The success of Royal Portrush, Xander Schauffele and the driver controversy, are the authorities planning to do something about the ball in the autumn and why you can’t say anything bad about Memphis. All that and more in episode 97 of State of the Game.
State of the Game was one of the first and is still considered one of the best golf podcasts in the world. Hosted by respected blogger and Golf Channel regular Geoff Shackelford, former European Tour player turned course architect Mike Clayton and long time golf writer Rod Morri this is ‘the golf podcast that talks about stuff that matters.’
There is much excitement among architecture types about next week’s Irish Open at the famed Lahinch in County Clare. Tournament host Paul McGinley joins Episode 96 of the show to explain how he plans to take the event back to the future making the on-site experience one that far exceeds watching on TV. The 2014 Ryder Cup captain says tournament goers can expect a festival atmosphere in the tiny town of Lahinch as the entire week will be a celebration of the game.
As the Old Course is to Scotland so Pebble Beach is to America and a US Open on the Monterey Peninsula is something a bit special. Join Pebble beach devotee Geoff Shackelford alongside Mike Clayton and Rod Morri for a breakdown of what role the course might play at this week’s 119th US Open as well as some discussion on the Hank Haney controversy from last weeks US Women’s Open and what the fallout might meaning the bigger picture.
It always promised to be an interesting experiment and it was. The inaugural State of the Game Golf Course Study Tour to Barnbougle Dunes earlier this month had a bit of everything but, as expected, the highlight was the chance to sit down with Mike Clayton for an ‘unplugged’ podcast/Q&A session. Clayton touches on everything from how the Barnbougle project got off the ground to stories from the European Tour from the 80’s and 90’s. Its everything you’d expect it to be and more and if you missed out on this one hopefully this episode helps convince you what a mistake you made and to come along for the next one!
With the PGA Championship set to return to the Bethpage Black course in New York next week there will be plenty of discussion about course design AW Tillinghast. While known mostly as a course architect, Tillinghast had many more strings to his bow including a well known – though little understood – tour of the US during the depression years to advise courses on more financially sustainable management practises. What is less known is the extensive records he kept of that period and PGA Historian Bob Denney joins Geoff Shackelford, Mike Clayton and Rod Morri on Episode 93 to delve into the life and times of one of the game’s great contributors.
Denis Pugh is a 40 year overnight success story. In his early years as a coach his theories were often scorned but having worked with more than 200 touring professionals – including Colin Montgomerie, our own Mike Clayton and of course the reigning Open Champion Francesco Molinari – his thirst for knowledge and communication skills have been proven. Denis talks everything from what it takes to succeed at the top level in the modern game to how he helped Molinari go from merely very good to truly elite.
Tiger Woods winning his fifth green jacket was something special but The Masters is about so much more than just the 72 holes each year. Join Geoff Shackelford, Mike Clayton join Rod Morri as they break down what the 2019 Masters means in the bigger picture, from changes to the course (in particular the fifth hole) to media, technology and the role of the Augusta National Women’s Amateur. Oh, and there’s mention of the possibility that distance might be an issue as well.
Is golf going into meltdown or are we just having a rough patch because of the new rules? Geoff Shackelford, Mike Clayton and Rod Morri delve into the seemingly weekly rules snafus in the professional game while also touching on the ‘enhanced’ rough we can expect at the 2021 Open at St Andrews and what might happen if the pro game made its own rules.
The storm over the European Tour’s visit to Saudi Arabia is only intensifying but it’s not the only controversy bubbling in golf. There is still lots of disquiet over the penalising of Hao Tong Li in Dubai as well as discussion about Lucas Herbert’s explanation of his actions in removing loose impediments with his club in wasteland in the same event. It’s not all bad news though, with Geoff Shackelford believing changes to the 5th hole at Augusta National made public this week suggesting the course may be moving back in the right direction.