January 28 2012
LA JOLLA, Calif. -- John Huh had never played in a PGA TOUR event until two weeks ago when he tied for 53rd at the Sony Open in Hawaii.
The 21-year-old must be a pretty quick learner. After all, Huh is 4 under through 16 holes at Torrey Pines on Saturday and currently tied for second, four strokes off the pace being set by Kyle Stanley.
Huh is a Korean-American who was born in New York City. The family moved to Korea shortly after he was born but returned to the United States to live in Chicago and Los Angeles, where Huh went to high school and became a fan of the Lakers and the Dodgers. His father is his primary instructor.
Huh turned pro in 2008 and made it through q-school last December, tying for 24th. When he was 19, he beat K.J. Choi by one shot at the 2008 Shinhan Donghae Open on the Korean Tour as he won rookie of the year honors.
Huh said Ernie Els and Tiger Woods were his idols early, and then he began following Choi and Y.E. Yang. "I'm looking forward to playing with them in practice rounds, for sure and learn from them a little bit," Huh said of the two Koreans.
"There's a lot of good players over there in Korea that are really looking forward to coming over here. I'm pretty sure it's going to be really soon."
Huh, who had three eagles in his first round on the North Course, said the strongest part of his game is the driver -- "keeping the ball on the fairway and giving myself a good chance to hit a good shot," he said. And he's doing just that at Torrey Pines, ranking first in fairways hit and tied for 16th in greens in regulation.