It came down to a battle between Michigan and Wisconsin to land the prized golf recruit.
And in the end, Michigan won.
“We were able to wrangle him away from the Badgers,” Michigan coach Andrew Sapp said of Jack Schultz.
Schultz, a Wisconsin resident and the 31st-ranked recruit in the country, mentioned Michigan’s strong academics, great team atmosphere and the distance from home as major reasons for choosing Michigan.
According to Sapp and Schultz, the rest has gone according to plan. At the beginning of the season, Schultz established himself as one of the starters and hasn’t lost his place since.
Sapp has not been surprised by Schultz’s play.
“We kind of expected him to come right in and help us right away,” Sapp said.
In Michigan’s first two tournaments in late September, Jack finished third both times and his strong first day at the Wolverine Invitational contributed to the Michigan team’s only tournament victory this season.
Confidence has been integral to Schultz’s strong play this year, and it showed when he followed two poor tournaments with a nine-under first day at the Bridgestone Intercollegiate in late October, which placed Michigan in first at the event.
That impressive showing — the team’s lowest round this year — has continued into the spring season. Schultz had the best record at the Big Ten Match Play and led the Wolverines at the Fresno State Lexus Classic. His only disappointment is that he didn’t shoot an under-par round.
But he said his plan is to shoot under par in Boca Raton next week and doesn’t feel pressure to improve his game.
“My short game’s been getting a lot better lately,” Schultz said. “In Fresno, I didn’t hit it as well but I got up and down and hit a bunch of putts so hopefully I’ll be able to put it together.”
Sapp is assured of Schultz’s all-around game and believes focus will be the key to the freshman’s consistency down the stretch.
“I think it’s just maintaining his focus when he’s playing two rounds a day,” Sapp said. “But, he has the ability when he gets in a groove to click off some birdies and pars one after the other.”
Sapp has stressed this focus for the team as well, hoping that toward the end of the season the team will start strong and close out tournaments when they are gunning for the win on the final day.