Meet the golfer who is completely blind – but would still easily beat you

Golfer Jake Olson has defied his disability to become a blind champion in the sport.

The 33-year-old was born with a rare cancer of the retina, losing sight in his left eye before the age of one and then his right eye aged 12. Despite that, he went on to become the first-ever blind American football college player having mastered the position of long snapping.

Olson was eligible for the 2014 NFL Draft but wasn't picked. He continued to pursue his dream in his native Canada but when that didn't work out, he turned to the golf course.

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Thanks to the help of his dad Brian, who discusses the length of the hole with him and lines up his shot, Olson makes teeing off look easy.

When it comes to putting, he will pace out the distance to the hole and hit the ball with the appropriate power, finishing with accuracy which the likes of Tiger Woods would be proud of – who he's actually met.

The former world No. 1 sent Olson a hand-written letter following his first college football game and then has invited him to his Genesis Invitational at Riviera Country Club over the years.

"He said he saw me and how inspired he was and commended my courage, just my resilience," Olson told the PGA Tour. "He was impressed with my ability to overcome adversity. And I think he's obviously has quite the appreciation for that in his own career."

Having become the United States Blind Golf Association champion in 2019, he competed in the inaugural US Adaptive Open in July of this year as the only completely blind player.

Upon learning of his participation, Olson posted on his Instagram: "I’m so excited to announce that I’ve been selected as part of the field to play in the first ever US Adaptive Open.

"This inaugural tournament is being put on by the USGA and will be played at Pinehurst in July. It is such an honor to be chosen to showcase my talents on this incredible stage.

"I will keep you all involved in my training and preparation and we’ll have a lot of fun along the way. Can’t wait to show the world how this blind guy can take over a course!"

And when he's not smashing it on the course, Olson supervises at a gym near his home in Huntington Beach, California which helps those with physical challenges, and works as a motivational speaker.


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