PACIFIC PALISADES, Calif. — While in college at Pepperdine, Jason Allred would get up early once a week to be able to play Bel Air Country Club. It was an exciting part of the week at the time and was a luxury that wasn’t as common to the Waves as it was for golfers at nearby powerhouse schools UCLA and USC.
Riviera Country Club, not quite a stone’s throw from Malibu but a possibly a fairway shot away, was a course he had always wanted to play in college. Finally, in 2008 he was given the opportunity when he was able to tee it up in the Northern Trust Open. It was his second and final year on the PGA Tour as he has bounced around on several mini tours until he finally played his way onto the Web.com tour in 2012.
He still doesn’t have his PGA Tour card – he qualified for this week’s Northern Trust Open on Monday – but you wouldn’t know it by the 64 he shot Friday in the second round, currently the low round for the week.
"This is just so much fun for me," Allred said. "A couple of those holes it’s like, man, I didn’t know all of these slopes were here."
It’s pretty safe to say Allred is the happiest guy on the course. He’s currently tied for ninth and is 5-under for the week after his 7-under performance Friday. Allred almost didn’t even make it to Los Angeles this week. His wife, Kimberly, is only two weeks away from having their third child and it was both a blessing and a curse – if Kimberly goes into labor he will return to Scottsdale, but knowing he had nothing to lose led to his inspired play Monday.
"I almost didn’t come here so I thought I might as well let it rip," Allred said. "Just to be able to look forward to having our third child, that’s helped. This is game I love but I try too hard sometimes. That puts it in perspective."
Play was suspended at 5:50pm 6 Players didnt finish. Play will resume at 7am Third round action starts approx 7:45 am on Saturday #PGATOUR
It’s his first PGA Tour start of the year. He failed to Monday qualify for the Sony Open – an event where he recorded his best PGA Tour finish as a rookie in 2005 – as well as the Waste Management Phoenix Open and the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am.
He began on a tear, birdieing three of his first six holes and then four straight on holes 8-11. He then birdied two more before finally getting into the bunker and bogeying 15 and 16.
The Oregon native could barely contain his excitement. He even said it was fun to talk to the media. While he wants to win and play well, for him it’s all about the experience and so far, it’s been a memorable one.
"I would actually take a second look around, like this is so cool: I’m at Riviera, playing a great round and just have a blast with it," Allred said. "I just kept telling myself, I only get to hit one shot at a time, so go hit it the best you can."