Tuesday, December 11

Golf Central: Golf's Biggest Disappointment in 2018



I LIKE TO KEEP IT MOSTLY POSITIVE, but this clip caught my eye.

Matt Adams and Geoff Shackelford share their biggest disappointment in golf this year. I'm with Matt on this one.

Friday, December 7

The Golf Ball Guide: Golf Ball Construction

GOLF BALLS CONSIST OF A CORE, in some cases layering, and always a cover with dimples.

© Incursion Voyages
Flickr 
Often made of rubber, the core determines compression rating, which is expressed as a number such as 74, 88, or 105. (A denser core has higher compression.) The higher the number, the more force that’s required to compress (squash) the golf ball at impact. As a result, high-compression golf balls are normally used by golfers with faster swing speeds. Lower-compression golf balls are preferable for golfers with slower swing speeds, making it easier to compress the ball and generate more distance.

Located between the core and the cover, layers (found in multi-piece golf balls) add playability features such as spin, distance control and accuracy.

Golf ball covers are made of ionomer (a polymer material containing ion) or urethane (a synthetic compound). Created by Dupont and known for its durability, Surlyn® has been a popular ionomer golf ball cover for a half century. Urethane covers are used in premium golf balls and are often favored by golfers who value softer feel and more spin.

The dimples on golf balls help create flight. Varying in shape and pattern—and usually numbering 300 and up per golf ball—dimples affect spin rate, distance and accuracy.

Put simply, think of the core as the engine of the golf ball and the dimples as the wings, as a Titleist senior project manager explained.



TO BE CONTINUED.

Related:
The Golf Ball Guide: Introduction

Tuesday, December 4

Joe Passov to Receive ASGCA Donald Ross Award

Award-winning golf writer has had more than 2,000 articles published in nearly 100 publications in North America, the U.K. and Asia

BROOKFIELD, Wis. – Joe Passov, Golf Writers Association of America-award winning golf journalist, has been chosen as the 2019 recipient of the ASGCA Donald Ross Award. The award, given annually since 1976, is presented to a person who has made a significant contribution to the game of golf and the profession of golf course architecture. It will be presented to Passov in May as part of the 2019 ASGCA Annual Meeting in Phoenix-Scottsdale, Arizona.

"Joe is among a small group of true golf writers--in contrast to the scores of golf critics--who are communicating about golf courses today. He's the rare journalist who understands the history, culture and strategy of the game and is producing thoughtful pieces that help the golfing public understand what golf course architects do," said ASGCA President Jeff Blume. "Joe's insight and creativity stand out in today's quick-hitting news cycle, and ASGCA wants to recognize his commitment to his craft."

Passov specializes in writing about golf travel and golf course architecture. He has researched and written more than 300 articles on classic courses and architects, including features on Alister MacKenzie, A.W. Tillinghast, Perry Maxwell and of course, Donald Ross. He has interviewed nearly every top modern architect, and has had the pleasure of teeing it up with more than 40 ASGCA members. Perhaps best known for his popular "Travelin' Joe" and "Eye on Design" columns in GOLF Magazine, Passov has had more than 2,000 articles published in nearly 100 publications in North America, the U.K. and Asia.

Formerly Editor-in-Chief of LINKS Magazine and prior to that appointment, a senior staff editor at three other major national golf publications, Passov has written about golf and related topics for The New York Times, the Los Angeles Times, Sports Illustrated and Men's Health, among other publications. He has also served as Contributing Editor at Golf Travel China and Golf Travel Korea.

Passov graduated from the University of Arizona in 1984 and received his law degree from the University of Nebraska in 1988. He lives in Cave Creek, Arizona, with his wife Betsy, whose favorite courses are Cypress Point and Ballybunion. Passov's sister Lori is married to fellow Arizonan Ken Kavanaugh, ASGCA.

The Donald Ross Award is presented by the ASGCA Awards Committee, co-chaired by ASGCA Past Presidents Steve Smyers, ASGCA, and Rees Jones, ASGCA Fellow (the 2013 Donald Ross Award recipient). For more information on ASGCA, visit www.asgca.org, call (262) 786-5960 or e-mail info@asgca.org.

Past Donald Ross Award Recipients
2018    President George Herbert Walker Bush, U.S. president
2017    Alice Dye, ASGCA Fellow, golf course architect
2016    Michael Bamberger, golf writer
2015    Bradley S. Klein, golf writer
2014    Maj. Dan Rooney, founder, Folds of Honor Foundation
2013    Rees Jones, ASGCA, golf course architect
2012    Bill Kubly, golf course builder
2011    James Dodson, golf writer/editor
2010    Tim Finchem, PGA Tour Commissioner
2009    Ron Dodson, sustainable golf advocate
2008    George Peper, golf writer
2007    Dr. Michael Hurdzan, ASGCA, golf course architect
2006    Jim Awtrey, chief executive officer, PGA of America
2005    John Singleton, irrigation pioneer
2004    Thomas Cousins, philanthropist, urban golf developer     
2003    Bill Campbell, president, USGA, captain, Royal & Ancient Golf Club
2002    Byron Nelson, professional golfer
2001    Jack Nicklaus, ASGCA, professional golfer, golf course architect
2000    Jaime Ortiz-Patino, owner and president, Valderrama Golf Club
1999    Arnold Palmer, professional golfer
1998    Judy Bell, president, USGA
1997    Gene Sarazen, professional golfer
1996    Ron Whitten, golf writer
1995    Pete Dye, ASGCA, golf course architect
1994    James R. Watson, agronomist
1993    Brent Wadsworth, golf course builder
1992    Paul Fullmer, ASGCA executive secretary
1991    Michael Bonallack, secretary, Royal & Ancient Golf Club
1990    John Zoller, executive director, Northern California Golf Association
1989    Dick Taylor, editor, Golf World magazine
1988    Frank Hannigan, executive director, USGA
1987    Charles Price, writer, Golf World magazine
1986    Deane Beman, commissioner, PGA Tour
1985    Peter Dobereiner, London Observer columnist, author
1984    Dinah Shore, sponsor of women’s golf tournaments
1983    Al Radko, director, USGA Green Section
1982    Geoffrey Cornish, ASGCA, golf course architect, historian
1981    James Rhodes, governor of Ohio
1980    Gerald Micklem, captain, Royal & Ancient
1979    Joe Dey, executive director, USGA
1978    Herb and Joe Graffis, founders, National Golf Foundation
1977    Herbert Warren Wind, The New Yorker columnist, author
1976    Robert Trent Jones, ASGCA, ASGCA founding member

Saturday, December 1

The Golf Ball Guide: An Introduction

THE GOLF BALL IS THAT ONE INDISPENSABLE piece of equipment needed to play this joyous and maddening game.

