Blue Raiders ink two Top 100 golfers

November 11, 2004 · MT Media Relations
MURFREESBORO, Tenn. - Middle Tennessee Head Men's Golf Coach Johnny Moore announced today scholarship agreements with two top 100 players and a U.S. Boys Junior qualifier. Rick Cochran, Craig Smith, and Chas Narramore will be the newest Blue Raiders beginning with the fall season of 2005.

"Because of the national tournament experience all three have the capability of coming in here and contributing right away," said Moore. "All three are very long hitters, come from excellent backgrounds and have had very good instruction."

Cochran, the nephew of PGA Tour star Russ Cochran, is the 90th ranked prospect in the nation according to the Junior Golf Scoreboard. The Paducah, Kent., native was first team all-state in 2004 for Heath High School and finished third in the Kentucky State Championship. Also in 2004, Cochran placed sixth at the Signal Mountain National Junior (73-71-68) and was 13th at the Bubba Conlee National Junior (75-68-69).

"Rick is a fearless and aggressive player who is really long off the tee," said PGA Tour pro Russ Cochran. "He has a lot of natural ability, is tenacious and loves to compete, which makes him a great fit for Middle Tennessee. His short game is world class, and when he gets his putter going he's hard to beat."

Smith, out of Springfield, Tenn., and Davidson Academy, was a first team all-state selection in 2004 and picked the Blue Raiders over Ole Miss, UAB and Memphis. In June of 2004, Smith qualified for the U.S. Boys Junior Championship at the Olympic Club in San Francisco, Calif., by shooting a 142 total in 36 holes (72-70) at the Old Fort Golf Course. He went on to advance to match play after firing a 151 total, but lost in the opening round to the fifth ranked player in the nation and Texas signee Randy Lowry (1 up). Smith also placed eighth at the 2004 Tennessee State Junior Championship (76-72-66).

Narramore, a native of Kingston, Tenn., is the 98th ranked prospect in the nation according to the Junior Golf Scoreboard. The Roane County High School product is the current Tennessee State Junior Champion after firing rounds of 70-68-70 on the Willow Creek Golf Course in Knoxville. A runner-up in the 2004 National High School Championship, Narramore recently shot a 59 (11-under) at Lakeside Golf Course in Kingston.

"This is a great class and we are very excited to have them representing our program and this University," Moore said. "A lot of credit needs to go to assistant coach Whit Turnbow who was very instrumental in getting all of these guys to come to Middle Tennessee. We were fortunate to grab two Top 100 kids for the first time in our program's history and Whit deserves a tremendous amount of credit."

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