NORMAN — Westwood Park assistant golf pro Bobby Florer’s estimation, Rick Parish has yet to take a day off.
Parish, the longtime assistant to David Lisle, who left Westwood after three decades to pursue the life of a golf entrepreneur, believes Florer’s being generous.
Since becoming head pro at Norman’s lone municipal golf course, Parish says he’s had between four and six days completely off, “when I didn’t even come in.”
By all accounts, he’s fitting right into his new and bigger chair.
“Rick’s organization and accountability skills are off the chart,” Florer said.
Of course, to some extent, this is the week they really get put to the test. Friday begins the annual Westwood Invitational; or, as it prefers to be called lately, the 39th annual OklahomaTickets.com Westwood Invitational.
It began in 1976 when Jay Colliatie became the first to claim the Championship Flight. A year ago, it was OU’s Michael Gellerman, almost foreshadowing his climb back atop coach Ryan Hybl’s Sooner top five, winning it all at what’s long been the largest stroke-play golf tournament in the state.
For the most part, it’s pretty much the save event it’s always been: free grub and beer to the players, a cap and door prize to all players and the camaraderie that only a place like Westwood can deliver.
One small difference, though it should mean anything on the course, is the tournament actually has its own website: westwoodinvitational.com, on which you can peruse the history of the tournament and, if you haven’t yet, enter it. You can also look and see who else has entered, along with their handicap.
For the most part, Parish always knew how big the job was this week. And still, doing it all can be a revelation.