PGA star Thomas tee's off with local teens

Justin Thomas returns home to Louisville

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WHAS11) -- Justin Thomas is one of the PGA Tour’s rising stars, and for the first time in a year, this big shot is back home for a junior tournament where he’s just another one of the guys.

"There's no place I can go that I feel better about myself than coming home to Louisville,” said Justin Thomas.

"We cut his allowance off,” said his father Mike Thomas. “Now he's got an excuse not to do anything. He is doing about the same he his whole life nothing."

While enjoying the little things like eating a home cooked meal, and sleeping in his own bed, he's also mixing business with pleasure by sponsoring a junior golf tournament.

"It's crazy because it wasn't that long ago this was me,” said Justin Thomas.  “I'm sure there are a handful of kids I'll be competing against in 5, 8, 10 years.  Hopefully, they won't be beating up on me too bad when they get out there."

While these kids may be a few years away from taking a swing at the tour they say they simply hope to follow in the footsteps of the 23-year-old St. X alumni.

"It kind of gives you the feel that maybe I could do something like that in the future,” said St. X junior Jay Kirchdorfer.  “We're pretty close. We're pretty much the same generation. It gives you the motivation that if he can do it, maybe I can catch him."

During a fun round of golf with Thomas earlier this week, a 15-year-old almost did just that, and it couldn't have made Thomas more proud.

"Our freshman, Campbell Kremer over there, hit his tee ball, Justin hadn't warmed up or anything, and he hit a tee shot about a yard short of Justin,” said Kirchdorfer.  “I think it was the best shot of his life."

"I didn't know which ball it was,” said Campbell Kremer.  “He was driving up the fairway and just asked me like, 'Do you got me?’ He was shocked that I hit it that far too. I was shocked I hit it that far."

"You know, I don't want them to feel like I'm just some guy on tour that they're intimidated or whatever by,” said Justin Thomas.  “I want to be their friend, and I want to be their peer and help them in any way I can."

Thomas has also helped generate some donations by sponsoring the American Junior Golf Association tournament.

First Tee will get $35,000, and his family is also working on a Justin Thomas Scholarship, which will help kids throughout Kentucky learn the game of golf.

© 2017 WHAS-TV


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