FAU professor to compete on ABC’s extreme mini-golf show Thursday

Economics professor Eric Chiang takes on obstacles and mini-golf on the season finale of ABC’s extreme game show Holey Moley for the chance to win $25,000.

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FAU professor to compete on ABC’s extreme mini-golf show Thursday

A contestant competing on Holey Moley, an extreme mini-golf game show on ABC. FAU professor Eric Chiang will be competing Thursday night for $25,000. Photo courtesy of Walt Disney Television

A contestant competing on Holey Moley, an extreme mini-golf game show on ABC. FAU professor Eric Chiang will be competing Thursday night for $25,000. Photo courtesy of Walt Disney Television

A contestant competing on Holey Moley, an extreme mini-golf game show on ABC. FAU professor Eric Chiang will be competing Thursday night for $25,000. Photo courtesy of Walt Disney Television

A contestant competing on Holey Moley, an extreme mini-golf game show on ABC. FAU professor Eric Chiang will be competing Thursday night for $25,000. Photo courtesy of Walt Disney Television

Daniel Sanchez, Contributing Writer

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Exhausted, sleep-deprived, and cold, FAU professor Eric Chiang went to face one of his biggest challenges: beating a mini-golf course on national television. Chiang competed in the season finale of Holey Moley, fully aware there would be no retakes — and $25,000 at stake. 

A friend told Chiang about the show, which combines an extreme obstacle course with miniature golf incorporated. He sent a video submission of his trick shots which got the attention of producers. After four months of Skype interviews, a personality assessment, and a background check, he traveled to Los Angeles, California for two weeks of filming. 

FAU economics professor Eric Chiang. Photo courtesy of Walt Disney Television

Along with 30 other competitors, Chiang was taken to the former set of Wipeout, a high-stakes obstacle game show. The course included both daunting obstacles and difficult mini golf holes. 

“Every hole was sudden death,” said Chiang. 

He described the experience as challenging both mentally and physically. He had to watch out for the water hazards, obstacles, and also remember to putt. 

“It was one of the most memorable experiences of my life … I would definitely consider participating on another game show,” Chiang said.

What stuck out to Chiang was meeting six-time NBA All-star of the Golden State Warriors Stephen Curry and play a hole against him, but Chiang admits that this portion of the episode may not be aired.

Golden State Warriors athlete Stephen Curry. Curry will be hosting Holey Moley Thursday night. Photo courtesy of Walt Disney Television

Chiang said he enjoyed the opportunity to watch both amateur golfers and professional golfers battle it out. 

He couldn’t disclose whether or not he won the $25,000 prize. However, he said he was “confident in his performance” and had a great experience overall. 

Off the course, Chiang is an economics professor specializing in international trade and has published 30 papers in peer reviewed journals. In 2009, he was selected by students for the Distinguished Teacher of the Year award, the university’s highest teaching honor. He also is a member of the United States ProMiniGolf Association (USPMGA) and has been playing nearly his entire life. The sport has become a hobby when he’s not teaching.

To watch Chiang compete, tune into ABC’s Holey Moley on Aug. 22 at 8 p.m.

Chiang couldn’t say much about his experience before his air-time, so check back with the UP after tonight’s finale for updates.

Daniel Sanchez is a contributing writer of the University Press. For information regarding this or other stories, email [email protected]