Twitter: GeoffShac
Writing And Videos
  • 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
  • Players: The Story of Sports and Money, and the Visionaries Who Fought to Create a Revolution
    Players: The Story of Sports and Money, and the Visionaries Who Fought to Create a Revolution
    by Matthew Futterman

The history of green committees generally is very like the adage of the new broom. The newly appointed chairman is likely to sweep very clean. In order to make a showing an entirely new policy is pursued.  A.W. TILLINGHAST


    

Wednesday
Aug102016

Furyk's 58 Was Even More Flawless Than We Thought

From Luis Rivera of the PGA Tour's Shotlink system:

Originally we had Furyk hitting 13 of 14 Fairways in his magical round of 58, his tee-shot on the 7th hole landed extremely close to the intermediate cut. After further review the tee shot was indeed in the fairway.
 
This historical round of 58 was nearly flawless with Furyk hitting all 14 fairways and all 18 greens in regulation. Since 1992, 45 players (49 times) have hit every fairway and every green in the same round.
 
In fact, Furyk was the last player to accomplish this feat at the 2015 Deutsche Bank Championship. Furyk became 1 of 3 players to hit every fairway and every green in a round 3 or more times.

Player                   # of times
T. Clark                 3 times
B. Lohr                  2 times
J. Furyk                 2 times

Tuesday
Aug092016

More Greetings From Rio: Olympic Fever May Be Setting In!

Had their been any present, the Olympic spirit lightbulb might have gone off for many golf fans today at the Rio venue after seeing splashes of team colors dotting the links-meets-sandbelt property.

With team entourages and some caddies in matching colors, the vistas at the course—accented by the bright 2016 color palette—let us know this could only be one event: the Olympic Games.

The only thing better? Teammates preparing for a competition that included an actual team component they were strategizing and bonding for. And…spectators.

We’ll table the team and format matter until after the Games (though Sergio has mentioned it this week notes Rex Hoggard. And we'll hope the sell-out for tickets Sunday means we’ll have a nice crowd for the medal round. Though with smaller crowds we will hear from the fans of certain countries. The course's well-preserved native areas will be handed off to the people of Rio in good shape. So there is that.

Also of note is the increasing excitement of players and caddies who are getting swept up in the Olympic spirit by attending other events and soaking up the thrill of being here. A visit to the massive and well-conceived Olympic Park means experiencing an epic concentration of energy from the many venues and party scene, which is highlighted by a pop-up disco and concert stage. I took in a captivating and loud Team Handball game featuring the home country, who fell after a valiant (and briefly bloody) comback effort.

Team USA’s Rickie Fowler, Bubba Watson
and Matt Kuchar practiced together under the watchful eye of dignitaries like course designer Gil Hanse, the IGF’s Ty Votaw (who did more work than anyone alive to get golf here), PGA Tour COO Jay Monahan and Kuchar’s wife Sybi. Various rules officials from the USGA, PGA Tour, European Tour and R&A were also out walking for pre-tournament recon studies.

All three Americans were striking the ball beautifully and seemed to be genuinely thrilled to be here, as are their caddies. But it was Watson whose nifty punch, run and jab shots around the greens stood out almost as much as his unusually chipper mood. A happy Bubba is a dangerous Bubba. Issue a flood watch if they are playing the anthem for him Sunday evening.

A few things worth clicking on...

If you saw me on with Rich Lerner today, you know he set up this somewhat accidental but absolutely mesmerizing piece with Sandy Tatum on the 1936 Games. Ony viewable in the States.

Bob Harig of ESPN.com on how the design turned out in the eyes of the folks who picked Gil Hanse.

Alex Miceli of Golfweek on Team USA living the good life as Olympians, soaking up the atmosphere and appearing relaxed at their Tuesday press conference.

James Corrigan on Ireland's Seamus Power.

Doug Ferguson on Padraig Harrington seeing Olympic golf as a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

Emiliano Grillo had an emotional reunion with his clubs. We can all understand. G.C. Digital reports.

Rickie Fowler is surprised at the fuss over his haircut, reports Steve DiMeglio. He's also making sure to mae the stay-at-home golfers, notes Rex Hoggard.

Team USA united in their praise of the course design, writes Jay Coffin.

A nice slideshow of the practice round with images by Chris Condon and Stan Badz.

