CLEMSON — Golfweek magazine has named Clemson University’s 18-hole John E. Walker Sr. Golf Course one of the top 10 college courses in the nation. The course came in at No. 10, a marked improvement from last year’s debut on the list at No. 14.
Stretched across 6,911 yards on the shores of Hartwell Lake, the course opened in 1995, making it one of the newer courses in the top 10, which include three courses that date back to the 1920s, including No. 1 The Course at Yale which opened in 1926.
Course superintendent Don Garrett said making the list is a result of the combined effort of the staff and students who work hard to make the course something special.
“It is quite an honor and I’m proud of where we have been able to take the course since Brent (Jessup, the course’s head golf professional) and I came on board 16 years ago,” he said. “There are some very good golf courses on that list and it means a lot to be mentioned with them. It’s a credit to all of our employees, including the many Clemson students that we employ on our staff.”
Jessup said the move up in the ranking was particularly gratifying.
“Being ranked for the second year in a row is quite an accomplishment, but to also know that we actually moved up the list from 14 to 10 is really great. We were quite honored last year when we debuted on this campus course ranking list, but now to be in the top 10 is even more special.“
Jessup said the ranking shows that not only do local golfers think very highly of the Walker course, but regional and out-of-state guests as well.
He gave credit to the staff for turning the course into a first-class destination for golfers.
“Everyone on our staff has worked tirelessly for many years and this ranking justifies that hard work,” he said. “We are blessed to share this ranking with many of the legendary university golf courses across America, such as Yale and University Ridge. I’m sure all of the Clemson family will be quite proud of this accomplishment.”