May 16, 2011
Tennessee's annual Kelson Cup is head coach Jim Kelson's way of maintaining the competitive juices in advance of this week's NCAA Indiana Regional.
The Vols departed Monday for Zionsville, Ind., where they open play Thursday at Wolf Run Golf Course on the northwest side of Indianapolis. On the line this week is a trip for five of the 14 teams in Indiana to the NCAA Championship Finals, set this year for Stillwater, Okla., from May 31-June 5.
UT is playing in its school-record 12th consecutive NCAA regional and has advanced to the NCAA finals each of the last two seasons. The Vols want to add a third consecutive this week, so Kelson devised the annual Kelson Cup to keep a sharp edge.
"It's a Ryder Cup format," Kelson said. "It's something we try to do every year, and it pits our European players against our Tennessee or American players. Basically, we have about a month in between the last round of our conference tournament and when our NCAA postseason starts. So this is kind of a warm-up and it gives our players the chance to experience a little competition.
"It's something I think they enjoy and it's something they have quite a bit of fun with -- and so do we."
The European side won 5½ to 2½ this year, but it's all in fun. Now this week, it's all-for-one as the Vols make another push for the NCAA Championship Finals.
Here's the video link to the Kelson Cup.