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  • Lines of Charm: Brilliant And Irreverent Quotes, Notes, And Anecdotes from Golf's Golden Age Architects
    Lines of Charm: Brilliant And Irreverent Quotes, Notes, And Anecdotes from Golf's Golden Age Architects
  • The Future of Golf: How Golf Lost Its Way and How to Get It Back
    The Future of Golf: How Golf Lost Its Way and How to Get It Back
    by Geoff Shackelford
  • Grounds for Golf: The History and Fundamentals of Golf Course Design
    Grounds for Golf: The History and Fundamentals of Golf Course Design
    by Geoff Shackelford
  • The Art of Golf Design
    The Art of Golf Design
    by Michael Miller, Geoff Shackelford
  • Alister MacKenzie's Cypress Point Club
    Alister MacKenzie's Cypress Point Club
    by Geoff Shackelford
  • The Golden Age of Golf Design
    The Golden Age of Golf Design
    by Geoff Shackelford
  • The Good Doctor Returns: A Novel
    The Good Doctor Returns: A Novel
    by Geoff Shackelford
  • Masters of the Links: Essays on the Art of Golf and Course Design
    Masters of the Links: Essays on the Art of Golf and Course Design
  • The Captain: George C. Thomas Jr. and His Golf Architecture
    The Captain: George C. Thomas Jr. and His Golf Architecture
    by Geoff Shackelford
Current Reading
  • Men in Green
    Men in Green
    by Michael Bamberger
  • Unplayable Lies: (The Only Golf Book You'll Ever Need)
    Unplayable Lies: (The Only Golf Book You'll Ever Need)
    by Dan Jenkins
  • Professional Golf 2015: The Complete Media, Fan and Fantasy Guide
    Professional Golf 2015: The Complete Media, Fan and Fantasy Guide
    by Daniel Wexler
  • The Forbidden Game: Golf and the Chinese Dream
    The Forbidden Game: Golf and the Chinese Dream
    by Dan Washburn
  • Arnie, Seve, and a Fleck of Golf History: Heroes, Underdogs, Courses, and Championships
    Arnie, Seve, and a Fleck of Golf History: Heroes, Underdogs, Courses, and Championships
    by Bill Fields
  • Unplayable Lies: (The Only Golf Book You'll Ever Need)
    Unplayable Lies: (The Only Golf Book You'll Ever Need)
    by Dan Jenkins

    Kindle Edition

  • The Magnificent Masters: Jack Nicklaus, Johnny Miller, Tom Weiskopf, and the 1975 Cliffhanger at Augusta
    The Magnificent Masters: Jack Nicklaus, Johnny Miller, Tom Weiskopf, and the 1975 Cliffhanger at Augusta
    by Gil Capps
  • Golf Architecture in America: Its Strategy and Construction
    Golf Architecture in America: Its Strategy and Construction
    by Geo. C. Thomas
  • The Course Beautiful : A Collection of Original Articles and Photographs on Golf Course Design
    The Course Beautiful : A Collection of Original Articles and Photographs on Golf Course Design
    Treewolf Prod
  • Reminiscences Of The Links
    Reminiscences Of The Links
    by Albert Warren Tillinghast, Richard C. Wolffe, Robert S. Trebus, Stuart F. Wolffe
  • Gleanings from the Wayside
    Gleanings from the Wayside
    by Albert Warren Tillinghast
  • Planet Golf USA: The Definitive Reference to Great Golf Courses in America
    Planet Golf USA: The Definitive Reference to Great Golf Courses in America
    by Darius Oliver
  • Planet Golf: The Definitive Reference to Great Golf Courses Outside the United States of America
    Planet Golf: The Definitive Reference to Great Golf Courses Outside the United States of America
    by Darius Oliver
Writing And Videos

I believe in pros and I believe in greenkeepers and I do not for one minute wish to imply that they are all equally unfit to design golf courses. One of the best-known golf architects in the country was formerly a pro. One of the best-known golf architects in England was formerly a practicing physician. But, for every pro, and for every greenkeeper, and, likewise, for every doctor that has natural gifts in this direction there are hundreds who have not. 



U.S. Mid-Am Final Match Highlighted by Schmitz's Par-4 Ace

There's a Chris Keane photo of U.S. Mid-Amateur Champion Sammy Schmitz holding up the ball, but so far no video has surfaced of the incredible and historic hole-in-one that all but iced the 2015 final match against Marc Dull. There is, however a Ron Driscoll story on Schmitz's family and friends pulling an all-nighter to be there for the final, so at least they saw the epic 260-yard shot.

