 under for the round.

  • Ed Hardin: Tour players and Wyndham, Jarrod Lyle’s last tournament, honor a life lost

    GREENSBORO — Two years ago Friday, a man with his entire life ahead of him stood over a putt at the 18th green at Sedgefield. He was getting ready to go home, his wife and two daughters waiting for him back his native Australia.

    Jarrod Lyle was 34, a man who’d battled through so much dealing with recurring bouts of leukemia since he was a teenager, a professional golfer who was ranked as high as 142nd in the world. He was a fighter, his friends say, a man who battled disease while chasing his dream to play golf on a world stage. He achieved his dream.

    Lyle died Aug. 8 at age 36, passing away quietly, his wife, Briony, said. She said he left a final message for his family and his friends worldwide.

    “Thanks for your support, it meant the world. My time was short, but if I’ve helped people think and act on behalf of those families who suffer through cancer, hopefully it wasn’t wasted.”

    The game of golf has been in mourning since his passing.

    This week at the Wyndham Championship, his golf bag and clubs sit on the first tee, a solemn memorial to a man known for his floppy yellow hat, his big smile and his courage. The hat hangs from the bag.

    Scattered throughout the field this week at the Wyndham, many of his fellow competitors and the caddies are also wearing yellow hats.

    All week, as players have walked to the first tee, they pause and place a hand on the bag. Some of them say a few words. Stuart Appleby, a fellow Aussie, kneeled and took a picture with his cellphone.

    Jason Shortall cried.

    Shortall was Lyle’s caddie and good friend. He’s here this week looping for golfer Sung Kang.

    “Shorty,” as he’s known on tour, said he probably has a little different perspective on Lyle’s passing, and it’s been a different emotion for him to walk to the first tee and see the old bag standing there.

    “I just touch it,” he said. “Every day. I touch it, and I say ‘hello,’ shed a tear, talk to him.”

    He cried for two hours when he heard the news of his friend’s passing.

    “It’s bittersweet,” Shortall said. “He’s gone. I’ve lost a friend. He’s not here. He’s not here giving me (expletive). That was Jarrod. But he’s not in pain anymore.”

    Lyle and his wife decided on July 31 to end treatment for what was a third recurrence of the cancer. Word spread quickly around the Tour, and the past few weeks have been a vigil, especially for the Australian players on tour. Lyle’s countrymen got together this week and had a wake, telling stories, talking about their friend and helping each other through the pain.

    “These are sad days for the PGA Tour family,” said Mark Brazil, the Wyndham tournament director. “I knew Jarrod to be one of the kindest human beings on Tour, and I know all the guys, especially the Australians, will really miss him.”

    This has been a great week of golf for the Wyndham and the Tour, but there’s a sad feel to it, too.

    Mike Barber, the first-tee announcer, has watched the scene all week as players and caddies walk to the bag, kneel, talk to their fallen friend, some saying hello and some saying goodbye.

    “This has caused the Tour players and the caddies to pause and evaluate their own life,” Barber said. “That’s the sense I get. They’ve lost someone they knew, someone so young and talented who gave so much of himself.”

    Shortall said that’s what he’ll remember about his friend and boss.

    “He gave so much and he never asked for anything,” Shortall said.

    Lyle stood over his final putt here at the 18th hole of the 2016 Wyndham Championship, so full of life and surrounded by his friends and living his dream.

    He made the putt.

    The last shot of Jarrod Lyle’s career was here at Sedgefield.

    He made the birdie.

  • Junior Players alumni have gone on to major accomplishments

    If past history holds up this weekend at the Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass, more than a few participants in the Junior Players Championship will be back within a few years — playing for big bucks.

    The American Junior Golf invitational begins on Friday with an international field represented by 18 countries. The U.S., Australia and China have the most players, but there are also juniors from Ecuador, Italy, India, Argentina, Singapore and Denmark.

    There are 10 players from Florida, including Stewart Slayden of Ponte Vedra Beach, University of Florida commit Fred Biondi of Port St. Lucie and last year’s runner-up, Jake Beber-Frankel of Miami.

    There are 42 players in the field of 78 who have committed to play college golf, including those headed to Florida, Florida State, Georgia, Alabama, Auburn, Oklahoma, North Carolina, Clemson, Texas and Arizona State.

    The field is led by Akshay Bhatia of Wake Forest, N.C., who is No. 1 on the AJGA Rolex Rankings and is a two-time AJGA all-American; University of Florida commit Ricky Castillo of Yorba Linda, Calif., ranked third; and Stanford commit Karl Vilips of Australia, who is fourth.

