THE FLATS – Golfer Ross Steelman, a second-team All-SEC selection as a sophomore this spring at Missouri, has signed a grant-in-aid to transfer to Georgia Tech and will enroll for the summer term, head coach Bruce Heppler announced Friday. Steelman has three seasons of eligibility remaining.
The Columbia, Mo., native makes the transition after finishing in a tie for third place overall, competing as an individual at the 2021 NCAA Noblesville Regional (Missouri did not compete as a team). Steelman closed with a 66 and finished with a 7-under-par total of 209, three shots off the lead. He had a 70.24 scoring average in 2020-21 and is Golfstat’s 29th-ranked player in the nation, and No. 33 in the Golfweek/Sagarin Index. He stands No. 223 in the World Amateur Golf Ranking, and No. 127 in the Scratch Players World Amateur Ranking, and was medalist at his U.S. Open local qualifier on May 10, in Kansas City.
“We’re very excited to add a player of his caliber and character to our team,” said Heppler, in his 26th season with the Yellow Jackets. “Ross is an incredible math student, and he’s had an incredible year at Missouri. He’s got great aspirations of playing professional golf. He was looking for a nationally-competitive program with high-end academics, and I’m happy that we fit what he was looking for. We’re fortunate to have such a high-quality individual join our program and have three years with us. He’s a physically dominating player. Looking at his results, he doesn’t ever seem to play a bad round.”
Steelman’s sophomore season was highlighted by capturing his second-career win at the Missouri Tiger Invitational where he fired a career-low 16-under 200 which ultimately earned him the title of SEC Newcomer of the Week. His consistent showing allowed him to lead the team in six of the eight events, anchored by his season tally of 16 rounds and six events under par. The 6-foot-5 golfer also tied for fourth at the LSU Invitational and The Hootie at Bulls Bay, and posted top-20 finishes at the Blessings Collegiate Invitational (T13), the Legends Collegiate Invitational (T11) and the Jerry Pate National Intercollegiate (T16). He had only one finish below 35th among eight events.
As a redshirt freshman in the COVID-shortened 2019-20 year, Steelman scored a win at the Prairie Club Invitational, a tie for 10th at the Gator Invitational and top-20 finishes at the Turning Stone Tiger Intercollegiate (T16), Hoakalei Country Club Invitational (18) and the Desert Mountain Intercollegiate (T17). He posted a 72.48 stroke average over 21 rounds and finished below 24th only once in seven tournaments.
Prior to joining the Tigers, Steelman was ranked No. 48 in the national 2019 Junior Golf Scoreboard rankings. Over the summer, Steelman secured two AJGA runner-up finishes at the AJGA Lockton Kansas City Junior and the AJGA Bass Pro Shops/Payne Stewart Championship shooting 6-under par (210) at both events.
In his high school career, he captured the individual 2018 Missouri Class 4 state championship with an 8-under par 136 for the tournament. The performance also led Rock Bridge to a team state title. Steelman was a consistent standout in Missouri, finishing fifth in the state as a sophomore and 10th as a freshman.
Additionally, Steelman won the Missouri Junior Match Play Championship at Mizzou’s AL Gustin Golf Course with an impressive 10-under 62.