Twitter: GeoffShac
  • Playing Through: Modern Golf's Most Iconic Players and Moments
    Playing Through: Modern Golf's Most Iconic Players and Moments
    by Jim Moriarty
  • Tommy's Honor: The Story of Old Tom Morris and Young Tom Morris, Golf's Founding Father and Son
    Tommy's Honor: The Story of Old Tom Morris and Young Tom Morris, Golf's Founding Father and Son
    by Kevin Cook
  • His Ownself: A Semi-Memoir (Anchor Sports)
    His Ownself: A Semi-Memoir (Anchor Sports)
    by Dan Jenkins
  • The Captain Myth: The Ryder Cup and Sport's Great Leadership Delusion
    The Captain Myth: The Ryder Cup and Sport's Great Leadership Delusion
    by Richard Gillis
  • The Ryder Cup: Golf's Grandest Event – A Complete History
    The Ryder Cup: Golf's Grandest Event – A Complete History
    by Martin Davis
  • A Life Well Played: My Stories
    A Life Well Played: My Stories
    by Arnold Palmer
  • Harvey Penick: The Life and Wisdom of the Man Who Wrote the Book on Golf
    Harvey Penick: The Life and Wisdom of the Man Who Wrote the Book on Golf
    by Kevin Robbins
  • Teeing Off: Players, Techniques, Characters, and Reflections from a Lifetime Inside the Game
    Teeing Off: Players, Techniques, Characters, and Reflections from a Lifetime Inside the Game
    by Ken Bowden

Golf Architecture in America lives in his magnificent golf courses and in those who followed him. And it lives as one of the most profound literary efforts of our profession. Personally, I have always thought it was the work that convinced us that golf course design was truly an art form.  GEOFFREY CORNISH

 

  

Thursday
Aug102017

Oak Hill Prez: “We get a bad rap. It’s not like a British Open on the coast of Scotland.”

While we wind down the PGA in August with this week's event in Charlotte and next year's barnburner at Bellerive, thoughts turn to how weather will impact northern venues.

Golf World's Tim Rosaforte investigates and finds most northern venues pointing to their positives (No thunderstorms! Thick rough!), with Whistling Straits' Herb Kohler all but conceding he's hosted his last PGA Championship.

Besides the stellar quote from the Oak Hill club president Tim Thaney suggesting Rochester in May isn't nearly as bad weatherwise as a British Open in Scotland--unless it snows--there was this, uh, chilling Rosaforte reminder about Bethpage in May.

Bethpage experienced winterkill damage three years ago that caused the Black Course to remain closed until after Memorial Day. If that happens in 2019, it could create logistical and public-relations nightmares for the PGA. But given that was one of only two conditioning issues like that in the last 20 years, golf-course superintendent Andy Wilson doesn’t see the one-in-10 chance as a deal-breaker. “It’s up to Mother Nature more than anything else,” Wilson says. “If she wants to beat us, she’ll beat us and we’ll recover.”

Thursday
Aug102017

Video: Rory McIlroy Narrates Traden Karch Story

Get ready for a seriously throat lump learning about the inspirational comeback of Traden Karch, an aspiring young golfer who's got some Rory in his swing and face. He has overcome a horrific accident with the help of doctors, family, friends, and Rory McIlroy, who narrates this Golf Channel piece.

If you saw this on Wednesday's Live From the PGA at Quail Hollow or maybe caught a glimpse from afar without audio, make sure to check out this fine piece of work by producer Adrienne Gallagher.

Wednesday
Aug092017

2017 PGA: First Round This And That

It's Glory's Second-To-Last Shot Before The Move To May!

The 2017 PGA gets underway at Quail Hollow, which was renovated in 89 days and, at least architecturally, conveys the feeling of a rush job lacking design permanence. Insipid two-dimensional bunkering, overzealous green contouring and several discreet anti-scoring touches explain why you've heard so few players offering praise for what is otherwise a world-class facility.

Michael Collins at ESPN.com with a fun caddie confidential on the player/caddie griping and plans to already fix one of the greens here.

Mercifully, superintendent Keith Wood's team is providing exceptional conditioning, the Charlotte fan energy is off-the-charts and more elite players seem to be on form heading into this major compared to the first three Grand Slam legs.

