Speech to Text for Buckley forging his own path to the PGA Tour
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standard path to a successful professional golf career usually involves a decorated junior career followed by some seasoning at an ncaa golf powerhouse. tupelo native hayden buckley is bucking that trend. success ." every shot that hayden buckley takes... nat every putt that hayden buckley rolls... nat is a reminder that his journey to professional golf wasn't easy. andy: 'who was recruiting you out of high school?' hayden buckley: 'i didn't have much out of high school. nobody really local. i wanted to stay in state. i had maybe southern miss and a few community colleges. i wanted to go bigger. i don't think i had the talent to go bigger, but i wanted to go bigger. i had one d1 offer in houston, texas at rice university.' undeterred, hayden used a personal connection to get to an sec school. buckley's swing coach, chris harder, reached out to missouri head golf coach mark leroux. harder had played college golf for leroux at austin peay. leroux decided to take a chance on hayden, sight unseen. hayden buckley: 'that was really the life- changer. it's just one conversation that maybe said let this kid come play, and that's all it was. the coach never watched my play golf. (had) never seen me hit a shot. really probably didn't know what i looked like, and said hey we want you to come play for us. i think that's pretty rare now-a-days.' hayden may have flown under the radar when he got to columbia. but he left missouri as one of its most decorated golfers. buckley won 4 tournaments his senior year, and shot 61, the lowest single round in program history. andy: 'when did you realize you could compete with the best of the best?' hayden buckley: 'probably late into college. by my senior year i started to really compete, i got my first college win at the start of the senior year and ended up winning three more times and started shooting low scores and playing really well so that was the point i realized this might be something i can do as a future, you know, as a career.' armed with confidence, buckley turned pro shortly after graduating college. last october, buckley parlayed a sponsors exemption at the sanderson farms championship into a tie for 63rd place and his first professional paycheck. earlier this month, hayden went to arizona and qualified for the mackenzie tour, a pga sanctioned tour in canada. buckley is living proof that there are multiple roads to success. buckley was a monday qualifier for this weeks web.com tour event in pratville, alabama. buckley made the cut and finished tied for 47th. former ole miss golfer jonathan randolph finished tied for 8th. lanto griffin defeated robby shelton in a playoff to win the