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Glover Ready to Defend JD Classic Title

Patrick Flavin, Lucas Glover and JD Classic's Barry Cronin
Patrick Flavin, Lucas Glover and JD Classic's Barry Cronin

Twenty years after he played in the John Deere Classic for the first time, Lucas Glover will be back. This time though, he'll play as the defending champion after winning last year's tournament.

After finishing Sunday's PGA Championship, Glover headlined Monday's "Champions Day" preview for this year's John Deere Classic. Glover received a sponsor exemption to play here in 2002, and since then has won four times on the PGA Tour.

"I've always said the best feeling on tour is the next week after you win - every one of your peers congratulating you. Whether they like you or you like them, everybody at least tells you congratulations, you and your caddy. And I think that's the coolest thing."

Invited to this year's Classic with a sponsor exemption is Patrick Flavin, from the Chicago suburb of Highwood. He calls it a "dream come true."

"Growing up in Illinois, the John Deere Classic to me was always a major. It was a really big deal, watching guys like Zach Johnson and Steve Stricker win, guys from the Midwest who aren't overpowering people and I'm kind of a small guy - it was really inspiring to me."

Other well-known players who received sponsor exemptions early in their careers include Jordan Spieth, Bryson DeChambeau, Jason Day, and Justin Thomas who just won the PGA Championship.

The John Deere Classic is now set for June 29th through July 3rd, at TPC Deere Run in Silvis.

A native of Detroit, Herb Trix began his radio career as a country-western disc jockey in Roswell, New Mexico (“KRSY, your superkicker in the Pecos Valley”), in 1978. After a stint at an oldies station in Topeka, Kansas (imagine getting paid to play “Louie Louie” and “Great Balls of Fire”), he wormed his way into news, first in Topeka, and then in Freeport Illinois. While a graduate student in the Public Affairs Reporting Program at the University of Illinois at Springfield (then known as Sangamon State University), he got his first taste of public radio, covering Illinois state government for WUIS. Here in the Quad Cities, Herb worked for WHBF Radio before coming to WVIK in 1987. Herb also produces the weekly public affairs feature Midwest Week – covering the news behind the news by interviewing reporters about the stories they cover.