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August 4, 2008

Scott Hebert


KELLY ELBIN: Welcome to the 90th PGA Championship at Oakland Hills Country Club. We'd like to welcome 2008 PGA Professional National Champion Scott Hebert to the Media Center. Scott is the PGA head professional at Grand Traverse Report and Spa in Michigan. A six time Michigan Open Champion. Scott won the 41st PGA Professional National Championship in June in Georgia. Scott, welcome and thoughts on being the reigning PGA Professional National Champion.
SCOTT HEBERT: It's great to be here. You know, that seems like a long time ago already, but it got me into this venue, so I'm just excited, looking forward to it.
KELLY ELBIN: Talk a little bit about this being your second PGA Championship. You missed the cut last year at Southern Hills, maybe your mindset of coming in this week versus the very first PGA Championship.
SCOTT HEBERT: Well, I know a little bit more what to expect. That will probably be the big thing. For a club pro to come into a major championship -- I played a few Buick Opens, but it's just the buzz, the way the course is setup, I'm going to draw off the experience of having played in it and try to forget the scores I shot.
KELLY ELBIN: All right. Thanks. Let's open it up for questions.

Q. As you were winning that event and realizing that you had an exemption into this championship in your home state, tell us about what kind of thoughts went through your mind; and in tandem with that as big a thrill as it's going to be for you, I imagine for friends and family it's amazing.
SCOTT HEBERT: It's nice to see or be close enough where I can get a lot of my friends here to support me. As far as qualifying for it, that PNC is I think everyone's goal when we go down there is to find a way to crack in that Top-20 to get into a world class event like this.
But it's nice, I just hopped in my car this morning, slept in my bed last night and drove down and didn't have to get on an airplane, so that's good.

Q. How different is it here for you this year than it was last year? You talked about that a little bit in your opening statement, but how, what are you feeling differently being at home, having seen this experience this once, what do you now expect of yourself that maybe you didn't last year?
SCOTT HEBERT: Just being comfortable at registration, to be honest. You know where stuff is, you know what to expect. I still get awe struck, we drove in and Adam Scott was right there and you can't help but do that, but the big thing will be that I'm here in Michigan, it is my kind of grass that I grew up on, that's what gives me a little bit of good feelings.

Q. You said you played as well as you ever played a few weeks ago when you won the National Club Pro, what's the state of your game at the moment?
SCOTT HEBERT: I would like to pick up where I left off down there. Unfortunately, I had a couple club events that are important to keep my club job going, but I've been working hard on my putting since then and if I can just get my ball striking to where it was there, I look forward to having fun.
KELLY ELBIN: For the record Scott's the first PGA Professional National Champion since 1997 to be playing in his home state. Questions?

Q. You faced a tough competition, obviously, at the National Championship, it came down to the wire, playing against a guy like Sonny Skinner who is a TOUR veteran, been on the Champions Tour, does that give you a sense of confidence to not only play well to make the cut to be successful this week?
SCOTT HEBERT: Yeah, with the success down there, I thought there were two pretty good golf courses I thought that we played and I think I got to 12-under par and I played well on the last nine holes, which it's always something that you can draw back some reference on. Whether it's coming down making the cut or contending to win, to know that, hey, I shot 5-under in the last nine holes to win before, so that's, obviously you're going to take good experiences away when you win, but that's nice to have being able to draw back on.

Q. How many times have you played Oakland Hills so far?
SCOTT HEBERT: This is my first time in the driveway. I haven't seen it, when I get out of here I'm going to look for the range. Shortly after that hopefully I'll get to the first tee and play some holes.

Q. How is it possible that a player of your ability, stature, a 20 time Michigan Open winner you never played the premier championship course in the state?
SCOTT HEBERT: I'm a long ways away from here, but it's not because I haven't had invitations, Steve Brady is another great Michigan player who works here, and has asked me to come down and it's just never seemed to work out. But I hear wonderful things about it. A lot of my members grew up here and said you're going to love the golf course. And I have seen it on TV. My wife's been here for the Ryder Cup, and she said it was wonderful, so.

Q. Has she given you any pro tips?
SCOTT HEBERT: Yeah, she gives me some tips once in a while, but.

Q. Are they down here with you?
SCOTT HEBERT: Yeah, they were down, I apologize for being a little tardy, but we had a little mix up at registration with them, so. But they're here and heading back to the hotel.
KELLY ELBIN: You talked a little bit about the situation with the week of the championship of your daughter being born prematurely and how she doing? What it was like to play in a Major event like that and to win it, knowing that you had a family situation going on.
SCOTT HEBERT: We had some suspicions that she would be early because our son was just about that early, for no particular reason, I guess my wife likes to deliver babies early. But when I left town my wife said, you have to go, this, that PNC is such a big event for our membership. And everyone assured me that her health was safe. And actually just before I teed off on Thursday my mom was down there with me and said Laurie just called and she was released from the hospital, so you know, I got to think that she's going to do well after that, so it really made my week. Didn't really matter how well I played, my daughter was going to be home and healthy.
KELLY ELBIN: And your daughter Susie is doing better now?
SCOTT HEBERT: Yeah, she's here. So.

Q. When you tee it up with these guys like you just said you were awe struck with Adam Scott a little bit, do you ever feel that like these guys are not really seeing Scott Hebert's true ability? You're running the member/guest, you're in the pro shop, you're, do you ever think like if I had the time to hit ten thousand balls like Vijay or whatever, I might just be that fresh and better?
SCOTT HEBERT: Not really. A lot of guys that are here I was playing with on the Hooter's Tour, Nationwide TOUR, but obviously all the guys that are here are world class players. For me to say, well, if and what and if I did this or if I did that, I tried playing for awhile and whether or not I was good enough or not, maybe I didn't stick with it long enough, some people have told me, but I'm not looking back and second guessing the decisions I made.
But I'm confident the way I play and obviously all these guys are confident in how they play. So I would never compare myself to someone like those guys. And if I hit that many balls could I be that good? I couldn't say.

Q. You mentioned awe struck but I'm assuming you're not the least bit intimidated.
SCOTT HEBERT: Well, yeah, if my parings were Adam Scott and Vijay Singh I think I would have a hard time sleeping the night before, but yeah, I mean, you can't help it. These are the best in the world. So I think if someone said they weren't awe struck they would be lying.

Q. I know some of these guys that are out here now you played with on the Hooter's Tour and roomed with and the whole thing, are you going to play practice rounds with some of those guys have you set anything up?
SCOTT HEBERT: I haven't set anything up yet. I'll be looking for a few of them Vaughn and Chad, Vaughn Taylor and Chad Campbell. I' haven't really looked at the field too hard, but if I see someone, obviously I'll try to hook up and play with them.
KELLY ELBIN: Scott Hebert, the 2008 PGA Professional National Champion. Thank you.
SCOTT HEBERT: Thank you.

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