STANFORD, Calif. - The Stanford University men's golf program has signed Jim Liu, Maverick McNealy, and Viraat Badhwar to NCAA letters of intent in the 2013 incoming freshman class, announced The Knowles Family Director of Men's Golf Conrad Ray. This diverse class includes two players nationally ranked #1 in their respective countries and a home grown phenom who first won the Stanford men's club championship at age 13.
Viraat Badhwar will join the Cardinal from Queensland, Australia, where he is the No. 1-ranked junior golfer in Australia and a student at Kelvin Grove State College. A member of the Australian Junior Golf Squad in 2012, Badhwar has a USGA handicap of +4. He won the 2012 Toyota Junior Golf World Cup in Japan leading Australia to the World Cup title with a 12-under par 72-68-65-67 performance. Viraat was the runner-up at the 2012 Australian Boys Amateur Championship. Badhwar was ranked as the #1 junior golfer in India from 2005 to 2007 before moving to Australia. Badhwar also recently was awarded the Platinum Award from Kelvin Grove State College for excellence in golf and academics.
Jim Liu, from Smithtown, NY is the No. 1 ranked high school golfer by Golfweek and the Junior Golf Scoreboard. Liu will graduate from The Knox School in Nissequogue, N.Y. in the spring. Liu is a four-time consecutive AJGA Rolex All-American, and was a member of two victorious junior Ryder Cup teams in 2010 and 2012. Liu advanced through the first stage of qualifying school for the 2012 European Tour, and has collected every USGA Junior Amateur Championship medal (gold, silver, stroke-play, medalist and sectional qualifying medalist). He surpassed Tiger Woods' record at the U.S. Junior Amateur, becoming the youngest champion in the tournaments' history in 2010. Liu also was the runner-up at the 2012 U.S. Junior Amateur Championship and is a four-time U.S. Kids World champion.
"The 2013 Stanford Men's Golf recruiting class may go down as the strongest in our programs history," said Ray. "When we are able to sign a single No. 1-ranked player in a given year it is a big deal, but to have two is very rare. The rigorous nature of the Stanford admissions process is well known and it is a credit to these student-athletes that they have been admitted and are making a great choice in Stanford University. We are very excited to add Maverick, Jim, and Viraat to the Cardinal roster in 2013 to continue our pursuit of the programs ninth national championship."