All Jokes Aside, Tiffany Joh Wants To Be A Contender
Just mention the name of Tiffany Joh and people smile.
Her fellow LPGA Tour members talk about her solid playing skills and penchant for producing entertaining videos. Her fans describe her approachability and willingness to chat and sign their proffered stuff. The media marvels at her intelligence and highly quotable commentary. And her former college teammates gush about how much fun she brought to their team.
The good news is, all of this is true.
Joh borders on comic genius when it comes to writing songs, singing, rapping, playing musical instruments and producing her own videos, which have a regular following on YouTube. Her creativity is off the charts for a professional athlete and her likeability meter makes her a player in demand among fans and media alike.
But while Joh moved the needle this year during her rookie season for reasons off the course, when pressed for an answer, the San Diego native admits she has one key focus on the LPGA Tour.
“The main reason we’re all out here is to be No. 1 in the world at some point,” said Joh, who is celebrating her 25th birthday on Dec. 8. “Sure, I want to be a contender, but maybe the other things I do [off course] is my way of taking off a little bit of pressure and just enjoying what I do. I don’t really mind if nobody takes me seriously.”
True, she might be the 2011 LPGA rookie class clown, but if her LPGA colleagues are not taking the Californian seriously, they might want to take another glance in their rearview mirror. Joh has a way of laughing and rapping her way to the top of leaderboards and making it look easy – even fun — along the way.
Consider that she was a two-time winner of the prestigious U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links Championship and a member of the winning 2008 U.S. Curtis Cup team. She also tied for 21st as an amateur in the 2009 Kraft Nabisco Championship and tied for third at the 2006 Australian Ladies Masters as an amateur where she fired a career-low round of 63.
In college, she became the first four-time All-American at UCLA, where she was the 2008 Pac-10 Golfer of the Year and individual runner-up at the 2008 NCAA Women’s Golf Championship (won by Azahara Munoz). She also recorded 23 top-10 finishes, including two tournament wins in college and graduated with a degree in communications with a 3.45 grade point average.
On her way to the LPGA, she won twice on the LPGA Futures Tour – including one victory this year – and earned 2011 LPGA membership by finishing No. 8 on the 2010 Futures Tour’s money list. Playing in only seven 2011 Futures Tour tournaments while also playing her way into better status on the LPGA Tour, Joh posted four top-10 Futures Tour finishes (including a tie for second and a third-place finish) and finished sixth on the Futures’ 2011 money list.
But while she was spending the LPGA’s idle weeks on the Futures Tour this season, Joh was also working her way up the LPGA’s money list and contending more often. That was never more evident than during the Navistar LPGA Classic in Se
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