What they said: Scott Langleytext sizeJanuary 11, 2013
DAVE SENKO: Maybe just get us started. I know you talked a little bit out there that this might have been your very best round, competitive round, you've ever had.
SCOTT LANGLEY: As a pro, yeah, yeah, probably. To go bogey free the first event as a full member of the TOUR, you know, I was pretty nervous starting out, and kind of settled down after three or four holes, made some nice birdies early, and kind of got me in a nice rhythm for the day. Yeah, just looking back at all my rounds professionally thus far, this might be the best one. It was nice coming.
DAVE SENKO: I know last year you were talking about at this time last year you were playing a Hooters Tour event.
SCOTT LANGLEY: Yep.
DAVE SENKO: Maybe just share that with these guys.
SCOTT LANGLEY: Yeah, Russell Henley and I were walking up the 16th fairway, Russell and I have been friends for years, and we were actually playing the Hooters event together. He had just missed the cut, I barely made the cut, we were on the range trying to help each other find it. You know, we just were walking up 16, you could see the ocean behind, PGA TOUR signs everywhere, looked at each other and realized this is pretty cool. To look back one year ago and to know that we weren't here, we were in a far different place.
Q. Where was that?
SCOTT LANGLEY: Orlando. Nothing against the Hooters Tour, it's a great developmental tour, but we want to be here.
Q. I wonder if you could talk about 13 and 17, a couple of five‑ and six‑footers for par that really kept it going for you.
SCOTT LANGLEY: Yeah, I putted so well today. That was a huge‑‑ any time you shoot a low score, you usually putt the eyes out of it. Today was no different. The short par putts almost mean more sometimes than the long ones for birdie and eagle, just because they really save the momentum and keep the round going.
It was a bonus to make the putt on 9 for eagle, and 16, I just hit a great putt, and it looked good the whole way. You know, just really felt good with the putter all day, and I love the greens. They're in perfect shape. It's kind of a cliché, but if you hit a good putt, it's going to go in. That's just the way it is out here. Yeah, I just felt good with the putter all day.
Q. We've seen a lot of rookies over the year play pretty well at this tournament. Is there something about it? Are you coming in more motivated, with more fire than maybe some of the other guys? Are you looking forward to it more?
SCOTT LANGLEY: Could be, yeah. I know speaking from my experience, as soon as I got my card, I couldn't wait until today, the competitor in me just really excited to get going. But I don't know what it is. Russell played great today, Morgan Hoffman played great, and Ben Kohles and a bunch of guys. We're just all excited to play, excited to be out here. Whether or not we're more motivated than others, I don't know. I'm pretty motivated to play well, but I think we help each other, the young guys.
We've grown up together. Russell and I and Luke have been friends since we were in middle school. It was cool to play with them today, and Russell and I kind of fed off each other, and we all know Luke, I'm sure he'll have a great day tomorrow.
It's just fun to see our peers who we've seen for so long be out here, Bud Cauley, Rickie, Cameron Tringale, doing so well, being in contention to win tournaments. When we do get out here, we believe that we can play well because we see the guys that we have played against our whole careers do the same thing.
Q. When did you first meet Russell?
SCOTT LANGLEY: Actually Russell and I met more recently than Luke. Luke and I have known each other for a while. Russell and I became good friends right after the 2010 U.S. Open at Pebble when we tied for low am. We flew from there to Northern Ireland for the Palmer Cup and literally sat next to each other for two five‑ to seven‑hour flights, and you do that with anybody, you get to know them pretty well, and we just became fast friends and the friendship has grown.
Q. You joked about it when you were coming in here, but did you ever think there would be a chance you'd be back in here one day later?
SCOTT LANGLEY: You know, I felt good about my game. I didn't maybe think I would be leading after today, my first go‑around, but there's no doubt that I felt good about my game coming in. I was motivated to come back and talk to you.
