Blair O’Neal is one of Golf Channel’s rising stars, hosting School Of Golf for the network. Her media career began after she pursued one in pro golf, attempting to reach the LPGA after a star-studded career at Arizona State. Along the way, she broke into modeling as well, giving her a very diverse set of professional experiences. Last spring, she and her husband Jeff Keiser welcomed their son Chrome Andy Keiser into the world.
O’Neal was born in Macomb, Ill. Her family moved to Arizona during her childhood. At the age of 11, she began to play golf, when her father enrolled she and her brother in a local clinic. According to her website bio, “Blair has rarely put down her clubs” since, practicing nearly every afternoon.
Two years later, she played for the American Junior Golf Association. She was named to the U.S. Junior Ryder Cup Team, earning her a trip to spain, and she’d go on to medal at the AJGA Ping Phoenix Junior Championship. In high school, she emerged as an elite young talent, winning the Women’s 5A State Golf Champion.
She went on to accept a scholarship to her “dream school,” Arizona State, where she continued to develop her game. She was the NCAA’s two-time women’s long-drive champion, with her strength off the tee being a major part of her game. She has a career best drive of 325 yards.
Blair O’Neal’s Golf Career:
After graduating from ASU, O’Neal pursued pro golf, playing in Asia before returning to the United States in an attempt to reach the LPGA. She played on the Symetra Tour, but after a few tough years grinding it out in an attempt to qualify for the LPGA Tour, she stepped away from the game to focus on her burgeoning modeling career.
In 2009, she made her return to golf. She was a contest on Golf Channel’s reality contest Big Break, finishing as the runner-up on the show. The re-invigorated her golf career, and she made a comeback as a professional. In 2010, she returned to Big Break, winning the show that season. Later that year, she went to LPGA Qualifying School, falling short of obtaining her tour card. Over the next four years, she played on the LPGA Symetra Tour once again.
While her career has turned towards media since 2015, she still plays in celebrity tournaments and other events. She is sponsored by Cobra-Puma Golf, playing with Cobra clubs. The Titleist PRO V1 Golf Ball is her ball of choice.
Blair’s Golf Channel Career, Hosting School of Golf And Other Programs:
Appearing on Golf Channel’s Big Break, a reality show that ran from 2003-2015, wound up being exactly that for Blair O’Neal. After five years away from the sport, the chance to compete on the show truly re-launched her career in golf, and helped set her down the path of golf media.
She first appeared on the 2009 season, Big Break Prince Edward Island, finishing as the runner-up to Derek Gillespie, a professional golfer on the Canadian Tour. The following year, she returned for Big Break Dominican Republic, where she was named champion, winning $50,000 and an LPGA Tour exemption, among other things.
O’Neal hosted What’s In The Bag and Donald J. Trump’s Fabulous World of Golf for the network, before landing her main School of Golf gig in 2017, replacing Sara Brown. She hosts alongside instructor Martin Hall, who has been on the show since 2011.
She has also done hosting work for Golf.com and Golf Digest in recent years. She says that Ben Hogan is her all-time favorite golfer.
Blair O’Neal’s Family: Who Did She Marry?
In 2013, O’Neal married boyfriend Jeff Keiser, a fellow Arizona State alumnus and self-described golf enthusiast, who works for the PetSmart corporation in Phoenix. The two keep a relative low profile as a couple, though he and their first child, Chrome Andy Keiser, make regular appearances on her social media profiles.
She gave birth last April, just weeks into the COVID-19 pandemic, which brought on unique stresses on top of being a first-time mother. She discussed what it was like going through that experience as the nation was going on lockdown with Golfweek.
“Being so pregnant, you’re already pretty emotional because your hormones are going crazy,” said O’Neal of Golf Channel’s “School of Golf.”
“But with everything going on in the world and so many unknowns with COVID-19, it was pretty scary. Was I going to be able to have my husband in the delivery room with me?”
Surely she wouldn’t have to do this alone. Husband Jeff Keiser wasn’t even allowed in the room for the final ultrasound.
Mercifully, New York hospitals started allowing one guest into hospital rooms, paving the way for Arizona. The rule changed one week before Chrome Andy Keiser made his grand entrance on April 7 at 5:47 a.m., weighing 8 pounds, 1 ounce.
“It’s such a roller coaster,” O’Neal said of motherhood. “One hour things are going good, and the next you don’t know what happened.”
O’Neal, who turns 39 on May 14, had her baby shower one week before the U.S. started going into lockdown. With diapers and wipes on backorder, even getting the essentials has been worrisome.
“I think I’ve ordered over 300 newborn diapers over Amazon,” she said.
A few months earlier, pre-COVID, she competed in the Diamond Resorts Tournament of Champions while six-months pregnant, finishing sixth in the celebrity portion of the event, an impressive accomplishment considering she hadn’t been playing nearly as much as she normally would.
What is Blair O’Neal Up To Now?:
In early 2021, she is back to work, recording new episodes of School of Golf now that she has returned from maternity leave. She recently shot new promos for Puma, along with Rickie Fowler, one of the other main faces of the company’s golf division.
She remains one of the sport, and Golf Channel’s, most popular personalities, and her role has only increased in the 5+ years that she has really been focused on the media side of her career.
— to thespun.com