Thursday, May 28

VIDEO: The Famous Burger Dog at the Olympic Club #NationalHamburgerDay

GOLF.COM: '7 Course-Management Strategies to Use When Your Game Is Rusty'

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THIS IS A GOOD PIECE by Zephyr Melton at Golf.com. I like all seven tips.

Read the entire article here.

Here's a sample:
5. Write down a swing thought that works 
When you get a swing thought in your head that's producing results, grab a pen and write it down. In the middle of struggles, it can be difficult to quiet your mind and figure out what you need to do to produce solid contact, but if you have it written down it could save your round. Keep a log of a few checkpoints so next time you have a long layoff you won't be searching for those old results.
I'd take the tips in this article a step further.

They're not just good when you're rusty. I'd use them anytime. (Unless you're a low single-digit handicapper or a pro.)

Maybe one or two of them will help me tomorrow. That's when I'm heading out to the golf course for the first time this season.

Tuesday, May 26

VIDEO: Recap of Capital One's The Match With Tiger Woods, Peyton Manning, Phil Mickelson and Tom Brady Raising $2 Million for Covid-19 Relief



ABOVE IS A FULL RECAP of Tiger Woods and Peyton Manning's 1-up victory over Phil Mickelson and Tom Brady in the 2020 Capital One's The Match at Medalist Golf Club.

It was a huge succes because, if nothing else, the event featuring the four Hall of Famers raised $20 million for charity at a time when it's sorely needed.

Tiger and Peyton played some fine golf. Woods looked especially sharp. I expect some of that came from being on his home course. Meanwhile, Phil and Tom struggled but hung around until the end.

The rain was relentless as the foursome soldiered on. They had no choice with a window of live coverage on TNT and millions of fans desperate to see a sporting event of any kind.

Peyton Manning is both fun-loving and funny. And the QB can play. His irons were talking at Medalist.

Tom Brady couldn't get through a shot on the front nine. I actually felt sorry for him. That's a first. Then No. 12 found a little something and played OK coming in.

Phil's banter is entertaining ... until it's tiresome. As Tiger said, "Now you see what I have to deal with."

Saturday, May 23

The PGA TOUR Champions Announces Combined 2020-21 Season

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PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Florida – PGA TOUR Champions has announced that its tournaments in 2020 and 2021 will combine to form one season, and the next Charles Schwab Cup champion will be crowned in November 2021 at the Charles Schwab Cup Championship.

Due to the circumstances related to the COVID-19 pandemic, eight PGA TOUR Champions tournaments have been canceled from the original 27-tournament schedule. A number of other events have been rescheduled to later in the calendar year and a decision on The Senior Open presented by Rolex will be forthcoming.

In an effort to uphold the competitive integrity of the Charles Schwab Cup, PGA TOUR Champions will combine the 2020 and 2021 seasons and form a singular 2020-21 season. In addition, other measures are being taken to offset some of the impact made by the cancellation of tournaments.

In 2020, the field size of tournaments will increase from 78 to 81 players. In 2020, the three Charles Schwab Cup Playoffs events will be converted into 81-player fields. The Charles Schwab Cup Championship will be reduced from 72 to 54 holes.

"While we won't have a Charles Schwab Cup champion in 2020, we feel that the combined schedule for 2020-21 is the best solution for everyone associated with PGA TOUR Champions," said PGA TOUR Champions President Miller Brady. "The wonderful support from the tournaments, title sponsors, Charles Schwab and the Player Advisory Council has helped us address some of the schedule complications caused by the COVID-19 pandemic, and as a result we have created solutions that best serve our members and our tournament communities."

Players will retain their 2020 eligibility in 2021, except for the five players in the Q-School category, who will play their guaranteed events. Additionally, the 2020 PGA TOUR Champions Qualifying Tournament will not be conducted, and player awards will not be presented at the end of 2020.

Five events have been completed and 13 tournaments remain on the 2020 schedule, beginning with The Ally Challenge at Warwick Hills in Grand Blanc, Michigan (July 31 – August 2). PGA TOUR Champions events to be contested in 2021 as part of the combined 2020-21 schedule will be announced later this year.

PGA TOUR Champions will continue to monitor the COVID-19 situation and follow the recommendations of local and state authorities in order to determine the most appropriate on-site access in each market. Decisions on fan attendance at all events will be dependent on available protocols that could be implemented to ensure the health and well-being for all involved.

