The golf story of the year has to be Billy Hurley III winning the Quicken Loans National on Sunday.
After getting in on a sponsor’s exemption, the former Naval officer won for the first time on the PGA Tour in 104 attempts at a tournament dedicated to servicemen and women. In addition, the Tiger Woods-hosted event at Congressional Country Club in Bethesda, Md., is not far from his home in Annapolis, where he attended the Naval Academy. His win also comes 10 months after the disappearance and death of his father, a police officer.
One of the perks of his win was earning a spot in the 145th Open Championship at Royal Troon in two weeks, but Hurley, 34, unbelievably withdrew yesterday from the third major of the year. Why? His sister is getting married! So Hurley will be a groomsman at the wedding in Leesburg, Va., instead of playing in the game’s oldest major.
Clearly, Hurley knows something about loyality and commitment, having served in the Navy for five years, but talk about bad timing. Another unlikely winner this year, Jim Herman, will take his spot.