When you hear the name Kevin Johnson in sports, it might take a little time placing him. There were four NFL players with the popular name. One NBA superstar. A heavyweight boxer. A soccer midfielder. Even a Bahamian sprinter.
Kevin Johnson, the golfer, did the name justice. The former Clemson All-American helped put coach Larry Penley’s Tigers program on the map as a national contender in the late 1980s, leading them to a third-place NCAA Championship finish as a senior, winning the U.S. Amateur Public Links and representing the United States in a Walker Cup and Eisenhower Trophy. Clemson enshrined Johnson in its Ring of Honor.
“Kevin Johnson and Chris Patton (former U.S. Amateur champion) were two guys that got everything started for me,” said Penley, who will retire at the end of this season after 38 years at the helm in Clemson.
As a professional, Johnson won on South Africa’s Sunshine Tour before collecting six tournament victories in a 12-year span on what is now called the Korn Ferry Tour – a success total second only ...
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