The (Next) Match: Forget Tiger And Phil, How About Brooks And Brandel?

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In winning his second PGA and fourth major in his last eight starts, Brooks Koepka still gladly shared his anger at having his toughness questioned by Golf Channel analyst Brandel Chamblee.

“Telling me I wasn’t tough,” Koepka said during a news conference. “That pissed me off. That really pissed me off.”

He wouldn’t name Chamblee, but didn’t leave any question who he was talking about.

Chamblee spent this week walking back some of his Koepka critiquing during the week, even comparing this run to Tiger’s play in 2000.

But I believe we need to take this manspat to the next, proper level: pay-per-view!

Since The Match II hasn’t been announced yet, I’d like to propose Brooks vs. Brandel.

Koepka can play all the way back while Brandel plays from the senior tees. Brooks can give Brandel two aside and we can all bet on it. Even better, they won’t give five footers and while the witty banter won’t be there, the potential for drama will be! Think about it MGM!

Koepka Wins The 2019 PGA: First Roundup And Your Kneejerk Reactions

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Steve DiMeglio’s USA Today game story sums up what turned into an exciting final round (for a bit), as Brooks Koepka defended his PGA Championship title at Bethpage Black. He has now won four of the last six majors he has played.

Koepka said this was by far his most stressful major win due to the difficulty of the Black and high winds.

Michael Bamberger on Brooks Koepka overtaking golf like dominant golfers before him, with comments from Greg Norman saying that Tiger wilted in Brooks’ presence.

Eamon Lynch on the Tiger-like alpha golfer Brooks Koepka has become and a day by day look at Koepka’s evolving week:

There are many similarities between Koepka and Woods, not least that they bludgeon courses into submission and display a studied disregard for their fellow competitors. “He’s like Tiger in that they march to the beat of their own drums. They do things their own way,” says Claude Harmon III, Koepka’s coach of six years.

The Black Course held up well if difficulty is your thing, though there were some interesting shifts from 2002 to 2009 to 2019 probably attributable to May, setup and changes in the game.

CBS's New "Aerial Tracing" Is Getting Slaughtered, Maybe A Bit Unfairly?

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People, people! Breathe!

Sure, the latest attempt at breakthrough technology was not perfect in its Saturday debut. GolfDigest.com’s Christopher Powers rounds up the rants in reaction to the first hole tee shot of Justin Rose, the technology’s debut on CBS.

The issue appears to be one of scale and visibility. The holes were presented horizontally, forcing a reduction in hole scale that made it hard to tell if a ball was heading for fairway or rough. The shot from the blimp kept the entire hole in view, which took us even farther away from being able to see details. There was also some uncertainty in when to cut away from the trace to the ball landing.

I still see a level of authenticity in seeing the actual hole instead of a graphic (since the graphics often do not reflect reality).

If the architectural features of the landing can be better delineated by the view, and the hole presented vertically to improve size and perspective, this could have great value.

Here is the Tweet with quite the onslaught of comments


2019 PGA First Round Ratings Hold Steady, Close To Last Year's May Players

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Paulsen at Sports Media Watch notes the “slight bump” in PGA round one ratings, the first in the new May date. Up 1% from the 2018 PGA, down 7% from 2017 PGA.

The average audience of 990,000 viewers was comparable to last year’s Players, played a week earlier, where the audience was slightly larger (1 million viewers).

Latest Green Reading Book Silliness: NCAA Championship Official Book Deemed Non-Conforming On Event Eve

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Golfweek’s Beth Ann Nichols details the latest fiasco with non-banned-but-should-be green reading materials”: official yardage books from the NCAA Division I women’s championships are non-conforming. By 1/16th of an inch. On ten of the holes.

“We’re just going to go to Office Depot and get some sticker labels and cover up all 18 of them,” said Purdue coach Devon Brouse.

Officials didn’t specify which of the 10 holes were in violation.

The new interpretation for Rule 4.3a, which went into effect Jan. 1, stipulates that players may use a putting-green map during play, but it must be “limited to a scale of 3/8 inch to 5 yards (1:480).”

The original green reading book ban discussions would have been more restrictive, but the USGA and R&A watered things down a bit, and now we have the same information, only smaller. Most of the time.

Just ban them and get it over with!