The weather forecast? Still ominous but Thursday is perfect and as Kyle Porter notes, it is expected to be a part of this championship.

Your live streaming, TV Times and groupings from PGA.com.

Golfweek's listing of times and groupings.

The renovated first hole is a nice par-5 in the minds of players (Casey/Golfweek).

The Green Mile is still the biggest part of the Quail Hollow test. (Romine/Golfweek).

Jason Day is trying to salvage his season, if he can get the putter going. (Menta/GolfChannel.com)

Phil thinks the winning score will be close to even par (Lavner/GolfChannel.com)

Josh Berhow at Golf.com puts a bow on the early week shorts discussion, with comments from Gary Player endorsing the relaxing of rules.

Michael McCann with legal analysis on Tiger's DUI arraignment and plea.

Golfweek's live blog will keep you updated.

And as for the story of the week, Jordan Spieth, Brian Wacker says the Champion Golfer of the Year's resilience is noticed by his peers.

Gary Williams and I discussed why Spieth is so confident and may be able put his great iron play to extra-special use this week.

And on trying to become the youngest to achieve the greatest feat for a golfer, he's not feeling the pressure. From his Wednesday press conference:

JORDAN SPIETH: How? There will be pressure. This is a major championship. I mean, this is one of the four pivotal weeks of the year that we focus on. So there will certainly be pressure. I'm simply stating, there won't be added expectations or pressure.

How? I don't know. I just don't feel it. I just -- it's not a burning desire to have to be the youngest to do something, and that would be the only reason there would be added expectations. The more years you go on playing PGAs, and if I don't win one in the next ten years, then maybe there's added pressure then, and hopefully we don't have to have this conversation in ten years. But if we do, then it might be a different.

But it was only two weeks ago that I was able to get the third leg, and that's so fresh in my mind. I'm so happy about that that I can't add pressure to this week. I'm free-rolling. And it feels good. I'm about as -- I'm about as kind of free and relaxed at a major than I think I've ever felt. Maybe since Chambers Bay, arriving at Chambers Bay after the Masters and just, you know, almost like I've accomplished something so great this year that anything else that happens, I can accept. That takes that pressure, that expectation away.

Now, you get into the heat of things, certainly that changes things, because I recognize where we are and what it would mean to win a major. Not anything else other than that. And so getting into position this week, this is a very, very, very tough course, and it's one that I need to drive the ball better than I've been driving it to have a chance to win this week, and I've been working hard on it and seeing some improvements. So as long as I can do that, then I should have chance.

Wednesday
Aug092017

Ball Goes Far Files: Rory's Driver Carries Render Quail Hollow's Range Too Short

There is some truly blissful viewing here watching the Toptracer techology track Rory's monster carry yardages and his range balls bounding through the trees 350 yards away.

Note the drive that carries 365! (Link here if embed does not work.)

Tuesday
Aug082017

CBS All In On Technology At The 2017 PGA

If you listened to this week's ShackHouse, you know we're excited to learn from guest Amanda Balionis that CBS is emptying the bucket and giving us lots of technology on this week's PGA Championship telecast.

Martin Kaufmann explains at Golfweek.com what to expect, including this:

For the first time CBS will have Trackman on all 18 holes, cranking out data such as ball speed and curvature, and wireless Toptracer technology to track approach shots.

“I’m most excited that we can use the technology on all 18 holes,” Sean McManus, chairman of CBS Sports, said during a conference call last week.

CBS also plans to use: ARL Virtual Eye, which shows Trackman tracing of ball flight over a hole graphic adjacent to live shots of players hitting tee shots; bunker cameras; a cable-mounted camera tracking action on the practice range and 4K coverage on DirecTV of the final three holes.

This is clearly a response to good feedback the network has received to its efforts this year, and even if some of the technology is useful only to a hardcore fan, the high-tech look helps modernize the telecast. It's also no coincidence that CBS's contract for the PGA is up after the 2019 event at Bethpage, and discussions about the next deal are expected to start later this year.