A few favorite shots from Tuesday’s practice round staring with the tee setup featuring an Omega clock and simple Rio 2016 signage.


The par-3 8th:


Masters champion Danny Willett meets the media and covers his ears.


The approach to the shortish par-9th, which bears a resemblance to the 13th at Fraserburgh.


Gil Hanse offering advice to team USA when asked, including Rickie Fowler and caddie Joe Skovron.

The divot replacement mix matches the shading of the Zeon Zoysia fairways:

The rings in front of the clubhouse:


View from the grandstand looking down on 18 green.


Three members of Team USA showing off their gear.

Tuesday
Aug092016

ShackHouse 17: Rio Olympic Golf Preview & Gil Hanse

Lots to cover this week, including where Jim Furyk's 58 ranks for the year, how some of the Olympians looked at the Olympic course, what happened with the Nike announcement and special guest, Olympic golf course architect Gil Hanse.

Here is The Ringer's page for the show.

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

Same deal with Soundcloud for the show, and Episode 17 is here to listen to right now!

And the ShackHouse Stitcher page.

I'd offer all of the usual links, but you know the drill: Callaway, Bill Simmons, The Ringer, Avion, Ring.com, MeUndies, and friends, we thank them and hope you check them out. And now, the rare shuttle bus in Rio must be grabbed!

Tuesday
Aug092016

Rio Golf Course: It's A Jungle Out There, Owl & Cabybara Edition

You're going to see them more than enough if you watch the Olympic golf coverage, but one of the great accomplishments of this course will be taking a property and making it better for wildlife through nature-based design and maintenance. That message hopefully is picked up by much of the world and may be one more important than who wins, or which developing nation gets more funding.

Gil Hanse told me today he's already seen a few bird species he never saw during construction and even he's astonished by the wildlife activity at a place that was already so active.

Steve DiMeglio wrote about the various critters for USA Today.

Here are the burrowing owls at the 9th, who have been allowed to do their thing. The Rules of Golf naturally allow for relief from this situation for the safety of all in involved.

A couple of shots from the ninth hole:

And the American contingent checking out the Capybara swimming around the 5th hole. Here's Rickie Fowler checking out the giant rodent who was busy munching on some greens.


Tuesday
Aug092016

Video: Gil Hanse On Olympic Course Bunkering And Sands

As I noted in this week's Golf World, uniformity will not be a word you'll hear this week at the Olympic Golf Course, one already little known to players and adding another local knowledge element: different sands.

Gil Hanse explains in this exclusive to GeoffShackelford.com why the sand shades and textures are different throughout the course, something unique to the site incorporated both for sustainability, cost savings and rewarding those skillful enough to do their homework. Let the howling begin!

We also discuss how the sandbelt style of bunkering came about.

Monday
Aug082016

Greetings From The Barra Media Village 1 Resort & Rooms

You know, $2000 for nine days of lodging just doesn't go as far as it used to.

Somehow I made it to the swank Barra Media Village 1, taking almost as long from LAX to Sao Paolo as it took to get from Sao Paolo to this premier media residence.

Rio 2016 left out one small bit of info when I prepaid a year ago: a surprise roommate with another to come for our little two bedroom "villa".

The chain-smoking roommate #1 is a swell chap and all, but apparently has some Alaskan Malamute in his genes based on the shedding he's done the first four days while using my shower instead of his. (I didn't ask for an explanation, though it wasn't because of the hot water supplied in mine, that I can confirm!)

But at least he complained to housekeeping to get me my very own towel so I didn't have to use the only one in the villa and go to bed with his smoker essence!

True fact movie buffs, the kitchen design in this "villa" was inspired by Hannibal Lector's cell in Manhunter (you know, the Michael Mann masterpiece starring Bryan Cox). Movie history in Rio!

Well on that note, I'm going to squeeze in some sleep and finally see the Olympic Golf Course in completed form tomorrow. Thoughts and insights are to be shared on Morning Drive and Live From should my bus drivers choose the mission of delivering us to the place we hope to go!

#growingthegame #growingthegame #growingthegame #growingthegame #growingthegame #growingthegame #growingthegame #growingthegame #growingthegame

Monday
Aug082016

A Few Fun Final Olympic Golf Course Preview Stories & Visuals

As we have arrived at week one of Olympic golf in Rio, a few final course and Games-related content pieces are worth a look.

