Space Coast Sports Hall of Fame Video Spotlight: Billy Horschel Four-Time All-American At UF
By SPACE COAST SPORTS HALL OF FAME // January 3, 2020
SPACE COAST SPORTS HALL OF FAME
ABOVE VIDEO: Billy Horschel was a four-time All-American at the University of Florida. Only five players in Gator history have received the award four times.
BILLY HORSCHEL – 2014 INDUCTEE
• Four-Time All-American
• PGA Professional
• US Amateur Medalist
GRANT NATIVE HAS GATOR PASSION
Take six feet, 175 pounds of golf talent, add a generous dash of Gator passion, and you’ve got Billy Horschel, the Grant native, whose biggest thrill was graduating in 2009 from the University of Florida, often sports the familiar orange and blue Gator tones during golf tournaments.
Neither of Billy’s parents have college degrees, so his diploma is as important to Horschel and his family as his exploits on the golf links.
Horschel’s scholarship to UF allowed him to play for coach Buddy Alexander’s Florida Gator’s men’s golf team in National Collegiate Athletic Association competitions from 2006 to 2009 while pursuing a bachelor’s degree in sport management.
His university is as equally proud of Horschel as he is of his alma mater, since he is a four-time All-American.
Only five players in Gator history have received the award four times.
Winning comes easily to Horschel, who as an amateur snagged individualist medalist honors at the 2006 U.S. Amateur, shooting a two-day score of 138 at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minnesota.
His opening round of 60 was an 18-hole tournament and USGA record.
In 2007 and 2009, Horschel received Southeastern Conference Player of the Year awards, joining Camilo Villegas as the only two UF golfers to earn the award more than once.
An athlete of perseverance and determination, Horschel’s biggest golf thrill was walking away with the 2007 Walker Cup.
In 2009, Horschel turned pro after he earned rookie status on the PGA Tour with his success at the qualifying tournament at Bear Lakes Country Club.
In 2013, the young golfer made the cut in every one of the 26 tournaments he entered and finished in the top ten eight times.
When asked what winning the Zurich classic meant to him, Horschel replied with a statement that speaks of his family values. “I am now able to financially help my parents and my brother,” he said. “This means a lot to me.” – Billy Horschel
His first career PGA Tour victory came last year at the Zurich Classic of New Orleans, thanks to six consecutive birdies in the final round en route to an 8-under 64 that gave him the victory.
The week before the tourney, Horschel vowed to Zurich CEO Martin Senn that “I’ll see you Sunday from the winner’s circle.” He made certain of his promise.
When asked what winning the Zurich classic meant to him, Horschel replied with a statement that speaks of his family values.
“I am now able to financially help my parents and my brother,” he said. “This means a lot to me.”
The win at the Big Easy moved Horschel to third in FedEx Cup standings, third on the PGA Tour money list and 49th in the Official World of Golf Ranking.
BRIGHTEST YOUNG STAR ON THE PGA TOUR
In the 2013 U.S. Open, playing in his first major as a professional, Horschel held a joint lead with Phil Mickelson at the halfway point of the tournament. He was one of only two players under par after the second round. He shot a 285, 4 strokes off the winner and finished tied for 4th in his first pro major, and moved up to 34th in world rankings and 4th in the FedEx Cup standings.
Feisty and passionate, Horschel has already been named one of the Top 10 Most Colorful Players on the PGA Tour. His octopus pants at the U.S. Open probably had something to do with the standing.
As a young player on the tour, Horschel is already involved in helping charities and hopes to one day create his own.
“Billy is one of the brightest young stars in the tour,” said Steve Worthy, CEO of Fore!Kids Foundation, producer of the Zurich Classic of New Orleans.
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