© Incursion Voyages
Flickr 
Through the centuries this small ball has undergone dramatic changes in size, construction and performance. And the golf ball has likely generated more talk and emotional outbursts while airborne or rolling than any other ball in any other sport.

Today, for golfers of all abilities, the golf ball is game-improvement equipment. That's right, the golf ball can actually make you better. There are golf balls that can fit your swing speed and match your skill level, helping you minimize your weaknesses and maximize your potential.

Modern golf balls, measuring 1.68 inches in diameter and weighing 1.62 ounces, can be broken into two basic groups. The first group are golf balls that produce less spin and go farther and straighter for the less-skilled golfer. The second group are golf balls that spin more for greater control, geared for the more-skilled golfer.

Distance-oriented golf balls typically have a firmer feel. Spin-oriented golf balls usually have a softer feel.

There are also differences in trajectory. Some balls fly higher. Some lower.

Due to ongoing advancements, there are now many performance variations in golf balls, no matter how they're grouped or categorized. This is great news for anyone who plays golf.

Next time: Golf Ball Construction

Thursday, November 29

Happy 91st Birthday to Vin Scully and Scully Golf Anecdotes from Golf Digest's Mike O'Malley

LEGENDARY ANNOUNCER VIN SCULLY IS 91 TODAY.

It's easy to forget that the longtime Dodgers announcer also anchored golf broadcasts for CBS Sports. Golf Digest Executive Editor Mike O'Malley shared these Scully anecdotes.


Tuesday, November 27

VIDEO: The Highly Unorthodox Winning Golf Swing of Ho-sung Choi


I DOUBT IF ANYONE WOULD TEACH the golf swing of Ho-sung Choi. But that doesn't mean it's not highly effective. Choi won on the Japan Golf Tour and his unique action has gone viral, in a golf sense.

I'm not sure what to say about it. Let me just say that Choi has flair. He is a golf ... artist?

Others on social media said ...

"Walking through is always better than falling back"

"All that matters is where the club is at impact. Hope for all duffers"

"Dude stole my swing and won with it"

Monday, November 26

The Match Doesn't Deliver

I DIDN'T WATCH THE MATCH. Did you?

The only thing I really wanted to know was who won, Tiger or Phil.

We all know Mickelson won on the 22nd hole. Now Lefty will have some measure of satisfaction that he beat the greatest of his generation in a head-to-head, made-for-TV match. And, as he made clear, Phil will needle Tiger about it for the rest of their days.

But what was in it, this hyper-marketed match, for the rest of us, that being the golf world and viewing public?

Not much, according to the reports I've read and skimmed. The aging titans played like aging titans. The banter wasn't that interesting, or was drowned out by the broadcast team. The pay-per-view technology was apparently a shank.

The Match had some people fondly reminiscing about the Skins Game, which died a natural death about a decade ago. The Skins Game was telecast over the Thanksgiving weekend and had some memorable moments, both of the tense and fun variety.

A week ago Golf Digest published "11 things you probably don't remember about the Skins Game."

One of those 11 things: the Skins Game was a ratings hit, as Golf Digest reported:
The Skins Game didn't just promise big bucks, it delivered big TV ratings. In fact, it was the highest-rated televised golf tournament in 1986. Yep, even higher than a certain sixth green jacket win by a certain Golden Bear that year at the Masters. And for its first 10 years of existence, the Skins Game's average weekend rating (5.65) topped that of the U.S. Open during that time. Why was this the case? Well, getting superstars to participate—Was that 1983 foursome of Jack Nicklaus, Arnold Palmer, Gary Player and Tom Watson any good?—was a start. But yes, there was also the money, which leads us to …
The Match is over and I'll give golf credit for trying something new. But in the end I think this was mostly about Phil. After all, it was his idea. There may be some redemption for him in beating Tiger Woods, something for his "mantle."

For the rest of us, not much.

Monday, November 19

VIDEO: Charles Howell III Ends Long Winless Drought at RSM Classic in Georgia



AT THE RSM CLASSIC AT SEA ISLAND RESORT in St. Simons Island, Georgia, Charles Howell III shot a final-round 67 to finish 19 under and get into a sudden-death playoff with Patrick Rodgers. Howell III defeated Rodgers on the second playoff hole.

His third PGA Tour victory ended a winless drought of more than a decade.

"Sometimes you wonder, well, maybe you just don't have it in you," Howell III said. "Maybe today is just not the day. More than likely I won't be winning the golf tournament."

He added, "Quite honestly, I didn't know if I would ever win one again. I had come up short so many times."

A runner-up 16 times on tour, this time he got it done. Howell III sank a 15-footer to win the playoff, then fought back tears and hugged his wife and kids.

Friday, November 16

Brrr: How Cold Weather Affects Golf Ball Performance

IT'S COLD IN THE MID ATLANTIC. In fact, freezing rain was falling outside my window as I began to write this. I won't be playing golf anytime soon.


(Jeff Cushner/Flickr)
But if you're a cold-weather golfer, this information from Golf Digest might be helpful:
[C]old air can affect the performance of a golf ball. Cold air is denser than warm air and creates additional drag on a ball. According to Trackman, the difference is approximately one yard of carry for every 10-degree change in temperature. So theoretically, you’re looking at a loss of four yards if you’re playing in 40 degrees as opposed to 80 degrees. Other factors—such as how the body reacts to the cold, and how wearing extra layers likely limits your backswing—can further impact distance. The takeaway: When playing fall golf plan for at least an extra half club, and if your swing is restricted by being fully bundled up, it might even be a full club.
Also this ...
As for trying to keep golf balls warm, don't bother. For starters, Rule 14-3/13.5 prohibits warming a golf ball during the round. Warming up golf balls is not prohibited, but there is a reason for that—it doesn't work. Several years ago, Golf Laboratories performed a test that showed you could not get a ball warm enough to have any impact because the ball almost instantly adopts to the outside temperatures.
If you play golf in the snow, use an orange, green or pink golf ball. And go ahead and improve your lie. Winter rules apply.

Thursday, November 8

GOLF CENTRAL: LPGA Player and Her Caddie Disagree on Circumstances That Led to DQ



WHAT A MESS. The player, Doris Chen, explained what happened to her golf ball that resulted in a disqualification. But the caddie, Alex Valer, had a very different take.

In the vicinity of the incident was Chen's mother. Did the mother play a role?

GolfChannel.com's Randall Mell reported on the controversy at the LPGA's Q-Series.

