August 6, 2012 - 9:14pm
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John Holmes
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Pete Dye
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The daunting Ocean Course at Kiawah Island has been striking fear into the world’s top players since it was announced as the host venue for this week’s PGA Championship. But all the consternation from the tour pros is music to the ears of Pete Dye, the renowned course architect who conjured it up out of the dunes and linksland along the wild South Carolina coast.

“Hell, I can't think of anything better” than the game’s best players complaining about playing from the back tees while the general public turns out in droves to enjoy the course from the white tees, Dye told Tom Mackin of Golf Magazine last week.

The irascible Dye also discussed his plans for retirement, golf’s global future, which of his courses he thinks could host a major, what he would do if he was in charge of the making the rules, and more.

To read the full interview, click here.

August 6, 2012 - 8:14pm
Posted by:
John Kim
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Kiawah's Ocean Course
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The sand areas around the course will be treated as "natural sandy areas" and not bunkers.

 

Standing at the airport carousel, I see my old friend Mark Wilson - former Rules Chairman for the PGA of America and still on the rules committee. After an initial greeting, I bring up (and confirm) - "No bunkers at the Ocean Course."
 
"No bunkers at the Ocean Course," he nodded. And then he continued.
 
"You know we (the PGA of America) did not have bunkers here in 1991 during the Ryder Cup - nor at the 2005 PGA Professional National Championship nor the 2007 Senior PGA Championship. That rule is a product of architecture, not a reaction to any event that occured previously."
 
Of course, that was the infamous bunker at Whistling Straits that cost Dustin Johnson a spot in the playoff, ultimately won by Martin Kaymer.
 
This means players will be able to ground a club, remove a obstruction or take a practice swing in these areas. There will be plenty fescue, ponds, marshes, waste areas and even alligators to avoid - but bunkers will not be a problem. 
August 4, 2012 - 11:34pm
Posted by:
John Holmes
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Did you play golf on Saturday? President Obama did – in fact, he celebrated his 51st birthday with a round of golf with what the Associated Press called "a small group of friends and aides that included White House chef Sam Kass, a frequent golf partner."

There are plenty of different opinions about Obama out there, but none of us can argue one thing – it's good for the game when the president, whoever he is, is a golfer.

August 4, 2012 - 8:11pm
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John Kim
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A tweet from the PGA Tour: "Due to a threat of inclement weather, players will go off split tees at 8 a.m. ET on Sunday in final round of the Bridgestone Invitational."

August 4, 2012 - 12:40pm
Posted by:
John Kim
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LoudMouth Golf at the Olympics
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Loudmouth Golf outfitted the United States beach volleyball team of Todd Rogers and Phil Dalhausser.

About six years ago, I was walking through the PGA Merchandise Show in Orlando and came across an apparel booth that certainly stood out.  I vividly recall telling the guys in the booth, "Your clothes are obnoxious, your music is too loud and I'd never wear that...I bet you guys make millions." We become fast friends. 

Two years later, I see my new friends at Loudmouth Golf at the PGA Championship - and they are walking with their newest endorser at the time - John Daly.  I invite them to meet some friends of mine in the media center.  Everyone points and laughs...but then later asks me if I can help them get a discount on some of their pants. 

Two years after that, I turn on the Winter Olympics and they have outfitted the Norwegian Curling team.  The worldwide demand for their pants shoot up so dramatically, they have some serious problems meeting the demand for a few months. (A great problem to have mind you, but nevertheless, a probelm.)

This year, they put their marketing power behind the 2008 gold medal winning beach volleyball team Todd Rogers and Phil Dalhausser. Todd and Phil had a good run but were elimnated earlier today from medal contention. So does this mean a bad week for Loudmouth Golf? Um, quite the contrary.  

Read about their Olympic week here.

August 3, 2012 - 5:52pm
Posted by:
John Holmes
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2012 PGA Championship logo

The tee times and pairings for the first two rounds of the PGA Championship were released Friday afternoon. You can see them here in a .pdf file.

Here are some of the most prominent pairings, and some off-the-top-of-my-head thoughts:

Tiger Woods, Keegan Bradley and Martin Kaymer (8:30 a.m./1:40 p.m.)
Two players who broke through in the PGA Championship earlier than anyone ever thought will play with the greatest major championship performer of the modern era, and perhaps of all time.

Bubba Watson, Webb Simpson and Ernie Els (1:20 p.m./8:10 a.m.)
Traditionally, the PGA Championship assembles the winners of the year’s first three majors into one marquee group. Els is on a roll, but Watson and Simpson are both trying to deal with the demands of parenthood.

Padraig Harrington, Davis Love III and Phil Mickelson (1:40 p.m./8:30 a.m. Thursday)
Harrington is pushing hard to reclaim a spot on the European Ryder Cup team, but Love will be focused on Mickelson, who’s hanging near the bottom of the list for guaranteed spots on the American team thanks to an inconsistent season.  

Dustin Johnson, Rory McIlroy and Jim Furyk (8:10 a.m./1:20 p.m.)
Furyk is on the comeback after a somewhat disappointing season so far, while Johnson is on the comeback from a season-wrecking injury and McIlroy is on the comeback from a year of inconsistent play. Johnson averages 305 yards off the tee, while McIlroy averages 304. Furyk, meanwhile, averages 279, so he’ll likely be hitting first into almost every green. 

Lee Westwood, Angel Cabrera and Bill Haas (8:50 a.m./2:00 p.m.)
Westwood’s long quest for a first major title finds him paired with the efficient Haas and the all-or-nothing Cabrera.

Hunter Mahan, Adam Scott and Sergio Garcia (1:10 p.m./8:00 a.m.)
Scott and Garcia can compare their major war wounds, while Mahan can see if he can step up to the next level with a breakthrough major victory.