Meet Florida A&M’s Mulbe Dillard, the first No. 1 in APGA Collegiate Ranking

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Mulbe Dillard has always had a dream of playing professional golf. Now, fulfilling that dream will be a little easier – and not just for Dillard.

On the heels of the debut of PGA Tour University, the PGA Tour and the Advocates Professional Golf Association Tour have teamed up to help top Black college golfers transition to the professional ranks by easing the financial burden of playing developmental tours and Korn Ferry Tour Q-School.

On Monday, the organizations announced a college ranking for Black golfers in NCAA Division I, II and III with the top five seniors each year receiving summer status on the APGA Tour and an exemption into the pre-qualifying stage for Korn Ferry Tour Q-School.

Dillard, a senior at Florida A&M, debuts at No. 1 in the ranking, just ahead of Michigan State’s Andrew Walker and three of Dillard’s teammates – Mahindra Lutchman, Ethan Mangum and Cameron Riley.

“It’s very big,” Dillard said of the new initiative, which will also cover entry and travel costs on the APGA Tour. “It’s big for many reasons, including the noticeability in terms of people being able to know our journeys and follow us.”

Dillard’s golf journey began when he was 2 years old, when his father, Mulbe III, brought him to a local driving range in Chicago. By age 5, Dillard was playing tournaments. By high school, not only was he committing to play for Florida A&M, but he was also opening his own golf academy.

The Mulbe Dillard Golf Academy started with Dillard giving affordable lessons to family friends and his mother’s co-workers. By the summer before his freshman year of college, Dillard was giving six to seven lessons a day at Jackson Park Golf Course in Chicago – on top of his normal practice schedule.

“It got pretty busy, pretty fast,” he said.

Since college, the volume of lessons has died down. Dillard, a business major who is set to graduate this spring, spent the first two summers after entering college interning at a private equity firm. However, he still found time for some virtual lessons, or when he returned home for the winter, lessons in a dome.

This past summer, Dillard spent most of his time in Tallahassee, Florida, where FAMU is located, but when he made a two-week trip back to Illinois in August to play in the APGA Tour’s event at TPC Deere Run in Silvis, Dillard estimates he gave nearly 25 lessons.

“I just have a very, very strong love for the game,” Dillard said.

Race & Sports in America: Florida A&M’s Dillard discusses APGA/PGA Tour U partnership

While Dillard has helped many golfers improve their games, Dillard’s own game has taken off in the past year. This past season, he won twice before the Rattlers’ spring was cut short by the COVID-19 pandemic. But Dillard then earned a

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U.S. Polo Assn. Welcomes Morehouse College and University of Kentucky to Collegiate Partnership Program

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. – October 20, 2020 – ( Newswire.com )

U.S. Polo Assn., the official brand of the United States Polo Association (USPA), will once again outfit competitive collegiate polo players through its nationwide Collegiate Partnership Program (CPP). This season, the sport-inspired global brand welcomes its first HBCU to the program, Morehouse College, as well as the University of Kentucky. Over forty teams annually participate from schools that span from east to west coast, small and large enrollments, and state schools to the Ivy League.

The Partnership involves U.S. Polo Assn. providing collegiate polo teams with branded face covers, performance jerseys, game whites, gear bags, along with a financial donation. In turn, the players wear official U.S. Polo Assn. gear while practicing on the polo fields as well as during campus life whether that be virtual or in-person. U.S. Polo Assn. has continued to support these amazing college polo teams and student athletes even as activities have been limited due to Covid-19 restrictions.

“As the official brand of the United States Polo Association, it’s an honor to partner with these amazing student athletes, particularly during these difficult times for sports and colleges. They not only represent the future of the sport of polo but are the future leaders and visionaries of America,” explains USPAGL President and CEO, J. Michael Prince. “We couldn’t be more thrilled to add Morehouse College and the University of Kentucky to our Collegiate Partnership Program.”

“Being a part of the U.S. Polo Assn. Collegiate Polo Program is great exposure for us as students, as well as for our team and our school as we continue to play and promote the sport this season,” said Jayson Palmer, a senior at Morehouse College studying Biology and Public Health. “As the first HBCU school to join the program, we look forward to proudly wearing our U.S. Polo Assn. gear and living up to the U.S. Polo Assn. core values.”

There is no doubt that Covid-19 has hit sports teams and universities hard from both an academic and athletic perspective. While some schools have not re-opened in person or have opted to keep contact sports sidelined this year, the need to keep student athletes practicing and working together is critical to their development and advancement on and off the field.

“The UK polo team is thrilled to partner with U.S. Polo Assn. this year and to proudly represent the brand both on and off the field. This is an exciting opportunity for the club, and one that we feel will be beneficial for everyone involved,” said Federico Puyana, President of the University of Kentucky Polo Club. “We know this is just the beginning of something great for our Team and for the U.S. Polo Assn. brand.”

Notes Carlucho Arellano, executive director of the United States Polo Association (USPA), “Student athletes need support now more than ever and the USPA is proud to have our U.S. Polo Assn. brand partner with these schools. While this year is unlike

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