Golf: Rickie Fowler attracts a crowd at Patriot Cup

Dozens of kids, ranging from elementary school age to college students wore orange and lime green shirts and Puma hats. They followed Rickie Fowler around Monday afternoon on a hilly course that takes some dedication to walk all 18 holes.
by Michael Baldwin Published: May 27, 2013
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photo - Professional golfer Rickie Fowler eyes his second shot to the green on the 16th fairway during the 4th Annual Folds of Honor Patriot Cup on May 27, 2013.  JOEY JOHNSON/For the Tulsa World ORG XMIT: DTI1305271809378530
Professional golfer Rickie Fowler eyes his second shot to the green on the 16th fairway during the 4th Annual Folds of Honor Patriot Cup on May 27, 2013. JOEY JOHNSON/For the Tulsa World ORG XMIT: DTI1305271809378530

“I really don't think about (expectations) a whole lot,” Fowler said. “I try to focus week to week. This week, we have the Memorial and I'm really prepping for the U.S. Open and looking to have a good major. It's tough to win on the PGA Tour. I'm excited with where my game is and where my health is now.”

Hampered by a back injury last year, Fowler said he's finally healthy for the first time since last year's U.S. Open.

“The last five weeks, playing in four events, are not the results I wanted,” Fowler said. “But health-wise I feel really good. I just need some putts to drop, get some good mojo going, get a little rhythm going. I've been swinging it really well. I'm pretty excited about what's about to happen with my game.”

California born and raised, Fowler views Oklahoma as his second home. Last week he matched the first $100,000 given to tornado relief in the Oklahoma City area from fans at the Colonial in Fort Worth.

“Oklahoma is definitely part of who I am,” Fowler said. “That’s never going to go away. Even though it was only two years here I love Stillwater and getting back when I can. I love hanging around Tulsa. Oklahoma is a great place. I wish I could spend more time here.”

Fowler is committed to playing in the Patriot Cup. At this year’s event Fowler was paired with Major Dan Rooney, who six years ago founded the Folds of Honor Foundation which raises money for college scholarships for families of military members injured or killed in service.

“I really hope this keeps fitting into my schedule the way it has,” Fowler said. “There are bigger things out there than golf. It’s a pretty special deal to spend the day here with Major Dan and everyone else. It’s a great cause.

“It definitely fits with Memorial Day. Major Dan is a pretty incredible person. It’s been great helping him out. It’s the least we can do as golfers. Memorial Day is Memorial Day for a reason. It’s a great to remember those who have given us the freedom to tee it up on a day like today.”

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by Michael Baldwin
Reporter
Mike Baldwin has been a sports reporter for The Oklahoman since 1982. Mike graduated from Okmulgee High School in 1974 and attended Oklahoma Christian University, graduating with a journalism degree in 1978. Mike's first job was sports editor...
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