This July, Jimmer Fredette will become the first athlete that hasn’t even played a game in his respective professional sport to participate in the American Century Celebrity Golf Championship at Lake Tahoe. While there, he’ll compete against the likes of Michael Jordan, Charles Barkley, Aaron Rodgers, Jason Kidd and Jerry Rice, just to name a few. So with much on his mind, I had a chance to speak with Jimmer last week about his golf game, workouts and the upcoming NBA Draft.
Dime: On a scale of Jordan (40-1 to win the tournament) to Barkley (500-1), where do you think your golf game ranks?
Jimmer Fredette: Yeah I’m not up to Michael Jordan-level, that’s for sure…I’m probably more towards Barkley. I haven’t played a whole lot. I can hit the ball decent and I’ll hit some decent shots, but in the workout my driving hooked. If I get it straight then I’ll be okay…but I’m glad that I’m there at 40-1 with Michael Jordan, even though he’s probably a lot better than I am.
Dime: What will be more nerve-racking: Waiting for you name to be called at the Draft or your first shot at Edgewood Tahoe Golf Course in July?
JF: You know that’s a great question, a really great question. Because I’m playing a sport I’m not used to playing on TV, you know? So that will be pretty nerve-racking the first time I get up there with a lot of people watching. But I think the Draft will be just a little more nerve-racking for me just ’cause you never know where you’re gonna go. You never know how long you’re gonna be waiting to hear your name called…and how quick it comes and what team you’re gonna play for.
Dime: How is it going to be for you to make a three-foot put on live national TV instead of a big free throw?
JF: Different…different for sure. Like I said, I never played golf on TV before and I haven’t, you know, played that often. I’m not a regular golfer…like some of these guys are. That’s gonna be nerve-racking for sure. Hopefully I can just dial it in and not worry about the cameras and people watching…just play. We’ll see how it goes. Hopefully I can get some help from my caddie, read the green a little bit and, you know, put it in the hole.
Dime: How comfortable do you feel in the short game versus driving?
JF: I think my putting game is a little bit better than my driving game. I think I can have some good putts – that’ll be more of my strong point, so hopefully I can rely on that and make some good puts.