Hopefully, the USGA's broadcast partner Fox, who was there taping, will have something on Fox Sports Live later tonight? Nothing yet on the USGA YouTube page either.

Anyway, sounds like it was a compelling match based on the down-the-stretch battle, described here by Golf News Net using match tweets. Schmitz won 3&2 and with it, a Masters berth.


Nick Faldo: Another Tiger Major Win Unlikely

While the sentiment is probably accurate, I'm still not ready to write off Tiger Woods and am a little surprised Nick Faldo is.

But he is!

Ray Slover with the quote from the six-time major winner Faldo.

Tiger Woods' future in professional golf has reached a crossroads with his latest back surgery. Count Nick Faldo among observers who doubt Woods can return to being dominant.

"It's really, really unlikely he could win another major," Faldo told OmniSport.

Woods hopes to return to PGA competition in 2016 following Sept. 16's surgery. He last played at mid-August's Wyndham Championship, showing flashes of gret play while leading early in the tournament.

A checkup after that tournament found Woods needed further surgery in the area doctors operated in March 2014.


Lee Westwood Going Back To European Tour Full Time

As the British Masters is about to get underway at Woburn and Lee Westwood is an official/unofficial host along with Mssrs. Poulter, Rose and Donald, the former world No. 2 is going back to the European Tour full time.

Alistair Tait explains that the move is family-driven, with a little future Ryder Cup captaincy also a positive that might come out of Westwood's recent divorce.

Westwood’s form could become a concern for next year’s Ryder Cup. He has been a perennial member of the European Tour since 1997. He plans to be at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minn., next year.

“I played the last nine, so obviously I would like to keep going,” he said. “(The matches) probably give you the biggest buzz of any golf tournament we play. I always like to be involved as a player. Coming back to Europe might give me a better chance of doing that.

“If I’m not involved as a player, I’d like to be involved in the backroom. I’d like to help (European captain) Darren (Clarke) out with the other stuff, also with a view to obviously be a captain at some point during the next few years.”

As for the British Masters' return, Derek Lawrenson has a few thoughts an insight into the interesting sponsorship role Sky Sports is playing.


Video: Presidents Cup Opening Ceremonies Goes Pixar...ish

I've studied my share of Taiwanese animation videos, but this Korean take on the Presidents Cup as a mid-city clash between Marvel superheroes is surreal.

Apparently this aired during the opening ceremony dinner of the 2015 Presidents Cup...


ABC Gets Back In The Golf Business With LPGA Finale

I'm hoping the Love Unlimited Orchestra's "Love Theme" is employed at some point to highlight ABC--ABC!--carrying the final round of the LPGA Tour's CME Group Tour Championship on November 22nd. Golf Channel will carry the first three days.

Granted, it's the ESPN golf team, but this is an encouraging sign for golf that a solid broadcast team is going to get a few more reps even as the worldwide leader cuts costs to please parent company Disney. With ABC not carrying the NFL or MLB, could the network that was so pivotal in cultivating golf on TV be an outlet for more LPGA or PGA Tour events down the road?

From an LPGA Tour release:

Tom Rinaldi will call the play on ABC’s telecast, joined by the team that called the RICOH Women’s British Open Championship on ESPN: Dottie Pepper, Judy Rankin, Andy North and Billy Kratzert, led by coordinating producer Mike McQuade - will cover the final round for ABC. The first three rounds will be broadcast on Golf Channel, with ESPN producing the telecasts.


Dull: 6-Foot-7 Streamsong Caddie In Mid-Am Final

Jeff Babineau at does a great job setting up the U.S. Mid-Amateur final match between Marc Dull and Sammy Schmitz, with a Masters berth on the line.

Check it out here.

Dull is fun, keeps things light, and plays golf with with a boldness that is to be admired. As others tense up in those big, please-remember-to-exhale moments of match play, Dull passes his time in the fairways laughing, singing and quoting playful lines from Will Ferrell movies with his best friend/caddie, a fellow looper nicknamed Spice.


Golf Can't Win Files: Gators At Rio Olympic Course Edition

As many of you who have followed the saga of the Olympic Golf Course in Rio know, a few locals and the AP have painted a picture of a virtual toxic waste dump that has ravaged the landscape and polluted the putridly polluted waters.

Having been there, I can tell you the site did have environmental components that I knew would be accentuated by Gil Hanse and friends, but convincing people that minimalist design is ultimately critter-friendly is always tough when the ignorant just assume that golf courses are all chemicals and no environment.

