Insider: Streb's whirlwind to continue next year on TOUR

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Stan Badz/PGA TOUR
Robert Streb will be a rookie two years in a row, as his first Web.com Tour season is leading into 2013 on the PGA TOUR.
September 12, 2012
John Dell, PGATOUR.COM Correspondent

When Robert Streb has some spare time to think about his year it's hard to comprehend how much has happened.

The 25-year-old former Kansas State star has thrived on the Web.com Tour and has done so well he'll be on the PGA TOUR next season. On top of that he took a week off in June to get married.

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"It's kind of been a whirlwind," Streb said in what could only be called an understatement. "But it's been a lot of fun so I'm not going to complain."

He knows nobody would listen if he did complain.

Streb became the sixth rookie to win on the Web.com Tour two weeks ago when he won the Mylan Classic and a career-best $108,000. He jumped from 23rd to fourth on the money list to secure his spot on the PGA TOUR for 2013.

He also became the 13th first-time winner so far on the Web.com Tour through 20 tournaments.

"To finally win somewhere other than my home golf course was great," Streb said, referring to his two victories in the Oklahoma State Open at Oak Tree Country Club in Edmond with his last one coming in 2009. "Obviously the win kind of put me on the fast track to where I want to go and that's the PGA TOUR."

It wasn't always the fast track for Streb, who graduated from Kansas State in 2009 then hit the minitours for two years before getting on the Web.com Tour. He says the days playing on the Hooters Tour were beneficial to his development.

All of that experience came in handy at the Mylan Classic.

"I just felt a little more comfortable out there and I think having that experience on the Hooters Tour prepared me for this season," Streb said. "I had to learn how to travel and how to manage things from week to week. And I tried to figure out how much to practice and all those things."

There wasn't a major difference for Streb at the Mylan Classic other than his comfort level.

"Once you feel comfortable and play pretty good in a couple of tournaments you feel like you belong," Streb said.

His first big win of his career didn't exactly come out of nowhere. He had finished tied for sixth at the Price Cutter Charity Championship and had a tie for eighth the next week at the Midwest Classic and both of those finishes helped his confidence.

Once he got into contention again Streb was ready to walk through that door. Of course, it also helped that his putting came around.

"I think on the weekend my putter kind of got hot," Streb said in yet another understatement. "You make a couple early and you feel good about it and that kind of got me going. That was good timing."

Inside THE 25
1 Casey Wittenberg $312,428
2 Luke List $309,196
3 Ben Kohles $286,875
4 Robert Streb $253,491
5 Paul Haley II $252,726

What was also good timing was setting up his future on the PGA TOUR not long after getting married. He and his wife, Maggie, are looking to move from Oklahoma to Florida where Streb can travel easier to and from tournaments.

"We'll move probably in the off-season so that will keep us busy," he said.

When Streb was going up he favored hockey over golf, but he became an accomplished high school player and then had a great senior season in college. That's when he felt like a career as a pro golfer was in his future.

"I played on the same high school team as Kevin Tway (Bob Tway's son) and then in college I played OK until my senior year," Streb said. "When I was younger I realized I wasn't fast enough or big enough to play hockey."

He's proven that he's more than good enough to play pro golf and is looking forward to the challenge of being a rookie again in 2013 on the PGA TOUR.

One thing he'll have to get used to is the long season, which will begin in January.

"I'm not to sure how it's going to be out on the PGA TOUR," Streb said. "I'll see how it goes. I've never played in one of those events and I know there's a lot going on at those tournaments so I'll have to adjust to that. I'll just try and treat those like any other tournaments."

The strength of Streb's game is his all-around play. He's 17th in driving distance but he's also fifth in putting average and sixth in the all-around category.

"Overall, my game is pretty good and I don't often look at my stats but I was poking around and I noticed I was in the top five in putting and scrambling so my short game has been pretty solid," Streb said.

While Streb can't help but look ahead to 2013 he wants to remain dialed in for the rest of this season. The Web.com Tour has seven tournaments left.

"I want to try to stay in the groove and I know it's nice that I finally won but you can't rest on that and you have to keep going," Streb said. "You want to keep going and stay sharp."

With a move to Florida upcoming there will be plenty of expenses, but coming off the best payday should help. He says there are no big plans to spend the money on any big-ticket items.

"I haven't done anything with it," Streb said about his winner's share. "I'll have to see how much Uncle Sam takes first but I'll probably just put it away in the bank. Maybe we will put it toward a house later on."

.ohn Dell has covered golf for the Winston-Salem Journal in North Carolina for the last 19 years. His views do not necessarily represent the views of the PGA TOUR. You can reach him at johndell@triad.rr.com.

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