Will Dickson’s Journal – Week of March 20, 2023

GolfNewsRI is excited to partner with former Moses Brown star Will Dickson to chronicle his journey through professional golf. 

Will Dickson’s Journal gives fans an unprecedented look at what it is like to be a professional golfer, grinding everyday trying to make it to the “show.” 

Will Dickson PHOTO: Georgia Tech

The journal is in Will’s own words, pictures and videos.

Anything written in italics is GolfNewsRI, as we chime in with some details and try to fill some gaps. 

We hope you enjoy the ride….

Setting Up

Rhode Island’s Will Dickson hasn’t played a competitive round in about a month. 

His last event on the G-Pro Tour was the St. Simons Open back in early February where he finished 27. 

The G-Pro Tour has been off since then. 

After spending most of the last month in Florida practicing, Will’s second full season as a pro begins with a Korn Ferry Tour Monday Qualifier, known in the biz as Monday Q….

Korn Ferry Tour – Club Car Championship, Monday Qualifier

March 20, 2023

I guess it would be, Saturday. We drove down to Savannah, Georgia and when I say we, it’s my roommate Ben Smith and I. 

He graduated from Georgia Tech in 2021, and we live together now, he’s also playing professional golf. He played on the golf team at Georgia Tech. 

We actually took separate cars, but we were kinda following each other and got to the hotel Saturday evening. We had dinner and I think we just stopped at a Chipotle or something like that. Something easy. 

The thing is with  Mondays is like, you can do it cheaper and you can do it quicker if you want. Like, let’s say you woke up Sunday and drove down Sunday and then play on Sunday afternoon. That would save a night in the hotel. But since you’re making the Mondays a priority, it’s like, all right, well, you want to do it the right way. If you want to have time to rest, you want to be fully recovered and ready to go. So, extra night in the hotel Saturday night, that way we can have a good sleep, wake up, take your time in the morning. 

Sunday is the practice round. I think I went to the gym before our practice round to get a little workout in and then we got to the course (Georgia Southern). 

We got a tee time for like 1:30 p.m. and played a little practice round. The practice round, you know, it’s nothing too serious at all. We’re just trying to get a feel for the greens, feel for how our pitch and chip shots would come into the greens, how much the ball spins, and speed of the greens. Another thing we look for is like what clubs you’re gonna hit off the tee, what lines to take. Nobody’s really keeping score. We’re not playing a match with each other. We’re just getting a feel for, for the course. 

We got out of there probably 4:30-5 o’clock and had a nice early dinner at like Outback. 

Try to try to be in bed by around 9:30-10 o’clock. Make sure you’re getting enough sleep. It’s not just for the next day, this is how it is every day. Like, I don’t have much time between this last tournament and the next one. So, like if you don’t get enough sleep throughout the week, you’re not going to be able to perform to the best of your ability the following week. 

So it’s really a combination of everything you do every day, hopefully will keep you in good performance shape throughout the year. We try to get to bed pretty early trying not to watch too much basketball or whatever is going on TV. 

Then Monday. 

So I had a 12 45 tee time and Ben had had like a 1:50 tee time. So he was a little bit behind me, but both in the afternoons.

I like to be in the afternoon for a Monday just because you kinda know what you got to do. You can see the scores, you can check the scores on your phone and just to see where the guys are at.

“The range balls at the Monday were absolutely terrible. If you were to hit driver, they could have cracked the face” – Will Dickson

I feel like it’s easier to shoot a really low score in the afternoon, than first thing in the morning. 

My round was pretty good. I hit the ball pretty well. I knew I was right there with a few holes to play. 

I knew I had to probably birdie three of the last five holes, to get to five or six under.  I new six was in, I was hoping five would have a chance and it would have been a little bit easier to get the five. But, I had good chances.

The last four or five holes, I probably had 10 -15 ft birdie putts on each one. I hit good putts, they just didn’t go in. 

“The greens barely had grass on it, they are pretty chewed up” – Will Dickson

So that’s kind of the theme of the week. I had a lot of opportunities, but I didn’t really make anything. So I shot three-under and six-under got in.  

I waited like an hour and a half for Ben to finish. I wanted to see where, you know what he did and probably have dinner together afterwards anyway. So I just hung around the green hit some putts, try to get a get a good feel for, you know, take advantage of your time, as best as you can. And then when Ben finished, he came in and shot seven-under.

 So he Mondayed into the Club Car Championship this week. Obviously, you know, first reaction was I was extremely happy for him, super proud of him. He’s been playing really well, so wasn’t really a surprise, but this is his first tournament. 

We went to dinner and he was asking me what to expect, where to register, what to do during the week. Just certain logistical things that you don’t really know your first tournament. 

 So I was trying to give him as much as much help as possible.  We didn’t get out of Savannah until about 8 p.m. Maybe even later than that.

