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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
  • The Golf Book: Twenty Years of the Players, Shots, and Moments That Changed the Game
    The Golf Book: Twenty Years of the Players, Shots, and Moments That Changed the Game
    by Chris Millard
  • The Forbidden Game: Golf and the Chinese Dream
    The Forbidden Game: Golf and the Chinese Dream
    by Dan Washburn
  • The Early Days of Pinehurst
    The Early Days of Pinehurst
    by Chris Buie
  • 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
  • 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
  • His Ownself: A Semi-Memoir
    His Ownself: A Semi-Memoir
    by Dan Jenkins
Classics
  • 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

The greater the experience I have of designing golf courses, the more certain I am that blindness of all kinds should be avoided. ALISTER MACKENZIE

 

    

Friday
Sep262014

Video: Marshal Digs Deep To Help Spot Team Europe Tee Ball!

It's lame enough that the second Ryder Cup in Scotland is played at a modern American-looking design, but the pathetic chip-out rough setup is compounding the disdain many will have for Gleneagles.

But hey, the marshals are there to help dig through the tall stuff! At least for Team Europe.

As this video posted by Golf Central Daily notes, no matter what side you're rooting for, this is way too much touchy-feely stuff with Sergio's 15th hole tee ball from the 2014 Ryder Cup afternoon foursomes.

The clip:

Friday
Sep262014

Roundup: Watson Criticized For Benching Spieth & Reed

Alex Myers on the 5&4 win by Jordan Spieth and Patrick Reed over Ian Poulter and Stephen Gallacher that fueled a strong USA start. Most interesting was Spieth's bold statement suggesting a certain Team USA view of Poulter.

"I think everybody on the team wants Poulter and we were able to have him first," Jordan Spieth said.

Larry Fine of Reuters recounts the silencing of Europe's "cup wizard" and notes this from Patrick Reed about not getting to play the afternoon.

"It was very, very quiet out there compared to what I think Patrick and I expected in the first round of a Ryder Cup over here, and that's the goal," Spieth said.

"Whenever you feel like you're playing really well...I felt like in alternate-shot, him and I would have been great to go back out and take the momentum of what we just had done," said Reed.

"But at the end of the day, Captain Watson, he picks pairings for a reason."

As it became apparently the winning duo was not playing again in the afternoon, the outrage was strong in part because Spieth revealed Watson said strong morning play would get them a look for an afternoon tee time.  However, because of timing issues, to play the young Americans would have meant benching Phil Mickelson and Keegan Bradley who beat Europe's top team of Garcia and McIlroy.

Jason Sobel reports that Spieth and Reed expressed their displeasure with Captain Tom Watson for benching them.

“They were very upset with me for not playing them this afternoon,” Watson admitted. “I said, ‘I know you're going to be mad at me, but you'll be playing tomorrow, for sure.’”

John Strege with the roundup of second-guessing on social media by the likes of Dave Stockton and Peter Kostis.

It did not take long for criticism to surface, only moments after U.S. Captain Tom Watson chose not to send out victorious rookies Jordan Spieth and Patrick Reed in the afternoon foursomes on the opening day of the Ryder Cup.

Hank Gola noted Johnny Miller's criticism.

The move brought wholesale criticism, including from NBC’s Johnny Miller.

“The way that Reed and Spieth played, they should be playing this afternoon,” Miller chirped. “Keegan Bradley and Phil Mickelson, they need a guide dog. They’ve been all over the golf course, whereas Reed and Spieth shot 6-under this morning, I think, the best of anybody.

Monty piled on at Sky, questioning how Mickelson and Bradley could be sent back out even after pulling out a win over McIlroy-Garcia.

They wanted to play and I was amazed that they didn’t play in the afternoon and Mickelson and Keegan Bradley did.

“Phil and Keegan got out of jail first up [to beat Sergio Garcia and Rory McIlroy 1 up] but they are not a foursome pairing as they don’t hit enough fairways.”

“I now fear for this American team without Mickelson playing his best – and I wonder who is going to be the team leader out on the course.

