Chris Malloy, head coach of the men’s golf team, says there really is a home-team advantage now that “The Claw” golf course has new turf.
“The newly renovated Bermuda greens give our team an added advantage over the course of a season,” Malloy said, “We putt on them every day, and when other schools come to Florida tournaments it takes them a while to adjust to the speed of the greens.”
The 18-hole, 6,809 yard golf course situated on the outskirts of the University of South Florida’s Tampa campus may not look like much when driving down Fletcher Ave., but it is considered to be a hidden gem in the Tampa Bay area.
Opened in 1967, the par 71 course offers long, narrow fairways, top notch greens, a driving range and a putting/chipping green, according to The Claw website. The USF men’s and women’s golf teams use this facility on a regular basis.
The Claw is a public course that has held a good reputation for many years. Many enjoy the difficulty of the course, while others admire the serene atmosphere of wildlife, lofty oak trees and lush green fairways. Adam Combs, general manager of The Claw at USF, talked about the importance of providing a well manicured golf course to be used by athletes, students and members of the Tampa community alike.
“It comes down to a passion for the game of golf,” Combs said. “The condition of the course is my responsibility, and if conditions on the course get bad, members and guests notice and the situation can get ugly. Our crew has done a good job with daily operations, and the renovations that occurred back in 2009 have set this course apart from other public courses in the area.”
Practice sessions at the Claw have evidently paid off for the Bulls in the Big East Conference Championships this week as they placed fourth out of twelve teams after two rounds of golf, according to gousfbulls.com. The final round is being played today, April 19 at Innisbrook Golf Resort in Palm Harbor.