THURSDAY  | NOVEMBER 15, 2018
by John Hawkins

Two past-their-prime superstars squaring off for a $9 million, corporate-funded jackpot in a pay-per-view challenge match on the busiest shopping day of the year, smack-dab in the heart of football season? Who’s providing the halftime entertainment at this pillow fight? Wayne Newton?

OK, so Tiger Woods vs. Phil Mickelson isn’t exactly stacking up as must-see TV. A fair number of serious golf fans have made it a point to tell me that they have no interest in watching, and when the $19.99 viewership fee was announced a couple of weeks ago, I didn’t get a sense that millions of Americans suddenly began second-guessing the idea of spending Black Friday jostling for position at the local Best Buy.

 



PGA Tour players plod as Tour condones pace
The PGA Tour, because of its inaction, has been encouraging slow play for decades (“Pros explain slow play: It’s the other guy,” Nov. 14).

While the players are more than capable of maintaining a steady, acceptable pace of play, some of them – perhaps unintentionally, at first – find ways to play slowly. Eventually, that occasional slowing or lagging becomes habitual and, unfortunately, becomes that player’s normal. Those slower players aren’t fearful of being called for it, because it seldom happens; when it does happen, the consequence is trivial.

 


0

Number of Italians who have finished No. 1 on the European Tour at the end of a season. Francesco Molinari stands a good chance this week at being the first. Play at the tour’s season-ending DP World Tour Championship begins today at Jumeirah Golf Estates’ Earth Course in Dubai, United Arab Emirates (tee times).

 


Died: James R. Hand, former president of the U.S. Golf Association, on Nov. 13. He was 101. Hand, a longtime bank president who lived most of his life in Ossining and Briarcliff Manor, N.Y., served as the USGA’s president in 1984-85. He credited golf – notably that he walked nearly every round, into his 90s – for his longevity.

 



RADIO, TV AND PODCASTS

Grill Room powered by Vertical Groove Golf
The Grill Room took a page out of the history books as 40-somethings Matt Kuchar and Lee Westwood won over the weekend, and Bernhard Langer, 61, claimed the Charles Schwab Cup. Co-hosts Bob Bubka and Jay Randolph Jr. discuss the trend with Morning Read founder Alex Miceli. Feature interview: Suzy Whaley, president of the PGA of America.


Hawk & Rude: Kooch’s coach
In Hawk & Rude, a podcast featuring veteran golf journalists John Hawkins and Jeff Rude, the hosts chat with swing instructor Chris O’Connell, who helped turn Matt Kuchar into one of America’s most consistent players.




FROM THE INDUSTRY

Peter Hill, the chairman and chief executive officer of Billy Casper Golf, has been recognized once again by Golf Inc. magazine as one of the most powerful people in golf. Hill, at No. 6 in the rankings of Golf Inc.’s “Most Powerful People in Golf," marks 14 consecutive years among the top 10 on the list. Billy Casper Golf, which Hill co-founded in 1989 with two partners, including the late Billy Casper, holds nearly 150 properties in 29 states.

 

PGA Golf Club will play host to the inaugural Red, White and You Fairway 5K Run/Walk on Dec. 16, the Port St. Lucie, Fla., club announced. If entrants preregister by Oct. 31, the cost is $25. Proceeds benefit PGA Hope (Helping Our Patriots Everywhere), the main military program of the PGA of America’s charitable foundation.

 

The Washington State Golf Association has retained Buffalo.Agency for marketing and website consultation. The WSGA represents more than 675 clubs and nearly 70,000 golfers statewide and in northern Idaho.

 

Indian Wells Golf Resort’s “Shots in the Night,” which opened Oct. 18 in the California desert, has been honored by Golf Inc. magazine as one of the “Best New Amenities” at public and resort golf facilities. Shots in the Night is open for public play Thursday through Saturday, from sundown until 10 p.m. It features glow golf, putting games, a food truck, music and clubhouse food and drink specials.

 


CALENDAR
November 15-18
Club pros: Assistant PGA Professional Championship

PGA GC (Wanamaker), Port St. Lucie, Fla.

European Tour: DP World Tour Championship

Jumeirah Golf Estates, Dubai, United Arab Emirates

PGA Tour: RSM Classic

Sea Island (Ga.) Resort (Seaside)

LPGA: CME Group Tour Championship

Tiburon GC (Gold), Naples, Fla.

November 16-19
Junior boys/girls: PGA Junior League Championship

Grayhawk Club (Raptor), Scottsdale, Ariz.

November 19-22
Junior boys/girls: Rolex Tournament of Champions

PGA National Resort (Champion and Fazio), Palm Beach Gardens, Fla.


      
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