What they said: Zach DoranJuly 25, 2008
PGA TOUR staff
Q. This is your first cut ever on the Nationwide Tour.
ZACH DORAN: It feels great to play the weekend. I haven't played well on the weekend so far and it's nice to get out here and play well. I feel like I'm competitive but I don't feel my resumé would say otherwise right now.
Q. Do you have a sense of -- I understand your mention of the resumé and that kind of thing, but do you have a sense that this is pretty unusual? I have you down as making one paid cut since 2005 --
DORAN: There's been a couple others, basically a Canadian Tour event and a handful of other ones that I've played okay in, but it's been few and far between.
Q. I would assume you're thrilled.
DORAN: Yeah, I'm excited, feel like I'm playing good at least, and that's kind of a relief. I don't really know what to make of it.
I'm just trying to play one shot and keep going. I feel like I beat my head against the wall for so long, that the perspective changes a little bit and I feel like I'm a little more relaxed about the whole situation. I start playing good, I don't get as up and I don't get as down I don't think either way right now. I'm just going about my business I guess.
Q. Let's get into the round a little bit, because it looks like you're right about the top 20 right now, and you're 1-under through two rounds, it looked like you could maybe be Top-10.
DORAN: Yeah, I guess everybody could always say that. No one makes as many as they should. It was okay. I rolled it all right today. I hit it in a lot of spots that I really couldn't make aggressive putts at you know what I mean. I was above the hole a handful of times and I had another couple holes I was playing a few feet of break trying to get it down there.
The greens out here since they have re-designed them are pretty -- they have some undulation in them a little bit and you can't just rip it in the middle of the green everywhere and have a 15-foot uphill putt or birdie anymore. There's some spots that you need to be behind there left or right of it, and if you're not there, you're kind of defensive putting or putting defensively a little bit.
Q. You're 17th hole was No. 8, which is over the water there. Did it take that tee shot to finally feel like you were going to do it??
DORAN: Not really. I wasn't even thinking about the water. If you're worried about the water on that hole, you don't need to be out here.
Q. At what point did you feel good about making the cut??
DORAN: I really wasn't that worried about it. I saw the leaderboard when I was on hole six, the par 5, and I wasn't really looking at it. I just glanced at it and they had the thing that said projected cut at 1-over, and I was 1-under at the time.
So I kind of for a brief second sort of thought about it and I was like, that's really not what I need to be thinking about right now.
So I was trying to just start it over, you know what I mean, get back to my routine, and I've got a couple notes jotted down in my yardage book and looked at those again to remind myself what's going on here and what the scoreboard says or what the projected cut is not something that I need to be worried about.
Q. You were with one of our other reporters yesterday and you said you have a goal but you were not ready to share it yesterday. Are you ready to share it now??
DORAN: Root legally. I've got lots of goals. I've got long-term goals and short-term goals and I've got goals for this week. It's not hard to figure out, nothing crazy or whatever, but I'll just keep that to myself. It's like a secret and pretty much what everybody in here would expect.
Q. This new caddie you picked up, do you think that helped??
DORAN: Yeah, I think he did a nice job. He's done a nice job for me so far. He's a nice guy. He's done what I asked and keeps up and pretty much wherever I look for him to be he's pretty much there, so that's nice. I don't have to worry about that a little bit. It's good. He's a good guy. So I lucked out there.
Q. How did you know him??
DORAN: Steve's a friends of mine and we played on the Canadian Tour together and he was high up on the Money List to get into Pete Dye and asked him if he knew of anybody that didn't have a bag this week or if he had somebody. He had someone carry for him at the second stage of U.S. Open Qualifying, and he caddied in the practice rounds and he caddied for six holes and I thought he was a nice guy or whatever and I asked about that guy and said he was on the regular tour looking for somebody.
I asked like four or five people, like Chris Smith and a couple other guys and I had like three or four guys that were trying to help me find someone that was good. I just wanted to get someone that was like recommended by a friend that I trust basically, that was all. It isn't like there's any horrible caddies out here or anything like that, but I just wanted to get somebody that at least knew me and thought I might get along well with whoever they recommended. There's no scientific method to it or anything.