    In its 12th year, competitors in the Junior Players have gone on to perform at the highest levels of golf, such as major champions Brooks Koepka, Jordan Spieth and Justin Thomas; plus other PGA Tour winners such as Patrick Cantlay, Emiliano Grillo and Daniel Berger.

    There have been 18 past Junior Players participants who have qualified for The Players Championship, including Bud Cauley of Jacksonville and Blayne Barber of Lake City.

    The tournament is Friday, Saturday and Sunday with players going off Nos. 1 and 10 at 8:10 a.m. Admission to the tournament is free.

  • Blayne Qualifies for his First FedEx Cup Playoffs

    Barber will tee it up at Bethpage on Thursday, August 25 to begin The Barclays.

    Barber, a former Auburn golfer, entered the Wyndham Championship at No. 120 in the Fedex Cup standings. To clinch a spot in the playoffs and keep his PGA Tour card, Barber had to make sure he didn’t fall below No. 125, the cutoff point for the Fedex Cup.

    Barber didn’t flinch.

    He ended the Wyndham at 12-under par, good enough for 14th place. That finish moved him up to 112th in the Fedex Cup, ensuring he will be able to play in the playoff opener: The Barclays, which takes place Thursday-Sunday at Bethpage State Park’s Black course in Bethpage, N.Y. More importantly, Barber’s Wyndham finish meant he would keep his PGA Tour card for the 2016-17 season.

    Once the tournament concluded Sunday, Barber took to Twitter to share his excitement.

  • Blayne Finishes 3rd at the Honda Classic

    Blayne Barber didn’t have his best round of golf on the final day of the Honda Classic.

    He did, however, play well enough the entire week to land the best finish of his career. After shooting even in the last round Sunday, Barber ended the tournament at 5-under par. He finished tied with Justin Thomas for third-place behind winner Adam Scott and Sergio Garcia.

    “Normally if you finish the week at 5-under, you’re kind of just taking your stuff and going,” Barber said. “But to be in the top three with that, just shows, is a testament to how hard this golf course is and par is a good score. Means a lot.”

    Barber has finished as high as eighth, but finally had a breakthrough performance. Last year, he was 58th at the Honda.

    “I feel like that’s the best I’ve controlled the ball in the wind probably my whole life,” Barber said. “Just really felt confident with it. Was making good swings, really controlling my ball flight well and it resulted in a good week.”

    Thomas was playing the course for the first time despite living in the same city. Even though both players were tied, they were cheering on each other at the 18th hole because of their strong friendship.

    “It was fun playing with Blayne,” Thomas said. “We talked about we had not played together in a while. I think we’ve been fortunate every time we’ve played together, we’ve been in contention to win. It was fun to be there for a little bit.”

  • Former Auburn golfer Blayne Barber qualifies for first U.S. Open

    Former Auburn All-American and current PGA Tour player Blayne Barber qualified for his first U.S. Open by finishing in a three-way tie for first in the 36-hole qualifier Monday.

  • Blayne Barber overcomes personal roadblocks on road to PGA Tour

    Chilling on a beach in Hawaii, Blayne Barberchuckled a tad about the nightmarish events that could have derailed his journey to the PGA Tour.

  • Golfer Blayne Barber Joins Target’s Roster of Pro Athletes

    Integrity. Passion. Resilience. All virtues Target looks to embody both as a company and in the athletes who make up Team Target. Well, Team Target has definitely found all three in the latest addition to the roster—golfer Blayne Barber.

  • South Georgia win puts Barber’s name ‘on a different trajectory’

    For Blayne Barber, the narrative is finally changing.

    In 16 months’ time, from November 2012 to this March, the young pro had endured a career’s worth of tournament oddities, to the point that his name and “DQ” were becoming synonymous to hardcore golf fans.

  • Barber takes title at South Georgia Classic

    VALDOSTA, Ga. – Blayne Barber fired a 5-under 67 Sunday and came from behind to win the South Georgia Classic presented by First State Bank & Trust Co., his first career win on the Tour.

    Barber finished four trips around the Kinderlou Forest Golf Club at 15-under 273, two shots in front of Alex Prugh (67) and three in front of 54-hole leader Carlos Ortiz (72) who was in search of his third win of the season and a promotion to the PGA TOUR that goes with it.

  • Northern Trust Open interview: Blayne Barber

    Like to welcome Blayne Barber. Blayne, you Monday‑qualified this week. If you want to go back to Q‑School when you had the rules violation, take everybody through that real quick, and then what you’ve been doing since and then we’ll have a few questions.

  • Blayne Barber discusses DQ from 2012 Q-School

    Blayne Barber talks about calling a penalty on himself at the 2012 Tour Qualifying Tournament, which cost him his card and allowed Chesson Hadley to advance.

    Watch the video here.