Q. After you shoot 62, how do you keep that going to Sunday?
SCOTT LANGLEY: Just pacing myself, just taking it really easy. Today when I would get excited I had to remind myself, calm down, it's early, it's Thursday. Take some deep breaths, distract myself in any way, normally look at the ocean, that normally does it. But yeah, I'm a young guy, but I'm old enough to know that we have a lot of golf left. We've barely started, and I'm excited about the next few days. Tomorrow the slate is wiped clean. The bad news for me is that tomorrow we all start at even par when we start off again for a second round, so I need to go out and have a good round tomorrow to put myself in position for the weekend.
Definitely enjoying it now, and I'll remember this day for a long time. But the competitor in me and people have taught me, I understand that tomorrow is a new day and I need to move forward.
Q. When you say people have taught you, who is that necessarily? Who do you reflect back on when you get yourself in situations like this?
SCOTT LANGLEY: All of my coaches growing up, from the beginning, back in St.Louis, Helen Kurtis was my childhood instructor and she taught me how to play the game. Coach Small at Illinois taught me how to be a competitor. He's played out here a lot and he's had success out here. You know, you look at Luke and I coming out here, I think we have a great asset in learning from Coach Small at Illinois, just being with him for four years, not just a couple lessons every once in a while. Four years. He was a big influence on us, and certainly instilled a lot of competitive aspects in me that I didn't have before I went to school. And now I work with Mike Adams in Florida.
Q. Which club?
SCOTT LANGLEY: In Florida he's up in Medalist. Helen worked at the family golf center in Kirkwood where I grew up. I wasn't a member at any club growing up, I just hit balls off of astroturf mats in the cold all winter. They had hitting bays, so I just did that all winter.
SCOTT LANGLEY: Yeah, I've developed a pretty good wind game, I think, playing at Illinois and moving to Florida, it's windy in both of those places a lot. You have to learn to flight the ball and to control it in the wind, and the best way that I've learned to do that is to just bring the ball down. My caddie and I joke that I hit this 3‑wood that's kind of my go to shot, it's called the S3, the stinger 3, and this golf course is totally suited for it. I'll hit it off of a lot of the tees. It might not look as pretty as other guys bombing drivers really high, but it's really effective.
It's kind of my shot, but no, another thing, going to Illinois, Coach Small taught me a lot about ball flight and controlling my ball in the wind. I think I came here and saw the wind, I was excited. The windier it gets, I think the more it plays into my hands.
Q. Where do you play in Florida?
SCOTT LANGLEY: I play at the Dye Preserve in Jupiter.
Q. You talked about Russell and Luke. When you saw that pairing, were you thinking I'm in my comfort zone?
SCOTT LANGLEY: I was pumped, yeah. I know that once we get out there, we have to kind of be‑‑ we have to kind of be competitors. We do have to be competitors, but we're really good friends. So it was fun to be able to kind of break the ice on all of our careers playing with friends. So I was certainly excited to see the pairing. Luke being my roommate at school and then Russell obviously being one of my really good buddies, it worked out really well. I was definitely excited.
Q. Were you in Rickie's house last year?
SCOTT LANGLEY: I was, yeah. I stayed with the boys. Rickie was great. Kid has a heart of gold, and he became one of my closest friends living in Jupiter, kind of going through a tough time personally and he really helped me out with staying at his house. Morgan Hoffman and Cam Tringale and Rickie are some of my closest friends to this day, and in large part to me living there with those guys.
Last year, I can really point to some areas in my golf game that were really improved just by being around Rickie and being around Cam and Morgan. They're such competitors, and there's so much good confidence, the right kind of confidence, and I really fed off that living in the house. We just talked golf a lot and played together every once in a while when we were all in town. But it was just a blast to live there.