Tuesday
Aug082017

Poll: Parsing The PGA-Players Championship Trade & Next Moves

I've been a bit leery of the proposed Players for PGA trade because of potential issues with finding quality venues and locales for a May PGA. On the PGA Tour side, reducing the wraparound season to finish before Labor Day has made fantastic sense from day one, but we are clearly a long ways from sorting out the particulars. Rex Hoggard tries here for GolfChannel.com.

Though as Bob Harig notes in his assessment at ESPN.com, the puzzle pieces are tough to put together with World Golf Championship events in tough places on the schedule.

But this is PGA week and the focus in rolling this out was on the major championship. My review here for Golfweek gets into some of the confirmed elements that have me (and I think) others feeling good about what is a huge change in the Grand Slam ebb and flow.

Alex Miceli at MorningRead.com considered the worldwide ramifications and interestingly the European Tour is already positioning itself in interesting ways.

It's a basic question, but after hopefully taking in some of the coverage today online or at Golf Channel, do you like the switch?

Do you like the PGA's planned move to May 2019?
 
pollcode.com free polls

Tuesday
Aug082017

BMW PGA Announces Move To September Before Ink Is Dry On PGA Move To May Deal!

Pelley!

Wasting little time...about 10 minutes to be exact...the European Tour announced a shift in the BMW PGA Championship's date to September.

I'd give then an "8" for passive aggressiveness, even this could end up being a great switch.

With the PGA Championship moving to May and the Players to March, the European Tour immediately seized on the likely shortening of the PGA Tour playoff season to push their marquee event into a month where the field stands to improve. Furthermore, the European Tour's Race To Dubai should also benefit from the U.S. calendar changes.

More on the PGA move to May later, as we learned a few fun things in today's press conference that I'm writing about for Golfweek. In the mean time, for immediate release... 

The European Tour today announces that the BMW PGA Championship will move from its current date in May to a new September slot from the 2019 season onwards.

The prestigious Championship, which is part of the European Tour’s Rolex Series, will be played at Wentworth Club from May 24-27, 2018, before moving to September for its 65th anniversary edition the following year.

The move comes following news announced earlier today that the 2019 US PGA Championship will move from its traditional August date into May, with The Players Championship on the PGA Tour moving from May to March.

The specific date of the 2019 BMW PGA Championship will be released in due course but it will be central to a strong and robust end of season schedule on the European Tour.

Keith Pelley, Chief Executive of the European Tour, said: “Significant changes to the global golfing calendar have given us the opportunity to move the BMW PGA Championship to a more favourable date from 2019 onwards.

“Wentworth Club is an iconic location in the realm of British sport and the BMW PGA Championship is always hugely popular with the public as was seen in May when it launched our Rolex Series with 110,000 spectators in attendance over the course of the week.

“This is a new chapter for the event but we expect similar interest in the autumn, as was shown historically by the World Match Play Championship when it was played at Wentworth Club at that time of the year.”

The BMW PGA Championship was the first of eight Rolex Series events to be played on the European Tour’s International Schedule in 2017, all of which are part of the Race to Dubai. Sweden’s Alex Noren claimed the title in May, overturning a seven shot deficit with a stunning final round of 62 to win by two strokes over the West Course, which had undergone a multi-million pound revamp in the period between the 2016 and 2017 Championships.

Noren joined an illustrious Roll of Honour for the Championship which includes Seve Ballesteros, Arnold Palmer, Tony Jacklin, Sir Nick Faldo, Bernhard Langer, Ian Woosnam, José María Olazábal, Colin Montgomerie, Luke Donald and Rory McIlroy.

Tuesday
Aug082017

Assessing Where A Spieth Career Slam Fits In Golf History

When you break down the career Grand Slam winners and the many legends who have won three of four legs, the opportunity facing Jordan Spieth becomes impressive. 

Mention that he can do this at a younger age than Woods and Nicklaus and it becomes, as Jim Nantz noted in the piece I wrote for Golfweek, one of the great accomplishments in the history of the game.  

Jaime Diaz assesses where this feat would fall in the game's history and notes that Grand Slam is not a perfect measure of greatness.

