Luke List has lived a golfing dream — at least three times.
The former Baylor School golfer has played in three U.S. Open major championships.
He went through the local and sectional qualifying process in 2003. He played at Pinehurst No. 2 in 2005 after finishing runner-up in the 2004 U.S. Amateur, and he qualified again in 2007 to play when the tournament was held at Oakmont Country Club.
He wants to go back.
"I was in this when I was 18, and I was beside myself on the first tee," List said Monday. "Guys who get through are impressive players.
"What makes the U.S. Open special is that anybody can make it. That's quite a feat."
List is among more than two dozen area golfers who have dreams of playing in the 2014 U.S. Open, which will be held June 12-16 at Pinehurst No. 2 in North Carolina.
More than 10,000 golfers from across the country, and the world, have signed up to see if they can be one of 156 golfers to compete for American's national championship.
"It's an open competition that anybody [with a qualifying handicap] can qualify for," said University of Tennessee at Chattanooga golf coach Mark Guhne, who has six current or former players attempting to reach the dream. "It's one of the most unique professional tournaments. You can't go qualify for the Masters or the PGA Championship. I think it's a great opportunity for guys to step out there and if they put good rounds together, they could be on TV.
"There are great players who are college kids, college coaches and club professionals and who knows what other sort of other guys."
The process to being shown on NBC during its coverage of the U.S. Open begins today for nearly 30 golfers with close ties to Chattanooga. Local qualifying tournaments are being held today in Knoxville and Memphis and early next week in Georgia with area golfers participating.
List is one of 15 set to play today in Knoxville. He's joined by college players including Wes Gosselin, Ooltewah High School senior Danny Gleeson and mini-tour players Caleb Roberson and Hunter Green, as well as former PGA Tour player Eric Axley, who grew up in Athens, Tenn.
"You know going in what the stakes are," List said. "The more you can dumb it down to the shot in front of you, the better you are. I'm going to play 18 holes and see how it goes.
"Pinehurst suits my eye, and I'd love to get back there and compete again."
List has spent most of this season playing on the Web.com Tour after playing last season on the big tour. He's relocated his home base to California and has healed from minor injuries that hampered him last season.
"I've got a lot of new things going on in my life, and the true fans and friends know that it's a grind because it's a humbling game but fun to chase it," List said. "I've had my ups and downs, and I know what I'm capable of. I'm feeling healthy and I'm feeling good.
"I've got a second wind going."
Perhaps one that could carry him back to Pinehurst.
Contact David Uchiyama at email@example.com or 423-757-6484. Follow him at twitter.com/UchiyamaCTFP.
David Uchiyama is a sports writer at the Chattanooga Times Free Press who began his tenure here in May 2001. His primary beats are UTC athletics — specifically men’s basketball and athletic department administration — and golf, which includes coverage from the PGA Tour to youth events. He also covers other high school sports, outdoor adventures, and contributes to other sections of the newspaper when necessary. David grew up in Salinas, Calif., and began working ...