It was exactly eight years ago today we released Episode One of ‘The golf podcast that talks about stuff that matters’ and 100 shows later has anything really changed in the game? The answer – as always – is both yes and no. There are dozens more golf podcast to choose from and a movement of apparently ‘fan media’ but the ball still goes too far, lots of players still don’t ‘get it’ and Mike Clayton is still – despite what Mguel Angel Jimenez might say – the most interesting man in golf (as well as being among its greatest contributors). Episode 100 is not a look back show but if you’re in the market for an interesting experiment head to the back catalogue and have a listen to that first episode and you’ll hear many of the same themes resonate in the game in 2020.
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.’
Geoff Shackelford, Mike Clayton and host Rod Morri delve into recent happenings in the world of golf and analyse what it means for the bigger picture. From the distance debate (of course) and changes in the PGA Tour schedule to whether a $15 million payday is off putting and is the LPGA playing courses that are too easy? All that comes under the microscope as well as Brandel Chamblee’s surprise switch of position back to advocating for bifurcation of the professional and amateur game.
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.
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.