Walter Hagen, who won 11 major championships, didn’t have a real shot at what evolved into the Grand Slam because the Masters wasn’t even played until he was well past his prime. And what of Bobby Jones’ “original” Grand Slam in 1930, winning the U.S. Open and Amateur and their British counterparts in one year, which has never been replicated by any golfer over an entire career? That feat, or the still unattained the calendar professional Grand Slam, or even the Tiger Slam of 2000-’01, would all have to be more exalted than the career Grand Slam.

Ryan Lavner reminds us that Tiger Woods, the last in the modern era to achieve the feat, didn't have much time to ponder the possibilties but pulled off the slam in his first try.

Not only was Woods, at 24, the youngest to win the career Grand Slam, but he was the fastest, too – needing only 93 starts, compared with Nicklaus’ 125.

“They’ve been the elite players to ever play the game,” Woods said that day. “And to be in the same breath as those guys, it makes it very special.”

Besides Woods, the only other players to complete the career Grand Slam in their first attempts were Gene Sarazen (age 33) and Ben Hogan (40).

Jack Nicklaus narrated this tribute:

 

Tuesday
Aug082017

Shorts Give The PGA Championship A Member-Guest Vibe

Not that there's anything wrong with the member guest!

I bring you great news from soggy Charlotte: now you can come to a major and not discern the players from the spectator.

Baba-booey!

Allowing the players to wear shorts in the practice round--a policy already adopted on the European Tour--screams Bushwood member-guest.

I realize I'm in the minority on this one, as every poll and every player declares how much they enjoyed letting their underexposed skin breath. And yes, pro golfers are real athletes these days, confused almost daily with linebackers, decathletes and boxers, so why not let them show off their physiques? Says the theory.

For me, the casual look reaffirms the fourth major as the fourth major.

 

 

I at least have one person agreeing with me...

Tuesday
Aug082017

ShackHouse 45: PGA Championship Preview, Amanda Balionis

Lots of fun stuff to cover from Steph Curry to PGA Championship news to Jordan Spieth's shot at history. We try to put it all in perspective and give out a few picks too. And if you listen, you know there are some sweet giveaways, so get those picks posted below (and don't forget to leave an email address).

As always, you can subscribe on iTunes and or just refresh your device's podcast subscription page.

Here is The Ringer's show page.

Same deal with Soundcloud for the show, and Episode 45 is here to listen to right now. Or this new platform or wherever podcasts are streamed.

ShackHouse is brought to you by Callaway, and of course, the new Steelhead fairway woods along with the new O-Works from Odyssey as well (hint, hint!).

Monday
Aug072017

Rio A Year Later: Golf Is In Better Place And The Course Is Alive!

Exactly a year ago the Rio Olympic course opened to the first practice rounds while many of us were getting our first introduction to new smells and brutal takes on coffee. Golf's place in the Games was still very much in doubt and predictions suggested the entire thing was dead on arrival.

The Rose's, Stenson's, Fowler's, Watson's, Kuchar's, Reed's and others of the game showed up and had the times of their lives, followed by the Park's, Ko's, Juntanagarn's, Thompson's and Lewis's of the women's game putting on a similar great show one week later. The course was a huge success and to this day, is believed to be shuttered because some do not know what rustic golf looks like.

The course is very much still alive, despite the latest bizarre Tweet from the courses greatest hater (AP's Stephen Wade) that received pushback from the Mayor. On Instagram you can follow the latest from the course, including wildlife sightings and, less thrilling, images of the new cart fleet.

A year later golf is locked in through the 2024 Games and will be headed to established venues in Tokyo and Paris. However, should golf make it to the LA Games in 2028, it will be contested at private clubs for all three. The impact of such venues is bound to impact atmosphere and venue enthusiasm. But ultimately all of that will be ignored if the format is built around a great competition and the Olympic spirit instead of the schedules of players and tours. The IOC has signaled it wants bold and fresh formats, as evidenced by 3-on-3 basketball. Now it's golf's turn to pitch similar updates to classic formats in hopes of exciting a younger generation while giving us all reason to support Olympic golf.

 

 

We discussed today on Morning Drive...

Monday
Aug072017

Friends And Neighbors: Augusta CC Sells Land To Augusta National For Undisclosed Sum

Love seeing these "friends and neighbors" getting along as they always have...well maybe except for those days when the negotiations stalled.

