Dade City, FL — Russell Budd knew from a very young age that he was going to be a golfer.
Budd, a Toronto native and fourth-year golfer at DePaul University, has had aspirations of becoming a competitive golfer since he could barely walk.
Fortunately for Budd his parents, Michael and Kalia Budd, played an integral role in the recognition and development of that goal.
“When I was a kid, my dad saw that I was making what looked like a swinging motion,” said Budd. “So my mom gave me a spatula and a tinfoil ball and then my dad was like ‘it looks like a golf motion.’”
This discovery led to a childhood filled with athletics. Surprisingly, despite his upbringing in one of the world’s biggest hockey hotbeds, that was not a sport that Budd participated in.
“[I played] baseball, basketball and football but no hockey. Big hockey fan but no hockey,” said Budd.
It wasn’t long until baseball, basketball and football joined hockey as sports Budd merely followed. As Budd got older, he turned his focus to golf and he excelled at it.
Budd was the MVP of his golf team four times in four years during his high school career at Community Hebrew Academy of Toronto before going to DePaul University where he has become the most consistent performer on his team.
Now, Budd has his eyes set on taking the next step in his golf career – turning pro.
“I am in no rush to make a decision about next year,” Budd said about the decision to turn pro. “But there is definitely a good possibility of testing the waters.”
Becoming a professional golfer is something that Budd has worked his entire life to become. Turning pro is not a decision he is going to rush.
With that goal in mind, Budd knows that there are areas of his game that he still needs to improve if he is going to reach that next level.
“Putting, by far,” Budd said about the biggest weakness in his golf game.
“I think that my ball striking is definitely good enough. My chipping has got a lot better and continues to get better, and my putting is a little streaky. At times it’s good and at times it’s god-awful. So I need to get that a lot more consistent.”
Budd’s ability to improve in the areas of his game that he is currently struggling in will go a long way in deciding how well he fairs at the next level of competition.
But, for the time being, Budd is focused on closing out his collegiate career in impressive fashion.