Mark Murphy, a Burbank native and recent graduate of St. Rita High School sat down with the Southtown to talk about one his of passions; golf. As you will read, Mark is a very dedicated man to both his work and his school. Growing up on the Soutside of Chicago, he followed is brothers and cousins into the world of caddying and has enjoyed it ever since. As dedicated as he was to his job, he made his school work the priority graduating from St. Rita with honors. As a result of his hardwork, he was awarded the Evans Scholarship and will be attending the University of Illinois in the Fall. With all this talk of golf, it sometimes gets lost that Murphy was one of the best soccer players in the state his senior year. Murphy garnered numerous awards including All-Conference, All-Area, and All-Sectional team selections and it was no surprise to anyone when he was named the Catholic League Player of the Year.
Murphy, caddies at Beverly Country Club, and when he arrives at the University of Illinois in the fall, he will study either accounting or finance.
What was your reaction to being named an Evans Scholar?
You can’t really put words to it. I was just excited that all my hard work paid off, and I was even more excited that it was such a big relief on my parents as well. They were a little more excited than I was. I wasn’t expecting it; I just applied and hoped for the best.
How did you get involved with golf?
All my cousins and brothers were into golf and caddying. I kind of knew what I was getting into.
How has your caddying experience improved your golf game?
I didn’t start playing until after I had been a caddie. As my knowledge increased, I started golfing. As a caddie, you get to see every shot from a different angle. The golfers tend to give you tips when you caddie, and that helps a lot. I’d without a doubt be worse without my caddying experience.
What’s the best advice you give as a caddie?
When someone asks me what I think they should do, I usually tell them to do what they’re comfortable with. If you’re confident in your shot, I believe you have a better chance of pulling it off.
What’s the most embarrassing moment you’ve had as a caddie?
Any time I mess up I feel bad. Golfers will tell you if you make a mistake, but it’s only to make you better in the future. Sometimes you get guys who are a little harsh, but I just take it as them trying to help.
What’s the largest tip you’ve ever received?
$150. I couldn’t even believe it.
What’s the smallest tip you’ve ever received?
$30. At the end of the day, it all evens out.
If you could caddie for one person who would it be?
Phil Mickelson because he’s a nice guy and an extremely good golfer.
Who is in your dream golf foursome?
Phil Mickelson, Tiger Woods and Jonathan Toews.
As told to Tommy Stokke, Southtown Star