Texas Tech’s Ludvig Aberg tops list of Jack Nicklaus Award winners


DUBLIN, Ohio—Ludvig Aberg of Texas Tech, fresh off clinching the No. 1 spot in the final PGA Tour University rankings to earn a tour card, led a group of five players Tuesday chosen to receive the 2023 Jack Nicklaus Award. The senior from Eslov, Sweden, was the winner in NCAA Division I after becoming the all-time leader in career victories at Texas Tech with eight.

The Nicklaus Award recognizes the national collegiate player of the year in Division I, II, III, NAIA, and NJCAA as selected by the Golf Coaches Association of America. The five players will receive their awards from Nicklaus on Sunday at Muirfield Village Golf Club.

Charles DeLong of Grand Valley State (Michigan), Alex Price of Christopher Newport (Virginia), Easton Johnson of The Master’s (California), and Matthis Lefèvre of New Mexico Junior College also were selected.

“If you look at the resumes of these five players, they have consistently excelled at the highest level this season and have proudly represented their schools,” said Nicklaus, founder and host of this week’s Memorial Tournament at Muirfield Village.

Aberg, who also was named recipient of the 2023 Fred Haskins Award on Tuesday, won four times including his second straight Big 12 Championship and the 2023 NCAA Norman Regional and finished in the top eight in nine tournaments this season. He joined 2016 Nicklaus recipient Jon Rahm, the reigning Masters champion, as only the second player to win the Ben Hogan Award multiple times. Aberg has PGA Tour membership in 2023 and ’24 and will make his pro debut at next week’s RBC Canadian Open.

DeLong was the Division II selection after winning a program-record seven tournaments and leading Division II in adjusted scoring average (69.70) to earn Ping First-Team All-America honors. A redshirt sophomore from DeWitt, Mich., DeLong has 13 individual victories, a school record.

In Division III, Price recorded three wins and two runner-up finishes among eight top-fives this season. The senior from Hillsboro, Va., finished T-2 at the NCAA Division III National Championship and topped his own single-season school record for lowest scoring average by almost three strokes at 69.96. He became the first player at Christopher Newport to be named All-American four times, including the first team twice.

Johnson won the 2023 NAIA men’s individual national title for his first collegiate victory to cap a season in which he finished in the top 11 in all 11 starts this season and earned Ping First-Team All-American honors. The playoff victory helped the freshman from Kansas City, Mo., sew up the NAIA Phil Mickelson Outstanding Freshman Award.

The top-ranked player in NJCAA Division I, Lefevre, a sophomore from Hossegor, France, won four times and finished no worse than ninth in all 12 tournament starts. He already owns the program record for career wins and was named a Ping First-Team All-American. He plans to continue his collegiate golf career next season at Texas Christian.

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