CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The Arnold Palmer Cup announced today (April 25) that Virginia first-year Ben James (Milford, Conn.) has earned a spot on the 2023 United States Palmer Cup team. The top six players in the ranking automatically make the squad. The other six members to fill out the roster come from a committee selection.
The event is a Ryder Cup-style tournament featuring the top men’s and women’s university/college golfers matching the United States against a team of International players.
The Arnold Palmer Cup was co-founded by Arnold Palmer and the Golf Coaches Association of America (GCAA) and began at the Bay Hill Club & Lodge, Orlando, Fla., in 1997.
Longtime Arnold Palmer partner Rolex is continuing its 50-plus year relationship through its support of the matches, which will be hosted by Laurel Valley Golf Club in Ligonier, Pa., June 8-10.
James becomes the third Cavalier to participate in the Palmer Cup. Jimmy Stanger was named to the 2017 United States team. Derek Bard became the first Cavalier to play in the event in 2016.
In the latest Golfstat standings (April 23), James is the No. 8 player in the nation and the top-ranked freshman.
James currently leads UVA with a 69.33 stroke average. He has finished first in four events this season and has placed in the top four in nine of 11 collegiate events this season. A total of 27 of his 33 rounds this year have been par or better. He opened UVA’s season by shooting a school record 20-under-par 196 to win the Streamsong Invitational. That performance included a score of 11-under 63 which tied the UVA single-round record.
In his most recent outing, James tied for third place at the ACC Championships.
Using Golfstat’s NCAA Player Ranking as a base, the Palmer Cup Ranking awards bonus points for wins and high finishes and a penalty for poor finishes. The ranking also contains a strength of schedule component.
The Palmer Cup has been played at some of the world’s greatest courses, including The Old Course at St. Andrews, The Royal County Down, Royal Portrush, Baltusrol, The Honors Course, and Cherry Hills. Beginning with the 2018 matches at Evian Resort Golf Club, the Palmer Cup is the only major tournament which features men and women playing side-by-side as partners.
Since its inception, over 125 former Arnold Palmer Cup alumni have gone on to earn cards on the PGA, DP World, or LPGA Tours; 34 have represented Europe or the USA in the Ryder Cup, Presidents Cup, or Solheim Cup and more than 75 have claimed over 315 victories on the PGA, DP World, or LPGA Tours, including 2022 major champions Jennifer Kupcho (The Chevron Championship) and Justin Thomas (PGA Championship). The United States leads the Palmer Cup series 13-12-1.
The Arnold & Winnie Palmer Foundation supports the Palmer Cup, which provides a platform for perpetuating Arnold Palmer’s commitment to youth character development and the growth of amateur/collegiate golf. For more information, please visit ArnoldPalmerCup.com.