There hasn’t been much to celebrate for Ole Miss basketball during the 2019-20 season, but when 84-year-old Mary Ann Wakefield sunk a putt from baseline to baseline to win a 2020 Nissan Altima on Saturday, The Pavilion might as well have been the venue of Game 7 of the NBA Finals.
Wakefield lined up a putt from 94 feet away and, with pinpoint technique and mechanics, hit a long, winding shot reminiscent of Tiger Woods at the 16th hole of the 2005 Augusta Masters.
“I got up there, and I was very relaxed,” she said. “(I) didn’t feel the pressure.”
In an interview with After Further Review podcast on Rebel Radio, Wakefield revealed that it was a no-look shot — a sort-of homage to greats like Magic Johnson or Jason Williams.
“To tell you the truth, I couldn’t see it once it went past half-court,” she said. “I didn’t know it went in until everybody started screaming, and the announcer said something. When I first got up to the ball, I couldn’t even see the hole because it was a black background and a black hole, so I said, ‘Where’s the hole?’
“If (the put curved), I’d be in trouble. I wouldn’t be able to make a two-foot putt.”
Since the electric putt, Wakefield has been invited to Reb Talk at Boure with David Kellum and featuring Lane Kiffin as well as gotten calls from Inside Edition, Fox News and Access Hollywood, among other programs, with her daughter acting as her agent.
She also made an appearance on ESPN as No. 1 on the Sportscenter Top-10 Plays of the Week. The new Ole Miss legend said that she was just as surprised as anyone when she made the putt.
“I’m a terrible golfer. My husband taught me to golf when I was in my 50s,” she said. “I could hit the ball pretty good, but once I got close to the green I just blew everything. I mean, really, my putting was terrible. That was just a miracle last Saturday.”
Wakefield was a bright spot in Ole Miss’ 103-78 blowout loss to Alabama on Saturday night.
“That’s the best thing I saw in the second half — her making the putt and winning the car. So congratulations to Mary Ann,” head coach Kermit Davis said after the loss.
With one swing of the putter, Wakefield became a legend on national television and on the Ole Miss campus, and we’re sure to see her face on a Club Red student section t-shirt next season.
“It’s unbelievable,” she said. “I know my daughter told me there’s over 3 million ‘twitters,’ and I don’t even Twitter.”