Player profile: Jacob Wherley
When most people think of golf, many don’t think of a fast-paced, exciting game, but that is not the case for Jacob Wherley. “It’s exciting for me and there is just nothing else like it,” Wherley said.
Wherley comes to UIS from Ozark, Mo. for two reasons, academics and the chance to play the sport he loves. He is a sophomore in the Capital Honors program and is currently a business administration major. Wherley’s favorite part about golf is “the individual aspect, you are out there playing for your own score and your own name.”
In high school, Wherley not only played golf, but he also played hockey and was a member of the A-B Honor Roll and the National Honor Society. His senior year, Wherley made the conference championship team for golf in which his team were district champions, as well. Wherley was also 4A Missouri State qualifier.
Wherley came to UIS for golf. “Coach Frank recruited me and I liked the feel of the campus and the school and classes that were offered as well as the honors program. I seemed like a great fit for me,” Wherley said.
During his freshman year Wherley saw action in all but one of the team’s tournaments. In his first tournament, Wherley tied for 14th at the UW-Parkside Fall Invitational. He averaged 79.2 last year and his best finish was third place in the UIS Springfield Classic.
Wherley finished 40th at the Great Lakes Valley Conference Championship and was selected to the academic All-GLVC team. He was also was named to the UIS Chancellor’s Academic Honor Roll for the fall semester and to the UIS Coach’s Academic Honor Roll for the spring semester. Wherley made the Dean’s List for the fall semester.
Playing at UIS Wherley likes “the players and the coach on the team for sure. They are a great bunch of guys to be around and it creates that environment – that team feeling that you want.”
Wherley’s favorite memory of playing golf was last fall when he won his first college tournament. “I shot 73 and 72 and after the 36 holes I was tied for first so I won; well, technically I tied for first.” Another one of Wherley’s favorite memories was last weekend when he shot one under par at the Midwest Regional. Wherley finished tied for 19th out of 155.
After Wherley graduates, he would like to play golf professionally. “It’s pretty tough, but I’ll give it a shot and if not I’ll find a ‘real job’ probably something to do with business.”
Wherley’s favorite professional golfer is either Phil Nickelson or Kegan Bradley. “They can both hit the ball a long ways, and when they get it going they are fun to watch.” While Wherley is not a fan of Tiger Woods as a person, he is as a golfer “definitely fun to watch, great for the game, and he brings that wow factor to the game. Like Michael (Jordan) did for basketball, he does that to golf.”
The next thing for Wherley and the rest of the golf team is the GLVC championship tournament which has yet to be announced.
Whether one day we see Wherley competing in the Masters or not, he will continue to swing his club for the enjoyment of the game.