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August 21, 2004

Jeff Overton


PETE KOWALSKI: Jeff, thanks for coming in and joining us. Great run through this championship. I'm sure it's disappointing for you, but if you could just give us a little sound byte on what you thought about today's match.

JEFF OVERTON: The golf course was in great shape, as it has been all week. The committee has just done an excellent job of setting up the golf course. I got off to a good start on the front nine. I was pleased with my front nine and then the back nine, my iron play wasn't very good. He knocked down a lot of good putts. If you can put the way he putted today, I mean, he deserves to win.

I'm pleased with my play this week up to this point, obviously, but I mean, just got to kind of look to the future and put this in the past. But good luck to him.

Q. 17, he's got that putt for the win, you've already got your hat off, is he the kind of player, you know he's not going to miss those putts?

JEFF OVERTON: Yeah, he was just, he was on fire. He putted -- he made everything he looked at basically today. I don't think, he probably made ten putts from in between eight and 12 feet, or probably seven or eight putts from in between that distance, I mean, along with a 30-footer. If you can putt your ball like that out here on these greens, you deserve to win. I wasn't able to knock down as many putts as he was and that's what it came down to.

Q. Are you impressed with the year that he's had?

JEFF OVERTON: I mean, yeah, he's had a great year. Wow, win the National Championship, which is considered in a lot of college players' eyes as big as this, and he's probably going to win this, he won the Public Links and the Western Am, which is huge. He's won every single -- if he goes onto win this, he's basically winning all of the major tournament in everybody's eyes.

Q. Is it hard to believe that somebody can actually run the table that many times?

JEFF OVERTON: It's kind of hard to believe, but at the same time, he's basically the only player that has every part of his game going right now. There's not a weakness in his game, and his putting is phenomenal.

I'm putting pretty good, but my iron play isn't as good as his. I need to work on that.

But right now, he's the best player, best amateur player, golfer in the country probably.

Q. Did he play today sort of the way he played when you played with him in the NCAAs?

JEFF OVERTON: He putted the same. (Laughing). In the NCAAs, he made everything. He's just a great player. Hats off to the guy.

Q. For you is that an extra pressure in a match like this, knowing that he's going to make a lot of putts, he's not going to make too many mistakes, does that force to you press at all?

JEFF OVERTON: I wouldn't say that. You've just got to play your own game and hopefully you have more game than he has.

I didn't have -- like I said, I wasn't hitting my irons nearly as well as he was today. He came out and finished strong. I think he was 2-over through four and shot even par. That's really good.

Q. What did you guys say to each other when he was on the 12th green; you had 3- or 4-foot putts side-to-side and you decided not to putt them.

JEFF OVERTON: They were straight up the hill, pretty much gimmes. He had a ball mark in his line. I didn't want him to hit the ball mark and it would be -- just like, yeah, that's fine. We're probably not going to miss those at this level. To make it here, you can't afford to miss any putts inside five feet. I don't think neither one of us has missed one inside five feet for six days now.

Q. What do you take out of this?

JEFF OVERTON: It's just a great experience. Wow, USGA event, come and finish in the Top-4, the golf course is just in awesome shape. It was just an unbelievable experience.

I now know that I need to work on my iron play and make a couple changes in my golf swing with my irons, and just continue to practice and get that experience. You can obviously tell that he has a lot of experience. He doesn't get rattled by things out on the golf course like a lot of people do. That's an important key to winning, which is why I think he is winning right now.

Q. Did you allow yourself to think about Augusta coming into today?

JEFF OVERTON: No, I really didn't. I did a good job of just completely not even thinking about that. Like last year when I was playing the Public Links, I was kind of thinking about that after I made it to the Elite Eight and I told myself this year, I knew I could make it to that point. I was like, don't beat yourself as far as that goes. Let the other player beat you.

I played a pretty solid round of golf today. In my mind, I had my B-plus game, he probably had his B-plus game, and he won.

Q. You said yesterday something to the effect of you had you had a little hot streak last fall and your head got a little big. Do you see that happening to you again?

JEFF OVERTON: To me? I'm not -- I would say I haven't found that game yet. I'm not to that level that I was. I'm close.

What I meant about I that, you've just got to be humble. Sometimes people come up in practice and I would treat it like on our team like a little bit below me and I can't do that in the future or this year. I think it hurts people on our team because they were trying to beat somebody. They wanted that shot and I wouldn't allow him to have a shot at things.

Q. Your second shot at 6, was that one of the best short-game shots you've ever hit?

JEFF OVERTON: That was pretty good. I was actually over there, in the second round of the golf tournament I hit it a little inside of that. It was a pretty good shot, yeah, I'll take it.

I hit one, actually the best shot I think actually came on 7 in my second round or third round of match-play against Nicholas Thompson. I think the pin was front left and I was about 15 to 20 yards left of the green. I hit it to four inches and he 3-putted.

PETE KOWALSKI: Jeff, congratulations. Great run in the championship. Thank you for coming in.

End of FastScripts.

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