Thursday, May 21

Golfer Sidney Beckwith Dies at 101; He Shot Below His Age 1,464 Times

SIDNEY BECKWITH CHEATED DEATH MANY TIMES in his 101 years. This remembrance by Adam Schupak for Golfweek is worth a full read.

Sidney Beckwith
Legacy.com
Beckwith died on May 9 after a bout with cancer and complications that followed, but a photo in Schupak's story shows him putting at Greenwood Valley Country Club on March 5.

Beckwith's longevity produced an enviable record on the golf course, according to Schupak:
Beckwith was 72 when he first broke his age at Green Valley. When he did it for the 100th time at age 85, his golf buddies took him out for a celebratory dinner. It only took three more years to get to 200 rounds at which time his friends at Gardiner's Bay gave him a plaque that proclaimed his "the guiding light of all golfers." (The club later renamed its annual Silver Bowl tournament the Beckwith Bowl.) 
At age 98, he broke his age more than 100 times. When he surpassed 1,000 rounds, a reporter from the Orlando Sentinel had to see it to believe it. Beckwith saved every scorecard, signed, attested and dated by his fellow competitors. Stacks of them lined the window sill of his bedroom and boxes filled to the gills secured the proof, each numbered, 1,464 in all, and telling a story of his age-defying feats.
Beckwith's is a story of luck, love and staying active for more than a century.

For perspective, his first car was a 1929 Ford Coupe. More recently, at age 100, Sidney drove his Hyundai Elantra on regular trips to the grocery store.

His first golf club was a wooden mashie. More recently, the centenarian teed off with a Callaway Epic driver. And his golf ball was in the air before 8 a.m. six days a week.

Tuesday, May 19

USGA: Four Championships in 2020, Deep Regret About No Qualifying

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THE USGA WILL CONDUCT ONLY FOUR championships in 2020, and that's only if public health and safety allow them. There's no certainty during the COVID-19 pandemic.

"The USGA will thus conduct four championships in 2020," the organization reported at USGA.org, "all at their originally scheduled sites.

"In early April, the USGA announced that the 120th U.S. Open will be played at Winged Foot Golf Club in Mamaroneck, N.Y., from Sept. 17-20, and the 75th U.S. Women’s Open will be played at Champions Golf Club in Houston, Texas, from Dec. 10-13. Testing and robust health and safety protocols will be in place at each of the four championships."

The other two will be the men and women's amateur championships, both with August dates.

None of the fields of the four championships will include qualifiers. All qualifying events have been canceled.

"[T]he fields will be filled entirely through exemptions," the USGA said.

This is a major disappointment, even during these difficult times, because it goes against what these "open" events are about, their very identity.

"[T]his was an incredibly difficult decision, as qualifying is a cornerstone of USGA championships," said John Bodenhamer, the USGA's senior managing director of Championships. "We take great pride in the fact that many thousands typically enter to pursue their dream of qualifying for a USGA championship and we deeply regret that they will not have that opportunity this year. But this structure provides the best path forward for us to conduct these championships in 2020."

Come late summer and fall, I'm sure I'll be glad to watch some golf, including these championships. But this situation reminds me of the war years when championships were canceled or fielded under different banners and sponsorships.

These 2020 USGA championships, if they are played, are a sad substitute for the real thing.

Friday, May 15

If You Need a Sports Fix: 'NBC Sports From the Vault' Continues on May 18

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STAMFORD, Conn. – The second week of NBC Sports From the Vault begins Monday, May 18 on NBCSN, replaying nearly 55 hours of classic sports events from the past 40 years, featuring Notre Dame Football, the Orange Bowl, MLB classics, Wimbledon, French Open, PGA TOUR and Ryder Cup.

From Monday, May 18, through Friday, May 22 (starting at 7 p.m. ET), and Saturday, May 23, through Sunday, May 24 (starting at 8 p.m. ET), NBCSN will present nightly primetime programming from NBC Sports' vault of historic games, spanning four sports across four decades.

