Brian Norman

Brian Norman qualified for the 2014 PGA Championship by virtue of his finish at the PGA Professional National Championship in Myrtle Beach, S.C., earlier this summer.

Brian Norman goes from spectator to participant

By Joseph Demling,

LOUSIVILLE, Ky. -- Brian Norman was at Valhalla Golf Club in 2000 when Tiger Woods beat Bob May in a playoff to win the PGA Championship. Norman was still in high school at Henderson County at the time and recalls following the final pairing on the back nine.

“It was awesome,” Norman said.

The PGA Championship returns to Valhalla, and this time Norman who will be in the middle of the action instead of the gallery.

A PGA Club Professional from The Colony, Texas, Norman qualified for his first major championship at the PGA Professional National Championship in June and will hit the first tee shot off the No. 1 hole in the 96th PGA on Thursday.

“My caddie might have to tee it up for me,” Norman joked. “Growing up here in Kentucky, it’s almost like a dream for me. It’s exciting.”

In his first PGA Professional National Championship start, Norman finished 16th to earn the spot in the PGA field and will be making his first major appearance. He was 10th in the 2012 PGA Assistant Championship and also tied for 10th in that event in 2010.

Norman was a standout high school player in the Bluegrass State who went on to play at John A. Logan and Southern Illinois. He worked in the golf business in Illinois for six years before moving to Texas.

He’s a PGA Professional at The Golf Club at Castle Hills now.

“My game is in good shape but this isn’t like a sectional event back home or even the PGA club pro,” Norman said. “But I’m getting used to all the crowds now and I’m just going to try and play my game and not worry about anything.”

But still, Norman admitted it’s a daunting task. He said he would be nervous and he’s going to be proud when he tees off at Valhalla.

“I was right there and saw the putt Tiger made on 16,” he said. “Now, to be part of this like I am it’s just a dream come true for me.”