KU to name its west Lawrence golf practice facility after PGA Tour pro Gary Woodland

Gary Woodland watches his tee shot on the fourth hole during the weather delayed third round of the Masters golf tournament at Augusta National Golf Club on Saturday, April 8, 2023, in Augusta, Ga. (AP Photo/Mark Baker)

The University of Kansas is naming its complex of golf practice facilities in west Lawrence after KU alumnus and U.S. Open winner Gary Woodland.

KU received approval on Wednesday from the Kansas Board of Regents to name the conglomeration of practice holes, driving range and putting facilities that the men’s and women’s golf teams use the Gary Woodland Golf Complex. The facilities are located at the privately owned country club The Jayhawk Club north of Clinton Parkway and Crossgate Drive in west Lawrence.

Woodland is a 2007 graduate of KU and is a four-time winner on the PGA Tour. He won the U.S. Open in 2019 at Pebble Beach and has become a major symbol of KU golf on the professional circuit.

“He has been incredibly supportive of the golf program,” Chancellor Douglas Girod told the Regents in asking for permission to name the complex after Woodland.

Woodland, a Topeka native, has a home in Lawrence, while continuing to compete on the PGA Tour. Last month, Woodland announced that doctors had discovered a brain lesion several months ago, and that he had decided to undergo brain surgery after other treatment methods had not been effective.

Woodland had the surgery on Monday, according to his social media accounts and multiple media reports, and is now recuperating.

“After a long surgery today, the majority of the tumor has been removed and he is currently resting,” the PGA Tour reported on its website earlier this week.

KU also on Wednesday received Regents approval to name the primary practice building at its golf complex after a KU couple who have been leaders in the pharmaceutical industry and in the world of youth golf.

KU will name the building, also at the Jayhawk Club, the Tom and Kathy Wiggans Golf Facility. Tom Wiggans is a 1975 graduate of KU’s pharmacy school. He’s created several successful pharmaceutical start-up firms in the Silicon Valley area, Girod said. Kathy Wiggans is the board chair of the nonprofit Youth On Course organization, which runs a program across North America to help youth play rounds of golf and receive off-course mentoring.

The couple, who live in Pebble Beach, Calif., recently provided a donation that paid off the university’s debt related to the golf practice facility, Girod said.


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