I’m a bit hammered this morning. Certainly a case of U.S. Open hangover. I had expected to be getting ready to watch a Monday playoff today, the day after Sunday’s final U.S. Open round. Dustin Johnson’s stunning and heartbreaking 3-putt on the final hole nixed that great idea. Boy I feel bad for the guy. He looked like he’d seen a ghost after that 3-putt. I probably would have thrown up after that, if I was in that situation. Hell, I would have probably thrown up before each putt…
Hats off to Jordan Spieth for putting the winning number up on the board and putting the pressure on DJ to tie him. The Spieth story is becoming legendary in a very short period of time. It is quite a time in golf, with Tiger seemingly on the way out and Spieth and McIlory taking over.
Chambers Bay quickly became a very polarizing topic of discussion on golf TV, interwebs, and socials. Having been to Chambers Bay myself, and playing dozens of rounds of golf in Scotland, I’m a fan of hard, fast, brown golf. So I get what course architect Robert Trent Jones II was going after. The course’s location though, meant not just hard conditions, but Poa annua grass on the greens. We deal with Poa here in Salt Lake too. It grows faster than other grasses and has tougher leaves. So when a green isn’t 100% Poa (like Pebble Beach), it gets bumpy. It can be very frustrating to putt on greens like that and many pros voiced their displeasure with the bumps, along with their displeasure of the USGA setup. Fans see a brown course and think it is dead. They expect golf to be like Augusta National and the Masters Tournament. In reality, almost no courses have that kind of budget and with water as short as it is becoming, minimalist brown golf is the future. Plus, it is more fun in my opinion.
Chambers Bay – Click for more…
I engaged (perhaps still) in some great debates on my Twitter and Facebook pages with friends about the setup and conditions. It seems, almost like the fans or haters of Tiger Woods, that people either loved the course or hated it.
Gary Player had some pretty harsh commentary about Chambers Bay. I was quite surprised he called out RTJ like he did. Then again, he’s a golf course architect and RTJ is a competitor who just had his course featured in the U.S. Open. So I take his commentary in that context a bit:
On Sunday the greens looked to be rolling quite well. Spieth made an incredible long-range putt for birdie on the 16th which had perfect speed and dropped in on the side of the hole. No bumps there. DJ’s 3-putts all rolled nicely, unfortunately for him the first two didn’t roll nicely into the hole.
Well if the golf media wasn’t already in a Spiethgasm, they will be now. Be ready for the Spieth-slam talk, and for the ever popular “will Spieth break Jack’s major championship record?” drivel. That of course between the “hottest women in golf” and “hot wives and girlfriends” photo gallery garbage.
How can you not have a Spiethgasm though? This 21 year old kid is doing something special, and I’m glad I’m here to witness it. What’s more is he’s not an overpowering player like Tiger Woods was (yeah I said was). He’s not long, but he’s long enough. There are really no holes in his game. No weaknesses I can see. The next few years are going to be a joy to watch.
I felt really bad for DJ after the 3-putt. The look on his face was unreal. He was melting. I melted too. He’s had many chances to close out majors. Undoubtedly he has the game. He needs to overcome the pressure and mental aspects of winning the big ones and he’ll get it done.
What’s wrong with Tiger Woods? A lot apparently. After rounds of 80 (+10) and 76 (+6) he went home early. I tuned in just in time Friday to watch him DUFF a 3-wood. It was a horrid shot, so bad that I recorded it and watched it several times in disbelief. There were so many things wrong with that particular swing that it looked like a 15 handicapper.
There are many theories as to what Tiger’s problem is. A new one discussed in my golf group is his possible fear that his will be the biggest fall from the top in sports history. I don’t know what the problem is, and it is likely a combination of many many things. Physically he looks fine, which leaves the only possible solutions within the 5-inch course between his ears.
I watched Jason Day collapse on the 18th hole Saturday, a result of vertigo. Man that’s terrible and I felt for the guy. He did manage to finish the tournament but what a story it would have been had he won the tournament. A valiant effort by Day.
