Caden Burr loves the game of golf — it’s why he’s been playing since he was a child. But now, the Windermere High junior is hoping to help the school’s boys golf team finally win the state title that has eluded the Wolverines so far.
When did you first get into golf?
I first started when I was 9 years old. My dad used to work for Sports Center at ESPN, and when he got a job at Golf Channel, we moved to Florida. (Because he) was covering (golf), I thought it would be a good idea to start, and then I fell in love with it and started practicing more.
What has been the biggest change you’ve seen in yourself since you first started playing golf?
It taught me a lot of self-discipline. I learned how to focus more now that I’m older, and obviously, the older you get, the farther you hit the golf ball, so it kind of got a little bit easier as I’ve aged.
What is your favorite thing about playing golf? What’s the most challenging part?
My favorite part about playing golf is I get to do it with my dad, my friends and my family, so it’s an opportunity to also socialize while having fun and practicing. I think the hardest part is individual tournaments. You’re really only relying on yourself, so it’s not like you have a teammate or someone to bail you out. You just have to pick yourself back up.
Which is stronger — your short game or long game?
I pride myself in kind of being consistent in all of them. I don’t drive the ball very far, so I have to hit a lot of fairways, and then when I’m coming into the green, I’m going to have to hit iron shots that are 5- and 6-irons, compared to other people when they’re having shorter shots in. So I’ve definitely learned to become a better iron player. Since I was young, I always thought my putting was my best attribute. When I first started, that’s all I did.
Is there a difference between playing at the high school level and playing AJGA tournaments?
High school is a great opportunity to play a tournament-like atmosphere where you have to keep your own score and follow all the rules you would in an AJGA (competition). There is definitely a little bit less pressure because it’s not going on the rankings where the colleges are going to see. But it is also different (in high school) because you have teammates, so you don’t want to let them down. It’s a different type of pressure.
What has golf been like for you this year given everything that’s going on?
I still got to practice every single day, so practice-wise it didn’t affect me. In late spring, a lot of events were canceled, so definitely late summer was more packed than it normally would be. There have definitely been some rules that are different because of COVID — like you have to putt with the pin in — so there are different rules we have to follow.