Trump Golf Properties Showing Mixed Financial Results In The Presidential Era

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Lachlan Markay and Sam Stein breakdown President Donald Trump’s financial disclosure form for 2019 and while losses at Mar a Lago garnered much of the headline attention, we learned more about where golf stood in his empire revenues of $352 million, down $387 million from 2017.

The Trump National LA number stood out:

His Mar-a-Lago club brought in about $2.5 million less than it did in 2017. Income from the Trump National Golf Club in Los Angeles dropped by roughly $3 million. And the Trump Organization’s hotel management arm saw its income plummet by nearly $16 million, though its numbers for 2018 were more in line with those prior to Trump assuming the presidency.

Other Trump properties fared better. His Doral resort in Miami hiked its income by about $2.2 million in spite of internal concerns about declining residency reported by The Washington Post this week. Trump Turnberry, a golf resort in Scotland, saw income increase by $3 million.

The Post story by David Fahrenthold and Jonathan O’Connell focused on Doral’s revenue decline, noting this:

At Doral, which Trump has listed in federal disclosures as his biggest moneymaker hotel, room rates, banquets, golf and overall revenue were all down since 2015. In two years, the resort’s net operating income — a key figure, representing the amount left over after expenses are paid — had fallen by 69 percent.

You Could Have Watched Tiger Woods Play In A Major For $6 Today (Plus Service And Handling Fees)

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GolfDigest.com’s Joel Beall noted the incredibly small crowds for Bethpage practice rounds, a stunning contrast to 2018 at Bellerive where fans were lining fairways before the tournament even began.

On Tuesday and Wednesday, many of the holes boasted more volunteers than spectators, a sight especially true on the remote part—holes six through 12—of the property. A beverage vendor mentioned sales were "about 30 to 40 percent" off from their weekly forecast. And a fan noted on the fifth hole, “It’s more crowded out here on a normal Saturday.”

On Monday sports business writer Darren Rovell Tweeted about the low resale market prices, calling the lowest in recent major history. Make sure to read the replies if you want a laugh or insight into how the New York market sees things.

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A study of StubHub showed $6 prices Wednesday morning. Surely that would not happen again Thursday?

Despite Tiger Woods and Brooks Koepka going out early in absolutely perfect first round weather, the resellers were giving tickets away again for round one. The Forecaddie says by sometime around 9 am, the price had dropped from a low of $16 to $6, not including handling fees (around $6). Large chunks of tickets were available for prices in the single digits.

Prices are higher for the remaining three days, but well under the $110 face value for general admission.

In February, the PGA of America touted robust, near-sellout situation, then CEO Seth Waugh touted a boost to sales after Tiger’s Masters win.

The Man Who Saved Bethpage's Major Venue Status Isn't Here

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Former PGA President Ted Bishop is given his rightful credit for his role in the idea to bring the PGA Championship and a Ryder Cup to Bethpage Black after the USGA had decided to pass on future U.S. Opens here. Former PGA CEO Pete Bevacqua and his team also deserve credit for getting the deal done, but as Herrmann writes, the idea started with Bishop:

Bishop was the PGA of America’s secretary, in line to be president, in September 2010 when he met at the park with state officials. The U.S. Golf Association had given up on Bethpage after two rain-drenched U.S. Opens. The PGA Tour had yet to hold its two FedEx Cup playoff events there (which turned out to be poorly attended).

“The future of championships at Bethpage, at the point we started talking, was obviously in doubt,” Bishop said from The Legends, the club in Franklin, Indiana, that he runs, serves as head pro and now is superintendent, too. “I knew about the concerns that everybody who loves Bethpage had, with funding and maintaining conditions going forward.”

Despite the USGA having pulled out, Bishop chose to dive in. His confidence was confirmed during a practice round for the 2010 Ryder Cup in Wales, when he was on the 18th fairway with Phil Mickelson and Rickie Fowler. “Just out of the blue,” he said, “they started talking about Ryder Cup venues and Phil says to Fowler, 'Can you imagine the home course advantage that we would have if they ever played this Ryder Cup at Bethpage.' "

The piece goes on to explain why Bishop isn’t here this week—hint, hint, the hard working PGA Board of Directors stripped him of his PGA status and celebrated the brilliant idea to return to Bethpage with some Hampton’s golf.

Must Be Nice Files: PGA CEO, Board Of Directors Tees It Up At NGLA On Championship Eve

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Either things are running so smoothly at your first major in May in ages or the leadership really isn’t needed at all. But it’s still quite a look to have the CEO and Board off in the Hamptons for some golf and lobster while the PGA is at Bethpage . That’s what The Forecaddie says the PGA Board of Directors, including president Suzy Whaley, were able to do on Wednesday of the PGA Championship.

How important was this outing? The organization even moved their traditional Wednesday press conference to Tuesday just for some NGLA golf. President Suzy Whaley posted images from this important off-site executive time session.

Vide: A.W. Tillinghast, The PGA (Of America) "Tour" Years

While the return to Bethpage brings up mixed emotions for A.W. Tillinghast fans, there is little doubt about his influence over the Black course and hundreds of courses across the United States. And Tillinghast’s mid-1930’s work, a lifeline of sorts from the PGA of America’s George Jacobus that turned into an incredible project, plus his late years in obscurity, were the subject of our focus for this Golf Channel feature.

The piece first aired Monday on Live From The PGA, so if you missed it, here’s an encore presentation (also embedded in the righthand column). A special thanks to Dominic Dastoli for a fine producing and supervising effort, and to the PGA of America’s Bob Denney and Dr. Tony Parker for helping us tell the Tillinghast story. And a special thank you to Jim Nantz and Jack Whitaker. Jim for helping us contact the broadcasting legend, and to Mr. Whitaker for becoming the voice of A.W. Tilinghast for us. Tillinghast and Whitaker, two of Philadelphia’s grandest contributions to the game!

Tip O' The Cap: Fox's Shane Bacon Heads To U.S. Open Sectionals

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Nice work by the Fox Sports lead-when-Joe-Buck-isn’t-working voice of golf to make the U.S. Open Sectional Qualifying this year. Good luck Monday in Dallas.

Though there is a U.S. Senior Women’s Open this weekend to cover first. At least you have Mid-Pines and Pinehurst nearby for some early morning or late evening practice!

Tiger On Hitting His Numbers, Five Hours As A Grow The Game Killer

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Tiger Woods was in good spirits to kick off his return to Bethpage Black and the 2019 PGA Championship, touching on an array of topics from Olympic golf (nice if it happens) to the state of his game and the Black Course. Steve DiMeglio with the full round-up here for Golfweek.

Two quotes stood out in his comments.

Q. You haven't gone major to major without playing all that often in your career, but as you look ahead now, is it something you might consider doing more often? And just sort of how do you weigh the need for reps versus the need for rest at this point?

TIGER WOODS: You know, that's a great question because the only other time where I've taken four weeks off prior to major championships is going from the British Open to the PGA. Usually that was my summer break, and take those four weeks off and then get ready for the PGA, Firestone and the fall. So I'm always looking for breaks. Generally it's after the Masters I used to take four weeks off there. Now, with the condensed schedule, it's trying to find breaks.

You know, I wanted to play at Quail Hollow, but to be honest with you, I wasn't ready yet to start the grind of practicing and preparing and logging all those hours again. I was lifting -- my numbers were good. I was feeling good in the gym, but I wasn't mentally prepared to log in the hours.

Ok first we had players wanting to his certain Trackman numbers. Now gym numbers?

Coming here is a different story. I was able to log in the hours, put in the time and feel rested and ready. That's going to be the interesting part going forward; how much do I play and how much do I rest. I think I've done a lot of the legwork and the hard work already, trying to find my game over the past year and a half. Now I think it's just maintaining it. I know that I feel better when I'm fresh. The body doesn't respond like it used to, doesn't bounce back quite as well, so I've got to be aware of that.

And this seemed to be a nice statement for those leading the game who insist there is nothing wrong with five hour rounds, or slow play in general.

Q. Tiger, more minorities and young women are taking up the sport than before because of all of the initiatives in place, but that isn't reflected in the college participation numbers. Asians are the only minorities that are showing an increase. What do you think is happening? Why aren't the kids who are taking up the game sticking with it?

TIGER WOODS: You know, that's the question for all of us that's been a difficult one to figure out, to put our finger on. The First Tee has done an amazing job of creating facilities and creating atmospheres for kids to be introduced to the game, but also have some type of sustainability within the game.

But it's difficult. There are so many different things that are pulling at kids to go different directions. Golf is just merely one of the vehicles.

Now, with today's -- as I said, there's so many different things that kids can get into and go towards that honestly playing five hours, five and a half hours of a sport just doesn't sound too appealing. That's one of the things that we've tried to increase is the pace of play and try and make sure that's faster, because most of us in this room, if you've gone probably five minutes without checking your phone, you're jonesing. Kids are the same way; five hours on a golf course seems pretty boring.