Iconic athletes that will be featured over the course of the week include Tiger Woods, Roger Federer, Rafael Nadal, Serena Williams, Phil Mickelson, and John McEnroe, as well as legendary postseason matchups featuring the Boston Red Sox-New York Mets 1986 World Series Game 6, Oakland A's-Los Angeles Dodgers 1988 World Series Game 1, and the 1990s Notre Dame Fighting Irish vs. the Colorado Buffaloes.

Throughout the week, former athletes will provide commentary on the classic games, including a pair of former Notre Dame standouts – Heisman Trophy runner-up Rocket Ismail and All-American Reggie Brooks – former Los Angeles Dodgers pitcher and 1988 World Series MVP Orel Hershiser, former New York Mets pitcher Ron Darling, GOLF Channel analyst and 12-time PGA TOUR winner Justin Leonard, and 12-time European Tour (and three-time PGA TOUR) winner Ian Poulter.

Game presentations will include a specialized ticker featuring live tweets. Fans can tweet #NBCSNVault for the chance to see their tweets live on air.

Following is each night's From the Vault content:

Monday, May 18: "Breakfast at Wimbledon"
Tuesday, May 19: "Breakfast at Wimbledon"
Wednesday, May 20: French Open
Thursday, May 21: Notre Dame Football
Friday, May 22: MLB Classics
Saturday, May 23: PGA TOUR (Arnold Palmer Invitational) and Ryder Cup
Sunday, May 24: PGA TOUR (THE PLAYERS Championship) and Ryder Cup

Programming will also stream on NBCSports.com and the NBC Sports app.
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Thursday, May 14

Single Mom Laura Baugh Played the LPGA Tour With Seven Kids Tagging Along

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LAURA BAUGH TURNED PRO IN 1973 and won Rookie of the Year.

In a Mother's Day story by Golfweek writer Beth Ann Nichols, Baugh tallked about the challenges of being a single mom of seven children while playing the LPGA Tour:
I was really in love with being a mom. We traveled in a large van and had great times, saw the Smithsonian. But my golf definitely suffered. A single mom with seven kids playing the LPGA tour sounds bizarre, but at the same time, we had great times.... 
Then, as the children got older, I thought, you don't want to homeschool and play professional golf and travel. I did everything. At one point there, I hired a nanny.... In the summertime, they all came out. Even when I went to Sweden and different places, I would take the bottom two with me. I was very much a hands-on mom. I always had children with me. It was a gift and a blessing that I didn’t expect to experience in life.
Now 64, Baugh lives in Ponte Vedra Beach, Florida, and stays in shape by running "a lot."

Baugh said she gets a rush by hitting long drives. In the Senior Women's Open, she "hit it plenty long," probably 260. It was like, "My god, how did you bomb it so far?"

Tuesday, May 12

PGA Tour's Joel Dahmen Shoots 58 on Home Course; Chicago Cubs' Ian Happ Cards 69



JOEL DAHMEN WAS "ONLY" 2 UNDER through seven holes. Then the PGA Tour pro went crazy. That is, 12-under-for-the-next-11-holes crazy.

Dahmen's 58 included a 26 on the second nine. The University of Washington product set a new course record at Mesa Country Club in Arizona. (Good luck trying to break it.)


"That was FUN!" tweeted Dahmen, also seen with his five golf partners in a photo. (As Alex Myers noted for Golf Digest, not much evidence of social distancing.)

Chicago Cubs infielder Ian Happ also has game, sporting a two handicap. Happ turned in a tidy 69.

That's solid on any day, but it might not have felt quite as good on a day when his golf-pro buddy bettered him by 11.

Dahmen is playing in this week's Scottsdale AZ Open, a 54-hole event. He opened with a 65.

Saturday, May 9

MORNING READ: 'The European Tour Is in Deep Trouble'; Speculation About Merger With PGA Tour

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THIS WEEK IN MORNING READ Mike Purkey wrote, "The European Tour is in deep trouble, and it appears that the PGA Tour will come riding to the rescue. But at a price."

The European Tour has canceled 16 events due to the coronavirus pandemic, including The Open Championship, its first cancellation since World War II. They still hope to play a 26-event schedule that begins (hopefully) on July 30.

The Europeans don't have PGA Tour-level resources. Survival is the goal.