“With Phil struggling and no Tiger Woods, nobody is really pulling out ahead here and going: ‘Come on lads, we can do this’, and that’s why I think Europe are firmly in the driving seat.
“If America don’t win Saturday’s first session, I think Europe will win this Ryder Cup.”

Watson addressed the topic right off the bat in his press conference and follow-up stories will be added as they are posted.

Friday
Sep262014

Monty Second Guesses Ian Poulter Pairing

And frankly, the 2010 European Captain was not off base, specially related to Poulter’s form all year. Monty at least stuck to the European party line that Poulter “had” to be picked because of his past form.

John Strege with Colin Montgomerie’s remarks during his brief American television appearance.

“Ian Poulter wasn’t playing well,” Montgomerie said during his stint in the Golf Channel booth. “He was 70th on the U.S. money list, is 50th on the European money list. I’m not saying a surprise pick, but at the same time you had to pick him because of his past performances. But to give Stephen Gallacher someone that’s struggling with his own game…Stephen Gallacher, who’s a rookie playing in Scotland, on a home track, I didn’t like that European pairing at all.

Monty expressed no such qualms about Poulter’s game earlier in the week as quoted by James Riach.

Thursday
Sep252014

Ryder Cup: Tale Of Two Captains Turns To Tale Of Two Teams

As we noted on Thursday's live chat, Paul McGinley will forever be remembered as the man who ruined the Ryder Cup opening ceremony.

No embarrassing player intros, no excessive attention paid to the WAG's, no lame celebrity cameos or bizarro dance numbers? Really? In general, it was a tight, classy ceremony that will doom the blogosphere unless the PGA of America can return the 2016 opening event back to the ridiculousness we've come to love and know.

And in the press room, McGinley has been professional, steady, self-deprecating and refreshingly humble. Captain Tom Watson has been, well, sounding a little...tired?

Brian Keogh
had a great breakdown of the captains thru Thursday where Watson admitted jet lag had gotten the best of him Wednesday when he sounded a tad irritable with the press.

Tom Watson wearily - perhaps even tetchily — completed his third press conference in as many days and remained behind in the near empty interview to eat a sandwich.

He sat alone in the same seat from where he’d just batted away questions he didn’t want to answer, barely recovered from the jet lag that left him looking every second of his 65 years the previous day.

“I was bushed yesterday, but I’m fine now,” he said. But he didn’t appear to be enjoying what the Ryder Cup has become since he captained the last US side to win on European soil in 1993.

“The only thing different here is the media responsibilities I've had, the extra time that I've had to spend with the media,” Watson said.

As for the picks, the bookmakers just love what Captain McGinley has come up with. But we all know it's the Ryder Cup. World ranking points and other nonsense mean not a thing when the first group goes out. And that's why it's the best event of the year. Play away gentleman!

Oh and one other note:

65% to 35% of you see Europe winning but in a strange twist, the American underdog status has 58% of you wanting to see Team USA win versus just 42% rooting for Team Europe. Thanks for voting!

Thursday
Sep252014

Webb Convinced Captain Watson Via Text, 4 a.m. Chat

As Bubba Watson and his exclusive babysitter Webb Simpson lead off for Team USA at the Ryder Cup's opening fourballs, James Riach reveals in The Guardian that it was an early morning (4 am) text message back-and-forth that convinced Captain Tom Watson to select Simpson.

Riach writes:

Simpson, who will partner Bubba Watson on Friday in the opening fourballs, had not heard from Watson until the night before his final selection, but lying in a hotel bed unable to sleep he texted the American captain and outlined his desperation to make the team.

“I couldn’t really sleep. I can’t ever sleep after the final round of tournaments in general and I was laying there and I thought, I had not heard from him,” Simpson said. “I probably would have heard from him by now and I’ve got nothing to lose. So I texted him, something like: ‘I know it’s a really tough decision for you, I know Chris just won and I know Bill is playing good and you even have other options than that. But I really, really, really want to be on the team and I really want to represent the United States.’

“He texted real quick – I saw the three little dots on the iPhone and I was surprised he was awake – and said: ‘This is a tough decision, Webb.’ That’s all he said. I was like, I didn’t make the team. He’s going to call me and I didn’t make the team but then he called me 30 minutes later and he asked me why I thought he should put me on the team. And at 4.30 in the morning it’s a tough question to be asked.”