Monday, November 5

VIDEO: Bryson DeChambeau Wins Shriners Hospitals for Children Open; Said 'Everybody Does It in a Different Way'



BRYSON DECHAMBEAU IS RED HOT. He fired a closing 66 to win the Shriners Hospitals for Children Open by a shot over Patrick Cantlay. It was win number five for DeChambeau on the PGA Tour, all of them bunched in the last 16 months.

DeChambeau is anything but orthodox in his approach to the game. It's working for him.

"More power to everyone that does it their own way," he said.

"Everybody is unique. Everybody does it in a different way. I believe I found a way that works really, really well for me and it allows me to be super consistent week in and week out."

DeChambeau climbed another spot in the world rankings, to No. 5. Meanwhile, Justin Rose reclaimed the top spot, displacing Brooks Koepka.

Thursday, November 1

Morning Drive: PGA's Mike Pickett and His Golf-Themed Pumpkins



I HOPE YOU HAD A GOOD HALLOWEEN. This is Mike Pickett, a PGA member whose favorite holiday is Halloween.

Is Mike better at golf or pumpkins? I wonder.

Wednesday, October 31

Pinehurst Caddie Willie McRae Dies at 85; Said 'Everybody's a Celebrity'



WILLIE MCRAE BEGAN AS A CADDIE at Pinehurst in 1943. He was 10. McRae retired from his trade a year ago and died this past Sunday at the age of 85.

Like those TV spots for the insurance company say, McRae had seen a thing or two. He caddied for five presidents and famous athletes like Mickey Mantle and Michael Jordan.

It made no difference to McRae. According to a 2013 interview, the Pinehurst caddie treated everyone the same way.

"[E]verybody's a celebrity," he said. "We can't say well this guy's a celebrity because he played basketball or baseball or golf pro or whatever. But everybody's somebody and that's what you gotta take."

McRae collected $1.75 a round plus a 50-cent tip when he started looping 65 years ago. In the early days, those loops included Pinehurst No. 2 architect Donald Ross and golf legends Bobby Jones, Gene Sarazen, Sam Snead and Ben Hogan.

Sunday, October 28

VIDEO: Xander Schauffele Wins WGC-HSBC Champions



XANDER SCHAUFFELE PREVAILED IN A ONE-HOLE playoff with Tony Finau to win the WGC-HSBC Champions in Shanghai.

Schauffele birdied the final two holes in regulation to force extra holes. He shot a final-round 68, the day's lowest score.

"I was definitely in sort of an attack mode," Schauffele said, "and I was hitting good shots all day, making good putts. I was doing everything that I needed to do."

Schauffele, 25, has three tour wins and is inside the top 20 in the world rankings.

Thursday, October 25

VIDEO: ESPN's Michael Collins on Dropped Lawsuit and Happier Caddies



ESPN'S MICHAEL COLLINS REPORTS THAT CADDIES have dropped their lawsuit against the PGA Tour. Furthermore, the caddies are apparently happier with Jay Monahan at the helm of the PGA Tour. Many were not fans of the previous regime. (Tim Finchem.)

I realize the caddies are independent contractors, but I'm glad to hear an increased stipend is probably coming their way. That will help with health care.

And how about Collins' beard?

It's longer than the rough at Le Golf National where Europe bagged another Ryder Cup victory.

Tuesday, October 23

Paul Azinger on Replacing Johnny Miller: 'I'm Just Going to Be Me. It's Got Me This Far, Right?'



IT'S OFFICIAL. PAUL AZINGER WAS NAMED as the lead golf analyst who will follow Johnny Miller at NBC.

Azinger is going to be busy in 2019. He will work the Masters for the BBC, the U.S. Opens for FOX, and the NBC golf telecasts beginning with the WGC-Mexico Championship in late February.

Azinger recently talked to golf writer Jeff Babineau at Gator Creek Golf Club. Here are a couple of Azinger snippets from Babineau's story for MORNING READ:
I'm not trying to fill Johnny's shoes. You can't fill those shoes. I'm different than him. I'm just going to go for being me. It's got me this far, right? I'll stir it up. I'll say stuff. It'll just pop up, like it does when I'm giving a lesson. But I'm not looking to carve my own path. I'm just looking to fit in. They've already established what they've got there. These guys are all experts.
On Johnny Miller:
I talked to him for about 15-20 minutes. I asked him a lot of questions. I asked him about Tommy Roy. I wanted to know about Tommy Randolph [also in NBC production] … What is Dan Hicks like? All that. You've got to high-praise Johnny, because he's done it for a long time, and Johnny would tell it like it is. Johnny had this ability to inflect his voice; he'd be saying stuff you disagreed with, but because of the way he inflected it, you weren't so sure. He was an influencer. We phone-tagged, and we talked. We have a lot in common, really, but I'm not Johnny. I'm different than Johnny. He told me, 'You keep calling it like it is.' And that’s what I plan on doing.
Azinger won a dozen times on the PGA Tour, including one major, the 1993 PGA Championship.

Saturday, October 20

VIDEO: Ian Poulter Explains European Domination in Ryder Cup



WHY DOES EUROPE KEEP WINNING?

It's not that complicated. It can't be solved by a U.S. task force or a pod system. Ian Poulter explains.

Tuesday, October 16

Lead Golf Analyst Johnny Miller to Retire from NBC Broadcast Booth in Early 2019


LEAD GOLF ANALYST JOHNNY MILLER WILL RETIRE from NBC Sports in January 2019. Miller's last event will be the Waste Management Phoenix Open. 

In a statement to Golf Channel, Miller said:

"The call for being there for my grandkids, to teach them how to fish. I felt it was a higher calling. The parents are trying to make a living, and the grandparents can be there like my father was with my four boys. He was there every day for them. I'm a big believer there is a time and a season for everything."

Miller has spent 29 years in the NBC booth after a Hall of Fame career that produced 23 wins on the PGA Tour, including two majors, the 1973 U.S. Open and 1976 Open Championship.

In December 2012 I enjoyed a long dinner with Miller at a Lexus event at Pebble Beach. Following are my notes on a small piece of that conversation:
I asked Johnny if he ever foresaw himself doing TV work. No, he said. He's signed on for three more years with NBC. After that it sounds like he'll be gone, except for an occasional event. He wondered aloud who might take his place. I said, "You must enjoy it." He's still in the tower after 20-plus years. Johnny said he feels like he has something to offer and brings something different to the game. My wife told him how she appreciates his candor. He told me a story about his mom's blackberry pie. He always wondered why it was the best. His mom finally shared the secret: mostly ripe, sweet berries, plus a few select tart ones. An approach that can also work well for golf commentary.
Reports say Paul Azinger will replace Miller.

