DENVER (CBS4) – The men’s British Open tees off at Royal Liverpool this week. Denver native Mark Hubbard hopes to play in the British someday. He hopes to play on the PGA Tour next year and he’s well on his way.
Hubbard is currently in the Top 15 on the Web.com Tour. The Top-25 automatically advance to the PGA.
On Twitter and Instagram he calls himself “Homeless Hubbs” because that’s what life feels like in golf’s minor leagues. But two weeks ago Hubbard may have had a life changing moment. He didn’t win the United Leasing Championship on the Web.com Tour, but he did finish second and pocketed $52,000.
Hubbard is now 11th on the money list.
“Getting to the PGA isn’t my overall goal. I want to be a Top 20 player in world and really more than anything I just want to be as good as I can be at the game,” Hubbard said. “So if I just keep my mind set on that and just try to get better every day it’s easy not to get caught up in that kind of stuff.”
Hubbard has been building towards it ever since he was a prep at Colorado Academy. He was clearly the best amateur golfer in Colorado, winning both the state stroke and match play events in 2007. Only four people have ever done that. Then Hubbard went to San Jose State where he won the WAC championship. From there it was off to life on the mini tours where he won on both the Golden State and Canadian tours.
“Mini tour golf is brutal, it’s really fun, you make friends for life on it,” he said. “But it’s a grind.”
There are no private jets on the mini tours — just the player and their car. Hubbard calls is car “Espanraza.” He got it in his freshman year of college and it now has 100,000 miles on it.
Hubbard’s life is changing rapidly in a good way. Now instead worrying about pinching pennies and living on a tight budget he can focus on golf, like who’s going to be his caddy.
“I picked up this guy in Cleveland and he’s been caddying for me the last three and I really like him a lot. But I’m already committed to this other guy who I want to be my caddy next year on tour.”
Whoever totes Hubbard’s bag next year will most likely do so on the PGA Tour where Hubbard will join Kevin Stadler as the only other player from Denver with full-time status on golf’s biggest stage.
“I still have them announce me from Denver, Colorado on the first tee,” he said. “I think golf in Colorado in underrated, so to put it on the map would be a sense of pride for me.”
Next year, while Hubbard may still be homeless, what a home it’ll be.