THURSDAY  | JUNE 7, 2018
by Herb Gould

Spectator golf has as many twists and turns as a double-dogleg par 5.

On one hand, you can get up-close and personal with the golfers. At the Senior PGA in Benton Harbor two years ago, I walked the first round with the threesome of John Daly, Mark Calcavecchia and Bernhard Langer.

 



by Mike Purkey

This will be the most head-scratching run-up to a U.S. Open in years because of the baffling difficulty to choose one or more clear favorites. Almost none of the usual suspects has built any momentum leading up to next week’s Open at Shinnecock Hills on Long Island, and, in fact, most have been playing some fairly ordinary golf.

The Vegas odds reflect the relative mediocrity. Most of the world’s top players were bunched from 12-1 to 16-1, according to Westgate SuperBook, and it’s little more than a coin flip among them.

 


Pull the plug on shot clock

I really don't care how long a professional takes to play his stroke, as long as: 1) I don't have to watch it on TV because they cut away to someone who is playing a shot, and 2) it doesn't affect a fellow competitor, as apparently happened when J.B. Holmes kept Alex Noren waiting for five minutes earlier this year  (“It’s about time: Shot clock debuts in Europe,” June 6).

That's the way tennis champion John McEnroe gained an edge, by arguing with the umpire while his opponent cooled off. There's a word for that, and it's not very nice, so it's good that they are trying to enforce some rules to prevent it. 

 


Reported: By Kate Wynja, a Sioux Falls (S.D.) Christian Schools senior who had just won the Class A girls state golf tournament on Tuesday, that she had signed for a lower score than she actually made on the final hole, according to a report in the Sioux Falls Argus Leader. The violation, under Rule 6-6d, was met with a disqualification, costing Wynja a second consecutive state title and dropping her team from first place to runner-up. “I knew I needed to tell them,” Wynja told the Argus Leader. “It was really sad, mostly because I knew what the result would be. I knew that I would be disqualified, and it broke my heart for the team. But I knew I couldn’t leave without saying something.”

 


16

Number of scores in the 60s that Phil Mickelson has posted in his past 20 rounds at TPC Southwind in Memphis, Tenn., site of the PGA Tour’s FedEx St. Jude Classic, which begins today. In those five appearances, Mickelson has finished no worse than T-11, including two runners-up and a third place (tee times).

 



RADIO, TV AND PODCASTS

The Grill Room powered by Vertical Groove Golf

Co-hosts Bob Bubka and Jay Randolph Jr. discuss Bryson DeChambeau, who won the Memorial Tournament using same-length clubs, and preview next week’s U.S. Open. On the Vertical Groove Hotline, Alex Miceli, the founder of Morning Read, analyzes the PGA Tour’s digital partnership with Discovery. And in Voices of The Game, Kelly Elbin chats with writer Dave Shedloski about Jack Nicklaus.

Hawk & Rude: Tiger at Memorial

In Hawk & Rude, a podcast featuring veteran golf journalists John Hawkins and Jeff Rude, the hosts discuss Tiger Woods’ latest hot-and-cold performance and assess his chances at next week’s U.S. Open.




FROM THE INDUSTRY

The eGull pay app has added the five courses in the Rockford (Ill.) Park District to its pay-by-the-hole network, eGull announced. The Aldeen, Sinnissippi, Sandy Hollow, Ingersoll and Elliot courses have joined eGull.

 

Pine Tree Country Club in Birmingham, Ala., will play host to the Alabama Men’s State Amateur Championship today through Sunday, the club announced. Pine Tree, a George W. Cobb-designed course that is celebrating its 50th anniversary, has hosted the state amateur twice: in 1983, when Birmingham’s Sam Farlow won, and in 1995, when Decatur’s Jason Brown prevailed.

 

Sean Cain has been named lead instructor at Reynolds Lake Oconee’s Kingdom of Golf in Greensboro, Ga., the resort community announced. Cain has been with Legends at Chateau Elan in Braselton, Ga., for 19 years, including the past 12 as head golf professional.

 

The Ann Liguori Foundation Charity Golf Classic, held June 4 at Atlantic Golf Club in Bridgehampton, N.Y., benefited cancer research and prevention. Ann Liguori, a sports talk-show host and author, hosted the event.

 


CALENDAR
June 6-9
Men’s amateur: Dogwood Invitational

Druid Hills GC, Atlanta

June 7-10
PGA Tour: FedEx St. Jude Classic

TPC Southwind, Memphis, Tenn.

Web.com Tour: Rust-Oleum Championship

Ivanhoe Club, Mundelein, Ill.

European Tour: Shot Clock Masters

Diamond CC, Atzenbrugg, Austria

June 8-10
Women’s amateur: Curtis Cup

Quaker Ridge GC, Scarsdale, N.Y.

Symetra Tour: Four Winds Invitational

Blackthorn GC, South Bend, Ind.

LPGA: ShopRite LPGA Classic

Stockton Seaview Hotel and GC, Galloway, N.J.

Champions: Principal Charity Classic

Wakonda Club, Des Moines, Iowa


      
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