It's that time of year again and all of the Fresno State athletic teams are gearing up for a new season of action. The men's golf team is starting off this centennial season in a big way. They will be heading off to Tanagura, Japan to compete in the 28th Annual Topy Cup.
The Topy Cup is a large golf tournament held in Japan for both men's and women's teams. The tournament is open to U.S. collegiate teams as well as Japanese collegiate teams. The U.S. teams must be invited by the Japanese Golf Association in order to participate. The Topy Cup is held at the Tanagura Country Club in Tanagura, Japan every year in early September.
This fall the Fresno State men's golf team will be competing in the Topy Cup on September 9-11. There are 90 players total in the tournament and only six teams are invited from the United States. The organizers of the tournament pay for five players and one coach from each team to travel to Japan to compete. Fresno State was picked as one of the four men's teams to travel to Japan this year. The other U.S. men's golf teams traveling to Japan are the University of Arizona, Arizona State, and Texas A&M. The women's golf teams traveling to Japan are the University of Arizona and UC Davis.
The teams have a tradition of exchanging small gifts at the beginning of the tournament. These gifts are usually mementos from the Universities and all of the American teams exchange them with students from the Japanese teams. This allows the student athletes to bond and be able to take home a personal souvenir from the tournament.
The tournament consists of 54 holes which are played over a three day period. There is a team and an individual champion crowned on the last day of play. The teams will spend the first day of the trip playing a practice round and getting familiar with the course that they will be competing on over the next three days. After the teams are done with their practice rounds, there will be a long drive contest. For this event one student from each team will be asked to participate. Following the long drive contest will be a welcome party for all of the teams and coaches.
The following three days will consist of the actual tournament. For each round a U.S. team will be paired up with two Japanese teams. On the last day of competition award ceremonies will be held and team and individual champions will be crowned. There is also a farewell party held that evening for all of the teams to celebrate the conclusion of the tournament.
Coach Mike Watney and the men's golf team are excited for their trip to Japan. The Topy Cup is a great way to open the centennial season. Don't forget to check gobulldogs.com for all of the latest updates from Tanagura Japan!
Jory is a member of the Fresno State Athletics Communications staff.