Following Up With 1990 U.S. Junior
Champ Mathew Todd
March 3, 2005
Pop quiz. Who was the last player to win the U.S. Junior Amateur
before Tiger Woods ran off three straight victories, from
Close - he won it two years earlier. Give up? It was a
17-year-old from Visalia, Calif., named Mathew Todd. Todd went on
to attend the University of Nevada-Las Vegas on a golf
scholarship, but his swing quickly deserted him, he says, and his
game went south.
Nevertheless, that week at Lake Merced Country Club in Daly
City, Calif., remains one of Todd's biggest highlights. In
the first round, he defeated future USA Walker Cupper Jason Gore,
1 up, and then needed 21 holes to eliminate Jason Freeman. In the
final, he knocked off stroke-play medalist Dennis Hillman of Rye,
N.Y., 1 up, after Hillman handed a then-14-year-old Woods a
3-and-2 setback in the morning semifinals.
Since college, Todd has co-managed a small golf clothing
company and taught golf at a driving range in Fresno, Calif. In
1999, he turned pro and tested his game on several mini-tours,
with little success.
His latest venture is Fundamental Golf, a custom-putter
fitting business that he runs out of his Visalia home. The idea
for the business came to him after he turned pro and realized
that finding an equipment company "that would take me
seriously was very difficult." If he couldn't find a
company that would cater to his custom-fitting needs, he
reasoned, how could the average amateur?
"I was hoping to help other people," he says.
Story written by Alan Bastable of Golf Magazine