Asked what he replied, Simpson said: “I made my final plea, I told him I want revenge for what happened in 2012 and I really want to be on that team. He decided, whatever I said, maybe it was nothing I said, but he picked me.

“Maybe it was my passion to play and desire to be on the team and my push for him to pick me but I don’t know what he was thinking. Keegan [Bradley] told me he thought it was a good thing I texted him to show him because I didn’t have a lot of interaction with the captain in terms of texting and phone calls throughout the year.”

Thursday
Sep252014

Instant Poll(s): Who Do You Think/Want To Win Ryder Cup?

I couldn't decide between the questions so I'm asking both: Who do you think will win, and who do you want to win.

Fire away!

First question...

Who do you think will win the 2014 Ryder Cup?
 
pollcode.com free polls

Second question...

Who do you WANT to win the 2014 Ryder Cup?
 
pollcode.com free polls

Thursday
Sep252014

2014 Ryder Cup Opening Ceremony Live Chat

We're going to get through this one together...dancing bagpipers and all...

Live Blog Live Ryder Cup Opening Ceremonies Chat
 

Wednesday
Sep242014

For Three Days Every Two Years A United Europe

The AP's John Leicester files the perfect column for you to send insufferable Team Europe fans who are anti-European Union for all but one week every two years.

Leicester writes:

Except, that is, for three days every two years, when European golf fans put nationality aside to rally behind the common cause of beating the Yanks at golf. Thanks, they might say, for helping us defeat Nazi Germany, for everything you did to help build modern Europe, the Marshall plan, staring down the Soviets and whatnot, but now watch our guys sink this birdie.

Which all makes golf's premier team event politically interesting and, at the same time, also feel somewhat bizarre.

Nowhere else will you see Ordinary Joes draping the European Union flag over their shoulders or cheering "Europe! Europe!" as they will from the very first tee Friday when captain Paul McGinley's merry band of 12 men from nine nations begin their defense of the cup.

Ask around in the crowds and you quickly find people who say they feel little or no love for the European Union but who are decked out in the EU colors of yellow and blue. It's all a bit perplexing.

Wednesday
Sep242014

Video: Justin Leonard Returns To Scene Of '99 Ryder Cup

Golf Channel’s Live From hit another home run with this feature about the 1999 Ryder Cup at Brookline and Justin Leonard’s revisiting of the scene. Because as we know, the hideous behavior of the Americans will always remain the definitive winning statement to any argument with a European!

This was Leonard’s first visit to The Country Club since ’99, dispelling any rumors that he and Ben Crenshaw make an annual trip to the 17th green to dance on the European’s grave.

Wednesday
Sep242014

First Minister Alex Salmond Surfaces With Team USA!!

Having resigned (effective November) after the Scottish Independence vote failed, First Minister Alex Salmond resurfaced publicly Wednesday night in Zelig-like fashion, joining the Team USA group photo, nestled not-so-discreetly between Amy Mickelson and Tom Watson.

Does this mean he's shifted his allegiance to the U.S.A?

Meanwhile, the rest of the GolfChannel.com gala dinner gallery is spectacular, highlighted by Sergio getting way too comfortable with his date and Victor Dubuissan either going for something very artistic or more likely the 6-year-oldish "I hate having my picture taken."

It's a stupendous gallery for conoisseurs of Ryder Cup drama. Here was a preview of what was planned for the night and no doubt someone will give us an accounting of the event.

Wednesday
Sep242014

Ryder Cup Opening Ceremony Live Blog Reminder & Viewing Guide

Over at The Loop, I've tried to condense the American viewing and listening options for those of you I've heard from who are still in disbelief that, indeed, this Ryder Cup will be shown live on Golf Channel Friday followed by NBC on the weekend. Just as intriguing is the "Alternate Shot" live feed on Golf Channel over the weekend anchored by David Feherty and Gary Williams.

SiriusXM will also be at it all the way and all streaming options for those at work are mentioned and linked to as well.

At 11 am ET Thursday I will be hosting a Cover It Live blog to guide us through the Opening Ceremony.