John Clarke of the New York Times wrote last month about the Zeon Zoysia making its international debut this week. It started from a small amount transported on an airplane by David Doguet, owner of Bladerunner Farms and is a promising turfgrass going forward for certain regions of the world looking for faster, firmer and tougher turf.

Zeon Zoysia requires less water, fertilizer, nitrogen and pesticide than most other types of golf turf, Doguet said. Perhaps most important, he said, it can endure Rio’s poor soil and water quality and meets the strict environmental regulations that prohibit the use of chemical fertilizers and weed killers on the course, which is on a nature preserve.

The story also includes a couple of slideshows worth checking out.

Gil Hanse has posted a guest course review at GolfNow!

Golf Digest writers discuss their visit to Rio and impressions of the course. Esquire's David Granger is also in the mix, and the aerials are fun to watch as well:


They also provided this quick preview video of golf's (quick) Olympic history.

Best of all is this 360 degree tour of the property and course, which will, for those viewing this week, give a great sense of where the holes sit. Gil Hanse narrates.

And Quartz has put together these DigitalGlobe sequential aerial shots of multiple venues, including Olympic Park, beach volleyball and the golf course in all stages. Really fun stuff if you've been watching the Games.

Click on the link above to see the transformation in action, this is just the final overhead:

Monday
Aug082016

Groupings: Rounds 1 & 2 Men's Olympic Golf

I don't see much deep hidden meaning in these groupings. I do like that there are some nice name groups and great opportunities for solid players from smaller countries.

 

Monday
Aug082016

Video: Hanse Discusses Rio Olympic Course Finishing Holes

An exclusive to GeoffShackelford.com, architect Gil Hanse discussed with me about the finishing holes as we look at his renderings. Tomorrow he'll explain why you're going to see different colors of sand through the property and the look of the bunker style. (Thanks to Sean Gilroy for the crack editing work!)

As I have with all the previous flyovers, I encourage a look at Golf Digest's drone shots sponsored by Adobe. They really are a pleasure to watch, as narrated by Hanse.

The 16th hole flyover and Hanse's final rendering.

The 17th hole flyover and Hanse's final rendering.

The 18th hole flyover and Hanse's final rendering.

Monday
Aug082016

The War on Cargo Shorts: Country Clubs Looking Prescient! 

Nicole Hong of the WSJ reports that men are trying to stick with their cargo shorts as women find them deplorable.

Country clubs, which have long hated cargos for mysterious reasons (too working class?!), are suddenly looking like pioneering trendsetters after years of being badgered for disallowing certain fashion, including cargos.

Hong notes golf's role in the cargo pant/short war.

Many upscale golf courses have banned cargo shorts in recent years. In 2012, Michael Jordan was playing golf in cargo shorts at a Miami country club when he was asked to change his pants, according to news reports at the time. He reportedly refused. His agent released a statement afterward saying Mr. Jordan had previously worn cargo pants at the club without incident.

Around 2010, slimmer men’s shorts started to replace baggy silhouettes. By then, the backlash against cargo shorts was well under way.

Fashion guru Tim Gunn said in a 2007 interview with Reuters that cargo shorts were the least fashionable item of clothing in his closet. British tabloid Daily Express called cargo shorts “a humiliation for any man over 21 and should be sold only after proof of age has been presented.”

Monday
Aug082016

Furyk's 58 Card Keeper Is Grateful For Erasers

Miguel Angel Carballo marked Jim Furyk down for a 3 at the par-4 14th hole instead of 4. Thankfully he discovered his mistake before Furyk could sign and another disaster for golf averted! 

Sunday
Aug072016

Scottish Golf Travel Podcast 98: Highlands And Turnberry

If you aren't already subscribing to Ru Macdonald and Graylyn Loomis' Scottish Golf Travel podcast for all things Scottish golf, here are past episodes to whet your appetite.

They kindly had me back to discuss my recent trip to Scotland, that included seeing and playing more Highlands courses including the great Cruden Bay and Royal Dornoch, as well as Trump Turnberry, Prestwick and Troon.

If you missed it, links to Turnberry review/content here.

Prestwick ode and content here.