So I couldn't help but chuckle at the press conference called to assuage fears that the wildlife re-taking the Rio golf course could prove dangerous next year. That's right, the critters are back and the world that thought they were being eradicated unfairly need to have their fears calmed! What a world.

Golf News Net
with the lowdown on the gators setting up shop in the lakes overnight and the efforts to calm those who are...obtuse?

And evidence that wildlife can co-exist with golf, as if we weren't aware.

Speaking of the course, USA Today's Roxanna Scott paid a visit and filed this update. More interesting is the photograph accompanying the story that shows native areas blossoming. Great for critters and great for projecting a rustic look for golf next summer.

Meanwhile Alex Miceli quotes Tim Finchem and Ty Votaw at length about recent news of budget cuts in Rio and how they could impact the golf.


If You Care Files: Why Sangmoon Is Sitting

You don't care about the Presidents Cup, most likely. But a casual observer knows this event fading fast for a number of reasons and desperately needs a jolt when it kicks off with Thursday foursomes (at 7 pm PT in the States).

Yet Captain Nick Price has benched one of the two South Korean born players in South Korea. The one who is playing his final event before two years of military service: Sangmoon Bae.

Dave Shedloski reports the rationale from the Captain. His thinking is logical, at least, in a strategic sense. But politically, commercially, and for building home field advantage?

Not so much.


Torrey North: "The reality has become something of a nightmare."

Tod Leonard assesses the state of the Torrey Pines North redo--arguably the nation's highest profile public course renovation in the works--and he paints a fairly bleak picture.

But hey, someone's going to get rich!

The current price tag for the North: $12.6 million in hard construction costs, while the soft costs raise it to more in the range of $14.6 million.

Amid this fiscal and public relations mess, the city’s golf division is charged to make this work. Four bids have been received for the construction work. Some big names are rumored to be associated with those bids, including Tom Weiskopf and Robert Trent Jones Jr.

The problem is that no matter how esteemed the architectural firm is, they didn’t sit through two years of public meetings with real golfers, who felt they were heard by Mickelson. They’re not going to have the time to painstakingly study play on the North, as Angus did.


Whew: Crime Down In The Borough Of Pine Valley

The Philadelphia Inquirer's Michael Boren profiled the Pine Valley PD and their ongoing efforts to keep America's No. 1 ranked (most years) golf club safe.

Boren writes:

The 12 residents barely outnumber the six officers. That makes Pine Valley the second-smallest municipality in New Jersey, and the smallest to have a police force.

Rauer acknowledges he and his officers encounter little crime. He told The Philadelphia Inquirer that the department averages one or two arrests a year, “maybe less.” That’s if trespassers or thieves get past the guarded entrance and the 8-foot-high chain-link fences that epitomize the deep desire for privacy everyone here appears to share.

Last year, the borough reported zero major crimes, and in 2013, three larceny-thefts - which Rauer said may have been people stealing flags from the greens.

“If anything,” said Bob Mather, 87, the friendly borough clerk who has worked there since 1969, “the police department acts as a deterrent to outsiders - outsiders that would like to come in here to do harm.”'s Josh Sens couldn't help but imagine what the police blotter of Pine Valley looks like. Thanks reader Scott.


Impressive: SMU Notches A Big Win One Week After Those NCAA Sanctions They Had Absolutely Nothing To Do With

I have nothing but admiration for the student-athletes at SMU men's golf who, after getting a virtual death penalty from the NCAA last week for recruiting violations by their previous coach, went out and beat a quality field without their top man.

Brentley Romine with the lowdown on SMU winning the Erin Hills Intercollegiate over Oklahoma State.

"I'm so proud of my guys this week," SMU head coach Jason Enloe said. "We all played as a team and really had a great time. Erin Hills is a special place and to win the event is a great accomplishment. It is a great remedy for what had been a tough week for our team amid the NCAA ban."


Day One '15 Presidents Cup Pairings Are Out & Will Remain Out!

Not quite the kick-off we were hoping for is it for Wednesday night's 10 pm PT start, is it?

Especially when the first match out may be the most intriguing? And they're playing a video game course. In the middle of the night. And all of the players get along. 

Oh well! G.C. Digital with the day one foursomes matchups that left Bill Haas, Chris Kirk, Charl Schwartzel and Sangmoon Bae (!?) on the bench.

Because, why would anyone in Korea want to see him play on day one?

Maybe the camera noise will generate a little necessary controversy? Steve Elling explains.


