Athlete of the Week Archive

March 7, 2008


Zach Zaremba

Tell us about your hometown of Pueblo, Colo.
"It's probably the third or fourth biggest city in Colorado, so it is not small. It's bigger than most people think. Pueblo also has very mild winters. You can play golf year-round pretty much, so I like that. Pueblo also has an abundance of tumbleweeds. That would probably be the thing it is known for best, when the wind gets going and they go blowing across the highway."

What's the best thing about having the Colorado State Fair in Pueblo and then what's the worst thing about having it there?
"The best thing is that you get to go do something besides go to the movies or go bowling. The worst thing about it is that after you go for two years then it's just the same thing over and over, so you get bored with it. Otherwise it's fun. Rides and they've had some good concerts there."

What's your best memory of playing in the U.S. Amateur this past summer?
"I got to play with a kid that is on the Walker Cup team and he was an amazing golfer. On the first day I hung with him all day, which is real encouraging to me. He was favored to win the tournament and played well on the second day too. Playing with him was probably my best memory because of how encouraging it was to me."

Along those same lines, if you had to pick anyone to play a round of golf with, who would it be?
"I'd go with Tiger Woods. Just to watch him and to try and figure out the mental aspect of his game. How he handles bad shots and to get a feel for that. He's just amazing."

What type of clubs and balls do you like to use, and why?
"Titleist all the way, for everything. Everything is Titleist in my bag other than my putter. The putter is Odyssey right now and that's the only thing I ever switch. My dad is actually on staff for Titleist as a golf pro, so I've gotten into it that way. They have more of a traditional aspect to their products and in my opinion they're the best."

Do you prefer the shorter holes or the longer ones...Par 3's, 4's or 5's?
"I'd have to say Par 3's, because in a round if you can birdie a Par 3, which doesn't happen on average as often as it does on other holes, that is a shot up on the field."

What is your favorite club to hit?
"I've got to say the putter. The putter's got to be my favorite club and I have to think it is my favorite club so I can make putts. That's where 90% of the game is and it's where you win or lose."

What do you think about the topic of using rangefinders in college golf?
"I use one, absolutely. If you can, then I do. The advantage of it is that even with errant shots you can still get your yardage exact, instead of having to step it off. If you don't have one then you can still use a pin sheet, but sometimes the yardage on a course can be a little off. I use one, but I can see why the USGA disallows them. Figuring yardage is part of the game. I do think that eventually everyone will be using them. For instance, professionals use them in their practice rounds to get all the yardages, so it's kind of the same thing."

Do you have a course or tree-lined?
"You know, I don't like a course that's not defined. So I do like trees since they help define where the holes are going. I like courses with water too, because they are more challenging. Specifically, the best stretch of holes I've ever played is The Bear Trap at PGA National where they play the Honda Classic. Jack Nicklaus designed those three holes (15, 16 and 17) to be especially challenging and they are mostly surrounded with water."

If you had to choose an early-morning round or a late-evening round, which would it be?
"Morning. That's the feel of golf. The mowers, the birds, the quiet. When I've got to wake up for golf it's no problem. School, not so much."

Since the fall was your first semester at UW and you played seven tournaments, how did you balance school and golf?
"School has never been too much of an issue for me because my mom has always really pushed me, but it was different during last semester because we were gone so much. The professors hardly knew who I was. When you are gone you focus on golf mainly, but when we would get back from trips you just have to suck it up and spend hours on homework. It's a grind and you just do the best you can. You really have to schedule everything, like making sure your teachers know when you're gone and setting dates for tests."

What's your favorite sport other than golf?
"Well, I love watching basketball, but my favorite sport to do other than golf is fishing. I love to fish, that's big for me."

How's dorm life been?
"Well, I have a single room, so it's been good. I can have my nice, quiet study time. The noise of a bunch of kids living together can be aggravating at times, but I contribute to that by not shutting off my alarm when I'm gone. Hopefully my neighbors don't hate me for that."