I got in my car and Ben got in his and now we go separate ways, he’s going to the big boy tournament and I’m going to G-Pro Tour. So it was a little disappointing. 

Obviously, you never want to lose to one of your best friends and your roommate, he’s playing the tournament that you want to be playing in. 

So that car ride from Savannah to Thompson, Georgia where G-Pro  was at, that was about a two hours, in the middle of nowhere, basically by myself, which wasn’t too fun. I was close but, didn’t quite get it done. And so, I had time just to think about stuff and get prepared for the G-Pro event.

I got in late Monday night (approximately 10 p.m.) and then the next day was a practice round for the G-Pro Tour’s Augusta Open. 

Ben Smith posted a two-day score of five-over at the Korn Ferry Tour’s Club Car Championship, and did not make the cut.

G-Pro Tour’s Augusta Open at Bella Meade in Thompson, Georgia

So, Tuesday I took it easy that morning and just made sure I got to sleep as much as I could. The course for the G-Pro was a course that I’ve played already. Again, the practice round, I only played, like, I think I played probably 13 or 14 of the 18 holes. I kind of skipped around because it was pretty slow out there. I knew the course pretty well. So I didn’t feel the need to stress myself out even more.

The first round was the next day (Wednesday). Unfortunately, the tournament didn’t really go as planned. 

I played well, I hit the ball well enough. I just didn’t really make any putts again, which is why I said that was kind of the theme of the week. I hit the ball plenty solid to compete and be up there at the top of the leaderboard, but, just not good enough. 

Will Dickson PHOTO: Georgia Tech

After the first day,  I went to, small town called Waynesboro, which is where my girlfriend is from. It’s like 45 minutes away. I just went to get away and go down there and there’s a small public course there that I really love. I went on the course after the first round and hit some more balls and I was just kinda out there by myself. It was a beautiful evening. Sun was going down. It was a perfect temperature and there was nobody out there. So I really enjoyed that. That was probably a highlight of the week  just, you know, going out there by myself, I had a shag bag with me. 

And I was just hitting a bunch of shots, and that’s like how, where and when golf is supposed to be played. It’s just such a beautiful scenery and that’s why I love the game. I’m able to do stuff like that. So that was just a good kind of reset for me. I really enjoyed that. 

The course Dickson played in Waynesboro is the same one he credits for, basically, saving his golf career amidst struggles at Georgia Tech. 

And then, the second day I knew I had to go low and it just didn’t really happen again.

Dickson made an eight on the 13th hole to put him out of contention.

So I was kind of coming down the stretch where it’s like, ok, I know I have to make three or four birdies coming in or at least two or three, and it’s just one of those holes where a little dog leg left, there’s out of bounds, left and right, and like I said, I knew I had to make birdie. 

 I hit three wood off the tee, which is really kind of pushing it up there and it’s, definitely a tighter landing area. 

Most guys hit like a hybrid or a three or four iron off the tee and lay farther back, maybe have a nine or eight iron in, but I wanted to try to get myself a good look and have a wedge in my hand. 

So my first tee shot went out of bounds, right. And my second one went out of bounds left. So just kind of two swings that I wasn’t really committed to. And, unfortunately, you know, that’s what happens when, you don’t really fully commit to the shot shape and what kind of shot you want to hit, and what you’re doing. 

So, yeah, as far as technically ball striking and playing goes, that’s definitely one of the things that I’m kind of working on and working through. Just really trusting when I swing and what the club is going to do and what the shot shape is going to be. Just really committing to that and trusting it and not trying to do something different with the ball or something that I can’t do.  

It’s definitely a work in progress, but I feel like we’re trending in the right direction. I just gotta commit to what I know I can do. And, I feel like when I play my best golf, I’m better than those guys and I can compete with the best players in the world. So it’s just a matter of being able to let go and commit to it, trust that what I’m doing is gonna get me to where I want to be.

So I finished the tournament I think I even, shot one under and one over. I think the cut was minus three. So I missed the cut by three. So, yeah, it is what it is,  it is not the end of the world, the season is just getting going down here.

I got back to Atlanta Friday night. Did a bunch of laundry, and cleaned everything up and got up this morning, went to the gym and I’m on the phone with you. So, just gonna do a big practice day today (Saturday), probably play a few holes tomorrow (Sunday) and then head out Sunday evening to Greensboro, North Carolina. 

Quick turnaround. But that’s just the nature of the season being in full force. Personally, I love just playing back-to-back-to-back. I love not having a ton of time at home. 

You need a couple of days to kind of relax and reset and get everything organized again, but I love being on the road. I love playing a bunch of tournaments in a row. 

Dickson will be back in action on March 28 for the Forest Oaks Classic in North Carolina on the G-Pro Tour.  

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