18 Questions With ...
Meghan Bolger, Two-Time USGA
March 11, 2008
When Meghan Bolger sets her mind to doing something, she
has a way of making a defining mark. Consider the
following: She not only won one Philadelphia Amateur title,
she won seven - in a row. In 2001, she was promoted to head
women's golf coach at the University of Mississippi, at
the time making her the youngest Division I head coach in
any sport at age 23.
And when it came to the U.S. Women's Mid-Amateur,
she enjoyed winning so much in 2006 that she won again in
2007 last October at Desert Forest Golf Club in Carefree,
Ariz. By doing so, Bolger, 29, of Haddonfield, N.J., became
the first repeat champion since Ellen Port (1995, '96)
and just the third to repeat in the 21-year history of the
Recently, she shared her thoughts on the game, how a
south Jersey girl ended up playing college golf in the
South at Tulane University in New Orleans, and what she was
doing when she found out she had been selected to the USA
Curtis Cup squad.
You are the reigning two-time U.S. Women's
Mid-Amateur champion. Do you have a hard time realizing
that title belongs to you?
Yes. It has been an amazing two years.
In the immediate aftermath of winning a championship,
everyone says, "It feels great" or "I
can't believe it," but it takes some distance to
fully appreciate what you accomplished. When did that come
It hit me when I saw my name on the trophy, after all of
the previous winners. I appreciate the wins every day
in a different manner.
How sweet was winning the U.S. Women's Mid-Amateur
in October 2006 at Old Waverly Golf Course in West Point,
Miss., while you were still the University of Mississippi
women's golf coach?
Surreal. The local support was important. The
golf course is beautiful and every staff member was great
to work with.
How did you celebrate winning the first one and then the
After the first win, I went directly to coach at a golf
tournament [in Auburn, Ala.]. After the second I took
a week off. I am still celebrating. It's a lifelong
celebration for me.
Which is more difficult, winning the first or second
Winning the first, you've never done [it]; winning the
second means good fortune. The next one is the most
difficult. I hope there is one.
How did a Jersey girl end up playing at
After deciding I was not going to play basketball and
soccer in college, I knew I wanted to travel and have an
incredible college experience.
Then you ended up in Oxford, Miss., to coach. How much
different was Oxford than New Jersey?
Oxford is a college town. You are surrounded by great
people and dedicated fans. New Jersey is
diverse. I am fortunate to have lived in
both states and have made lifelong friends.
Why did you never give professional golf a try?
My original plan was to gain coaching/work experience for
two years and then begin my playing career. My plans
changed a little; [I] coached for seven years, loved every
second, and now have the commitment and dedication to play.
You were named the Ole Miss coach at age 23, only a
couple of years older than your players. In what ways as a
coach did you mature over the seven seasons in Oxford?
As a coach and individual you are always learning. You
learn from your mistakes as well as your
triumphs. It's important to gain the respect.
In what ways does being a coach help you in your own
You need to be very patient. As a coach you watch
of golf and don't have the time to play or
practice. I developed more of a feel game, less
mechanical, and loved every round of golf I played, good or
not so good.
What's more gratifying, winning a tournament as an
individual or watching your team win a tournament?
Both. I love to win. I am very competitive, but also
learn from losing. It makes you a stronger person and
What were you doing when you found out you had been
named to the 2008 USA Curtis Cup team?
Pulling off the side of the road. My father and I just
finished a qualifying round at Coral Ridge Country
Club. It's special to share with my family and
Is there something about you that would make people say
"Hmm . " or would be surprised to know?
I love to cook, entertain and travel.
What is the most nervous you've ever been on a golf
A tournament when I was being recruited. My coach
still tells the story. Thank goodness my length off the tee
impressed her more than my mental game that day.
You're the first of five children in the Bolger
family. Did you get the free pass or did your younger
brothers and sisters have an easier time.
Growing up was entertaining. Not sure how my parents
pulled off every sporting event. We all worked hard in
every sport we played. We still enjoy the
competitiveness of all sports we play - the Thanksgiving
Day football game is getting funnier every year.
What was the best advice you gave your players or that
you live by?
Enjoy every second of your life. Life is too short to
let the little things in life affect who you are and who
you want to become.
What's been your biggest "Wow" moment as a
Every time I meet someone new and make a lifelong
friendship I am wowed. I love the stories from the
You won seven straight Philadelphia Amateurs? Does that
make you sit back and go, 'That's pretty
I am proud to be part of the Philadelphia history with many
other great players.