PGA golfer Max Homa discusses waiting to defend title, Santa Clarita course that shaped his game

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, Valencia's Max Homa was not able to defend his first and only PGA Tour title that he won nearly a year ago.
VALENCIA, Calif. (KABC) -- You never forget your first.

"I got memories sitting in the locker room during a rain delay sitting at a table by myself and Jason Day and Rory McIlroy were sitting at a table in the corner, and I felt in their head they were thinking 'Who the hell is this kid, and why won't he go away?' And I felt the same way," said PGA golfer Max Homa.

Homa didn't go away. It was just over a year ago he won his first and only PGA event. But his anniversary is as sour as spoiled milk.

"Yea it stinks!" he said.

It also stinks because next year the Well Fargo Tournament won't be played on the same course in North Carolina where Homa won because of the President's Cup.

"That's a bummer, I won't get to defend on the course I won at," he said.

Homa was ranked 70th on the PGA Tour when the COVID-19 crisis became meaner than a bad lie in a sand trap. He lives in Arizona now, where golf is essential business in Phoenix.

"It has the sleepy vibes of the off season," Homa said, referring to playing and practicing until the tour resumes without fans in June.

He graduated from Valencia High School in the Santa Clarita Valley. He speaks strongly of the small public course, Vista Valencia, that was his home sweet home.

"I can't overstate this enough, but Vista Valencia is, besides Tiger Woods, the only reason I'm playing golf," he said.

Homa never looked at the sport as something he had to do. The Vista Valencia course taught him an organic love for the game.

"Especially back in the mid-90s, early 2000s, golf wasn't exactly the coolest sport," Homa said. "Tiger made it a whole lot cooler. I don't think a lot of kids were trying to run to the golf course to go practice. But all my best friends did it. We had a great group of guys."

If you think his pro-level game is strong, you should see his Twitter account. He has nearly 150,000 followers. It grew as he started roasting golf swings.

"I got a tweet that said roast my golf swing like you're Gordon Ramsey," he said.

That first roast evolved into hundreds upon hundreds of requests a day, including celebrities like former ESPN Host Chris Berman.

"I've seen that swing before, it's really not good," said Homa, referring to Berman's unorthodox swing.

When asked it there was a particular celebrity that he got excited about who reached out to evaluate his swing, he said it was his favorite Los Angeles Dodger.

"Cody Bellinger sent me his. He's my favorite baseball player going," Homa said.

The PGA Tour and Max Homa are expected to get going without fans in mid-June.
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