This is always one of the great displays of excess, pageantry and occasionally, ignorance at its grandest. Please join in and comment away if you are at work and watching on the RyderCup.com stream. Or, if you've hit rock bottom and are sitting at home watching and in lieu of adult beverages, needing a medium still faster than Twitter to get through this biennial boondoggle show.

 

Wednesday
Sep242014

Phil: “Well, not only are we able to play together, we also don't litigate against each other"

As we await the Fleet Street feasting, some American takes on Phil Mickelson livening up the Ryder Cup proceedings Wednesday with a jab at the Rory McIlroy lawsuit that has dragged old buddy Graeme McDowell into the mix.

Bob Harig with the quote and context:

"Well, not only are we able to play together, we also don't litigate against each other, and that's a real plus, I feel, heading into this week," Mickelson quipped.

Mickelson said it with a smile and was clearly joking, but the comment hits home.

Ryan Herrington of GolfDigest.com with this:

Mickelson's quip drew laughter and a few wry smiles from the press in attendance. Moderator Michael Gibbons even offered a playful "ouch" in response.

"I might get roasted but I couldn't resist," Mickelson told GolfDigest.com. "I can handle it. We all need to laugh at ourselves. I think it's funny."

Jason Sobel at GolfChannel.com:

What’s the agenda here? Maybe he wanted to pump some life into festivities that were clearly lacking. Maybe he wanted to take the heat off his teammates who have been continuously – and tiresomely – answering questions about being overmatched this week.

Or maybe this was a public dig at McIlroy, who hasn’t held back from opining about Mickelson lately.

Wednesday
Sep242014

Video: When Paul McGinley Was A San Diegoan

If America should prevail in the 2014 matches, no doubt European Ryder Cup Captain Paul McGinley will be unfairly blamed even though he didn't hit a single shot. In the match autopsies look for his ties to the hotbed of subversiveness known as San Diego to be pointed to as signs that the Irishman should never have been chosen in the first place. We Americans will push back by noting that McGinley is a great guy and well-rounded class act because of his time in San Diego.

Golf Channel's Live From has been running a nice feature on McGinley's time in America, narrated by Rich Lerner. And be reminded of what Ashworth clothes and late 80s cool looked like. So, so puffy in hindsight! And that's just the hair.

If you missed it...

Tuesday
Sep232014

GMac And Rory's Golf Dynamic Has Changed...And What Better Time To Sort This Out Than Ryder Cup Week!

In my early roundup of UK papers for The Loop, note the lack of Team USA related stories. And in Brian Keogh's roundup of press conference quotes, the longest answer belongs to Graeme McDowell trying to convince us that he and Rory McIlroy are chummy teammates who now apparently aren't a good fit for fourballs.

This is all very minor on the scale of Ryder Cup controversies, but considering how organized Paul McGinley appeared heading in and how bonded Team Europe is purported to be, the oddity of sorting out the understandably deteriorated GMac-McIlroy dynamic under the Ryder Cup's glare is at least inconvenient for Team Europe.

Tuesday's spin from Gleneagles?

GMac and Rory have never been closer. And now that we've learned the former Ryder Cup partners will be playing with others after months of being assured nothing was amiss between the two despite lawsuit issues, now it's merely their "golf dynamic" that has changed.

Ewan Murray in The Guardian with the breakdown of McDowell's comments.

“Rory and I’s golf dynamic has changed significantly from the first time we ever played together back when perhaps the older brother/kind of younger brother leadership role that maybe I had with him, that’s changed.

“He’s the world’s No1 player. He’s a four-times major champion. The dynamic between him and I is changed forever. He would now be the leader of the two of us and perhaps the dynamic doesn’t work as well as it did in the past. Perhaps I’m the kind of guy that needs that leadership role a little bit, who needs to feel like he is on at least on a level with the guy he’s playing with. I’ll be the first to admit it.

GMac gets big points for a golf-specific explanation for why they aren't good fourball partners at this point, but again, why wasn't this wheeled out weeks ago?