The inclination is to assume the 13th hole will be lengthened even though the governing bodies insist things have flatlined. Also look for a service road and stronger property buffer to be part of future changes to the Amen Corner portion of Augusta National.

The Augusta Country Club letter to members, and the area in question below that.

 

 

Monday
Aug072017

Breakfast Viewing Trend? Ricoh British Highest Rated Women's Major Of The Year

For the first time the men's Open Championship edged the U.S. Open in a once unthinkable occrence. And while the 2017 KPMG LPGA was not a morning show, it also beat the U.S. Women's Open ratings.

While the Ricoh Women's British Open had its moments and there may be a Michelle Wie bump, I.K. Kim still held a huge lead heading into the final round. Translation: not the recipe for ratings success.

But are we seeing more evidence yet that sports and golf fans are preferring their golf in morning or prime time hours now that we learn the 2017 Women's British was the season's top rated broadcast?

Remember, all of the events in question are network broadcasts (NBC or Fox), so this is not a cable vs. broadcast network story. And maybe there is no story yet, but the interest in morning golf is a trend worth noting.

For Immediate Release:

HIGHEST-RATED OVERNIGHT TELECAST FOR WOMEN’S GOLF IN MORE THAN A YEAR

The RICOH Women’s British Open Final Round coverage on NBC yesterday posted a .86 Overnight (11:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. ET), +15% YOY, making it the highest-rated overnight telecast for women’s golf in more than a year (2016 U.S. Women’s Open; .98) and the highest-rated women’s golf telecast on NBC since 2014 U.S. Women’s Open (1.67). Final Round coverage, which saw I.K. Kim (South Korea) win her first major championship, also became the highest overnight rating at the event in more than 10 years (2006 on ABC; 1.30).

This is the first time in the history of the Women’s British Open that it reigns as the highest-rated women’s golf telecast of the year, to date, despite its morning/early afternoon telecast window. 
The comparable final five hours of the RICOH Women’s British Open’s Final Round coverage across Golf Channel and NBC was a .64 (9:30 a.m. – 2:30 p.m. ET), which makes it the highest overnight rating for a women’s major 5-hour telecast in 2017 (FOX, U.S. Open Final Round, 2-7 p.m. ET; .63). And the comparable final three hours of broadcast television coverage makes the RICOH Women’s British Open the highest rated ( 11:30 a.m.-2:30 p.m. ET; .86), +21% vs. U.S. Women’s Open on FOX (4-7 p.m. ET; .71) and +25% vs. KPMG Women’s PGA Championship (3-6 p.m. ET, .69).

Next up in women’s golf will be Golf Channel and NBC’s coverage of the Solheim Cup, the biennial team match play event featuring the United States vs. Europe, being contested in Des Moines, Iowa, Friday, August 18 – Sunday, August 20.

Monday
Aug072017

Golf Channel Acquires Revolution Golf

Erik Matuszewski reports at Forbes on Golf Channel's purchase of Revolution Golf and its 2 million subscribers.

He explains how this could be an Amazon Prime-inspired play:

Five years ago, Revolution Golf launched a premium subscription offering for which members pay up to $124 annually to access a library of exclusive video content, special offers on training aids, equipment, and exclusive member-only events. Two-thirds of the business's subscribers play golf at least once a week during the season. That participation is part of what makes golf unique – the sport’s fans are also passionate players.

Golf Channel is serving that passion. And not just via TV, but also through its continually growing digital businesses: playing, instruction, travel and now e-commerce.

As Golf Channel’s McIntosh says -- “We want to connect the world to golf.”

Monday
Aug072017

U.S. Women's Amateur: San Diego Kicks Off SoCal USGA Swing

Tod Leonard previews the U.S. Women's Amateur at San Diego Country Club.

This kicks off what figures to be a fun swing of national championships and a Walker Cup in southern California over the next month or so.

While the wives of country club members once were prominent in the Women’s Am — partly because until 1979 only those who belonged to country clubs could enter — it now mostly serves as a high-level competition for the young. There are 108 women this year in the bracket of 16- to 20-year-olds.