The 2018-19 PGA Tour Schedule: Events, Dates, Courses, Purses



THERE'S NO OFF SEASON IN GOLF. I expect only the most dedicated golf fans notice or care. Here's what's ahead for the men of the PGA Tour, and those who watch.

OCTOBER
Oct. 4-7: Safeway Open (Kevin Tway); Silverado Resort and Spa North, Napa, CA; $6,400,000
Oct. 11-14: CIMB Classic (Marc Leishman); TPC Kuala Lumpur, Kuala Lumpur, Malaysia; $7,000,000
Oct. 18-21: The CJ Cup; Nine Bridges, Jeju Island, South Korea; $9,250,000
Oct. 25-28: WGC-HSBC Champions; Sheshan International GC, Shanghai, CHN; $10,000,000
Oct. 25-28: Sanderson Farms Championship; CC of Jackson, Jackson, MS; $4,300,000

NOVEMBER
Nov. 1-4: Shriners Hospitals for Children Open; TPC Summerlin, Las Vegas, NV; $6,800,000
Nov. 8-11: Mayakoba Golf Classic; El Chameleon GC, Playa del Carmen, Mexico; $7,100,000
Nov. 15-18: The RSM Classic; Sea Island Resort, Sea Island, GA; $6,200,000
Nov. 22-25: ISPS Handa Melbourne World Cup of Golf; The Metropolitan Golf Club, South Oakleigh, Victoria, Australia; $7,000,000
Nov. 29-Dec. 2: Hero World Challenge; Albany, New Providence, Bahamas; $3,500,000

DECEMBER
Dec. 7-9: QBE Shootout; Tiburon, Naples, FL; $3,300,000

JANUARY
Jan. 3-6: Sentry Tournament of Champions; Plantation Course at Kapalua, Maui, HI; $7,000,000
Jan. 10-13: Sony Open in Hawaii; Waialae Country Club, Honolulu, HI; $6,200,000
Jan 17-20: CareerBuilder Challenge; Stadium Course, La Quinta, CA; $5,900,000
Jan. 24-27: Farmers Insurance Open; Torrey Pines Golf Course, San Diego, CA; $6,900,000
Jan. 31-Feb. 3: Waste Management Phoenix Open; TPC Scottsdale, Scottsdale, AZ; $6,900,000

FEBRUARY
Feb 7-10: AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am; Pebble Beach GL, Pebble Beach, CA; $7,400,000
Feb. 14-17: Genesis Open; The Riveria Country Club, Pacific Palisades, CA; $7,200,000
Feb. 21-24: Puerto Rico Open; Coco Beach Golf & CC, Rio Grande, Puerto Rico; $3,000,000
Feb. 21-24: WGC-Mexico Championship; Club de Golf Chapultepec, Mexico City, Mexico; $10,000,000
Feb. 28-March 3: The Honda Classic; PGA National, Palm Beach Gardens, FL; $6,600,000

MARCH
Mar. 7-10: Arnold Palmer Invitational; Bay Hill Club and Lodge, Orlando, FL; $8,900,000
Mar. 14-17: The Players Championship; TPC Sawgrass, Ponte Verde Beach, FL; $10,500,000
Mar. 21-24: Valspar Championship; Innisbrook Resort and Golf Club, Palm Harbor, FL; $6,500,000
Mar. 27-31: WGC-Dell Match Play; Austin Country Club, Austin, TX; $10,000,000
Mar. 28-31: Corales Puntacana Resort & Club Championship; Corales Puntacana Resort & Club, Punta Cana, D.R.; $3,000,000

APRIL
Apr. 4-7: Valero Texas Open; TPC San Antonio, San Antonio, TX; $6,200,000
Apr. 11-14: Masters Tournament; Augusta National GC, Augusta, GA; $11,000,000
Apr. 18-21: RBC Heritage; Harbour Town Golf Links, Hilton Head Island, SC; $6,700,000
Apr. 25-28: Zurich Classic of New Orleans; TPC Louisiana, New Orleans, LA; $7,200,000

MAY
May 2-5: Wells Fargo Championship; Quail Hollow Club, Charlotte, NC; $7,700,000
May 9-12: AT&T Byron Nelson; Trinity Forest Golf Club, Dallas, TX; $7,700,000
May 16-19: PGA Championship; Bethpage State Park BK Corse, Bethpage NY; $11,000,000
May 23-26: Charles Schwabb Challenge; Colonial Country Club, Fort Worth, TX; $7,100,000
May 30-Jun. 2: The Memorial Tournament; Muirfield Village GC, Dublin, OH; $8,900,000

JUNE
Jun. 6-9: RBC Canadian Open; Hamilton Golf & Country Club, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada; $6,200,000
Jun. 13-16: U.S. Open; Pebble Beach Golf Links, Pebble Beach, CA; $12,000,000
Jun. 20-23: Travelers Championship; TPC River Highlands, Cromwell, CT; $7,000,000
Jun. 27-30: Rocket Mortgage Classic; Detroit Golf Club, Detroit, MI; New tournament

JULY
July 4-7: 3M Open; TPC Twin Cities, Blaine, MN: $6,600,000
July 11-14: John Deere Classic; TPC Deere Run, Silvis, IL; $5,800,000
July 18-21: The Open Championship; Royal Portrush Golf Club, Portrush, NIR; $10,500,000
July 18-21: Barbasol Championship; Keene Trace Golf Club, Nicholasville, KY; $3,500,000
July 25-28: WGC-FedEx St. Jude Invitational; TPC Southwind, Memphis, TN; $10,000,000
July 25-28: Reno-Tahoe Tournament; Montreux GC & CC, Reno, NV: $3,300,000

AUGUST
Aug. 1-4: Wyndham Championship; Sedgefield Country Club, Greensboro, NC; $6,000,000
FedEx Cup Playoffs:
Aug. 8-11: The Northern Trust; Liberty National GC, Jersey City, NJ; $9,000,000
Aug. 15-18: BMW Championship; Medinah CC, Medinah, IL; $9,000,000
Aug. 22-25: TOUR Championship; East Lake GC, Atlanta, GA; $9,000,000

Sunday, September 23

VIDEO: Tiger Woods Wins Tour Championship for 80th PGA Tour Title; Justin Rose Claims FedEx Cup



HE DID IT. TIGER WOODS WON the season-ending Tour Championship in a fairy tale comeback that virtually no one expected, including him. It was his first victory since 2013. Woods now has 80 victories on the PGA Tour, just two short of the record set by golf legend Sam Snead.

"I loved every bit of it," Woods told NBC Sports after shooting a 1-over 71 to win by two shots over Billy Horschel, who closed with a 66. "The fight and the grind and the tough conditions. Just have to suck it up and hit shots."

Tiger added: "I've had a not-so-easy last couple of years and I've worked my way back and ... it's just hard to believe I've won the Tour Championship."

Meanwhile, Justin Rose edged Woods to win the FedEx Cup and earn the $10 million bonus. Rose finished T4 at the Tour Championship but came out on top in the season-long points race.

"That's PGA Tour royalty," Rose said about winning the FedEx Cup.

Now it's on to the Ryder Cup for Woods. After his improbable comeback, anything seems possible, at least at the moment.

Wednesday, September 12

VIDEO: Keegan Bradley Ends Long Drought With Playoff Victory at BMW Championship



IN THE FINAL ROUND OF THE 2018 BMW Championship on Monday, Justin Rose and Keegan Bradley tied at the end of regulation play and proceeded to sudden death.

Bradley carded a 4 on the first playoff hole to earn a long-awaited victory. It was Keegan's first title in 161 events, or six years.

Despite the playoff loss, there was good news for Justin Rose. The 38-year-old Englishman moved to No. 1 in the Official World Golf Ranking for the first time in his career.

U.S. Ryder Cup Captain Jim Furyk: 'It's a Well-Rounded Team, and We'll Go to Work'


WILL THE AMERICANS WIN THE RYDER CUP on European soil for the first time in 25 years?

The 42nd Ryder Cup will be contested on September 25-30 at Le Golf National in Paris, France. Despite an impressive victory in 2016 at Hazeltine, the U.S. squad faces a huge challenge: win their first away game since 1993.

They beat Europe 17-11 last time out in Minnesota. Before that Europe had won three in a row, six of seven, and eight of 10. It's no time to be giddy.

With Captain Jim Furyk's final pick of Tony Finau on Monday, both teams are set.

"(I've) got a lot of confidence in those players," Captain Furyk said a week ago. "I think we have some great chemistry. I think we have some great pairing opportunities. We've got some great veteran leadership and we've got some youth. It's a well-rounded team, and we'll go to work, get set to go."

U.S Ryder Cup Team
Captain Jim Furyk
Points qualifiers:
Brooks Koepka
Dustin Johnson
Justin Thomas
Patrick Reed
Bubba Watson
Jordan Spieth
Rickie Fowler
Webb Simpson
Captain's picks:
Bryson DeChambeau
Phil Mickelson
Tiger Woods
Tony Finau

"It’s going to be a great challenge because we know how strong the European side is and how well they play at home," Phil Mickelson said. "but it's a wonderful chance, an opportunity for us to do something I haven't done or been a part of in my career, and would very much like to."

European Ryder Cup Team
Captain Thomas Bjorn
Automatic qualifiers:
Francesco Molinari
Justin Rose
Tyrrell Hatton
Tommy Fleetwood
Thorbjorn Oleson
Jon Rahm
Rory McIlroy
Alex Noren
Captain's picks:
Paul Casey
Sergio Garcia
Ian Poulter
Henrik Stenson

"If I had written down 12 names before I started my captaincy journey, it wouldn’t have been far away from this," Captain Bjorn said.

Friday, September 7

The Only Jack Nicklaus Designed Putting Course Opens in Jupiter


I SAW THIS IN THE NICKLAUS NEWS that lands in my email inbox. The Gold Cub Mini Golf Course, a Jack Nicklaus design, opened recently in Jupiter, Florida.

"We went through the same thought process in the design as we would on a full-sized course," said Nicklaus Design Associate Chad Goetz via WPTV. "We hope the result is something very different than the typical miniature golf experience, and one that is enjoyable for golfers and nongolfers alike."

It has at least one thing in common with all the other Nicklaus courses. It's hard.

"I only played one hole, and I was challenged on that one!" Jack said, laughing.

One good thing: It doesn't cost much to play this Nicklaus course.

RATES
Kids 6 and up: $12.50
Kids 5 and under: $7
Seniors (over 60): $10
Military: $9
Unlimited: $18.50

Tuesday, August 28

VIDEO: Padraig Harrington Needs a Moment of Privacy at D+D Real Czech Masters



SOON TO BE 47, PADRAIG HARRINGTON had a good showing this past week on the European Tour. The three-time major champion finished runner-up to Andrea Pavan at the D+D Real Czech Masters. Harrington finished 20 under at Albatross Golf Resort in Prague.

"I'm seeing things about my game that I can improve and work on," Harrington told EuropeanTour.com. "I'm in a nice place. I just have to keep doing the good stuff and hopefully there'll be more tournaments like this ahead."

That camera operator was seemingly transfixed by Harrington, much to the Irishman's amusement.

Friday, August 24

There's a PGA Tour Intern at Ponte Vedra Beach Headquarters Named Island Green (No, Really)

ISLAND GREEN IS AN INTERN for the PGA Tour at tour headquarters in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, not far from TPC Sawgrass and its famous 17th hole.

From Golf Digest:
"I didn’t know too much," said Green of the Island Green at TPC Sawgrass. "I knew there was a golf course named Island Green in South Carolina, but I didn't know about the Island Green in general."
"I think we taught Island more about the island green during the interview process then he knew beforehand,” said Jim Clarke, the tour's Senior Director of Human Resources who also oversees the internship program.
Island Green will be a junior at Winston-Salem State University in North Carolina.

THE MATCH: Tiger vs. Phil on Thanksgiving Weekend in Las Vegas


THE TIGER WOODS-PHIL MICKELSON match is on. The golf titans (or old warhorses?) will square off on Thanksgiving weekend at Shadow Creek Golf Course in Las Vegas. It's a $9 million winner-take-all match.

"We're going to have fun doing something that's never been done before," Tiger said, "and have on pay-per-view and doing something, trying to showcase golf and showcase golf in a different way."

Judging from social media, many are not enthusiastic about this event.

Associated Press golf writer Doug Ferguson said on Facebook:

"Tiger v. Phil feels phony to me. The whole Tiger-Phil thing is 10 years past its due date. Phil joins Twitter the day of the announcement. That was about as genuine as the “trash talk” that is sure to follow. Pay-per-view. Makes you wonder how many networks had a chance to take it and said no. And then to steal the name from 'The Match' featuring Hogan and Nelson vs. Ward and Venturi."


"Tiger vs Phil. Does anybody really care?" asked GolfShake.com.

I would watch this match if it was on TV. Pay per view? It seems doubtful at the moment.

