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April 17, 2016

Ernie Els

Hilton Head, South Carolina


Q. You have good weather and come out and shoot 66?
ERNIE ELS: Just celebrating the weather. It was beautiful out there. It's really getting beautiful. The course is nice and.

And firm and fast. I really enjoyed my time out there. Just making one bogey was also very nice.

Q. Play analyst for us a little bit for the guys that are just now teeing off. Is it gettable maybe more than the first four holes, the way yesterday was?
ERNIE ELS: The first five holes, really. I was 2-under through 5. And that set me up for a nice round. You've still got the same breeze out of the north, there's a lot of nice birdieable holes. But they've got some really good flags. All the par-3s are tucked today. 17 is firm and fast. 15 -- they're all pretty firm. But it's gettable. The wind is really down, and I think the guys will enjoy that.

Q. Thursday was Autism Day, many of us still wearing the ribbons. What's that mean to you and was it another good day for the program? I know your son was here this week?
ERNIE ELS: Yeah, thank you. I want to thank everybody that put the pins on /SKP-PL the little ribbons. It's been coming a while now, and we've had some great support from the Tour, you guys, the media, the spectators and the players. The players have been unbelievable supporting, of course. And autism -- April is autism month. So blue is the color of autism us and autism speaks and a lot of our autism organizations. So really nice seeing people wear blue.

Q. Update us on the program. How are you doing? Where are you going? What's next?
ERNIE ELS: The school is up and going. Kids at the school. We are going to start building the upper school, including my little range in the back right there, so kids can have a little golf clinic and stuff. I'm still aiming to -- at the end of the day we want to have a Special Olympics event there. So that's some big goals. But first we want to get the upper school built and enroll another 150 kids.

Q. Are you feeling like your mind is still riding on the greens yet or are we still in a process do you think?
ERNIE ELS: As I say, I made huge mistakes last week. I haven't been doing that bad on the greens. And for some reason, Augusta week, always haunting you, trying to get better. I listened to somebody that I was maybe going a step forward. And it was just too quick. Just too much information for me to handle on those greens. And I absolutely had a big disaster.

I worked on it those two days that I played, but started feeling almost myself that last day, the last ten holes I started putting better and my anxiousness was gone.

And this week you'll see my putting stats, I'm going to be top-20 in putting. It's there I've just got to trust what I'm doing and just keep doing it.

Q. Can you kind of fall out of love and back in love with golf?
ERNIE ELS: You know what, I think I'm just a freak like everybody else, just like anybody else trying to get better. I'm just like my father trying to get another five yards and like any other guy on Tour thinking what to do, how to feel comfortable. I'm just doing the same thing. And I think that's the love we have for the game. We love to get tortured and we love to play good golf. And on a day you feel like, man, I could play this game again.

The game is always going to be better than us, but every now and then we have our day and I think that's what we love doing.

Q. When you looked up above last night, that thing was bigger than Greg Norman's boat that's pulling that Dreamliner.
ERNIE ELS: That's a sailor-made sailing boat.

Q. He was showing off with it, too. He said it got up to 65 degrees.
ERNIE ELS: The winds are there. With all the new technology that is just amazing. When they start building golf clubs, watch out.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports

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