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Video: Oxford hosts first North Mississippi Classic Golf tournament

Leah Davis
Oxford Stories
lmdavis2@go.olemiss.edu

This spring, the Web.com and PGA Tours sanctioned the first annual North Mississippi Classic Golf tournament. The Web.com Tour is a well-renown tour that hosts tournaments in five locations across the United States, including California, Florida, Georgia, North Carolina, and now Mississippi. It was held April 15-22, 2018 at the Country Club of Oxford.

There were 156 players competing over seven days in which part of the $550,000 was awarded to the top three players, and the rest was given to Century Club Charities. The Web.com and PGA Tour sanctioned this event in which 156 players compete for a total of $550,000.

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156 players will compete in this competition over the week long event. Photo by Leah Davis.

Steve Jent, executive director of Century Club Charities, works behind the scenes to make this event happen. He and his team work to keep the daily logistics of the tournament running smoothly.

“I’m in charge of the team that puts on the tournament from an operational standpoint,” he said. “In terms of hospitality, running the pro-am and everything for general spectators, my staff runs it from that standpoint.”

Each day of the tournament gets more competitive. To begin the week, there are two days of practice. The next, there is a pro-am in which amateur golfers play against the Web.com professionals.

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The North Mississippi Classic will take place at the Country Club of Oxford. Photo by Leah Davis.

The tournament was hosted at the Country Club of Oxford. Resident and Range Chair Steve Downing shared his thoughts about the significance of the event for the Oxford community and the work of the charities involved.

“This is a big deal for Oxford and the Country Club community,” he said. “There is only 20-something of these events worldwide everywhere. It’s very well put together. The staff has been great to work with.”

“The total money raised in the tour comes from multiple sources: the Web.com, Web.com Tour, and sponsors. Jent said: “What we hope is that after the hospitality bills, the gift packages, it all adds up. But we hope to have enough money left over to give to charity.”

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Jent and Downing speak to plan the next day’s events. Photo by Leah Davis.

“There are 25 pros who have a team of four with them. The sponsors of those pros are putting in about $8,000 per grouping, so that’s going to raise about a couple hundred thousands dollars for charity. They have other sponsors for all the name brands. It’s a great thing. Through this one charity, it will be parceled out to others.”

On the last Sunday of the week, Eric Axley was announced the champion of the 2018 North Mississippi Classic and received the $99,000 prize.

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