Q. So this is your first Nationwide Tour start??
DORAN: Yeah, I got a sponsor exemption to play here. They don't have a Monday qualifier for this obviously. I tried to Monday qualify a few times in the past and been within one or two shots a couple of times and gotten into a playoff but never gotten in, so this is the first start I've had.
Q. Where have you been playing??
DORAN: Pretty much the Canadian Tour the last few years. Last year I had my card and lost it, and then this year I got it back and the last few weeks I haven't played, for whatever reason I made some mistakes here or there, and all of a sudden I'm two or three shots outside the number and three or four shots outside the number and just kind of things haven't been going all that well, so I don't know. When I played -- I played well in México and that was nice.
Q. From the standpoint of what just happened here the past two days, how much maybe does your comfort level with the tournament being in Scarlet and you being at home have to do with the way you played the last two days??
DORAN: It definitely helps. Definitely being in Scarlet is probably the biggest thing. I mean, I was telling somebody yesterday, I can't remember his name, a reporter yesterday, but he asked about this being my first Nationwide start, and everything here is pretty much bigger than what I'm used to. I'm not used to having this many people out here and I'm not used to having all the fairways roped off and I'm not used to having the scorers or the ShotLink or the walking scorers and all that stuff.
We have some of that on the Canadian Tour and there's a few events that are nicer than others where you get some of that stuff but this is bigger than what I'm used to. I know the lines off the tees even though it's re-designed. It's re-designed but not re-designed to the point where I don't know anything about the golf course. When I stand on the tee I know where to hit it and where it's good and I know where to miss it and where to not miss it.
Q. What about in the last couple of years, how close were you to saying you'll go do something else??
DORAN: You always question in the back of your mind, you start missing cuts, like what am I doing.
But I don't know I've got some really good people helping me out, not just financially, those guys are great too, but like Jason Carbone, my instructor, I can't say enough about that guy. He's helped me so much, not just with my golf swing had general. He's not a sports psychologist but he understands how it goes and he's been around enough TOUR players to know what it's like when it's going good and what it's like when it's going bad. He's been a big help as far as I can call that guy and talk to him about anything and I know it's not going to go anywhere else and he's been awesome.
My dad's been great, and I think there's a lot of dads I think that are a little psycho, a lot psycho. I feel good that my dad isn't one of those. He likes it. He follows me on the Internet and stuff, but it's not like -- I don't have to call him every day and tell him every shot I hit. I certainly -- I think he's proud but I'm happy that he's like relaxed about it, you know what I mean.
Q. Like in 2002, you had the leading scoring average on the Class A team.
DORAN: I think I did one year.
Q. Do you stay in touch with Coach Brown??
DORAN: Yeah, Coach is very dependable. He's very dependable. He's great. I call him on his cell phone every night and check in on him and gives me a call every now and then and sees how things are going.
He's pretty relaxed. He's not like checking every Thursday night like every one of his past players; if he did that, he would be on the Internet for three hours figuring out who is playing or whatnot.
Yeah, he's really good to lean on a little bit because I mean, he's good because he doesn't get too high or too low, either. He's even so many good players come through here, and he's seen so many players really, really screw up, that he's seen worse, you know what I mean, so he's pretty relaxed about all that, too.
Q. Do you remember the last time you played on a weekend??
DORAN: México earlier this year. I played well at the Toledo Open last year. I think I finished fifth out there. It's a two-day event, a smaller event. There's no cut there, but you have to finish in the top whatever to finish in the money.
Q. Have you ever played the Ohio Open??
DORAN: I have, yeah. I made the cut there. Ever one year and missed it one year I think. I don't know, I think I played it twice, maybe more than that, but I think twice.
Q. Your last year at Ohio State would have been --
DORAN: My eligibility ran out at a different time than I graduated. I finished in the fall, so it would have been the spring of the same year I guess, I think '04. But I don't know if you want to double-check that. That might not be accurate.
Q. And you transferred to Ohio State from somewhere else??
DORAN: Yeah, I went to Florida Southern originally.
Q. At Florida Southern, was that a full-ride, a half-ride??
DORAN: I don't know the percentage to be honest. It's a private school so the tuition was a little -- it's a very good golf school actually. Jeff Klauk went there, Rocco Mediate also, and then Travis Perkins and Marco Dawson and Lee Janzen. There's a lot more at Ohio State I guess, too.