PROVO — The BYU men's golf team's advancement to the NCAA Championship this week for the first time in the match-play era created a scheduling dilemma because, as per school policy, the Cougars don't compete on Sunday in any sports.
The third round of stroke-play qualifying is scheduled for Sunday, May 27.
But tournament officials are making an accommodation for BYU as part of the NCAA's so-called "Sunday Play" rule. The NCAA must accommodate schools that don't compete on certain days for religious reasons.
Finals play consists of three days of stroke play on Friday, May 25, through Sunday, May 27, after which the top 15 teams will be determined.
The Cougars will now play the team's official practice round at Karsten Creek on Wednesday, May 23, before the start of the final match of the NCAA Women’s Championship. On Thursday, BYU will play its third round 30 minutes after the other 29 teams hold their official practice rounds.
BYU's five players will play individually with a walking scorer and a rules official.
Coaches and players from the other schools will be allowed to watch BYU compete from outside the ropes. Every team is expected to have a representative there to get a view of the third-round hole locations.
A final day of 18 holes of stroke play will be held on Monday, May 28, to decide the top eight teams that will advance to match play. The team national champion will be determined by a match-play format with quarterfinals and semifinals played on Tuesday, May 29, followed by finals on Wednesday, May 30.
The BYU women's golf team went through the same situation two years ago. The Cougars ended up shooting 34 over par and finished last among the 24 teams.
This year, the BYU men's golf team is ranked No. 39 in the country. The Cougars shot 20 under par to tie for second at the Norman, Oklahoma, regional. Patrick Fishburn and Peter Kuest finished in the top 5 individually.