Jeremy Gandon just beginning to tap potential during freshman year

Freshman Jeremy Gandon finishes his swing from the fairway of the seventh hole at Colbert Hills Golf Course during a team practice on October 1, 2015. (File Photo by Evert Nelson)

When his head coach said he had the potential to be the best golfer the K-State program has ever seen, his reply was, “That’s cool,” followed by a couple of chuckles. Jeremy Gandon is his name and he is one of the many young talented golfers on the K-State men’s golf team.

“He’s had a really, really good freshman year,” head coach Grant Robbins said. “It’s hard for any freshman playing college golf for the first time. You don’t typically see them have as much success as he’s had.”

While Gandon had a very successful freshman year, it has not come without its ups and downs. In his first-ever collegiate tournament, Gandon finished in 60th place. The following tournament two weeks later he finished in a tie for first to win the tournament.

Gandon said the ever-challenging mental side of golf is something he needs to work on.

“I think the main work I have to do is more in my mental game, which is sometimes not very good,” Gandon said. “Last year I didn’t have to care about school, it was only golf, so now I have school and golf. It can be a challenge.”

Making the transition from playing golf in France to coming to K-State and being a student and an athlete all at once is no easy task. Gandon, however, said he is happy he chose to come to this small college town in northeast Kansas.

“It’s pretty cool,” Gandon said. “I like Manhattan. It’s very good here. I think it was the best program for me between the schools that (recruited) me.”

Robbins said Gandon has done well in how he has handled the challenges of going to another country to play golf.

“It’s very hard for someone coming from another country because you come, and you’re having to deal with the language barrier, having to fit in to a new school, having to be away from home for so long,” Robbins said. “He’s made the transition very well, he gets along well with everyone on the team and he’s doing well in school. He’s had a very, very good freshman year.”

Now that the transition year is finished, Gandon is focused on improving his game for next season.

“I will work on my mental game and my short game and putting,” Gandon said.

Finishing fourth in the competitive Big 12 Tournament to end the season is a great building block and will certainly help keep his focus on improving, Gandon said.

“It’s good because I was in a bad mood the last few tournaments, so for my confidence going forward it’s good,” Gandon said.

K-State golf has produced two All-Americans since 2004, including PGA Tour golfer Robert Streb. Robbins said Gandon oozes potential, and if he keeps improving could be destined to join those two.

“He’s going to grow and by the time you see him as a junior and senior, he’s going to be very, very good,” Robbins said. “He has the potential to be the best that’s ever played here I think.”

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