Rory McIlory is no Tiger Woods. Tiger was much more consistent when in his best years. Rory is super-streaky. When he’s hot, nobody can beat him. When not, he can miss cuts. McIlory showed some life in the tournament, but in the end was not a factor. No worries about his game. That’s the way he rolls.
Wow tough deal for Branden Grace (also known as “Branden Gracen” on the Fox broadcast). Standing on the 16th tee he was at -5, tied with Spieth, two shots ahead of the nearest competitors. One swing later his 3-wood goes out of bounds and kills his chances of winning. Brutal.
Fox Sports Coverage
Funny how so many people hated the Fox Sports coverage of the Open, even before they saw it. It seems those same people hated the course before they saw it in action as well. I didn’t expect the Fox broadcast to be perfect and it certainly was not. There were dozens of instances of bad camera work, shaky commentary, and technical issues.
There was a little too much talking, almost like baseball announcers who think they have to fill up all the dead space with sound. Many complain(ed) that all Greg Norman does is talk about himself. Seemed like Greg was fine to me and not this self centered personality they made him out to be.
What I did like was the drone coverage, since I too build and fly drones, mostly for flying over golf courses and shooting video and photos.
Many complained about not seeing the shots, and I agree. Fox had it tough though, having to break themselves in at such a difficult venue.
Overall I’d give Fox a C grade and I do expect they’ll analyze what they did, listen to the critics, and try to improve their product.
In the end the 2015 U.S. Open was exciting, controversial with regards to course setup like EVERY U.S. Open is, and produced a stellar leader board of the world’s best golfers. The USGA got what they wanted, a handful of players under par and a test that filtered out all but one of the top two players in the world as its champion.
I’ve said many times I’ll never forgive my father for introducing me to the wonderful game of golf…
Yesterday for perhaps the 20th year in a row my dad and I teamed up at his club’s Father’s Day Father/Son tournament, an event we’ve won many times. Yesterday we had just about everything clicking. I was bombing drives and hitting great approaches while his short game and putting was in the zone. I made a couple of bombs for birdie and he drained about eight mid-range ones.
At the end of the day we produced 10 birdies in the scramble format over 18 holes and won by FOUR shots!
What a fun Father’s Day gift! Champions!
These Imperial Headwear Coolcore hats are undoubtedly the coolest hats in the world:
Coolest hats in the world? Absolutely – Coolcore by Imperial Headwear
Love at first sight. Still awaiting delivery on these and will post a full review of the Imperial Coolcore soon.
For now you can check out the press release and description of these golf hats below:
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Bonneville Golf Course – Aerial Photo by Tony Korologos
While I was playing a gross match in my men’s league Tiger shot 80 at the U.S. Open. I beat him by five shots today… Yes yes I’ll surely catch grief about how the courses we played are different. That is true. Tiger played a par-70 course and I played a par-72 course… 🙂
In all seriousness I have but a few comments about my gross match, which I lost. I don’t feel bad really. I was killing the ball today. Between the super hot conditions and hitting it pure, I was bombing shots way over the green. One uphill shot of 112 I hit my sand wedge 30 yards long, and no I didn’t blade it. On one hole I was 260 out and hit a hybrid over the universe. It must have gone 290.
The match today was between two players of almost exact same handicaps, so it should have been tight and it was. My crappy short game was to blame for losing a couple of holes and not winning a couple of others, but I still managed a 75. My opponent somehow did a Houdini impersonation, making pars from situations I would have guaranteed I’d make bogey.
The match was never more than one-up or one-down for the two of us all day, and the last four holes were all square. On the final hole I pulled my approach from 109 to a hillside left of the green, short-sided. I’m not sure even Phil Mickelson could have saved par from there, and I certainly did not. My opponent had an easy two-putt to win the match on the 18th hole.
I could be mad but I’m not. My achilles heel, short game, was the reason I didn’t win. Until I fix that, this is about as good as it is going to be.
Hitting those solid shots felt good, despite the loss.
You know what’s great about having a blog? Being able to write whatever words I want. Today’s word is douche. The photo below is a perfect representation of what a douche does on the golf course.
I’m guessing this is the same guy that turned around yelled a bunch of F-bombs back at us when we yelled ahead, asking him to take less that 27 minutes reading one putt…