November 23, 2015

Since Sam Snead has already been claimed by Virginia, the Mountain State’s finest amateur golfer, William C. Campbell, gets the nod. Known to most as “Bill,” this Huntington native compiled a phenomenal record of consistency and longevity in regional and national competitions. An insurance agent by trade, Campbell competed in 37 U.S. Amateurs, including 33 in a row from 1941 to ’77. He won the event in 1964, downing fellow West Virginian Ed Tutwiler. Campbell won two U.S. Senior Amateurs, in 1979 and ’80, and captured four North & South Amateurs at Pinehurst. He was a marvel locally, winning 15 West Virginia Amateurs and three West Virginia Opens, and distinguished himself internationally, running up an 11-4-3 individual record in eight Walker Cup matches (going 7-0-1 in singles). Campbell finished runner-up in the ’54 British Amateur. Had he given the pro game a chance, he could very well have succeeded. He earned invitations to 18 Masters, with a T-23 in 1954 his best finish, and qualified for 15 U.S. Opens. He tied for 36th in 1955 and ’66. Campbell’s legacy includes stints as USGA president in 1982-83 and as Captain of the Royal & Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews.