On Wednesday, Hootie Johnson will enter Augusta National's state-of-the-art press building for his annual no-comment session with the world's leading scribblers. He will probably be joined by the club's Chair of Winter Storm Damage Storage, Will Nicholson, and Question Screening Committee Chair, Billy Payne.
First, a question for Nicholson:
- Last year you said, "There are no top players that I talk to that aren't unanimous that the ball is changing the nature of the game. The ability to move the ball right, or left, as the old timers did, is now out of the game." Have you recommended a change in the ball to your friends at the USGA?
And now, here are a few questions I'd love to ask Hootie:
- Are you concerned that several holes, in their present configuration, will not allow for increases in length.
- Bobby Jones, while looking out at Augusta National with Alistair Cooke, once remarked that he "didn't see a need for a tree on a golf course." With that in mind, do you really believe he would approve of so much tree planting?
- Have club members and USGA officers Walter Driver and Fred Ridley asked you not to adopt a Masters ball spec?
- With ShotLink now being used to collect data, will this information be made available to patrons and media?
- And...Martha Burk: great woman, or the greatest woman? (With apologies to Colbert.)