Men’s Golf Island Hops To Kaua’i To Host John Burns Intercollegiate – University of Hawai’i at Manoa Athletics – University of Hawaii Athletics

HONOLULU – For the third consecutive year, the University of Hawai’i men’s golf team will host the John A. Burns Intercollegiate at the Ocean Course Hokuala in Līhu’e, Kaua’i. The 47th edition of the tournament runs Thursday, Feb. 15 through Saturday, Feb. 17.
The tournament has been held on the island of Kaua’i for the past nine years and moved to Hokuala in 2022 after seven years down the road at Wailua Golf Course.
“It’s a great course for strategy,” UH head coach Scott Simpson said. “The Ocean Course offers a great mix of holes to attack and holes to play it safe, with much of the challenge dependent upon the ever-changing winds.”
“The Burns” will feature a 20-team field headlined by 10th-ranked Arizona while seven other teams are ranked in the Top 50. A total of 14 of the 20 teams are ranked inside the Top 100.
Making up the field are Hawai’i (#139), Arkansas Little Rock (#71), Brigham Young (#39), California (#21), Fresno State (#49), Grand Canyon (#103), Georgia Southern (#122), Long Beach State (#50), New Mexico (#19), Saint Mary’s (#84), San Diego State (#32), San Francisco (#61), Texas A&M (#27), UC Santa Barbara (#199), UNLV (#51), USC (#90), Utah (#106), UTEP (#120), and Washington State (#63).
This year’s field includes eight past champions who have won a combined 24 titles, including defending champion and four-time winner Brigham Young (1977, 2000, ’07, ’23). Other past champions include Arizona (1992, 2003 & ’04), California (2011, ’12, ’13, ’14, ’15), New Mexico (2001, ’05, & ’22), San Diego State (2002), Texas A&M (2009, ’18, & ’20), UNLV (1991, ’98, ’99 & 2010), and USC (1986).
The highest individual ranked golfer in this year’s field is Washington’s Taehoon Song, who is ranked No. 13, while Arizona’s Tiger Christensen is No. 20.

Participants will play a total of 54 holes over the three-day tournament at the 7,156-yard, par-72 course with an 8:30 a.m., shotgun start each day. Hokuala has been rated as a Top 10 top golf courses in the state by Golf Digest and Golfweek and was picked as one of the “World’s Most Beautiful Golf Courses” by MSN Travel.

The John A. Burns Intercollegiate is named after the former Governor of the state of Hawai’i and was created by former UH head coach Robert Takano in 1977. Takano, who coached UH from 1976-82, passed away in 2022 at the age of 89.

The Burns is the fifth tournament on the schedule for the Rainbow Warriors, who opened the spring season on Hawai’i Island at the Amer Ari Intercollegiate, where they placed 17th. Josh Hayashida was UH’s top finisher, tying for 71st overall with a 4-under 212 total.
“One of the strengths of our team is that everyone’s capable of playing really good golf,” Simpson said. “Because the course is so beautiful and in great shape, we can attract many of the best teams in the country. Competing in tournaments like this is a great opportunity for all involved.”
Tournament #6
: February 15-17, 2024
Format: Three-days; 54 holes (18 holes each day); 5-count-4
Time: 8:30 a.m. shotgun start each day
Course: Ocean Course Hokuala
Location: Lihu’e, Kaua’i
Yardage (Par): 7,156 (72)
Live Scoring:
Participating Teams (20):
Hawai’i, Arizona, Arkansas Little Rock, Brigham Young, California, Fresno State, Grand Canyon, Georgia Southern, Long Beach State, New Mexico, Saint Mary’s, San Diego State, San Francisco, Texas A&M, UC Santa Barbara, UNLV, USC, Utah, UTEP, Washington State
Tournament History
For nearly half a century, the John A. Burns Intercollegiate is considered the University of Hawai’i’s premiere golf tournament, providing some of the nation’s top-ranked programs with the opportunity to compete against one another in the 50th state.
The annual spring tournament has seen tremendous growth since its first year in 1977. The tournament was held primarily at Kane’ohe Klipper Golf Course before moving to Leilehua Golf Course in 2000 for an 11-year run. The tournament then moved to Turtle Bay Resort from 2011-13 and then to Wailua Golf Course on Kaua’i in 2014 for the next seven years. The tournament remained on Kaua’i, relocating to Ocean Course Hokuala in 2022.
Among the who’s-who of Burns champions include Bob Clampett, who won at Wailua in 1978, Steve Pate (UCLA, 1983), Notah Begay (Stanford, 1995), Tiger Woods (Stanford, 1996), and Bo Van Pelt (Oklahoma State, 1997). Oklahoma State has a won record six Burns titles while California captured five straight titles from 2011-15.
As governor of the state of Hawai’i, Burns longed to see the growth of UH’s athletes at a competitive level with the rest of the nation. He took part in initiating statehood in 1959 and also started the planning and construction for Aloha Stadium – home of UH football and the NFL’s Pro Bowl, as well as other island sporting events and music concerts.
Before he passed away on April 15, 1975 at the age of 66, Burns had a hand in upgrading UH’s athletics program. Shortly after his death, his namesake tournament was founded. This tournament reflects back to Burns, the political power who was really a “sportsman at heart.”



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Mark Evans

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