Kickstarter Or Something ASAP: The Duf Plaque at Oak Hill

"Positively frightening" is how Alex Myers put it at and who is going to argue with that assessment of Jason Dufner's Oak Hill plaque commemorating his 2013 PGA win.

To put it another way, you know it's bad when the person who the plaque is based on Instagram's a photo of himself with a Lord Of The Rings character.

Reader Charlie saw the Myers item and suggested that we need to do something. While normally I would say that there are bigger issues in the world--Syrian refugees, Biblical South Carolina storms, Oak Hill calling itself a Donald Ross design--the sheer horror of this plaque requires immediate and bold action.

Look, I'm a lover of golf history. Not depicting things accurately bothers me, but this calls for special measures. After all, Duf has shed a few pounds, cleaned up his look, and definitely does not resemble Laura Davies with dark hair (as the artist apparently thought).

Charlie's rallying cry: Dat Ain't Duf!

The post from Dufner his ownself:


Biblical Rains: Situation Not Too Horrible In South Carolina?

Jason Scott Deegan has an update from folks on the ground in South Carolina following recent rains measured at as much as 17 and 21 inches near key Low Country destinations.

Deegan writes:

It’s likely many courses will be cart path only until they dry out further. There will also be issues with standing water in low spots and in bunkers at some courses. Few facilities, however, suffered any significant damage. King’s North Course at Myrtle Beach National will be closed for several extra days to repair a washed out section of cart path, according to the Sun News.

Golden said he won’t know the economic impact of the storm for several weeks. A lot of it depends how quickly golfers come back. After a wet spring, area operators were hoping for a strong fall to make up for that shortcoming.

"I have been here 20 years," Golden said. "It was similar to Hurricane Floyd (1999) in terms of water. I’ve heard comments regarding (this being) a thousand-year storm. That is what this was being compared to. It seems to be a once-in-a-lifetime occurrence.”


Forward Press: Presidents Cup, British Masters

I know once the matches get going I'll get excited about watching the Presidents Cup. At least, until I fall asleep because it's on in the middle of the night.

And I know Jack Nicklaus Golf Club will provide some good fodder if the matches don't.

But as I note in this edition of the Forward Press, with the all important Prez Cup TV time breakdown, there is a lot riding on these matches. A blowout on a bad course probably starts to sink the event. But a thriller with a nice knockdown, dragout man-spat or two, and there is hope for the planet.

Though I'm probably more excited about the British Masters returning to the English countryside, where Cara Robinson and I discussed today on Morning Drive. Good crowds are expected and Ian Poulter is all in as a member of Woburn.


Video: A Don't Try This At Home Trick Shot

Nice spot by Jason Crook of SkratchTV's Tweeted trick shot video from Sigurdur Hauksson in what is definitely the first "don't try this at home" trick shot.

Seriously, don't try this at home or at a national park near you.

But, like the local news anchors who warn that graphic video is coming, I give you Hauksson standing on Kjeragbolten, a boulder wedged into Norway's Kjerag mountain. It's over 3,000 feet above sea level and no telling how far down for the rescuers to go to claim your body. Not worth it!

Okay to the tape!



Rory's Done With Kickabouts, Global Travel Days Soon Too

Rory McIlroy appears to have talked to several outlets as part of some sort of pre-Race To Dubai wrap and you'll just be shocked to smithereens to learn that the days of traveling the globe (standing in the Hall of Fame!) are not long in his world.

From James Corrigan's story for The Telegraph, which has McIlroy pledging no more in-season kickabouts (mitzvah!) and at some point soon, spending more time at home. Wherever that is.

On his forays into casual football.

“Looking back, I can see the opportunities I missed because of the injury,” McIlroy said. “Listen, I’m in a fortunate position to have the chance to win trophies many others can only dream about and yes, I will make sure I’ll be a little more careful in the future. I will not be playing football during the golf season again. It’s a shame, as I enjoy playing with my friends, but I’ll limit it to the off-season. We always have our Boxing Day game and there’s no way I’m missing that. That’s our FA Cup final. And in that sense it is important to carry on living my life.”

And in the world travel division, some tour is going to see a lot less of Rory very soon.

“Look at it, some of it is amazing,” he said. “The travel - wow! I’m in an airplane for more than a fortnight a year; have been in 118 different airports in 12 months. I’ve spent 287 nights in a hotel. What does that leave? less than 80 nights in my own bed, whether it’s the one in Northern Ireland or Florida. I guess at the minute, I don't really have a home.

