Golf Buzz

May 21, 2014 - 3:33pm
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Jack Nicklaus
Jack Nicklaus has been known to make the game look easy. But this was just ridiculous.

BENTON HARBOR, Mich. -- The Senior PGA Championship presented by KitchenAid takes place this week at Harbor Shores.

Harbor Shores also hosted the 2012 Senior PGA Championship, which was won by England's Roger Chapman.

It usually takes a lot of time for a course to generate notable moments in its history. That isn't the case with Harbor Shores.

RELATED: What's it like to play Harbor Shores? | Senior PGA Champ. coverage

This course was put on the map the day it officially opened, July 10, 2010, thanks to its designer Jack Nicklaus.

As part of the grand opening, Nicklaus was joined by Arnold Palmer, Tom Watson and Johnny Miller to play 18 holes.

When the group reached the par-5 10th hole, something unfolded that you couldn't make up.

The 10th green at Harbor Shores is one of the most undulating on the course -- which is saying something because a lot of the greens here are of the hit-and-hope variety: hit it and hope it finishes somewhere reasonably close to the hole.

On opening day, Miller found his third shot on the lower level of the green, with the pin placement up a hill in the back, middle portion of the green, 102 feet away with the kinds of twists and turns you only expect to see on a roller coaster.

At first, Miller contemplated using a wedge, arguing it was the only wat to get close to the hole. Nicklaus insisted the ball could be putted up there.

With that, Nicklaus walked down to where Miller was, dropped a golf ball, took a quick look at the hole and proceeded to do this:




So, this week when you see players struggling for a three-putt on the 10th green at Harbor Shores, just remember it's not as easy as Nicklaus made it look.

Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair.


May 21, 2014 - 10:43am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Notah Begay
Getty Images
After a one-month absence from his analyst duties at Golf Channel to recover from a heart attack, Notah Begay will be back to work next week for the NCAA Division I men's golf championship.

After suffering a heart attack in April, Notah Begay is ready to return to his analyst role at Golf Channel.

In a statement released Wednesday morning, Golf Channel announced that after a month's absence while recovering from his heart attack, Begay will rejoin the network's broadcast team next week for the NCAA Division I Men's Golf Championships (Monday, May 26 through Wednesday, May 28).

RELATED: Golf Channel analyst recovering from heart attack | NCAA golf coverage

Begay will also serve as an analyst for Golf Central's news coverage surrounding the tournament.

"I'm feeling great and completely ready to get back to Golf Channel and NBC to do what I love best," he said. "The whole experience was a bit surreal, but it's given me a new perspective on my health and I feel even more motivated to use my foundation to help educate kids about their own health and make a positive difference in their lives."

Begay suffered his heart attack on April 24, caused by what doctors at Methodist Hospital in Dallas diagnosed as a 100 percent blockage of his right coronary artery.

The Golf Channel statement said that a stent was inserted to unblock the artery and, at the time, his prognosis for a full recovery was very good. Begay has a history of heart disease in his family, the statement said, and says he's looking forward to expanding his NB3 Foundation's mission to address health and wellness issues among Native American youth, as well as working more closely with the American Heart Association.

Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair.


May 21, 2014 - 9:27am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Rory McIlroy, engagement, Caroline Wozniaki
USA Today Sports Images
In a statement released through his management firm on Wednesday, Rory McIlroy announced that he has called off his engagement to tennis star Caroline Wozniaki.

Rory McIlroy has called off his engagement to tennis star Caroline Wozniaki.

In a statement released by his management firm on Wednesday, McIlroy explained he, "wasn't ready for all that marriage entails."

McIlroy, 25, proposed to the 23-year-old Wozniaki on New Year's Eve in Sydney, Australia, after many British tabloids reported the two had split.

WATCH: Bryan Brothers glow-in-the-dark trick shots

"There is no right way to end a relationship that has been so important to two people," McIlroy said in the statement as he prepares for BMW PGA Championship in England, the European Tour's flagship event.

"The wedding invitations issued at the weekend made me realize that I wasn't ready for all that marriage entails.

"I wish Caroline all the happiness she deserves and thank her for the great times we've had. I will not be saying anything more about our relationship in any setting."

Follow T.J. Auclair on Twitter, @tjauclair.


Bryan Brothers glow in the dark trick shots
Bryan Brothers via Youtube
Night time is no problem for trick shot artists George and Wesley Bryan.

We're starting to run out of superlatives to describe all the trick shots that brothers George and Wesley Bryan have brought us via YouTube over the past couple of months. Fortunately, the brothers haven't run out of creative ideas.

Their latest video came out this afternoon – except that it was filmed at night. And if you're wondering how to hit trick shots at night, we have an answer – Glow in the Dark!

Yes, the Bryan brothers are outfitted with special gear that lights up the night to bring us some of their favorite tricks. And with the amazing visual effects and cool background music, it makes for quite a spectacle.

So, enough said. Take a look for yourself:




Benson Park
Omaha Parks and Recreation
Omaha has eight municipal courses, including Benson Park.

The Omaha, Neb., Parks and Recreation Department has an outstanding idea for growing their junior golf program this summer: Let kids 14 and under play free on the city's four nine-hole courses during weekdays.

Starting May 27, junior golfers ages 14 and under will be able to play for free Monday through Thursday at all city-operated nine-hole courses. And at Westwood Golf Course, the city will provide free balls and tees as well.

GET GOLF READY: PGA of America's programs for junior golfers

For free golf, each child must attend a half-hour junior golf player certification program, which will go over golf fundamentals, rules and safety. After that, they will receive a junior player's card which will allow them to play all they like.

Omaha has eight municipal course, of which four are participating in the program. Spring Lake is the longest of the four, a par-33 measuring 1,873 yards from the back tees. That includes a unique "road hole," requiring golfers to hit over the street to an elevated green near the clubhouse.

2015 DRIVE, CHIP AND PUTT CHAMPIONSHIP: Register now for local qualifiers

The other three courses are classic par-3s. In addition to Westwood, Steve Hogan is one of the oldest courses in the state of Nebraska, measuring 1,337 yards. Warren Swigart opened in 1959 and measures 1,239 yards.

Free golf for juniors this summer is just one of the programs available to Omaha residents. For more information, check out the Junior Golf Club of Omaha website.

Outeniqua golf course
Fancourt Resort/Twitter
A South African golf course flagstick was struck by lightning Monday night.

Why it's important to pay attention to thunderstorm warnings: Here's visual proof of what lightning can do on a golf course.

The Fancourt resort in George, South Africa, posted a photo Tuesday of the No. 1 green on its Gary Player-designed Outeniqua course. Apparently the lightning bolt went right down the flagstick and into the surface of the green:





Thankfully, it happened overnight so no one was on the course. But you rarely think of a fiberglass flagstick as being the target of lightning -- although there's a metal base that sits in the cup.

Lee Trevino was struck by lightning while playing in the Western Open near Chicago in 1975. And according to a 2013 study by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administation, eight people in the United States have been killed by lightning strikes while playing golf since 2006.