Sanderson Farms Championship

Friday, September 30, 2022

Jackson, Mississippi, USA

Country Club of Jackson

Mark Hubbard

Quick Quotes

Q. 8-under through two rounds, in nice position for the weekend. How would you characterize today as compared to yesterday and how it's gone overall?

MARK HUBBARD: Yeah, I think overall I'm probably happier with today's round than yesterday's because I really didn't feel that great today. I was kind of fighting my swing the whole day. To manage it the way I did and get something under par I felt like was a lot more of an achievement than yesterday when I really felt good with my irons. I think I led the field in strokes gained approach yesterday, so things were really clicking.

Anytime you can still shoot in the 60s without your "A" game, it feels really good.

Q. Is that something where throughout your career you feel better at that now than you might have as a rookie, being able to grind out a round when you don't have your full arsenal?

MARK HUBBARD: Yeah, absolutely. I think it's a skill learned over time. I also think having played these courses so many times now you learn where to miss and where not to miss, so when you do get into trouble, which I was in the rough a lot today, I knew exactly where I needed to hit it to have the best chance at par and birdie.

I think that's actually been a big factor. You asked me yesterday what I thought was going right, and I didn't really have an answer for you, but thinking about it, I've really played well out of the rough this week, which historically has been a bad statistic for me, so if I can keep doing that this week, good things will happen.

Q. You mentioned yesterday the reads on the greens. Was it the same today or did you read some more?

MARK HUBBARD: No, I had him read every putt. I felt like I was actually maybe seeing them a little better than him today. I don't think either of us saw them great. But I made a few putts. I think as long as I make my par putts and my short ones, I'll get a few to come in, just stay patient, but just keep hitting good iron shots.

Q. Is there anything from past experiences in contention -- you've contended a couple times this summer back-to-back weeks that you've learned about what that's like on the weekend that you look to take into this weekend?

MARK HUBBARD: You know, I don't think there's any one thing that I can put my finger on. I don't feel like I ever really get ahead of myself or I don't think it's like a mental thing. I think it's just a pure comfortability thing that you just get better at as you do more.

The more you play in front of big crowds, the more you play when it matters and you care a little bit more, you just get more comfortable and the nerves get less, and you just have an easier time catching your breath and just taking everything for what it is, each shot at a time. I don't think there's one thing, but yeah, definitely the experiences I've had in the past couple years will help me over the weekend.

Q. Is there anyone you've talked to about what that's like, any fellow players and how to manage down the stretch?

MARK HUBBARD: Not really. I mean, Max has always been a good one. I haven't really talked to him a bunch, but listening to his podcasts or just conversations he was having in the past, he's someone who I think has struggled mentally in the past and has really turned it around, and now I feel like that's one of my strengths. Always listening to him is fun. I definitely don't listen to Stroud. He's full of it.

But yeah, I think just my friends in general, Max and Joel, but we don't really talk a lot of golf, to be honest. Even with my caddie on the course, we don't talk a lot of golf.

Yeah, little conversations here and there, but nothing really I could point my finger to what I'm going to fall back on.

Q. Mentioning Max, what's it been like seeing him come from losing his card on TOUR twice to now becoming Presidents Cup hero and kind of the man of the moment?

MARK HUBBARD: Yeah, it's funny, I always knew he was really good. I think to say I knew he was this good is probably a lie, but his caddie actually caddied for me two tournaments back probably 2020 when we were at Sherwood and what's the one in Vegas --

Q. Shadow Creek?

MARK HUBBARD: Yeah. He caddied for me those two weeks. I don't know what Max was doing. We had a really good time. I love Joe. We've been friends for a while, and my brother was like, why wouldn't Joe ever come caddie for you full-time, and I'm like, look, he's got -- Max's ceiling is so freaking high. I know I'm good, but Max has potential to do all this stuff.

Not that I don't see myself as a really good golfer, but I don't think I'm ever going to be No. 1 in the world. I don't have the length, and frankly I don't think I have the discipline and care enough. I like the rest of my life too much to practice that much and grind that much.

You've got to be a little crazy to get that far, and I think Max really has that drive.

So I knew back then when I was having that conversation with my brother, yeah, he's going to be crazy good.

Q. Where being the No. 1 player in the world isn't necessarily your motivation, your motivation is having a well-rounded life and succeeding on and off the course more or less?

MARK HUBBARD: Yeah, I want to be the best version of myself, and for me, when golf becomes too big of a priority, the rest of my life suffers, and I'm just not happy. So it is kind of that balance for me of finding how much do I grind and practice because I do love it and I do care and I do want to be really good. But yeah, for me there's times where it is kind of just a means to an end, and I don't think there's anything wrong with that. I think I can still go out and win tournaments. I think I can still go out and win this weekend without killing myself over it and still go skiing and having beers with my buddies and whatever.

Yeah, I don't know. Maybe I'm wrong about that, but I think that's why I've played well the years that I've played well out here is because I've had the best balance for myself.

Q. What does it mean to you to just have this career and be on the PGA TOUR and travel and play in front of these crowds and be on this platform?

MARK HUBBARD: Yeah, absolutely. All that aside about the balance, like this is absolutely my dream job. I love the travel. I've got a really good group of friends out here. All of our wives get along. My wife is great right now. I've got awesome little kid, another one on the way. I really couldn't ask for anything more.

Yeah, anytime you can be in contention, that's why we practice, that's why we get up. Even though it's not always my No. 1 priority, it's a huge, huge part of my life, and I couldn't be happier and more grateful that I'm out here.

FastScripts Transcript by ASAP Sports
125305-1-1002 2022-09-30 18:05:00 GMT

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