“At Medinah a couple of years ago, and Rory and I spoke about this, I found the better ball format very difficult with him because he likes to go first, I let him at it, and I kind of come second. You know, he’s standing there beating it 350 down the middle, and I put my tee in the ground thinking there’s not really a lot of point in me hitting this tee shot and find myself throwing myself at it, and literally it kind of didn’t help my game much at Medinah playing better-ball with him. Foursomes I think is different. I think we could still play foursomes really well together.”

Tuesday
Sep232014

Letter From Beyond Saugerties, Ryder Cup Edition

The late great Frank Hannigan took issue with some of the focus on captain's following the 2012 Ryder Cup and as the 2014 captain's were being named. And because most of us miss hearing from him I thought I'd share this from Frank, dated January 13, 2013.

1.   I don't happen to believe that the captaincy of the Ryder Cups has anything to do with the outcomes.     Especiallly given the randomness of the pairings. I do believe the outcome matters more to the Europeans overall.    
 
2.  On the captaincy business,  nobody writes about the commercial value. It's worth a hell of a lot. Varies with the name, of course, but I would guess not getting it was a loss of a million dollars to Larry Nelson. Watson?  I imagine the inevitable attention matters considerably to his sponsors. I think Tony Jacklin was the first captain who understood how it could be parlayed into serious money.

When Curtis was captain ( & he got an extra year because of 9/11) I think it helped keep his Monday appearance fees up a great deal long after he was a truly competitive golfer. I don't say there is anything wrong with this. It's just consistent with what golf became.

But it pisses me off that it is treated by what remains of golf media as if what is going on is the equivalent of the USGA picking Francis Ouimet to captain another Walker Cup team 80 years ago. Does anyone think that Lee Westwood or Luke Donald will try less hard if Paul McGinley is picked as distinct from someone who won a "major" ?  It's hard for me to imagine that a Westwood could think of Montgomerie as anything other than someone who had enormous and undeserved skills.

Tuesday
Sep232014

ESPN.com: "At Ryder Cup, follow the money"

Bob Harig files an in-depth look at the business structure of Ryder Cups on both sides of the Atlantic, breaking down the differences with the European Tour essentially taking bids and a flat fee for the privilege of hosting every four years, while the PGA of America pays a fee to the venues and handles everything on the business side.

While numbers are tough to come by, Harig notes that the "European Tour controls 60 percent of the event, with the PGA of Great Britain and the PGA of Europe each holding 20 percent." And how important is the event to the European Tour coffers?

Earlier this year, Golfweek reported that the European Tour made more than 14 million pounds in pre-tax profit in 2010, the last time the Ryder Cup was staged in Europe. A year later, when there was no Ryder Cup, it lost more than 2.2 million pounds.

The most interesting part of the story for me came from the course owners who bought Ryder Cups and how they view the investment in their rear view mirrors. In hindsight, the investment for the K Clubs and Celtic Manors of the world was a good one even if we still have to see those uninspired places in highlight packages.

From Terry Matthews of Celtic Manor, 2010 host.

"I happen to be a risk taker; I know you might find that hard to believe," Matthews said during a telephone interview conducted at the same time as the recent NATO Summit was taking place at Celtic Manor. "I look at it like this: If I do it, what is the best case? If I do it what is the worst case? As long as I can afford the worst case, I'll work hard for the best case.

"In terms of the cost, [the Ryder Cup] was the worst case. In terms of upside, it ended up being the best case. It's true this has been a very costly exercise.

"But in my business, I travel all over the world and wherever I go they know about the Ryder Cup. They know about Celtic Manor. They all know that Prince Charles toured the site. President Obama was the first sitting U.S. president to visit Wales. Without the Ryder Cup and the infrastructure necessary, I probably would not have been able to host the NATO Summit. The Ryder Cup makes for a great conversation piece wherever I go."

And it doesn't hurt that his golf business prospered because of it. According to Matthews' communications director, Paul Williams, golf revenues doubled at Celtic Manor between 2008 and 2011 and have maintained that level.

"I have to tell you," Matthews said. "It was probably the best investment I ever made."

Tuesday
Sep232014

PGA President Bishop Apologizes For Prevalence Of Dick's Sporting Goods Ads On Ryder Cup Coverage

In a September 19th email to PGA of America professionals, PGA of America president Ted Bishop has apologized not for the relentless Omega "Hall of Fame" ad that will haunt all memories of the 2014 PGA Championship, but for the presence of Dick's Sporting Goods ads during Golf Channel's Live From Downton Abbey The Ryder Cup coverage.

