WHITE SULPHUR SPRINGS, W. Va.—A host of players are currently in the hunt during the second round of the Greenbrier Classic, including J.B. Holmes.
The fact that Holmes is even on the course, is a minor miracle.
J.B. Holmes looks like any other PGA Tour player. But last summer, he began to experience vertigo-like symptoms, including dizziness and double vision, caused by chiari malformations in his brain.
In September he underwent surgery, which left him without a quarter-sized piece of his skull and a titanium plate at the base of his cerebellum.
“I tried to stay real positive. It was brain surgery, but for brain surgery it was minor surgery. I was very confident in the doctor. He knew what to do and had done a bunch of surgeries so I really didn't let it enter my mind that I wasn't coming back out here to compete. I just tried to stay positive,” Holmes said.
While downplaying the surgery, he knows how fortunate he really is. The Kentucky native didn't swing a club for three months, admitting his health problems gave him a new appreciation for life and his livelihood.
“It's still your job and it's still frustrating, and you still get upset when you hit a few bad shots but in the grand scheme of things you realize the most important things are God, family, and friends. So it puts it in perspective a little bit. If you do start to get a little upset, you stop and think and say it's not that big of a deal, it's just a game.
Holmes has a reputation as one of the longest hitters on Tour. His driving skills were on display in the second round of the Greenbrier Classic when he bombed a 359-yard drive on the 11th hole.