Brooks Koepka: From 156 To 80 To Maybe 35, And Pressure Is Going To Get To Some Of 35...

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Brooks Koepka did the math on how he sees a field and, well, you can see why he’s a regular contender these days in majors. The man is confident, as Dan Kilbridge notes for Golfweek in writing about the defending champion.

Here is the actual 2019 PGA Championship press conference transcript outlining his view of a major field:

Q. We've heard you say several times majors are the easiest to win; yet that seems too simple for complicated minds. What has led you to internalize this approach which clearly seems to be a winning approach?

BROOKS KOEPKA: The easiest way I can break it down is there's -- what is there, 140 --

JON DEVER: 156 in the field.

BROOKS KOEPKA: 156 in the field, so you figure at least 80 of them I'm just going to beat. From there, the other -- you figure about half of them won't play well from there, so you're down to about maybe 35. And then from 35, some of them just -- pressure is going to get to them. It only leaves you with a few more, and you've just got to beat those guys.

If you just hang around -- I think one of the big things that I've learned over the last few years is you don't need to win it, you don't have to try to go win it. Just hang around. If you hang around, good things are going to happen.

So I think that's what's kind of caused me an issue in the regular PGA TOUR events. I've gone out on Saturday and tried to build a cushion, maybe pressed a little bit too hard and gotten ahead of myself, where in the majors I just stay in the moment. I never think one hole ahead. I'm not thinking about tomorrow. I'm not thinking about the next shot. I'm just thinking about what I've got to do right then and there. And I kind of dummy it down and make it very simple, and I think that's what helps me.

2019 PGA Championship Picks Roundup: Prognosticating At Soggy Bethpage

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Prognosticating golf tournaments is generally a fool’s game. Then dump lots of rain on a major venue and watch the nullification of many of the best setup and design elements. While Bethpage Black is usually soft for its major events, this year’s weather may further dull the local knowledge or experience advantage some might have enjoyed.

This is my way of saying this one seems wide open. Particularly when you factor in the mostly so-so track records of top players in four significant events since 2002. I consider those finishes and recent form in this “ten to watch” for Golfweek. 

And our team makes their picks for USA Today/Golfweek. I am sticking with Tiger again. He likes the place, he’s confident and he’s rested. Oh and he has Privacy here.

It’s hard not to see length being a huge factor, particularly without warmer temperatures this week that players enjoy so much. Ball-striking is paramount, as Joel Beall notes for GolfDigest.com.

Check out some of the changes in iron distance detailed in this Monday preview from Bethpage by Golfweek’s David Dusek. 

The Golf.com team’s picks.

Ryan Herrington’s “sneaky” PGA picks for Golf World.

And Oddschecker is always great fun to watch as it evolves during the week.

Discovery Buys Golf Digest And PGA Tour To Sell The Ads: A New House Organ Is Born?

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It’s certainly pleasing that Golf Digest has been saved from extinction by Discovery and that many golf writers will remain employed, but it’s hard to see how the PGA Tour taking over sales for the magazine and website is a positive.

Keith Kelley reported on Page Six (link not live) that Discovery paid $30 million for Golf Digest, Golf World and assorted elements after a “bidding war” with NBC/Comcast. Multiple sources tell me, however, that no bid was even made by Comcast.

The $30 million figure noted by Kelley, if his reporting is accurate, marks a steep plunge from the $430 million Conde Nast paid for Golf Digest in 2001. But they were also buying a robust monthly then with millions in lucrative monthly ad sales and a staff full of must-read writers.

The purchase price also looks particularly paltry given Discovery CEO David Zaslav’s pay the last two years: $42.2 million and $129.5 million in 2019.

Most surprising, however, was this line late in Sam Weinman’s GolfDigest.com story announcing the new “global editorial powerhouse”:

The Discovery acquisition will also feature the introduction of a new sales structure in which Golf Digest and the PGA Tour will combine to create a one-stop digital network in which advertisers can engage with fans across Golf Digest, PGA Tour, and GOLFTV platforms.

It seems hard to imagine any other scenario where the PGA Tour driving and selling the content by Golf Digest is a plus. Some fans may like that this keeps the operation viable, but I’m guessing most golfers wanting coverage of the game will be disappointed in where this leads.

