Greensboro, GA -- Head football coach Paul Johnson and former basketball great Jon Barry of Georgia Tech successfully defended their Chick-fil-A Bowl Challenge championship today with a one stroke victory over the field to take home the $125,000 first-place scholarship prize.
After a seven-under-par effort on the front nine, Georgia Tech birdied the 10th to take a two shot lead, but then fell back a shot on No. 11. Johnson and Barry rebounded to birdie the 12th. After pars on the next three holes, they birdied Nos. 16 and 17 to move to 10-under.
Needing a par at 18 to hold onto the victory, Johnson hit a wedge to within five feet and Barry nailed the putt to preserve the win over the teams from Florida State and Maryland.
“It was a first-class tournament. It’s fun to play out here and I’m very fortunate to have a partner that’s as skilled as Jon,” said Johnson. “It got real competitive coming down the stretch. We knew on 16 that we had to get probably to -10 because we knew the guys had strokes on us on the last hole.”
“I didn’t want to have to hit a five-footer to win this tournament, but coach hit a great chip in there. We knew we had to make par on the toughest hole in Georgia and we got it done. It was a lot of fun,” Barry said. “I’ll tell you, my mouth was dry and I was as nervous as I’ve ever been. Thankfully we got it done and had a great time.”
“Thanks to the Chick-fil-A Bowl and all the volunteers. It’s a wonderful event that we look forward to every year,” Barry said.
In addition to Georgia Tech's win, Barry also claimed the title in the Celebrity Long Drive Contest, held on Monday, with a drive of 308 yards.
“Our congratulations go out to team Georgia Tech for a great victory today. Coach Johnson and Jon Barry really brought their ‘A’ game today,” said Gary Stokan, Chick-fil-A Bowl president and CEO. “We were all blessed to have so many great universities represented out here today and we feel fortunate to be in a position to help deliver more than $750,000 in scholarship and charity through this year’s Chick-fil-A Bowl Challenge.”
After the first nine holes, the defending champions from Georgia Tech (-7) held a one stroke lead over the teams from North Carolina (-6) and Miami (-6). Alabama, South Carolina and Virginia Tech were in the hunt at -5.
The Yellow Jackets’ recorded five birdies and an eagle on the third hole en route to a seven-under-par front nine, which was best in the field.
The Chick-fil-A Bowl Challenge is the country’s premier head coach and celebrity charity golf event featuring NCAA head coaches and former athletes and celebrities from the same school competing against their rivals for a share of a $520,000 scholarship purse.
In addition to the $520,000 scholarship purse, another $243,000 was generated for charitable organizations.
2012 Chick-fil-A Bowl Challenge Final Results:
Place: Team ... Score ... Scholarship winnings
1st Place: Georgia Tech (Paul Johnson, Jon Barry) ... -10 ... $125,000
2nd Place: Florida State (Jimbo Fisher, Terrell Buckley) ... -9 ... $55,000
2nd Place: Maryland (Randy Edsall, Stan Gelbaugh) ... -9 ... $55,000
4th Place: Miss. State (Dan Mullen, Fred McCrary) ... -8 ... $35,000
4th Place: Virginia Tech (Frank Beamer, Dell Curry) ... -8 ... $35,000
6th Place: Ohio State (Urban Meyer, Jeff Logan) ... -7 ... $25,000
6th Place: Alabama (Nick Saban, Johnny Musso) ... -7 ... $25,000
8th Place: Tennessee (Derek Dooley, Stanley Morgan) ... -6 ... $20,000
8th Place: Ole Miss (Hugh Freeze, Sean Tuohy) ... -6 ... $20,000
8th Place: South Carolina (Steve Spurrier, Sterling Sharpe) ... -6 ... $20,000
8th Place: Miami (Al Golden, Gino Torretta) ... -6 ... $20,000
8th Place: North Carolina (Larry Fedora, Roy Williams) ... -6 ... $20,000
13th Place: Wake Forest (Jim Grobe, Riley Skinner) ... -5 ... $15,000
14th Place: Clemson (Dabo Swinney, Steve Fuller) ... -1 ... $15,000
14th Place: NC State (Tom O’Brien, Tom Gugliotta) ... -1 ... $15,000
Year: Team ... Score ... Margin
2012: Georgia Tech (Paul Johnson / Jon Barry) ... -10 ... 1 stroke
2011: Georgia Tech (Paul Johnson / Jon Barry) ... -11 ... 3 strokes
2010: Florida State (Jimbo Fisher / Terrell Buckley) ... - 7 ... 1 stroke
2009: South Carolina (Steve Spurrier / Sterling Sharpe) ... -12 ... 1 (Playoff)
2008: South Carolina (Steve Spurrier / Sterling Sharpe) ... -12 ... 5 strokes
2007: Virginia Tech (Frank Beamer / Dell Curry) ... -10 ... 1 stroke