Q. I don't care about the golf. Who cooked?
SCOTT LANGLEY: (Laughing) I think I tried to do my share because I was rent-free. That was kind of my‑‑ we all kind of pitched in. We had a cleaning lady, which was nice, but we all kind of did it. It was kind of like living in a house with a bunch of guys in college, to be honest. But we would have games and stuff to figure out who would buy the groceries for that night and who would buy dinner and all that stuff. Yeah, Rickie would drive me around in all of his cars, which was fun and crazy and scary all at once. But no, it was just a great environment to be in.
Q. How did you meet Rickie, college?
SCOTT LANGLEY: College, yeah. Truth be told, I knew Morgan a lot better than I knew Rickie when I moved into the house, and that just shows what kind of guy Rickie is, to let somebody that he probably didn't know very well come into his house. Yeah, he probably knew a little bit about me, but a friend in need, he really reached out, and it was great.
But we started to play together a lot more when I lived there, and to this day I am excited to see him next week and hopefully play a practice round with him and just give him a big bear hug. I haven't seen him in a while. Yeah, a lot of fun to be there.
Q. I'm trying to remember, was it two years ago when you were at Erin Hills where you struggled? Can you talk about that and how you kicked yourself out of that?
SCOTT LANGLEY: Yeah, it was kind of the same time. I was really struggling with my game, finished my year at Illinois really poorly at nationals and throughout the summer I kind of struggled and was just fighting my golf game a lot and was kind of‑‑ John Deere Classic, perfect example, was probably rock bottom as a golfer for me. I finished dead lost, dead last by a lot, probably six or seven shots, and just so many emotions that I was excited to play, I got a sponsor exemption, being from Illinois, I wanted to play well really badly. There were almost times during the tournament and after where I felt bad for accepting the exemption because I played so poorly.
The way I got out of it, I just stayed patient. I'm an optimistic guy. I never left that. I was always‑‑ I always believed that I could come out of it and be here one day. I really did.
I had good friends around me that helped me stay patient. Russell was a great friend to me during that time. I mean, of all the guys, I would be on the range at the Dogwood or at the Porter Cup or any amateur tournament, the U.S. Am, and if he saw me struggling he'd come over and really try and help me. That year I finished dead last at Q‑school, too, at second stage, and kind of again, I thought I had it for a little while, played well at Erin Hills actually, and got to Q‑school and just didn't even give myself a chance.
Kind of went back to the drawing board, started working with Mike Adams down in Florida, and he's really helped my game a lot. He's been a great, great teacher and been great influence on my life, as well. So just getting back to the proper technique and never giving up hope and never giving the naysayers and giving ways to negative thinking, ever. I just stayed really positive and always believed in myself and my game and that I could be back here one day.
There are a lot of people that helped me, but certainly Mike Adams and my mental coach Gaston Cordova, too, were big influences in helping me return to playing good golf.
Q. When you were even a younger kid and first came to the game, can you talk about the three things that attracted you to the game and how they were present out there today if they were or how they manifested themselves in your round today?
SCOTT LANGLEY: Yeah, I loved to compete when I was younger, and I still do to this day. My brother and I were so competitive in everything we did, and golf was no different. I got to play golf with my brother a lot when we were growing up, and it was just fun to go and do it with him. I just loved the challenge. I loved that it changed every day. Hawai'i is a great example. It can be really, really windy one day, it can be calm the next day, and new pins every day, different golf courses, different conditions. I love that you have to adapt. I love that it's kind of a thinking man's game. And those are the things that attracted me to it.
But mostly when I was younger, it was a sport that I was the best at. I played basketball, I played soccer, I played baseball. I was too short for basketball, too slow for soccer, couldn't throw hard enough for baseball, so went with golf. But it's always been my greatest passion. So yeah, to this day, I had a blast out there.
SCOTT LANGLEY: I watched the telecast last year for this tournament, and on Sunday it was like perfect. So I know it's possible. It's out there.
Q. Where is your brother now?
SCOTT LANGLEY: He plays golf at Missouri State. He's younger.