Needless to say, this will also radically re-shape Golf Digest’s coverage of the PGA Tour and the business of golf.

For Immediate Release (Warning, b-speak is flowing!):

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Discovery, Inc. Acquires Golf Digest From Condé Nast

Creating the largest digital golf media business in the U.S. in partnership with the PGA TOUR

Golf Digest’s multi-platform content to be distributed globally on GOLFTV streaming service

Golf Digest Chairman and Editor-in-Chief Jerry Tarde to Join Discovery Golf

NEW YORK, May 13, 2019 – Discovery, Inc. (Nasdaq: DISCA, DISCB, DISCK) announced today it has acquired Golf Digest from Condé Nast. Golf Digest is the world’s No. 1 golf media brand and will extend Discovery’s global golf media business to the U.S. market through Golf Digest’s multiplatform distribution and reach.

The acquisition creates a powerful programming engine for GOLFTV powered by PGA TOUR, adding world-renowned Golf Digest content to a platform that is built on competition coverage from the PGA TOUR, European Tour, and the Ladies European Tour, as well as the Masters Tournament in select territories outside the U.S. and Discovery’s exclusive global content partnerships with Tiger Woods, winner of 81 PGA TOUR events and 15 major championships, and Francesco Molinari, winner of 10 pro events worldwide and the reigning Open champion.

The addition of Golf Digest boosts Discovery’s global golf ecosystem with a leading platform in the U.S., and will now reach golf fans with everything associated with the game, including instructional videos, equipment advice, course rankings, travel destinations, online bookings and more.

Additionally, Discovery and the PGA TOUR are expanding their groundbreaking 12-year strategic partnership with a new content and sales relationship in the U.S., among other initiatives. The organizations will join forces to create the largest digital network in golf with a one-stop activation platform now including Golf Digest, for advertisers to engage with fans and players, across a full suite of editorial coverage, live and on-demand video streaming, digital, social, print and branded content opportunities. The current Golf Digest sales teams will continue to be responsible for ad sales during a transition period until the Discovery / PGA TOUR sales integration is complete.

David Zaslav, President and CEO of Discovery, Inc. said: “Golf Digest is a world-class brand that has become the ‘go-to’ authority for millions of golf enthusiasts, professional players and global advertisers. It’s a natural strategic fit with Discovery’s goal to be the leading golf media platform in the world through our investments with the PGA TOUR, the European Tour and our partnership with Tiger Woods. We wanted to bolster GOLFTV’s international offerings with Golf Digest’s award-winning journalism, broad consumer reach and deep content library while also creating the largest U.S. digital golf business with Jay Monahan and the PGA TOUR. They have been great partners, and we are excited to deepen the opportunity to bring these amazing players and all of their terrific play to more people on more devices in every market in the world.”

Rick Anderson, Chief Media Officer, PGA TOUR, said: “We’re thrilled to deepen our partnership with Discovery, as well as Golf Digest, which has been an official marketing partner of the PGA TOUR since 2006. By combining our assets in the U.S., we’re now able to offer the most robust digital content and product offering for fans, golfers and TOUR partners. The new PGA TOUR / Golf Digest digital network will be the single largest golf network offering unrivaled breadth and depth of content across platforms.”

Discovery will seek to optimize its exclusive global partnership with Tiger Woods across both Golf Digest and PGA TOUR platforms. GOLFTV is collaborating with Woods on a range of content, such as deep-dive instruction to help players improve their game, which began filming last month, and exclusive access to his tournament preparation. The unique collaboration offers an authentic look into the life, mind and performance of the game’s ultimate icon.

Tiger Woods said: “This is an important step in enhancing and expanding the U.S. and global reach of Discovery and GOLFTV. It gives me another platform to tell my story directly to fans and makes my partnership with Discovery even stronger. This acquisition, along with what Discovery and GOLFTV have already done with the PGA TOUR, is great for the game of golf.”

Alex Kaplan, President and General Manager, Discovery Golf, said: “This is a big deal for Discovery to add Golf Digest to our golf portfolio. Adding Golf Digest to GOLFTV and our existing PGA TOUR, European Tour, Tiger and Francesco content will be a big win for the sport. We are offering something unique, whether you’re a fan, player, viewer, brand or advertiser. We can utilize the strengths of both Golf Digest and our burgeoning GOLFTV platform, establishing a global editorial powerhouse delivering content across all platforms to engage and inspire millions of passionate golf fans around the world.”