Purkey quoted an April memo from European Tour CEO Keith Pelley:
"Our tour has enjoyed a significant period of growth in recent years, in terms of prize funds, playing opportunities and the overall standard of our events, as well as our broadcast product. The impact of the coronavirus has stopped this rapid momentum in its tracks, and it will, in fact, require us to reassess many elements. You should therefore be prepared that when we do resume playing, the schedule and the infrastructure of tournaments could look radically different from what you have been used to. 
"Prize funds will also most likely be different. … The reality is, the pandemic is going to have a profound impact on the tour financially, as well as many of our partners, both in sponsorship and broadcast areas."
The merger mill has been noisy.

Purkey added: "[A]ccording to reports, both men [Pelley and Jay Monahan] are talking daily about forging some sort of arrangement – perhaps a partnership or an outright merger – in which the European Tour would receive at the very least significant financial help to remain afloat and viable. At most, it is speculated that the Euro Tour would become a subsidiary of the PGA Tour."

Like so many industries, organizations and sports profoundly impacted by the pandemic, golf won't be the same on the other side. The strong will survive. The weak may die or be swallowed up by the strong.

Thursday, May 7

VIDEO: Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, Tom Brady and Peyton Manning Talk (and Trash Talk) With TNT's Ernie Johnson About Their Upcoming Televised Charity Match



LET THE TRASH TALKING BEGIN. And it does, if you listen.

This promo was actually pretty funny in spots. It sounds as if Tom and Peyton will bring plenty of golf balls to make sure they have enough to get all the way around the course.

Following are the essentials.

Turner Sports will exclusively present "Capital One's The Match: Champions for Charity," featuring Tiger Woods and Phil Mickelson, and joined by Peyton Manning and Tom Brady. (It's Woods/Manning vs. Mickelson/Brady.)

The live event will be on Sunday, May 24, at 3 p.m. ET. It's a simulcast across TNT, TBS, truTV and HLN.

The match will be played at Medalist Golf Club in Florida (Tiger's home course).

There will be a $10 million charitable donation for COVID-19 relief. Additional fundraising will include on-course challenges and partnership with ALL IN Challenge.

(H/T Geoff Shackelford)

Tuesday, May 5

Reopening Golf: Industry Stakeholders Release CDC-Reviewed 'Back2Golf' Plan

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Three-Phase National Framework Aligned with
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Guidelines

ST. AUGUSTINE, Fla. – As part of an industry-wide collaboration to lead the responsible return of golf in the time of the COVID-19 pandemic, the game's allied organizations have established "Back2Golf," a plan outlining operational guidelines for golf]s 16,000-plus facilities that adhere to nationally established protocols and best practices.

[Visit BACK2GOLF for three-phased approach and guidelines]

After review from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), golf leaders and medical experts, the game's national organizations have adopted a three-phase approach for golf's careful reopening, focused on prolonged social distancing and enhanced sanitization practices. Using measures set by the CDC and The White House "Guidelines for Opening Up America Again" plan, the recommendations will progress at various paces depending on geographic location.

"The Back2Golf Playbook and Guidelines that the PGA of America and golf's allied organizations have put together are both comprehensive in nature and, most importantly, lay out a responsible way to get back on the golf course," said Dr. Bradley Connor, clinical professor of medicine at the Weill Cornell Medical College and an attending physician at the New York Presbyterian Hospital-Cornell campus. "The guidelines emphasize social distancing and other preventative measures in alignment with the plan established by The White House and CDC. Golf is a terrific recreational outlet that offers a number of physical and mental health benefits.

 "While we all must remain vigilant and continue to take precautions, this plan allows golf to be played in keeping with social distancing best practices," Dr. Connor continued. "I applaud the golf industry for helping to be part of the solution to get us back outdoors in a healthy and responsible manner."

This industry-wide initiative has been primarily focused on ensuring golf courses that have remained operational or will reopen soon, do so responsibly to protect golfers, employees and all members of the community. Each organization has distributed "Back2Golf Guidelines" and the corresponding "Operations Playbook" to its respective audiences to implement and administer. Updates will be made as interim guidance on COVID-19 is issued by the CDC.

Back2Golf is driven by key stakeholders of WE ARE GOLF, a division of the World Golf Foundation created in 2010 to spearhead initiatives on behalf of the game. Organizations include PGA of America, USGA, PGA TOUR, LPGA, Golf Course Superintendents Association of America (GCSAA), National Golf Course Owners Association (NGCOA), and Club Management Association of America (CMAA), among others.