Wednesday, August 15

Jack Nicklaus Walks 36 to Watch Son Play in 2018 U.S. Amateur at Pebble Beach


JACK AND BARBARA NICKLAUS FOLLOWED son Gary as he competed in the 2018 U.S. Amateur at Spyglass Hill and Pebble Beach, where Jack won the national amateur in 1961.

From Geoff Shackelford at Golfweek:
Jack and Barbara Nicklaus—both USGA Bobby Jones Award winners—walked all 36 holes at Spyglass Hill and Pebble Beach, with Jack only occasionally taking a ride in a USGA security cart. He mostly hoofed it, resting on an old-school shooting stick like his old writer pal Herbert Warren Wind. He posed for cell phone photos, did plenty of meeting-and-greeting in player dining, and even got the occasional "do you remember me?" types, including one promoting his forthcoming instruction book. As always, Nicklaus was gracious even though he never took an eye off of Gary's play.
Gary was eliminated after rounds of 78-78. He hit the ball pretty well but putted poorly. The Golden Bear offered tips about Pebble's greens but it didn't seem to help.

"I'm 49 years old and I'm still not listening to my dad," Gary said.

Sunday, August 12

Brooks Koepka Holds Off Tiger Woods to Win PGA Championship



BROOKS KOEPKA CLAIMED HIS SECOND MAJOR of the season by firing a final-round 66 at Bellerive Country Club to win the 100th PGA Championship by two shots over a resurgent Tiger Woods.

Woods closed with a 64 to finish at 14 under despite spraying tee shots into the thick rough and trees lining the fairways. He only needed 23 putts on the soft greens.

Koepka never wavered as the 14-time major winner and Masters champion Adam Scott made their runs on the final nine. The 28-year-old with a placid demeanor has made history, first winning back-to-back U.S. Opens and now being in the company of only a few golf greats who have hoisted the U.S. Open and Wanamaker trophies in the same calendar year.

Koepka said, "For some reason the majors get my attention more. Every shot is so important. You have to be patient and I always do that very well in the majors."

Wednesday, August 8

Aussie Joe Kirkwood's 14 Points for Golf



By John Coyne
Copyright © John Coyne. Used with permission.

RECENTLY I HAVE BEEN READING Joe Kirkwood's autobiography, Links of Life. Kirkwood was an Australian golf professional who won 13 times on the PGA Tour and was also known as a trick shot artist. His book was published privately in 1973. Kirkwood told his story to Barbara Few and the story has an introduction by Lowell Thomas, the famous news commentator, one-time chairman of the American Golf Hall of Fame and a friend of Kirkwood.

On the back jacket cover are words of praise about Kirkwood from Dwight D. Eisenhower and Richard M. Nixon.

Ike writes, "My golf game shows the benefit of his magic touch….Joe Kirkwood—a real artist."

Nixon is quoted, "I recall vividly the day he taught me some of the things I know about golf when we met at Quaker Hill, and I shall always be grateful for his kindness on that occasion."

In his introduction, Lowell Thomas asks Kirkwood, while they are playing a round of golf at the Western White House at San Clemente, if he recalled President Wilson's famous Fourteen Points which Wilson believed could lead to world peace and then Lowell Thomas suggested, "How about summing up golf in the same way?"

Kirkwood took the challenge and dictated 14 points that Thomas had framed on the wall of the locker room at the Western White House golf course.

Thomas added the 14 points to his introduction of Links of Life. Here they are:

Joe Kirkwood's 14 Points

1. Relax, relax, relax!

2. When addressing the ball, stand almost straight, sitting back slightly on your heels.

3. Extend hands, arms and club out straight. That is, don’t drop your hands as though putting them in your lap.

4. Grip should always be the same. If you want a hook or a fade, a low shot or a high one simply alter your stance.

5. For instance if you want a high shot, open your club face and stand behind the ball.

6. Get biggest arc possible. Slow backswing. Slight hesitation at top.

7. Stay almost flat footed through swing until after ball is in flight and club head is out where it should be on the follow through. It’s okay to sway a light as you pivot, but your head must not move too much. On your pivot be sure to bring left shoulder way under.

8. Imagine you are looking underneath the ball. Avoid closing club face.

9. Whatever you do don’t let your body get ahead of your hands and the club.

10. Don't fight the wind. For example, on the Quaker Hill course, in playing the 7th where the wind often is from the West, hit a fade to the left and allow wind to bring the ball around. This way you will get more distance.

11. On pitch and chip shots keep arms still. Arms, hands, club all on piece.

12. On pitch and chip shots use slow easy rhythmical stroke, with a follow through. Don’t snap at the ball!

13. In rough, or any bad lie, open club face in order to cut through trouble.

14. In getting out of traps spank the sand with club head. Use light touch; easy stroke. Don’t bang at it. After rain, or in any hard sand, use a very light touch, caress it.

Relax! Be Loose! But not loose as a goose.

John Coyne is a bestselling author whose most recent golf novel is The Caddie Who Won the Masters. Learn more at John Coyne Books.

2018 PGA Championship Notes and TV Schedule



THE 100TH PGA CHAMPIONSHIP BEGINS on Thursday at Bellerive Country Club in St. Louis, Missouri. This will be the final PGA Championship played in August. Next year the PGA will follow the Masters in the majors lineup, teeing off at Bethpage Black in Farmingdale, New York, on May 16, 2019.

Designed by famed course architect Robert Trent Jones Sr., Bellerive hosted the 1992 PGA Championship won by Nick Price and has also been the scene of other majors such as the 1965 U.S. Open won by Gary Player.

The last time the PGA Tour visited Bellerive was in 2008 for the BMW Championship and the start of the FedEx Cup Playoffs.

The Favorites
Here they are according to bookmaker Bovada.

8/1: Dustin Johnson
12/1: Rory McIlroy
14/1: Justin Thomas
20/1: Jason Day, Brooks Koepka, Jordan Spieth
22/1: Rickie Fowler, Justin Rose
25/1: Jon Rahm
28/1: Tommy Fleetwood, Tiger Woods
33/1: Francesco Molinari
40/1: Tony Finau, Patrick Reed
50/1: Patrick Cantlay, Henrik Stenson, Bubba Watson
55/1: Paul Casey, Alex Noren
60/1: Xander Schauffele
66/1: Marc Leishman, Hideki Matsuyama, Joaquin Niemann
75/1: Thorbjorn Olesen, Webb Simpson
80/1: Bryson DeChambeau, Matt Kuchar, Louis Oosthuizen, Kyle Stanley                             
100/1: Daniel Berger, Keegan Bradley, Sergio Garcia, Branden Grace, Brian Harman, Charley Hoffman, Zach Johnson, Kevin Kisner, Phil Mickelson, Ian Poulter, Gary Woodland

Notable Groupings
Following are noteworthy groupings for Thursday and Friday, including Thursday tee times. (All times Eastern.)

