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Penn State Grads Hold Integral Role In PGA

Call it a twist of fate or a coincidence, but the people responsible for preparing the golf courses for the masters, the U.S. Open and the PGA Championship this summer are all Penn State graduates.
Call it a twist of fate or a coincidence, but the people responsible for preparing the golf courses for the masters, the U.S. Open and the PGA Championship this summer are all Penn State graduates.

Oak Hill Country Club takes your breath away. From the tudor style clubhouse to the meticulously groomed greens and fairways.
 
"I fell in love with Oak Hill along time ago, but I love the short par 4s. I love 2, I love 12, I love 14. Great holes," Jeff Corcoran said.

Jeff Corcoran is in charge of the science behind this work of art. As Manager of Golf Courses and Grounds at Oak Hill, he leads a staff of 60. He first became interested in turf as a means to an end when he was growing up outside Ithaca.

"Before I got to this point in my career I actually used to play a lot if golf," he said. "And it was a way for me to get free golf."

That led Corcoran to Penn State University. He's part of an elite group of graduates. The superintendents in charge of the golf courses for all three U.S. Majors this year came from Penn State..
 
"So what's in the water at Penn State," I asked him.

"You know I think Penn State's always had an extremely strong turf grass management program," Cororcan replied.

"You know it's an incredible credit to that university and their turf program," Phil Cuffare said.

Phil Cuffare works for Jeff as East Course Superintendent.

"Jeff is easily the most qualified person I've ever been around. You know tremendous leader in the field. Tremendous teacher in the classroom," he said.

And it's a tremendous responsibility to make the golf course challenging for the players and tough enough to handle giant crowds.

"Oh it's a ton of pride. I think not only for myself but our staff our membership, the PGA staff," Cuffare said.

Like an artist Oak Hill is Jeff's canvas, and right now it is perfect. Then 200,000 people trample all over it. Such is the life of the Manager of Golf Courses and Grounds.

Jeff has a lot of help this week. There are about 80 experts from other famous golf courses around America and Europe who have come in to work on Oak Hill this week.
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