Balancing Junior and College Golf (April Madness)

Yes, I know the term is March Madness and that it refers to the NCAA tournament, but I am stealing it. Now that we have one son playing in college and the other in junior and college golf, “madness” feels like the correct term.

As parents, we want to watch every tournament. We want to be there for every event. Sadly, it isn’t always possible. Especially when “someone” decided to go to college 6 hours away!

That being said, my wife and I try to embrace the madness. We try to watch as much as possible. Are you interested in an example? Here was a recent weekend (Sat – Mon) – you can decide if you would call it madness.

Grandparents – Junior Golf Super-Fans

Saturday: The “easy” day

Our junior golfer had an 18-hole tournament at a course 2 hours from our home. We left our house at 10 am, picked up the grandparents, and drove to the course.

Warmed up, had some lunch, walked 18 holes, and headed home. Back to our house by 9pm.

We did stop for dinner and the grandparents bought dinner (a rare event :)). As I said, this was the easy day!

Sunday: Things Get A Bit Crazier

Our junior golfer had a 1-day tourney near our home. We left the house around noon. He played and we hooped in the car to drive to Philly (4-hour drive).

Of course, this 4-hour drive turned into a 6-hour drive (have I mentioned how much I love traffic on 95-N). Thanks a lot, Northern Virginia!

We arrived at our hotel around 11 pm, checked in, took showers, watched an episode of Impractical Jokers, and went to sleep.

Monday: This Was A Long One…

Wake up at 7 am. Check out of our hotel and head to the golf course to watch our older son play in a college tourney.

Does anyone else think you should get a discounted rate on your hotel room if you are only in the room for 8 hours? Just an idea.

We arrive at the golf course for a 9 am shotgun start. This college event happened to be a 1-day, 36 hole marathon.

We got to talk to our older son while he warmed up on the driving range. It was great to see him. I quickly realized this was not a junior golf event when we had this conversation:

My son: “I start on 18 – its 512 yards”

Me: “Great, hit it in two and get a look for eagle”

My son: looks at me with disgust and says “its a par 4, old man”

The horn sounds at 9 am and we get started. We walked all 36 holes without a break. No idea how many miles, but it felt like 100!

You do realize that even your college kids still need you. Not sure if our son would have finished the last 9 holes if his mommy hadn’t provided him with more snacks.

9 hours and 45 minutes after they started, the college players finished. We hung out with the team for a few minutes, hearing stories of birdies and doubles. Said goodbye to our son, gave him a little cash, and got back in the van.

No traffic late on a Monday night, so we managed to get back home by a little after 11 pm.

I Wouldn’t Have It Any Other Way!

Let me be clear – I am not complaining! It was an awesome weekend. Love getting the chance to watch both of my boys play. Still have no clue what I am going to do once there are no more golf tournaments to watch.

Sure, it took me several days to recover, but I would do it all again this weekend. Is that madness?

mike - Balancing Junior and College Golf (April Madness)

About the author

Mike Harris is a former college golfer and dedicated father of two talented junior golfers. With a passion for the sport that began in his own childhood, Mike now focuses on helping his children, Avery and Olivia, navigate the world of junior golf. He’s eager to share tips, advice, and insights with other families on their own golf journeys. Join Mike as he tees off into the exciting realm of junior golf, providing guidance to parents and kids alike.

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