‘Try to catch me’: 2 college roommates are contending for PGA Tour win on Sunday (in same pairing)

Split image of PGA Tour pros Cameron Champ (left) and Chandler Phillips (right), who are in contention at the Valspar Championship.

Cameron Champ (left) and Chandler Phillips (right) are in contention at the Valspar Championship.

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Heading into Sunday’s final round at the 2024 Valspar Championship, the leaderboard is crowded with contenders at the top. Two of those contenders are familiar with each other. Very familiar.

PGA Tour veteran Cameron Champ and rookie Chandler Phillips both enter Round 4 at the Copperhead Course within striking distance of Keith Mitchell’s lead. They also share something else in common. They were college roommates for three years at Texas A&M University.

Even crazier? Not only will they be fighting each other for the victory on Sunday, they’ll be doing it alongside each other in the same pairing.

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Champ opened up about their long relationship after his third round on Saturday at Innisbrook.

“Oh, we go back. We were roommates in college for three years. Chandler’s a good dude. It was awesome to see him finally get out here,” Champ shared in his press conference. “I know he’s struggled for a few years on the mini-tours and missing Q-School by a couple shots every year. Then he finally made it through and I knew that’s all it took… and I’m not shocked that he’s playing well here. So, again, Chandler’s a great player.”

And at least according to Champ, Phillips isn’t cowering in Champ’s shadow as they battle each other for the win this weekend. Phillips was even feeling confident enough to throw a dig at his more experienced former roommate via text.

“He texted me last night, I told him, Great playing, and he said, ‘Man, try to catch me.’ And I said, I’ll try,” Champ revealed on Saturday. “But super excited for him, him and his family and I think he’s, I saw he was leading, so hopefully he can keep it up today.”

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Phillips had a great season on the Korn Ferry Tour last year, finishing 10th in the standings to earn his PGA Tour card for the first time, and he’s made the most of it. In six starts so far in 2024, Phillips has two top-25 finishes and only one missed cut.

Now he’ll try put together his breakthrough moment on Sunday at the Valspar. Just don’t expect him to reveal too much in the winner’s press conference if he does pull it off, as Champ explained Saturday.

“We’re very similar. I think we’re kind of quiet just around people, but kind of when we’re together or when we’re around people we’re comfortable with, we’re all joyful and joking and messing with each other,” Champ shared. “Like I said, Chandler’s a good dude, super happy for him and hopefully he can keep it up.”

Champ and Phillips tee off for their final rounds at 1:20 p.m. ET.

Kevin Cunningham

Kevin Cunningham

Golf.com Editor

As managing producer for GOLF.com, Cunningham edits, writes and publishes stories on GOLF.com, and manages the brand’s e-newsletters, which reach more than 1.4 million subscribers each month. A former two-time intern, he also helps keep GOLF.com humming outside the news-breaking stories and service content provided by our reporters and writers, and works with the tech team in the development of new products and innovative ways to deliver an engaging site to our audience.

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