Youth was served last year when 16-year-old Eun Jeong Seong of the Republic of Korea defeated 19-year-old Virginia Elena Carta of Italy. Seong became the youngest player to win three USGA championships, though she chose not to defend the Women’s Am this year.

While Riviera and Los Angeles Country Club will get the majority of the attention, San Diego CC is a much-beloved course that has produced two legends, notes John Strege for Golf World.

When one enters the clubhouse, the Billy Casper Grill is on the right, the Mickey Wright Lounge on the left.

No other operating club in the U.S. likely has spawned two greater champions than Wright and Casper, each of whom were members in their youth, while Casper remained a member until his death. Ben Hogan and Byron Nelson were both products of Glen Garden Golf & Country Club in Fort Worth, Texas, but the club went out of business a few years ago.

Wright and Casper are both World Golf Hall of Fame members.

Fox Sports 1 will cover matches beginning with Wednesday play, airing the action from 6-9 pm ET through Friday. Weekend windows are 7-10 pm ET Saturday and 4-7 pm ET Sunday.

Monday
Aug072017

NY Times: "You Can Always Get a Tee Time, but Turning a Profit Can Be Tricky"

Paul Sullivan uses his NY Times Wealth Matters column to talk to a nice range of golf course developers, including Warren Stephens at Alotian Club and Paul Schock of Prairie Club. The topic? The costs and perils of buying or building a golf course.

Most of the stories end on a positive note, but not after cautionary tales about spending.

This from Chip Smith, who bought the TPC Myrtle Beach but later sold it to Chinese investors in 2014.

But last year, when he and a partner, Doug Marty, bought a course in Florida, Wellington National, he said he realized just how much money it could cost to turn around a course and make it profitable.

“We went into that one and evaluated the facilities and the golf course,” Mr. Smith said. “It was by far the worst one I’d ever seen in terms of being open and playable but being in awful condition. Doug likes to say we went in with an unlimited budget and exceeded that.”

They shut the club for a year of renovations. It has now reopened and started to attract members. The two partners are betting that it can attract members from the surrounding equestrian community and nearby Palm Beach.

But recouping their investment will take time. The initiation fee is $7,500 and annual dues are $6,750, comparatively modest in an area where $50,000 and $100,000 initiation fees are common

Sunday
Aug062017

Rory Ready For Quail Hollow? Averages 328.7 At Firestone

I know, I know, the the ball just rolled forever at Firestone and those Trackman carry numbers CBS showed us were just made up.

Still, it was fun to see seven players get their season driving distance total over the 300 yard average plateau following play at Firestone and Reno. That makes 40 players averaging over 300 yards on the PGA Tour.

Just think, only one player did that in 2000. But these guys eat carrots, broccoli and do four minute planks! I know, I know.

I have to say though in the world of astounding distance numbers, Rory McIlroy's numbers were particularly wild at the 2017 WGC Bridgestone, notes Golf.com's Golf Wire.

McIlroy awed the golf world with his driving capabilities at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational this week, and for good reason: 52 of his 56 tee balls (non par-3s) traveled farther than 300 yards. (And one that came up short was only 298.)

Of course, he ranked first in driving distance this week, averaging 328.7 yards off the tee—almost 10 yards more than Jason Day, who ranked second at 319.2 yards.

Naturally he needs to find some magic on the Quail Hollow greens, but with his distance spiking at the right time, it's hard to discount the mojo factor for someone who feeds off of overpowering a course.

Sunday
Aug062017

What's Next For Steph Curry The Golfer?

Two 74's and finishing ahead of some regular Web.com Tour guys is a pretty stellar accomplishment for someone who just won and NBA title two months ago.

(Ron Kroichick's day two SF Chronicle story here recounts how the round went and how much Curry was aware of scoring skepticism. The story is accompanied by a Michael Macor image gallery. Golfweek's Kevin Casey rounds up many of the social media highlight posts and other responses to Curry's play.)

Yes, Steph Curry could prep in the Lake Tahoe celebrity event, but he still performed so admirably against Triple-A and future PGA Tour-level talent. Since the event wasn't televised and the coverage was restricted, there is a thirst to see more of Curry. Though I side with Michael Bamberger in this week's SI/Golf.com roundtable on keeping these appearances limited.

