SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WCIA) — Michael Feagles woke up Wednesday morning in a panic. The rising Illini senior had pink eye, just 24 hours before he was supposed to tee off in his first pro event.
“I’m like literally the most blind person you’ve ever met and the doctor was like, ‘You can’t wear contacts.’ And I was like I can’t play if I can’t wear contacts, there’s no way,” says Feagles.
Feagles can’t wear glasses on the course, so with several steroids in his right eye, he powered thru the pain, playing with his contacts in. He shot one-over 72, carding four birdies and five bogeys.
“It would have been a good round if I would have been a little sharper with some things but other than that it was fine,” says Feagles. “It was my first pro round so just kind of keep that all in perspective and just try to go into tomorrow with low expectations and try to exceed those.”
Playing at Panther Creek is also nothing new for former Illini Brian Campbell. This is third time he’s been in field at the Lincoln Land Championship and he’s hoping it’s his last. The California native started the tournament tied for 20th on the Web.com Tour money list. The Top 25 at the end of the year earn their PGA Tour card.
“I have a lot of confidence right now, just building off some good weeks,” says Campbell. “Just keep doing what you’re doing, keep thinking the same way.”
Campbell is coming off his second Top 3 finish of the year and put himself in good position once again carding a 4-under 67 in his opening round at Panther Creek. After turning pro in 2015, he made a quick jump to the PGA Tour, earning a spot after just one year on the Web. He made 7 out of 20 cuts in 2017 but couldn’t keep his card. It’s been a grind to get back ever since.
“It’s definitely a week-to-week grind. I’m lucky enough to be on the PGA for a year and I can kind of draw from that and learn from my mistakes and the good things that I did,” says Campbell. “I’m just kind of focused on what I’m doing individually and hopefully the work takes care of itself.”
Campbell says his goal is to finish in the Top 5 on the money list when the season ends. Another strong finish this week would certainly help him get one step closer, as he tries to make it back to the PGA Tour.