Golf Digest’s award-winning editorial content, including news, instructional videos, and rankings, as well as tentpoles such as ‘100 Greatest Course Rankings’ and its annual ‘Hot List,’ will drive engagement for GOLFTV around the world, provide opportunities for Discovery to leverage its golf content in the U.S. and bring more exciting opportunities to partner the PGA TOUR and all the world-class players.

Discovery will seek to leverage its global scale, with reach into 220 markets and territories, to further grow the Golf Digest brand around the world. Golf Digest, which earns nearly half of its revenues from digital advertising, will continue to publish a U.S. monthly print magazine and Discovery will assume the global licenses for editions serving nearly 70 countries.

Golf Digest’s editorial team will join Discovery Golf under the continued leadership of Jerry Tarde, as Editor-in-Chief, Golf Digest, and Global Head of Strategy and Content, Discovery Golf. In addition to overseeing the world-class editorial content of Golf Digest, Tarde will expand his purview to include GOLFTV and report to Alex Kaplan, President and General Manager, Discovery Golf.

Jerry Tarde, Editor-in-Chief, Golf Digest, and Global Head of Strategy and Content, Discovery Golf, said: “Golf Digest has this amazing team of editors, reporters, producers, photographers and contributors – all dedicated to helping golfers improve and be smarter consumers of the game we love. Discovery’s vision to create one global destination for everything a golf fan could want is perfectly aligned with what Golf Digest does every day. As we look to the future, Discovery’s global scale and ability to light up content on all platforms and in every language, combined with the PGA TOUR’s brand, will benefit golf and golfers worldwide.”

Kaplan added, “A critical piece is Golf Digest’s people. We’re thrilled to welcome aboard Golf Digest’s world-class team and its Chairman and Editor-in-Chief, Jerry Tarde, who is widely considered the dean of golf journalism.”

Golf Digest reaches millions every month across all platforms:

60 million video views
4.8 million readers
4.8 million digital uniques
2.2 million social followers

Warning: The Black Course Is An Extremely Difficult Course That Players May Light Up During The 2019 PGA

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And it’s ok! Really.

For three simple reasons: spring conditions, simple greens and huge changes in the game.

As Jim Nantz and Nick Faldo noted in this week’s CBS call to promote the new May date for the PGA Championship, the combination of spring conditions and more rain the weekend before means rough is likely to be inconsistent. While long and playing long due to cool conditions, the course should be soft.

But as Tom Dunne notes for Golfweek, Bethpage Black was meant to be a beast from the start and has largely maintained that reputation. (I’m sure it’ll still give players some fits but do remember that the 265-yard carry off the 10th tee in 2002 was understandably controversial. Today, it would take a major wind to restore that fear factor. )

Tillinghast wrote about the “Man Killer” element to the place in 1937 for the PGA Magazine (page 14 of 16 from the TIllinghast Illustrated by the great folks at Tillinghast.net).

Another factor worth watching: the relatively simple greens. In recent years hole locations have been in some astounding places to protect scoring but a soft Bethpage hasn’t many places to hide the holes. So even if the greens are slower than players like and maybe a little bumpy by day’s end, the lack of complexity in the green complexes makes the place more vulnerable.

So it will be interesting to see how the place’s reputation is viewed if the players score well in this PGA. It shouldn’t matter one bit. Because we all know the place has taken on a lot of water and will do so again all day Monday (100% chance of rain). But this is The Black and the good people of Long Island want their course to extract pain!

Oh and here is how things looked Sunday out there:

Return To Bethpage Begins The Wind-Down On Muni's As Major Hosts

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The state of New York’s glorious Bethpage State Park hosts this week’s 2019 PGA Championship and the 2024 Ryder Cup, while Harding Park is site of next year’s PGA. Throw in one US Open at a true public venue—2021 at Torrey Pines—and that’s about it in the way of muni’s hosting majors. The foreseeable future has been lined up for both the PGA and U.S. Open, with clubs or upscale resort courses the focus.

As I write for Golfweek, it’s been a mixed-bag in terms of success rate and benefits for the facilities. But it’s also clear that the cost to host and list of potential venues has shrunken due to the bench press and gluten free diets of today’s better athletes.

But do not despair, as I make the case that these majors at muni’s spawned interest in restoring classic public courses, with a tip of the cap to the new National Links Trust and efforts around the country.