No. 1
8:56 a.m.: Padraig Harrington, Jimmy Walker, Vijay Singh
9:07 a.m.: Bryson DeChambeau, Andy Sullivan, Kiradech Aphibarnrat
1:42 p.m.: Chris Wood, Alex Noren, Matt Kuchar
1:53 p.m.: Dustin Johnson, Bubba Watson, Adam Scott
2:04 p.m.: Tommy Fleetwood, Satoshi Kodaira, Marc Leishman
2:15 p.m.: Patrick Reed, Brooks Koepka, Francesco Molinari
2:26 p.m.: Gary Woodland, Sergio Garcia, Kevin Kisner
2:37 p.m.: Jordan Spieth, Jon Rahm, Justin Rose
2:48 p.m.: Aaron Wise, Paul Casey, Zach Johnson
2:59 p.m.: Louis Oosthuizen, Thomas Pieters, Bill Haas
3:10 p.m.: Lee Westwood, Joaquin Niemann, Daniel Berger

No. 10
8:17 a.m.: Jim Furyk, Tony Finau, Xander Schauffele
8:39 a.m.: Rickie Fowler, Hideki Matsuyama, Ian Poulter
8:50 a.m.: Henrik Stenson, Danny Willett, Pat Perez
9:01 a.m.: Phil Mickelson, Jason Day, Keegan Bradley
9:23 a.m.: Justin Thomas, Rory McIlroy, Tiger Woods
2:32 p.m.: Thorbjorn Olesen, Charl Schwartzel, Patrick Cantlay

100th PGA Championship Details
Dates: August 9-12
Course: Bellerive Country Club
Par: 70
Yardage: 7316 yards
Purse: $10.5 million
Winner’s share: $1.89 million
Field: 156 players
Defending champion: Justin Thomas

TV Schedule
All times Eastern.
Thursday, August 9: TNT 2 p.m.-8 p.m.
Friday, August 10: TNT 2 p.m.-8 p.m.
Saturday, August 11: TNT 11 a.m.-2 p.m.; CBS 2 p.m.-7 p.m.
Sunday, August 12: TNT 11 a.m.-2 p.m.; CBS 2 p.m.-7 p.m.

Live Streaming Coverage
Live streaming coverage is available at PGA.com or on the PGA app.

Thursday, August 2

VIDEO: Bryson DeChambeau Says 'I Was Completely Embarrassed'



NBC SPORTS' MIKE TIRICO SITS DOWN with Bryson DeChambeau after the young tour pro's meltdown on the European Tour handed Richard McEvoy his first victory in 285 starts.

DeChambeau explains the situation, including all the context (his finish), that can't be captured in the few frames of him breezing by McEvoy with only a hint of a handshake and congratulations.

DeChambeau is thoughtful and eloquent. He owns up to what happened, understands how bad it looked, but also fills us in on what the camera and social media fail to reveal. Good interview.

By the way, this instant vilification is a problem, isn't it?

Every little thing is caught on video and magnified on social media. Some of it is newsworthy and even important, but a lot of it is plain silliness.

Monday, July 30

DJ Bags Third Win of Season at RBC Canadian Open



DUSTIN JOHNSON FIRED A 66 on Sunday to win the RBC Canadian Open by three strokes. DJ's 23-under total at Glen Abbey Golf Club came on the heels of a missed cut at Carnoustie Golf Links in the British Open.

"Winning here definitely means a lot," said Johnson, who signed with tournament sponsor RBC this year and has Canadian ties through his fiance Paulina and her dad Wayne Gretsky, the hockey great.

"I had a lot of support this week."

The world No. 1 golfer shot rounds of 68, 66, 65 and 66 to notch his third win of the season and 19th victory on the PGA Tour. All his tour wins have come since 2008.

Friday, July 27

Youth on Course Continues Strong Growth

By Buffalo Agency

(PEBBLE BEACH, CA) Youth on Course — the organization renowned for its record-breaking national growth to provide affordable golf access – continues remarkable growth with state and regional golf association partnerships increasing 120 percent in the last 18 months.

In 2018, more than 41,000 members are on pace to complete 115,000 rounds at 900-plus golf courses nationwide. Now in 26 states, this marks Youth on Course’s largest growth period to date, continuing their upward climb towards their goal of providing $5 golf to kids in all 50 states. At the end of 2017, Youth on Course had 30,000 members across 19 states.

"There are millions of kids interested in playing golf but might not have the opportunity," says Adam Heieck, Youth on Course Executive Director. "As we continue expanding our membership and national footprint, we're able to provide more young people with access to affordable golf, which is our ultimate purpose."

According to the National Golf Foundation, golf is an $84.1 billion industry with golfers ages 6-17 making up 11% of all players. In 2017, 2.7 million juniors played golf, an increase of 12.5% since the last time this study was conducted in 2011. Youth on Course’s dedication to providing accessible golf has helped support these numbers by equipping young golfers with a reliable outlet to play consistently.

2018 partnerships include:

  • Golf Association of Philadelphia 
  • Iowa Golf Association
  • Junior Golf Alliance of Colorado
  • Maryland State Golf Association
  • Metropolitan Golf Association
  • Metropolitan Amateur Golf Association
  • North Dakota Golf Association
  • South Dakota Golf Association
In addition to subsidized rounds, the organization also facilitates college scholarships, paid internships and a caddie program. Since the inception of the scholarship program in 2008, Youth on Course has awarded 222 students with scholarships totaling more than $1.4 million in financial support. The current Youth on Course scholarship retention rate is ninety-eight percent, with 53 students already graduated.

Wednesday, July 18

2018 Open Championship TV Schedule and Tournament Notes



147th Open Championship
Dates: July 19-22
Course: Carnoustie Golf Links
Par: 71
Yardage: 7402 yards
Purse: $10.5 million
Winner's share: $1.89 million
Field: 156 players
Defending champion: Jordan Spieth

Open TV Coverage
All times Eastern.
Thursday, July 19
Golf Channel 1:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
Friday, July 20
Golf Channel 1:30 a.m.-4 p.m.
Saturday, July 21
Golf Channel 4:30 a.m.-7 a.m.
NBC 7 a.m.-2:30 p.m.
Sunday, July 22
Golf Channel 4:30 a.m.-7 a.m.
NBC 7 a.m.-2:30 p.m.

Live streaming coverage at TheOpen.com.

