Shepherd Archie III, or “the quiet assassin” as he is referred to, is working hard to help lead the Florida A&M golf team to a national title this year.
Archie is a junior biology student from Augusta, Ga.
Archie’s father first introduced him to golf as a toddler, between the ages of four and five-years-old. He started playing golf with his dad on the weekends.
“He started at an early age with us,” said Shepherd Archie Jr., Archie’s father, who has been playing golf around 20 years. “He had special golf clubs made for him so that he could play along with us. It was a great experience.”
After learning the game from his father, Archie was able to develop and polish his own skills. By the ages of seven and eight-years-old, the gifted young man started playing in competitive golf tournaments in and around Georgia.
“After he stopped watching and started playing, it was all over.” Archie Jr., said.
In high school, at Richmond Academy in Augusta County, Archie was on a 2-time state golf championship team. In 2007, he led that team to the Georgia High School Association (GHSA) State Golf meet, where he scored a 76 in the win.
Archie was selected and represented Augusta, Ga., on national television, at the Wal-Mart First Tee Open, an official Champions Tour tournament, at Pebble Beach.
He has also represented America, being invited to play in an international tournament, in Scotland.
“You have to surround yourself with other golfers that are just as go as you,” Archie said. “You got to keep your competition level up, because tournament play and just playing on Saturday is completely different.”
Most recently, at FAMU, he won the low medalist award (first place) in the 2009 Golf Classic at Morehouse College. He had a two-day tally of 145 to win medalist honors (first place) in the Frito Lay/AT&T Intercollegiate Golf Tournament hosted by Jackson State University.
He has also placed in the top ten at the National Minority League Invitational.
“I attend 10 to 15 tournaments a year,” Archie said. “I love the challenge of the game.”
Archie was recruited by a number of schools for his academics and athletic ability. Schools such as South Carolina State, Alabama State, Michigan State and even the four time national champions, and rivals, Bethune-Cookman University were vying for his services.
FAMU golf coach Marvin Green described Archie as having a quiet demeanor, but being very confident in his ability.
“He is a smart guy, dedicated to his game and a hard worker,” Green said. “He wants to win so bad and he wants to be the best. I am very impressed by him.”
Even though he has had the chance to perform in both world renown and high-level tournaments, he has slowly overcome difficulties that once affected his game.
“I found my biggest problem was keeping my emotions under control,” Archie said. “Whenever I let my emotions get the best of me, I started losing. Whenever I am able to stay calm, I am able to recover.”
Coach Green agreed with Archie’s view on the changes in his emotional game.
“He has learned to calm himself down, or walk slow to the next tee to get his mind back,” Green said. “He realizes that millions of people wish to play like him, and to not allow his bad holes to back fire.”
“My parents tell me every time before I go to play to control my temper,” the FAMU golfer said. “Golf is a frustrating sport. The ball is not going to do what you want it to do all the time.”
Like in high school, when Archie helped his golf team win titles, he now looks to bring a national title to FAMU.
“This year, we all need to do better,” Archie said. “We need to get a ring.”
The Rattlers next opportunity at coming closer will be the Thomas University Invitational on Feb. 13th through the 15th.