“I’m not moaning, because I know how lucky I am. And you don’t notice it when you're doing it. But then when you're shown it in black and white, you take a step back and think ‘blimey’. I can definitely see a time in the not so distant future when those numbers will reduce. They’ll have to, if I’m going to have a family and a home life an all that. But that’s what being a global player and playing two tours entails.”

He also suggested he thought about quitting the European Tour, but those comments were less eye-opening than the above.

Phil Casey also has McIlroy justifying his special exemption into the Race To Dubai playoffs despite not qualifying while he was out channeling his inner-David Beckham.

“We had to be careful, especially because I’m included in the Race to Dubai now, so number 61 doesn’t get in, number 111 doesn’t get his card... so it was a tough decision for them (European Tour) to make.

“For me it’s more about the 111th guy, who loses his card. That’s the big thing. What do I do? Send him a bit of a Christmas present? It’s a hard one. I can’t really think of that.

“If I was to look at it really selfishly the 111th guy could have made one more putt or cut to get his card. I just have to think about myself and take a bit of a selfish view of it, I’m afraid."

“But at the end of the day it’s not about the bonus pool, I want to win the Race to Dubai. If I can win the Race to Dubai playing 12 events... at least give me the opportunity. I would have played more if I could.

Yep, but at least you're honest about it.

In this opening-up session, McIlroy also revealed that the PGA Tour lowered his fine for hurling a club into the 8th hole pond at Trump National Doral earlier this year. Stephen Hennessey highlights this admission which ought to raise a few eyebrows on the PGA Tour.

In an interview with ESPN, Rory McIlroy revealed that the tour cut the Northern Irishman some slack after being fined by the PGA Tour for tossing his 3-iron into the water at Doral in March. Actually, the tour saved him $20,000.

His quote: "The fine was reduced from $25,000 to $5,000 because I said I was sorry in the TV interview afterward."


It Wasn't Draft Kings, But We Have Our Avis Fantasy Winner!

It took a while to get your the final results from the league of 2015 PGA Tour Fantasy, and while this four week run was no FanDuel/DraftKings in terms of unadulterated corruption now apparent to the entire world, we were able to produce a winner!

Now, that doesn't mean the PGA Tour world of fantasy golf is working to perfect, but again, at least the thing relentless billed on ads is not saddled by insider trading.

Congratulations to BWL 02 (Ben Latimer) who wins two free rental days from Avis and a new Great Big Bertha from Callaway (left-handed for Ben). And 2nd place goes to Double Eagle Dobiash (Jonathan Dobiash), who wins an Odyssey putter and a free rental day from Avis.
Nicely done chaps.

Now, in light of the corruption scandal that is breaking and the PGA Tour's attempts to embrance fantasy--a new league is promised starting next week--I'm curious what you all think?

My take on the Avis Fantasy League: nice concept, nice software but just too hard to follow your players because of the reliance on ShotLink data instead of their tournament finishes. Thoughts?


Golf Gods Files: Kicker Who Mocked Tiger Cut Over His Yips

Nice work by Emily Kay capturing the lovely story of Jacksonville Jaguars kicker Josh Scobee, who mockingly challenged Tiger Woods post-Waste Management Open debacle via Twitter to a game.

This was as the legend was experiencing some chip yips and now finds himself unemployed. Scobee has been stinking it up this year, going for 3-for-7 on field goals and missing an extra point from the new distance.

Kay writes:

Scobee apparently deleted his Twitter account following Thursday night’s debacle, but we’ll leave you with some words of wisdom he shared after playing himself into a five-shot cushion at the American Century Golf Championship in July.

"Being a kicker, it is kind of like kicking a football," Scobee told the South Lake Tahoe News. "You have to take each thing individually and focus on that one thing and not try to get anything clogged in your head and play your game."


Adam Scott Refreshed By "Forced Change"

Rex Hoggard at talks to Adam Scott, who is re-debuting a short putter at this week's Presidents Cup after a few weeks of practice.

Hoggard's report includes this quote with Scott putting the best spin on the loss of his long putter, which he could still use, just without the anchoring part.

“It was a good time to make the change and I spent some time working on it, a similar amount of time actually when I went to the long putter,” Scott said. “It’s kind of refreshing to make a forced change because my putting stats are certainly unimpressive this year.”

It's an interesting time to re-debut the old/new method, either speaking to Scott's desire to test his new approach under pressure, or under the light pressure of an exhibition. Just depends on your view of the event I suppose.