Dick's, you may recall, laid off nearly 500 PGA pros earlier this year and their CEO blamed the state of golf for lagging sales, not the decision to sign on for Taylor Made's three-drivers-in-one-year product cycle that even parent company Adidas took issue with.

Bishop's letter suggests that Dick's sponsorship during the PGA Championship was in place originally before intervention from the PGA of America. Thanks to the many fine PGA pros who forwarded the letter:

Meanwhile in happier times, Luke Kerr-Dineen reports that Bishop partook in the thuggish jingoism by having USA cut into his hair ala Rickie Fowler.

Bishop also Tweeted a photo with Rickie.

 

 

Tuesday
Sep232014

Back9's "Off Par" Features Infamous Miss Teen South Carolina

In the tough-job-but-someone's-got-to-do-it files, Alex Myers has determined that Back9Network's recently announced new hire Caite Upton, set to co-host the "Off-Par" show with comedian Matty Blake, is actually Caitlin Upton, once known as Lauren Upton, who made national headlines seven years ago for her appearance in the Miss Teen USA contest.

Of course that was seven years ago and she's 25 now, so we won't hold it against her. Plus, having been the subject of a viral video, Upton seems a good fit for the show she's been hired to do:

Co-hosted by acclaimed comedian and actor Matty Blake, and American model Caite Upton, "Off Par” is an inventive look at the world of golf and entertainment, with a comedic twist. Blake, Upton, and a rotating cast of characters will deliver free-flowing laughs in the form of viral internet videos, user-generated social media content, golf-themed skits, and guest appearances by other comedians. The program will air weeknights at 8PM Eastern.

Jimmy Kimmel once famously analyzed this infamous viral video (thanks to reader Jeff for the reminder):

Monday
Sep222014

McGinley Delivers "Shock Departure" On Pairing Rory & GMac

That didn't take long!

Perhaps sensing a rare Monday news dump opportunity, European Captain Paul McGinley, reversed course and now sounds unlikely to pair the the veteran Ryder Cup duo of Rory McIlroy and Graeme McDowell.

In my roundup of Fleet Street coverage at The Loop, note the skepticism in coverage from The Telegraph's James Corrigan and The Guardian's Ewan Murray, the two most consistent followers of McGinley's term as captain. Neither could characterize McGinley's Monday comments as anything but a shock and hardly believable after months of suggesting the legal row involving McIlroy and GMac was not going to be an issue.

AP's Doug Ferguson took McGinley at his word in this report of Monday's reversal.

McGinley's comments in their entirety, including the dreaded V word:

PAUL McGINLEY: Yeah, it's not an issue and it's not been an issue for me in terms of Ryder Cup captaincy since -- over the last year, certainly, since these court proceedings started. Both of them have assured me all along that there's no issues, and that's the way I've always seen it. Whether they come together or not is another story. Three or four months ago, I had a very strong view that they would have been, but the more I look at their statistics and the more I look at the different value I have with them, I'm thinking there may be a value in not doing it. But if I don't do it, it certainly won't be because of any issues. As both of them have said, there are no issues between them and both of them will be happy to play together but it will be my decision ultimately.

As I noted on Morning Drive, imagine if the situation was reversed and Bubba's lawyers had issued subpoena's for private business dealings from Webb as the two were about to play as partners in the Ryder Cup? The stories of American discord would have been flowing!

Monday
Sep222014

Day One! Rory Already Defies Team Europe Dress Code

Everyone else got the message on team shoes but as Tweeter Alliss noticed, Rory McIlroy has already deviated from the playbook in what can only be a sign that the World No. 1 intends to steadfastly defy captain Paul McGinley at every opportunity.

Or something like that.

Meanwhile, the bold sports coats would seem to back up Gary Evans’ assertion that we could be in for some stellar fashion “faux pars” this week.

The crocodile skin motif for Team Europe’s golf bags and head covers won’t be winning any awards from PETA.

Tweeter Alliss with the team photo and Rory's navy high-tops.

 

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