VIDEO: Jean Van de Velde Explains That Disaster at the 1999 Open Championship



JEAN VAN DE VELDE RETURNED TO CARNOUSTIE to relive one of the most famous moments in Open history.

Could anyone handle that massive disappointment with more grace?

Tuesday, July 17

2018 Open Championship: Carnoustie Golf Links Preview (VIDEO)



ON THE EAST COAST OF SCOTLAND, Carnoustie Golf Links, site of this year's Open Championship, is the northernmost course in the Open rota. It's also the toughest. No one seems to argue this point.

The above video is a good preview of Carnoustie heading into the 147th edition of the Open Championship that tees off early on Thursday morning. There are aerial footage and interviews with Carnoustie's head pro and another fellow.

Playing to a par of 71, Carnoustie is longer than any course in Open history: 7402 yards.

This will be the eighth time Carnoustie has hosted the Open Championship. Here are the previous champions:

1931 Tommy Armour
1937 Henry Cotton
1953 Ben Hogan
1968 Gary Player
1975 Tom Watson
1999 Paul Lawrie
2007 Padraig Harrington

Wednesday, July 4

'Death from the Claret Jug' By James Y. Bartlett From Yeoman House Books

HERE'S THE BOOK DESCRIPTION from the publisher:

Death from the Claret Jug again features the adventures of golf writer Pete Hacker, who covers the game for his Boston newspaper. Hacker is in St. Andrews, Scotland, to cover the Open Championship and finds there is trouble afoot in the Auld Grey Toon as an official with the Links Trust is murdered, and his body dropped into the depths of the Bottle Dungeon at St. Andrews Castle.

Whodunnit?

The cast of suspects includes a flamboyant and controversial American resort developer with a history of run-ins with the Links Trust. But there's also a professor at St. Andrews University who wants to ban golf entirely and disrupt the tournament; the Marquess Cheape, whose family has for generations held the title to the land beneath the famed Old Course; and some shadowy Russian figures who might be interested in a big business deal, or might just be interested in mayhem.

So while the world's best golfers are battling the elements and the golf course to win the title of "Champion Golfer of the Year," Hacker is chasing leads and clues from pub to pub on the narrow and twisting lanes of St. Andrews. And Hacker's girlfriend, Mary Jane, is along for the ride on her first visit to Scotland.

Death from the Claret Jug is Bartlett's fifth Hacker mystery. And with the recent publication of Death in a Green Jacket, set at the Masters in Augusta, Ga., Bartlett has made the turn in his planned four-book Major Tournament series.

Death from the Claret Jug is available in both trade paperback ($14.99) and e-book ($4.99) editions, and can be purchased from Amazon.com.

James Y. Bartlett is one of the most-published golf writers of his generation. A former staff editor for Golfweek, Luxury Golf and Caribbean Travel & Life magazines, he also wrote regular columns on the world of golf for Forbes FYI and Hemispheres (the inflight magazine of United Airlines) and contributed articles on golf, travel, lifestyle and fashion to dozens of national publications, from Esquire to Golf for Women.

Thursday, June 28

VIDEO: Tribute to Five-Time Open Champion Peter Thomson



PETER THOMSON IS THE G.O.A.T. in Australian golf. No one Down Under touches his record. This is a nice tribute to the man and includes words from fellow Aussie Adam Scott and South African Gary Player.

Thomson won five British Opens during an era when it was THE major golf championship and at a time when American tournaments were not very accessible to players across the oceans.

Thomson was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1988. He won about 70 tournaments worldwide, including 22 on the European Tour.

Golf on TV: Quicken Loans National, KPMG Women's PGA Championship, U.S. Senior Open, HNA French Open

PGA TOUR
Quicken Loans National
Course: TPC Potomac at Avenel Farm / Yardage: 7,107 / Par: 70
Purse: $7.1 million
Winner's share: $1.278 million
Defending champion: Kyle Stanley
TV Schedule:
Thursday-Friday, 3-7 p.m. (Golf Channel)
Saturday-Sunday, 1-2:45 p.m. (Golf Channel); 3-6 p.m. (CBS Sports)

Embed from Getty Images

LPGA TOUR
KPMG Women's PGA Championship
Course: Kemper Lakes GC / Yardage: 6,741 / Par: 72
Purse: $3.65 million
Winner's share: $547,500
Defending champion: Danielle Kang
TV Schedule:
Thursday-Friday, 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. (Golf Channel)
Saturday-Sunday, 3-6 p.m. (NBC Sports)

USGA/PGA TOUR CHAMPIONS
U.S. Senior Open
Course: The Broadmoor GC / Yardage: 7,264 / Par: 70
Purse: $4 million
Winner's share: $720,000
Defending champion: Kenny Perry
TV Schedule:
Thursday, 4-9 p.m. (FS1); Friday, 3:30-8:30 p.m. (FS1)
Saturday-Sunday 4-9 p.m. (FS1)

EUROPEAN TOUR
HNA French Open
Course: Le National Golf / Yardage: 7,247 / Par: 71
Purse: $7 million
Winner's share: $1.167 million
Defending champion: Tommy Fleetwood
TV Schedule:
Thursday-Friday, 4:30-10:30 a.m. (Golf Channel)
Saturday-Sunday, 7:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. (Golf Channel)

Friday, June 22

MORNING DRIVE: Betsy King and Golf Fore Africa Bringing Clean Water to Rural Villages



GOOD WORK BY HALL OF FAMER Betsy King and Golf Fore Africa, the organization she founded in 2007.

King explains her project to bring clean water to improve lives in rural areas. They are partnering with World Vision to raise money for wells.

Betsy King won 34 times on the LPGA Tour, including six majors, and was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 1995.

Wednesday, June 20

Phil Mickelson Apologizes for U.S. Open Fiasco



PHIL MICKELSON HAS COME TO HIS SENSES.

He sent this statement via text to a few reporters earlier today:
I know this should've come sooner, but it's taken me a few days to calm down. My anger and frustration got the best of me last weekend. I'm embarrassed and disappointed by my actions. It was clearly not my finest moment and I'm sorry.
I'm mostly a Mickelson fan, but his supreme confidence in himself and unapologetic takes cross the line at times. They strike me as arrogant. His behavior on the 13th green and explanation during the third round of the U.S. Open were Phil at his worst. He did something stupid in the heat of the moment. And then he dug in afterward, justifying his actions.

It was a really bad look.

Sure, the USGA got the setup wrong on Saturday, but it's cowardly to blame them.

Golf is a humbling game. It certainly humbled the best golfers in the world at Shinnecock Hills. Judging from his apology, perhaps Phil is a bit more humble. I hope so.