Trinityâ€™s James Inman is ranked second in All-State points for KHSAA golf. He is a team leader on and off the course and has a 3.7 GPA. To meet him, he seems like an average high school senior. He enjoys being outside, playing basketball, football and hanging out with his friends. But on the course, he is dedicated and focused. Head Coach Mike Brumfield says this is the key to his success.
â€œJames is a great leader,â€ Brumfield said. â€œHeâ€™s very easygoing, and the other kids look up to James and follow him. That part makes it easy for me. Heâ€™s easy to get along with. He gives me some static, I give it right back to him. So, it makes it fun for the team. James wants to succeed, and he wants his teammates to succeed. Itâ€™s not a me thing with James, itâ€™s always howâ€™s the team doing?â€
Inman is not only a social leader of the team; he leads Trinityâ€™s scoring week after week, and has the teamâ€™s lowest score of the season so far with his 67 at the Boyle County Invitational.
Inman is dedicated to the sport and spends two to three hours every day on the course, working out and practicing his swings. He says his short game is his strong suit, which is quite the opposite from his academic life. Inman is already looking at many colleges for collegiate golf, including the University of Louisville, Bellarmine University, College of Charleston, Coastal Carolina and Samford. Inman hopes to play golf at whatever university he attends in the pursuit of becoming a professional, but will also be majoring in business administration.
But Inman isnâ€™t focused on himself at the moment. He loves working as a part of his golf team and supporting his teammates.
â€œI love the team aspect,â€ Inman said. â€œI love playing with my team, seeing how theyâ€™re doing on the course.â€
Brumfield believes that Inmanâ€™s mental toughness is also a key part to his success. He noted a marked change in Inmanâ€™s maturation process and his ability to stay focused throughout the ups and downs of a round of golf, citing this as a big part of his improvement.
â€œHeâ€™s very tough. He doesnâ€™t let anything get to him too much,â€ Brumfield said. â€œHe grinds it out for all 18 holes, doesnâ€™t get mad and doesnâ€™t get too over-happy. He just stays in every shot. From the last two years his mental game has gotten much better, which is why heâ€™s improved so much. â€
Inmanâ€™s favorite golfer on the tour is Rory McIlroy because of his ability and resilience. He was able to attend the recent PGA Championships at Valhalla and drew inspiration from the professionals.
â€œThey all started somewhere,â€ Inman said. â€œThey all started where I was. And if I keep practicing, Iâ€™ll get there maybe one day.â€
Brumfield said that Inmanâ€™s biggest challenge now is to continue shooting low scores – not a bad problem to have.
â€œItâ€™s hard when youâ€™re a couple under par, to get to shooting three-under par, four-under par,â€ he said. â€œBut heâ€™s getting there, and thatâ€™s all her really needs to improve on.â€
If Inman could play a dream round of golf, he said he would play with Rory McIlroy, Tiger Woods and his dad.