Professional golf has many levels, many tours and many success stories and failures. Guys are teeing it up seemingly every day on some mini tour, in some town you've probably never even heard of, or knew existed.
That's part of what makes golf and golfers such great stories. Not every golfer goes straight to the PGA Tour and to the millions of dollars that are up for grabs. There are thousands of golfers, grinding it out on golf's mini tour's smaller stages.
Hopkinston, Mass. native Jon Curran joined the NGA Tour (formerly the Hooters Tour) in 2009, after a collegiate career at Vanderbilt University. Where he holds the Vanderbilt 54 hole (-15) and 72 hole (-4) scoring records and his 8th place finish at the 2007 NCAA D-1 national tournament is the highest finish in the NCAA finals in Vanderbilt history.
Although not on the big stage of the PGA Tour just yet. Curran did rack up three wins in 13 starts on the NGA Tour in 2013. Finishing seventh or better in seven events. Winning the money title ($99,718.22), and last but certainly not least. The 2013 NGA Tour Player of the Year award.
“It’s awesome,” said Curran after being presented the award. “I’m not one to sit around and think about awards, but you’ve got to enjoy something like this. When you hear names like [past NGA Players of the Year and PGA TOUR winners] Chad Campbell, Michael Thompson, Ted Potter Jr. and Zach Johnson, this award is bigger than I realized. I’ve never been among guys like that before and I’m going to enjoy it.”
“A few years ago, I thought it was impossible to finish in the top 10 on the NGA TOUR,” Curran continued in an interview on www.ngatour.com. “I can pinpoint the reasons I’m playing the way I am right now. I’m not getting into trouble and I’m not getting caught up in what everyone else is doing. I also don’t stress over every putt or let not making a birdie get to me as much. I’m comfortable with my game right now.”
Not to forget his ultimate goal of earning his PGA Tour card. Or to have people think he is just some big fish in a small pond mini tour player. Curran did find time to finish T24 at the Puerto Rico Open this season on the big tour.
With three starts on the PGA Tour and T39 finish on the Web.com Tour in 2013. Curran is certainly on his way to reaching his goal, in joining his former high school team mate Keegan Bradley on the PGA Tour.