In its first year of existence, the Ole Miss disc golf club has secured a spot in the National Collegiate Disc Golf Championships in North Augusta, South Carolina, the end of this week.
“We’re really excited about the team going to nationals,” Brian Veverka, the graduate assistant for intramural sports and sports clubs, said. “Hopefully it brings more attention to the sport of disc golf and to the disc golf course on campus.”
The club was founded last spring by students Zack Fisher and Alan Logan. It began competing last fall in the Southern Collegiate Disc Golf Conference and Mid South Open. It holds its practices at a course near the intramural fields.
“It’s a brand new club that just started in the fall semester, and already in the spring they’re going to a national tournament,” Veverka said. “That’s incredible for them to achieve that success so quickly.”
As a first-year sports club at Ole Miss, the disc golfers have been forced to self-finance many of their expenses. The team had a GoFundMe page on Nov. 28, 2016, after finishing second in the Mid South Collegiate Open in Jonesboro, Arkansas. Its goal was to raise $1,500.
“Donations have come a lot from families, people from the community, Shipley Donuts, local business owners, but mainly our pockets,” Alan Logan, vice president and co-founder of the disc golf club, said. “We have paid for 99 percent of our expenses so far.”
Any money raised goes directly to travel arrangements and tournament fees for their trip to North Augusta. There is a $200 entry fee for the tournament, and each player is required to join the Professional Disc Golf Association, a privilege reserved for those players who pay a $75 fee.
“A disc golf team is made up for four players,” Zach Fisher, president and co-founder of the disc golf club, said. “I am excited to go and play on the course. This is the furthest we will have traveled as a team.”
While the trip and tournament fees present a considerable challenge for the club’s members, every dollar has a purpose.
“The money is to make sure we get there safely, we’re comfortable and that we’re fed,” said Logan. “And that all the dues have been met in order to compete.”
The club’s members eagerly anticipate their chance to put Mississippi on the disc golfing map.
“We are excited to represent our school and our state on the biggest stage in collegiate disc golf,” Tyler Flynn, treasurer for the disc golf club, said. “Ideally, we will bring home something nice and shiny.”
For the team, the message is simple.
“Put the disc in the basket,” said Logan. “That’s the game.”
This article was submitted to The Daily Mississippian from an advanced reporting class.