Dec. 21, 2008
NOTRE DAME, Ind. - Notre Dame men's golf coach Jim Kubinski announced Sunday that Paul McNamara III (Palos Verdes Estates, Calif./Chadwick HS), has signed a National Letter of Intent to attend the University and play for the Fighting Irish beginning in the fall of 2009. McNamara is the first student-athlete to commit to join the Notre Dame men's golf program next season.
"Paul did a tremendous job separating himself from several very highly-ranked players," Kubinski said. "He has competed extremely well against national competition on the very best tours in junior golf. He is a strong ball striker and is very accurate. Probably his greatest strengths, though, are his short game abilities and his mental approach. I look for Paul to be a competitive player within our program from the outset. Physically, he'll be working to get stronger and add a few yards but he has the tools right now to be successful. We're excited to have him join us in August."
McNamara has been ranked as high as 17th among the class of 2009, according to the Golfweek/Titleist Sagarin Performance Index. He has played on three major junior tours -- the America Junior Golf Association (AJGA), Future Collegians World Tour (FCWT) and International Junior Golf Tour (IJGT) -- having amassed six tournament victories, 24 top-five finishes and 33 top-10 finishes during his junior career. In addition, he was an IJGT first-team All-American in 2007 and a FWCT honorable mention All-American in 2008, while also garnering all-academic honors from the FCWT last year. In 2006-07 alone, he won four IJGT tournaments and was runner-up three other times while logging a solid 74.16 stroke average in the 12-event season.
A four-year starter at Chadwick High School, McNamara twice has earned all-area recognition and has been an all-Bay League First Team selection in each of his first three prep seasons (2006-08). He also claimed medalist honors at the 2007 California Interscholastic Federation-Southern Section (CIF-SS) team event and currently serves as team captain.
This past summer, McNamara came east to Notre Dame and successfully qualified for the Western Amateur at his future home, the Warren Golf Course. He also is a former winner of the Palos Verdes Golf Club men's championship, taking the title as a 14-year-old in 2005.
"Beyond his outstanding academic and athletic resume, there were really two clinching factors for us in the recruiting process with Paul," Kubinski said. "One, Paul had a great visit. We felt he would be a perfect fit here at Notre Dame. Of course, his feeling that we were absolutely his top choice is something I very much appreciated. Paul did his homework throughout the process, asked the best questions and really seemed to be someone we felt would be a great addition to our family. Of course, the other interesting factor was Paul qualifying for the prestigious Western Amateur. Qualifying is an accomplishment in itself, especially as a junior golfer. Amazingly, though, Paul did so without his golf clubs. His clubs had been lost by an airline en route, so he borrowed a set from the golf shop, teed it up and qualified. That was pretty impressive."
McNamara's future teammates will get back on the course March 9-11, 2009, when they travel to Humacao, P.R., for the Palmas Del Mar Intercollegiate.