Sunday
Aug072016

Russell Knox Makes Strong Case For '16 Euro Ryder Cup Team

Anyone who saw the stirring, slightly crazy finish to the 2016 Travelers knows Russell Knox capped off a wacky day in style.

And then he reinforced his self-confidence by declaring himself hard to pass up for a Ryder Cup spot should he not make the team on points.

Brian Wacker at GolfDigest.com with the post-round comments and assessment from Cromwell:

“If I don't make the team, I can't think I'm worthy of a pick,” Knox said. “It's his decision. He can pick whoever he wants, and that's the luxury of it. If I make the top nine, then I deserve to be on the team. If I'm No. 10, he can quite happily pass on me, and that's just the way it is.”

The final round highlights include the big last green putt by Knox:

Sunday
Aug072016

Wes Bryan: Trick Shot Artist A Year Ago, Battlefield Promotion Today

Adam Stanley at PGATour.com has all the details on Wesley Bryan's incredible 2016 Web.com Tour season concluding with a Digital Ally Open win that is his third of 2016.

That sets him up for a battlefield promotion which gets him in next week's John Deere Classic and the Wyndham, if he chooses. Then it's off to the Web.com Tour playoffs if he chooses, or he can just prepare for putting the tour card he'd already secured to use in September.

His third win of the season came after he hit, what he called, the shot of his life, on the par-3 17th. After he, J.T. Poston and Grayson Murray all made birdies on the par-4 18th, they retreated to the 17th for what turned out to be the final time. Murray missed his chip long, and Poston left his putt short. That set the stage for Bryan, who had left himself about 2 feet for the win.
There was never a doubt.

 The promotion no longer carries the weight it once did due to the wraparound schedule change that has the Web.com Tour season starting too late for a three-time winner to get elevated to the big tour for enough starts. However Bryan's accomplishment is inching him up the world ranking and will remind folks of his rise from viral video trick shot artist (with brother and sometimes caddy George), to second stage Web.com Tour school graduate last year, to holding a PGA Tour card in such a short time. Well done Wesley!

Wesley's full bag from his third win, and his Twitter account.

The winning putt at the Digital Ally:

Sunday
Aug072016

58 Roundup! Jim Furyk Posts Record 58 At The Travelers!

A year shy of the 40th anniversary of Al Geiberger's 59 (and five subsequent amazing rounds), Jim Furyk broke the barrier at the 2016 Travelers. Golf Channel scrapped their pregame and CBS moved Jim Nantz and Peter Kostis into the booth early for what a historic day on what was looking like it would be an otherwise ho-hum morning in Connecticut.

Brian Wacker takes us through the round at GolfDigest.com and included this from Furyk:

“Had I never shot 59 before, I probably would have been thinking 59, the barrier. . . . Having that experience in the past, and this one mimicked it a lot, it was comforting for me. You don't wake up on Sunday morning with an 8:41 tee time thinking that anything exciting is going to happen. I mean, really on those days the most exciting thing that can happen is the group in front of you plays quick and your flight takes off a little early and you get home is usually what you're looking to do. To get out there and make a bunch of birdies and get the juices flowing and feel like I was in the hunt in a golf tournament was kind of cool.”

Ryan Lavner on Furyk's swing tip from dad that helped get things squared away for him to deliver the lowest score in PGA Tour history.

Furyk birdied three of the last four holes Friday just to make the cut. After a third-round 72, he retreated to the range to hit a big bag of balls. He became so frustrated with his ball-striking that he instructed caddie Mike “Fluff” Cowan to take pictures of his swing to send back home to his father/swing coach, Mike. The fix was a tighter, shorter backswing.

Stephen Hennessey with 7 amazing facts from the day, including this which is kind of fun in a big picture sense.

Experience on his side: The 46-year-old shot the last 59 on the PGA Tour -- in the third round of the BMW Championship in 2013.

Furyk is the first-ever player to shoot two sub-60 rounds -- and he's now the oldest to do it. The five other rounds of 59: Al Geiberger (1977, Memphis Classic), Chip Beck (1991, Las Vegas Classic), David Duval (1999, Bob Hope Classic), Paul Goydos (2010, John Deere Classic), Stuart Appleby (2010, Greenbrier Classic).

