A group of old college friends can thank the Golden State Warriors for allowing them to personally witness one of the best golf majors in recent history.
GOLF.com executive editor Alan Bastable got the exclusive scoop from Concordia College alum Andrew Beliveau, who said that he and his friends bankrolled a trip to St. Andrews by betting the Warriors to win this year's NBA title.
Beliveau, who is a big Warriors fan, and his crew take an annual trip every year. The idea this time around was to go to The Open Championship. That obviously would be a pricey endeavor, so the group decided to make some investments in the Dubs a couple of times during the season.
All told, the group won about $30,000 on an overall investment of $5,000-$6,000. A huge chunk of the profit is going to an $18,000 Airbnb at a property across the street from St. Andrews' fabled 18th green.
Beliveau and the crew were pictured sporting Kevon Looney jerseys on site, a proper homage to the team and its starting center.
They couldn't have picked a much better Open Championship to go to, as this one is shaping up to be a classic.
Rory McIlroy and Viktor Hovland are tied atop the leaderboard at 16 under, four strokes better than third-place holders Cameron Young and Cam Smith. It should be a phenomenal duel Sunday between two of golf's top talents.
McIlroy is looking for his first major in eight years. Hovland is seeking the first-ever major of his brief professional career.
McIlroy provided the jaw-dropping moment Saturday with a 27-yard eagle from the 10th greenside bunker.
Hovland posted the field's only bogey-free card. Both he and McIlroy finished with six-under 66 results on moving day.
The friends have a vested interest in McIlroy's chances, as they threw down bets on him winning the Claret Jug. If he's victorious, the friends will have another trip bankrolled, this time to an Ole Miss football game in the fall.
McIlroy and Hovland will tee off Sunday at 9:50 a.m. ET.