MEMPHIS, Tenn. (WREG) — The last time we caught up with Memphis native Greg Odom Jr. he was making headlines after winning the PGA WORKS Collegiate Championship just days after losing his father, Greg Sr., the man who introduced him to the game.
“When everything happened, I was just like, let me just get on a golf course to ease my mind,” Odom said. “And then next thing I know doors opened. So I just want to thank my dad for planting the seed in the ground and just watching me grow.”
Since then, Odom has taken home another PGA WORKS title and helped lead the Howard Bisons to their first ever MEAC championship.
Odom also garnered HBCU Golfer of the Year honors and was named an All-American by both the Golf Coaches Association and the Black Golf Coaches Association.
“It was a surreal moment. I mean, I always tell people that I never thought about going to HBCU. And because of the opportunity and the resources that we had, I mean, how can you not get better as a player and also as a person? So I want to thank Steph Curry and I want to thank Samuel Puryear. I’m just living it.”
Golden State guard Stephen Curry committed to fund the Howard golf program for the next six years and has already raised millions for the Bisons. But Curry isn’t just a figurehead, he’s been hands on with the program’s golfers, including building a bond with Odom.
“It’s all about mentorship. And he’s one of those guys just, you know, he’s friendly guy. So he’ll come up to you, tell you what you need to be doing and how to do things. And I mean, I’m thankful for him.”
That leadership and a sponsor exemption opened the door of a lifetime for Odom, playing on the PGA Tour, making his debut at that Wells Fargo Championship back in May.
“He has amazing talent to get him on the PGA Tour, to get some experience, continue to wave that our flag is going to be awesome,” Curry said ahead of Odom’s debut. “I’m excited for him and excited for the opportunity for him to showcase his skills and continue to put Howard on the map.”
That opportunity connected him with some of the big names on the tour who he was able to reconnect with this week during his hometown tournament, the FedEx St. Jude Championship.
“I’m just trying to be under their wing and trying to just get every bit of knowledge I can get. Because I remember back in the day, I kind of tried to qualify for this and then now it’s a playoff event and it’s now top guys are playing. So it’s crazy to see all these guys in Memphis, my hometown, and doing their thing.”
Odom will continue to do his thing, returning to Howard for one more year with his late father still with him every step of the way.
“I mean, one thing he taught me was patience. And I think patience is paying out right now. So I’m just happy, you know, just to be here and just to be surrounded by great people.”