Deep friendships exist between Alabama Crimson Tide athletes, coaches, alumni, and fans.
Nick Saban, the football coach, is well aware of this fact.
Likewise, Lee Hodges is a former Alabama graduate. This past weekend, Hodges dominated the competition at the 3M Open, winning by seven strokes.
Sunday evening, Saban reached out to Hodges to extend his congratulations.
“Congratulations,” stated Saban. “That is incredible. Did you have a fantastic one? I typically watch in the evening and was routing for you.”
It’s not often that you win by seven points, so it was a lot of joy, Hodges replied.
Hodges’ seven-shot victory in Minnesota marked his first victory on the PGA Tour. It is also the greatest victory margin on the PGA Tour in over three years. Rory McIlroy was the last golfer to accomplish this feat, winning the 2019 RBC Canadian Open by seven strokes.
Hodges received 500 FedEx Cup points for his victory. This elevated him from position 74 to position 33 in the FedEx Cup standings.
Hodges now has a secure place in the PGA Tour’s postseason, as only the top 70 players qualify for the first playoff event in Memphis.
After his victory, Hodges stated, “I’m playing really good golf.” “I’m thrilled to have the chance to do some extraordinary things in the semifinals. When you triumph, you really set yourself up for something extraordinary.”
STILLWATER, Oklahoma — Alabama’s Lee Hodges congratulates Oklahoma State’s Viktor Hovland at the conclusion of their match at the Division I Men’s Golf Team Match Play Championship on May 30, 2018, at the Karsten Creek Golf Club.
Hodges continued, “My caddie told me on the 18th hole when I honestly hadn’t even considered it, that we will be playing at Augusta the following year.” “This is something different. That was the most interesting thing I heard all day. I’m just extremely grateful.”
Hodges had a very enjoyable Sunday. He won his first PGA Tour tournament, qualified for The Masters, and received a phone call of congratulations from Coach Saban.
Hodges can shift his focus from the FedEx Cup semifinals to the Crimson Tide football team, which begins practice this week.
On September 2, 2023, Saban’s squad will host Middle Tennessee State for the season opener.