For those starting their college golf careers (and for those players in the recruiting process) I thought I would share some pics of my college golf days and pass along a few reminders as you begin the best 4 years of your life! Times have certainly changed but a few things still remain the same.

1Playing college golf is a privilege

Yes, you earned it thru hard work and dedication as a junior golfer, but it’s still not something you’re “entitled” to, it is an opportunity provided to you that comes with a lot of responsibility and respect! Do not EVER take that for granted!!

2Be a good teammate

Brandi Jackson (2nd from left) with her Furman University team mates at the 2001 Lady Paladin Invitational.

3It will humble you

James Madison University Women’s Golf – Website | Instagram

College golf will probably be the first time you’re going to be on a team of players who are as good if not better than you. That is tough for some players to handle. Do not look at that as a negative, but instead look at it as an opportunity to be on a team of players who will push you to get better. You will play in college tournaments against not just the best players in your state and region or even in the US, but from all over the world. And you will play with juniors and seniors who have much more experience at the college golf level than you do. So check your ego on the first day of practice and embrace the humbling experience that you are about to take on.

4Believe in yourself

While this is certainly going to be one of the most humbling experiences you will encounter, it is also a time that you must maintain belief in yourself and your abilities. There is a reason the coach chose you to play on the team. It may mean a different timeline or process from the others but maintain your confidence and stay focused on your goals.

5Coach knows best

James Madison University Women’s Golf team at the 2017 CAA Championships where they finished 4th. From left: Herbie Sargent (husband of coach), Sarah Sargent (coach), Lauren Comegys, Morgan Cox, Katie Turk, Maddisen Cox, Laura Gomez

6Stay ahead

Furman University at the 2003 NCAA East Regionals. Brandi Jackson (seated center).

7Stay fit and healthy

Yes, you are a college kid who is going to order pizza late at night, grab whatever you can in the dining hall, eat EasyMac, go to Waffle House at 2 am, eat junk food and probably not work out unless it’s mandatory. But keep in mind that you are a student-athlete, not just a student, so your health and well-being affect your performance, along with your team and your coaches. Your coach or trainer can’t tell you what to do when to go to bed, and what to eat every hour of the day, so take ownership of that yourself a make better choices to allow you to be at your peak performance level.

8Enjoy the ride

2002 Southern Conference Team Champions Furman University. Individual Champion Brandi Jackson (third from left)

bioBrandi Jackson had a stellar collegiate career at Furman University, before going on to play professionally for eight years on the LPGA and Symetra Tour.  In 2012 Brandi was inducted into the Furman University Athletic Hall of Fame, and she serves on the Board of Directors for The Blade Jr Classic. She runs her own business out of Greenville, South Carolina where she consults junior golf families all over the world on competitive junior golf and the college recruiting process. For more information on Brandi Jackson, visit her website at www.brandijacksongolf.com. Follow Brandi on Twitter @bjacksongolf and Instagram @bjacksongolf.

For more information about college golf recruiting and competitive junior golf, including Brandi’s innovative online Golf Recruiting 101 Course and Recruit Caddy Service, visit www.brandijacksongolf.com

Feature Photo of the JMU team and other images courtesy of brandijacksongolf.com and JMU Women’s Golf