Justin Rose - 2013 US Open Champion

The Champion Wow - what a brutal test of golf and mental toughness that was! Merion more than held her own and I hope the USGA brings this event back to Philadelphia soon. Congrats to Justin Rose on his first major championship and tough luck to Phil Mickelson who has now finished as a runner up on six occasions in the US Open Championship.

I thoroughly enjoyed watching these golfers deal with the challenge of an incredibly difficult golf course. But I think I enjoyed watching this swing from the practice tee at Merion a little more...

Any thoughts? Whose swing would you like to emulate?

Cannot wait for Muirfield and the Open Championship next month.

Anchors Away!

While I am sure you have read most of what has been written on the USGA and R&A proposed ban on anchored putting I wanted to briefly share my take with you:

Professional Golf

I'm sure the primary objective of the two governing bodies was to eliminate anchoring from the major tours and I emphatically agree. I think the best golfers should be capable of freely swinging the club with their hands and arms.

Bifurcation and Growing the Game

Bifurcation means the splitting of a main body into two parts - and that's exactly what needs to be done with the rules of golf. There may be another sport, but I cannot think of one  where the 'amateur' body governs the 'professional' body. From college football to baseball, there are different rules for the pros than the amateurs and that's the way it should be. The governing bodies should be growing the game and this ruling is going to eliminate so many ailing golfers from competing at any level or even playing the game. In 2016 there are going to be thousands of golfers who will turn down an invitation to their Member-Guest event due to the fact that they are simply incapable of putting the ball. I've seen golfers who twitch anchored putters - never mind a putter that's not attached - in 2016 they're out of golf! Come up with a ruling for professional golf and USGA/R&A events and let the rest of us just enjoy the game.


If you thought you had seen some strange putters and putting styles, you ain't seen nothing yet! As with anything, golfers who simply cannot putt will find ways to the job done in unique and quirky ways by the time 2016 rolls around. Ever seen anyone putt with both arms wrapped around the putter twice?

I like the idea of changing the ruling for the big guys, but don't punish everybody in order to achieve your goal...

The End.

Slow the Golf Ball Down - It Goes Way Too Far!

Phil and Tiger (Cannon/Getty)I watched the broadcast from Quail Hollow yesterday and was shocked at what I saw; these golfers were playing some of the hardest holes I have ever seen with 9-irons and wedges for their approaches.  I have been to this event and the 'Green Mile' holes are as they have been promoted - BRUTAL!  The leaders made them look a little silly (even though none of them managed to hit the 17th green!):

  • O'Hair had 154 yds. left in to the 480 yard 16th and the hole played slightly into the wind! Nine iron!
  • Number 17 played 225 yds. to the back pin and into a light wind.  Now I comprehend that the green was rock hard and with water lurking over the green and a back pin the optimal spot was to leave the ball a little short, but Lucas Glover hit a 5-iron!  That is ridiculous!
  • The uphill closing hole measures 478 yds. and played slightly down breeze.  Tiger Woods hit 3-wood, 9-iron to pin high! (Tiger also drove the 14th green (345yds.) with his 3-wood)  Bubba Watson had a flip wedge in from 135 yds. after hitting what looked like an easy cut driver!  Number 18 is the hardest hole I think I have ever seen and to play it with a fairway metal and a short iron is just wrong.
  • Bubba Watson hit a tournament long drive of 374 yards!  I know the guy is long but that is obscene.

I firmly believe that the USGA and RnA has dropped the ball (pun intended) on this matter and something needs to be done soon.  Gone are the days of upper echelon golfers hitting a 3-iron into a par four unless weather conditions exist.  Without changing the ball the only way that could be done would be to have par fours of over 530 yards and golf courses that measure 8,000 yards!  Whether it means changing the size of the ball, it's dimples, materials or construction, something needs to be done.

For more detailed quotes and information on this topic please link to http://www.geoffshackelford.com/the-list/

Things to ponder:

  • Zach Johnson looked like a regular weekend warrior out there on the 2nd hole; a little cart path, a little pine, a three putt, hello triple!
  • Sean O'Hair's mental toughness will carry him far.  Even though he finished bogey, bogey I never thought he looked afraid.
  • Well done to Bubba Watson!  He is more of what the PGA Tour needs and no that new hair-do is not a mullet.
  • Tiger needs to lose the driver and hit 3-wood on every hole.  The driver and 3-wood swings look so different.
  • How about David Feherty calling Tiger a loser!?  Tiger smiled, but I don't think we'll be seeing Feherty do the Tiger post-round interviews any longer.
  • Brandel Chamblee made the one of the dumbest statement of the year following the broadcast on the Golf Channel. In referring to Tiger's position at the top of his backswing;  "He needs to do something, because you cannot play golf from there!"  I'd like to not play like that.
  • The so-called 5th major is at TPC Sawgrass this week and it is my opinion that any golf course where every player in the field can hit 9 iron or less into more than half the holes cannot possibly be a major. (#1,2,4,6,9,10,11,12,16 and 17)