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April 30, 2011

Webb Simpson


DOUG MILNE: Webb Simpson, thanks for joining us for a few minutes. Quite a successful third round puts you right at the top of the leaderboard. 5-under 67 today, reeled off five birdies in a row after a couple of opening pars. Just a few comments on the round, and how you're feeling as you're heading into the final round tomorrow?
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, it was a good day. Like you said, I got off to a great start. I birdied 3 through 7 with a chip-in on 6. So it just kickstarted the round for me.
I've been playing well I feel like as of late. The last Thursday and Friday were just real solid kind of boring rounds. Today was a little more exciting. I don't think I hit quite as many fairways, but all in all it was a good day.
No bogeys on a windy day and the ground was drying out, I was very pleased. I'm excited for the challenge tomorrow.

Q. Have you slept on a Saturday night lead before in the Tour?
WEBB SIMPSON: Never have. Friday night lead. I've slept on a lead after two days on the Barclays in 2009, but that was it.

Q. What do you hear about sleeping on a Saturday night lead, and what do you expect, restless tonight or what do you anticipate?
WEBB SIMPSON: No, I mean, I've always slept pretty good going back to college and amateur days holding the lead. But this is why we do what we do. This is why we work out, why we practice, to give ourselves a chance to win on the PGA TOUR. I think that will kind of calm my nerves. Just excited and happy going into tomorrow's round.

Q. On this course, who has a chance? In other words, how far behind the lead can a guy be and still have a chance tomorrow do you think?
WEBB SIMPSON: Well, I think tomorrow's going to be a similar day to today in terms of the weather. So the golf course isn't too terribly tough, certainly challenging still. I think there's a low number if you tee off a little before the wind.
Somebody told me late in the day the groups didn't make many birdies coming in. So I think the later you tee off the more challenging it will be. So if a guy's going to make a run, he better shoot pretty low.

Q. Four or five shots will have a chance?
WEBB SIMPSON: I think so. Actually I should say no, they don't (smiling).

Q. What have you learned from your experience in Transitions?
WEBB SIMPSON: I can't say I learned a whole lot except for the fact that I proved to myself that I can win. I was in contention right there until the last hole. You know, I was able to execute shots under pressure. It just gave me a lot of confidence and peace that, hey, if I put myself in the position, I can do it.

Q. And you were in the final group that day?
WEBB SIMPSON: Second to last.

Q. Was the back nine kind of confounding that you couldn't find at least one coming in?
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, it was a little frustrating that I didn't make any birdies on the back. I had three or four good chances.
But I hit a couple good putts, a couple poor putts and had a couple good up and downs. All in all it was a solid back nine.
But it's kind of the beauty of this golf course. There are birdie holes, but at the same time they can jump up and bite you really quick. So bogey free I was pleased with.

Q. Did your heart skip a beat on 18?
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, I didn't watch it. I thought I was in the middle of the lake, but somehow it stayed left. Just a poor swing. Yeah, it was a good break there.

Q. Did you get to chat with Chris Paul at all yesterday or did he send you a text wishing you well or anything like that?
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, he got me tickets to the game Thursday night. So we've been talking a little bit since I've been in town. It was good to have him out. I hope he comes back tomorrow.

Q. Were they good tickets?
WEBB SIMPSON: Yeah, they were good. They were a little closer than his fiancee. So I don't know if he got in trouble for that, but they were good.

Q. Did you stay the whole game?
WEBB SIMPSON: We left with two minutes left.

Q. What does a guy like that when he was out here yesterday -- it gives you some support, obviously -- but having a superstar NBA player like that being out here?
WEBB SIMPSON: I think more than anything it just shows the nature of Wake Forest. It's a small school. And big schools I think athletes walk around and they're celebrities, but a place like Wake Forest they were just another guy.
The way he and I were in college -- we didn't know each other that well. We weren't good buddies, but we just remained in touch. I think that just reflects the uniqueness of Wake Forest.

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