G.C. Digital with more fun stats from the round:

Putts: 24
Distance of putts made: 117 feet, 11 inches
Average proximity to hole: 20 feet, 4 inches

Mike Johnson with the clubs that posted the lowest round in tour history.

The highlights from PGA Tour Entertainment.

Sunday
Aug072016

Video: Rio Olympic Golf Course 13th, 14th & 15th Holes

The Olympic course gets closed the water at the 13th and therefore sees a change in the landscape. A ficus tree was used at the dogleg and the change of pace is welcome as the course starts to head home. At 479/408 the wind will be a key factor in how tough this plays, but the fairway is ample. From my visit to the course a few years ago, this was the hole that was toughest to visualize, so watching the finished flyover it's fun to see that what looked compelling on paper turned out that way.

The final Gil Hanse rendering.

The Golf Digest flyover narrated by Hanse and courtesy of Adobe.

The par-3 14th can be played from many distances, the official is listed at 229/190, but it can stretch longer and is also likely to play shorter if the back left wing is used for a hole location. Hopefully the approach is firm enough to support a run-up on the windier days.

The final Hanse rendering.

The Golf Digest flyover.

With today's driving distances--you know the ones that have changed in a long time according to the USGA and R&A--I'll be curious if the centerline fairway bunker is much of an annoyance at the 15th, which measures 412/374 yards for the men and women competing at the Rio 2016 Games.

The final Hanse rendering.

The Golf Digest flyover.

Saturday
Aug062016

Video: Els Ace At The Travelers

As Daniel Berger opened up a three-stroke lead at the Travelers Championship, Ernie Els stole the spotlight for a bit by recording an ace at No. 16 Saturday. And The Big Easy still looks like he enjoys the thrill as much as ever.

Saturday
Aug062016

Sunday Morning: Morning Drive Airs David Feherty Interview With President Barack Obama

If you watched the Opening Ceremony of the 2016 Rio Games you know there was a short conversation with President Barack Obama about the Olympics.

David Feherty's full chat is set to air on Golf Channel's Morning Drive from 7:30 to 9 am ET.

No preview clip is available. Among the purported topics: golf entering the Olympics and Obama's game.

This latest "get" means Feherty has interviewed all of the living golfing presidents.

In other Obama news, Kathy Bergen and Katherine Skiba report that the decision to bring his Presidential Library to the South Shore could help expedite the hoped-for renovation of Jackson Park.

The long-shot vision to build an expansive 18-hole course worthy of a spot on the PGA Tour, which has been hovering on the radar, gained momentum last week with the announcement that Obama's library and museum would be built in historic Jackson Park, said Mark Rolfing, an NBC/Golf Channel analyst who is advising the Chicago Park District on the idea.

Saturday
Aug062016

Video: Rio Olympic Course 10th, 11th And 12th

The par-5 10th hole at the Rio Olympic Course provides another nice birdie chance before the course turns difficult. Playing 590/526 with water on the tee shot, the double dogleg looks fun. Here is Golf Digest's flyover with narration from Gil Hanse. And Hanse's final rendering with comments. 

The par-4 11th hole on the Rio Olympic Course is 488/420 and appears the most penal off the tee in terms of dunes/waste/native. The second shot is uphill with a green going away from the players, so that should be fun!

Here is Digest flyover tour and the final Hanse rendering.

 
The 514/430-yard par-4 12th players toward the water and features high-scoring possibilities. The Digest flyover tour with commentary from course architect the final Hanse rendering.

Saturday
Aug062016

Golfers In Olympic Opening Ceremonies; Rory Heckled By Boxers

Rickie Fowler appears to be having no shortage of fun in Rio so far, based on this slideshow at GolfChannel.com of his best Snapchat shots.

This, despite having his stylist misunderstanding a haircut directive for which Twitter was most unkind, reports Alex Myers.

Golf favorites Henrik Stenson of Sweden and England's Justin Rose also were having a good time with Rose bagman Mark Fulchers.

 Julieta Granata carried the flag for Paraguay even though she doesn't begin competing for 11 days.

Golfer Siddikur Rahman carried Bangladesh's flag into the stadium: 

Rory McIlroy's Olympic WD was noted by Irish boxer’s Paddy Barnes and Michael Conlon, who employed Caroline Wozniacki (here) and Rickie Fowler for heckling Tweets. The Fowler one uses a fun description!