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October 12, 2011

Rickie Fowler


JOHN BUSH: We'd like to welcome Rickie Fowler here to the McGladrey Classic. First of all, congratulations on your win in Korea. Could you talk a little bit about last week for us?
RICKIE FOWLER: Yeah, thank you. Obviously a fun week for me last week, played well, or really well, and played really well Sunday morning, which basically put me in a position to cruise around the back nine, gave me a lot of comfort and cushion coming in the last few holes. Nice to get the first win out of the way, now I've just got to get my first one here on the PGA TOUR.
JOHN BUSH: You have some history on this course. I think you birdied seven in a row to start your round against Peter Uihlein.
RICKIE FOWLER: I wasn't going to bring that up, but yes, I did do that to Peter. He still uses that against me at times. But yeah, played well here before and have some good memories here. Love the facility. This is one of my favorite courses, and I'm glad to be here this week.

Q. What do they call you in Korea?
RICKIE FOWLER: "Lickie Fowler." That's kind of how they pronounce it.

Q. How come you're playing this week, and what are you going to do the rest of the year do you think?
RICKIE FOWLER: Well, I was planning on having some downtime after this. Right now I have five weeks off after this. Instead of just playing one week and back off, I felt like playing the two, and with this course being one of my favorites, pretty easy week being able to stay at the lodge, and when you like a course, it makes a week a lot easier. So excited to be here, and yeah, like I said, it's one of my favorite courses, so it was hard to pass up for a second time.

Q. When you said two, you're talking about last week, as well?
RICKIE FOWLER: Yeah, playing last week and then here instead of just going to Korea and then back home.

Q. The Americans are always being criticized for not going global. Going to Korea, did that give you a taste of wanting to play overseas more than just sticking here?
RICKIE FOWLER: Well, I mean, my whole dream was to play on the PGA TOUR. That's going to be my main focus going forward. But I definitely like to travel around and play around the world and see different cultures. But still going to be focusing most of my time and effort on the PGA TOUR.

Q. Two things: How did you celebrate the win, and then secondly, how do you gauge it in terms of obviously it's not a TOUR event but it's still a win and you beat some pretty good players. Where does it sort of fit in your year because I know it really hasn't been the year you wanted.
RICKIE FOWLER: Yeah, it hasn't been a great year. It's been all right. I've played a lot more consistently, I've made more cuts, but obviously I'm not out here to just make cuts; I want to be in contention and have high finishes and win golf tournaments.
I just struggled this year on the weekend, and the win in Korea, I finally put four pretty good rounds together. I played okay on Friday. Other than that I played pretty well. And yeah, it wasn't as strong a field as a PGA TOUR event, but at the same time two guys that are pretty well known that were up in the mix, Y.E. Yang and Rory, so obviously Rory is probably one of the hottest players right now. He's been playing well, and it was nice to get a win against him, because we're good buddies but at the same time friendly rivals.

Q. What's it kind of mean to you in terms of -- I guess I'm just trying to see how you -- what kind of value you put on a win.
RICKIE FOWLER: I mean, it's kind of -- it's nice to get the first one out of the way. And the way I played in contention, the way I felt, because like I said, it wasn't like I was just playing against no one. There were some good players. There was a lot of good Korean players over there right now.
The way I played, played with the lead and pulled away really made me feel good about my game, gave me a lot of confidence, and feeling really good going into this off-season with a few more events and then really kind of sit down and practice and prepare for next year.

Q. I meant to ask you, after this week we don't see you again until next year, or was there anything late in the year?
RICKIE FOWLER: Planning right now Aussie PGA will be my next start, and then I'm first alternate at Tiger's, and then Shark Shootout with the Colombian, Camilo.

Q. As it relates to Bud Cauley, your old Walker Cup teammate, pretty remarkable what he's done. I'm trying to remember back, I guess it was '09, when you made your run there. You turned pro in September, did you not?
RICKIE FOWLER: I turned pro September 14th.

Q. Which was right after --
RICKIE FOWLER: Right after the Walker Cup.

Q. I think that actually answers my question. Do amateurs and college players going forward, if they're going to try and get their card, is it going to be a case where they're going to have to decide to skip some things? Bud did decide to skip the Walker Cup, didn't he?
RICKIE FOWLER: Yeah, and part of the reason was because he had already played and he was kind of dead set on turning pro and figuring that out.
But I think really what's going to dictate what players do coming out of college is some of the things -- what happens with Q-school, and the other thing is some guys really struggle to get starts. It's really the only top three guys that are able to get starts right now, so that makes it tough if you're playing -- if you're a top 10 guy coming out of college, say if you're kind of seven or eight, you're not going to get any starts, so you're almost better off turning pro right after NCAAs, that way you have some Mondays and some time to get some playing experience to have a chance to play your way on, depending on what happens at Q-school, if you have to go through Q-school or play your way into possibly the three-event series.

Q. When you turned pro the Playoffs were going on?
RICKIE FOWLER: Yeah, I played -- I had two Nationwide starts, Boise, Soboba, and then had the two PGA TOUR starts, Vegas, Fry's, and then earned my way into Viking which got canceled, moved over to Disney.

Q. Could you just talk a little bit about what the course is like this week as opposed to your past experiences here? Obviously a PGA TOUR event is set up a bit harder for you guys.
RICKIE FOWLER: Right now it's actually playing easier. It's softer, a little slower, which I'd prefer to see it firm and fast. But I know it's been a bit wet up here. The course here is really -- you get to see its character when it plays a little firm with some pace around the greens and the wind is blowing 15 to 20. We'll see; if they keep good weather going they'll be able to dry it out a bit, and this is one of my favorite places, so hopefully we'll be able to get it into some good tournament shape come this week.

Q. (Inaudible.)
RICKIE FOWLER: No, I didn't get a check. They had a cut-out about, I don't know, a couple feet by a couple feet. I didn't get a big check.

Q. Did the cut-out have the amount?
RICKIE FOWLER: Yeah, I wish I had a big check with that amount on it; 300 million won. I mean, Bill Haas, 10 million. I mean, I got 300 million. I guess it was like 11.4 or something, Bill's. 300 million, that's way more.

Q. Did you figure it out in dollars?
RICKIE FOWLER: It was like 252 or 256 or something.
JOHN BUSH: Rickie, thank you. Play well this week.

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