Michael Bamberger, senior writer, Sports Illustrated: It was just great to see Steph Curry out there. His play was excellent, he has so much energy and brings out energy in others. There had to be people watching golf for the first time only because he was playing. I think he should be very, very selective about future invitations. Web.com is one thing—it needs all the attention it can get. The PGA Tour is another. But you have to think he's going to be around the game for decades to come, and it will do a lot for him, and vice-versa.

Jeff Ritter, digital development editor, GOLF.com (@Jeff_Ritter): Steph drew eyeballs, played well and had a blast. What's not to like? Too bad he has to continue that pesky basketball career that interferes with his golf game. I agree with MB that he should be selective with his professional appearances, but let's do this one again next year.

Sean Zak, associate editor, GOLF.com (@Sean_Zak): I aligned my expectations with that of Las Vegas, and Steph crushed those expectations. I not only want to see Steph tee it up again, as a gigantic hoops fan, I think I'm desperate for it. Two rounds were not enough! Plus, it made me think a little harder about those rumors he floated on Feherty, that he could see a golf career after hoops. Yes, please!

I'd vote for Curry taking a couple of invites to quality amateur events during his summers and building a golf career that way, interspersed with some prestige appearances.

Either way, for golf to have one of the best athletes on the planet be so competitive at the height of his (basketball) powers was really special for Curry. That someone so talented at another sport was able to communicate the difficulties of golf with his play and words was a victory for golf.

I loved this quote from Rickie Fowler at the Bridgestone, reported on by Dave Shedloski:

"To play that well with the kind of pressure he must have been under is very impressive. It's cool what he did," said Rickie Fowler. "I've never been thrown in a situation where I've had to perform at the highest level -- or one of the highest levels -- competing in another sport. There may be a couple of athletes on the PGA Tour, maybe Dustin Johnson or Gary Woodland, who could look athletic on a basketball court, but they aren't going to play to the level that he did as a golfer."

What say you?

(Oh, and at least Dawie van der walt ate his golf bag.)

 

 

Saturday
Aug052017

Pay For (Holes Played): “We definitely think this is a trend in the industry that’s not going to go away.”

Thanks to reader John for Brian Costa's latest WSJ column on courses offering rounds even shorter than nine holes, focusing on Canal Shores :where, before he starred in 'Caddyshack,' Bill Murray once worked as a caddie—the impact of the shorter loops remains to be seen."

Mike Matthews, a 39-year-old regular at Canal Shores, often plays five holes with his 10-year-old son, whereas he said they would be unlikely to play 18 or even nine holes. “With him still learning and not being able to drive the ball, five holes is enough for us,” Matthews said. But the logistics of playing five are more conducive to slower times of day, since the five-hole loop starts at the 14th hole, meaning Matthews and his son wait for gaps between groups playing 18.

Bulf, the business manager, said the response from golfers has been overwhelmingly positive. The shorter loops now account for 20% of weekday morning rounds played. But the question of whether they represent revenue gained or revenue lost remains unanswered.

Either way, Bulf said, “We definitely think this is a trend in the industry that’s not going to go away.”

Saturday
Aug052017

Quail Hollow PGA Mood Setter: Rosaforte Profiles Harris

Johnny Harris is mentioned pretty relentlessly when the PGA Tour annually visits Quail Hollow Club, so it'll be interesting how center-stage he becomes during next week's PGA Championship.

Tim Rosaforte helps us get to know Harris so that when you hear players rave about Johnny or preface criticisms of any course changes as, "I love Johnny, but..."

Speaking of the constant updates and tweaks to the property since being awarded the PGA:

“That was $10-15 million ago,” says Harris, who is famous for taking care of the little things like personally overseeing changes to the service roads to a major decision of re-designing the opening three holes just after the final round was played of the Wells Fargo in 2016. This one took some selling with Bevacqua and Kerry Haigh, Chief Champions Office for the PGA. With a 90-day window and rotating crews working around the clock, club members were playing the new holes on the 89th day. More improvements are planned for the Presidents Cup in four years.