Bryan to receive Rube award

Published 7:00 am Wednesday, July 8, 2015

West Point native George Bryan, who brought the 1999 U.S. Women’s Open golf championship to the nationally renowned golf course he built in his hometown, will receive the 2015 Rube Award for his lifetime of contributions to Mississippi sports.

The Rube Award is named in honor of the late Michael Rubenstein, long-time TV sportscaster and executive director of the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and Museum.

Members of the Board of Directors of the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and Museum select the Rube Award recipient.

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“I am honored to receive this award and appreciate Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame for this recognition,” Bryan said.  “I believe strongly in Mississippi and in Mississippi sports of all types.”

Bryan will be the fourth Rube winner, following Ben Puckett, Boo Ferriss and Archie Manning.

Bryan, a business school graduate of Mississippi State University, is the founder of Old Waverly Golf Club in West Point. Old Waverly has hosted the U.S. Women’s Open, Southern Amateur Championship, and other national championships.

“When George Bryan successfully brought the U.S. Open to Mississippi, it showed a lot of us what our state was capable of when somebody has vision and the ability to unite government and public support behind that vision,” said Rick Cleveland, executive director of the Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame and Museum.

Earlier this year, Bryan announced another golf course project: Mossy Oak Golf Club is set to open in 2017 across the road from Old Waverly. Mossy Oak, designed by world-renowned golf course architect Gil Hanse, will feature a 7,400 yard, par-72 golf course, a clubhouse and guest cabins to accommodate golf travelers.

Together, Hanse, Mossy Oak, the Bryan family and 76 founding members are creating a new premier golf destination experience that will be known as Nature’s Golf, which Bryan calls “a sustainable and mindful approach to course development that leaves a gentle footprint on the local habitat while delivering a world-class golf experience.”

Bryan recently received first Mississippi Golf Association (MGA) Distinguished Service Award. The award will go annually to an individual who embodies the mission of the MGA and strives to promote the game of golf and the traditions upon which it is based.

Bryan will receive The Rube at the BancorpSouth Mississippi Sports Hall of Fame Induction Banquet on August 1 at the Jackson Convention Complex. The MHSOF will induct six new members: Mike Dennis, Brett Favre, Steve Knight, Fred McAfee, Clarence Weatherspoon and Gwen White.

Tickets, tables and sponsorships are available by calling 601-982-8264 or online at

By Rick Cleveland.