Simpson: Drivers are bigger issue than long putters

By Associated PressOctober 22, 2012, 10:18 pm

SOUTHAMPTON, Bermuda – U.S. Open champion Webb Simpson isn't worried about a potential rule change that would ban long putters, and he's already practicing with a conventional putter.

That doesn't mean he agrees with a change, saying Monday that larger drivers have affected golf far more than putters anchored to the body.

The U.S. Golf Association and Royal & Ancient Golf Club are discussing a possible change to the rules of golf that would keep players from anchoring the putter to their body, such as the belly or the chest for the broom-style putters.

Three of the last five major champions have anchored their putters – Simpson, British Open champion Ernie Els and PGA champion Keegan Bradley. Simpson and Bradley are at Port Royal for the PGA Grand Slam of Golf, a 36-hole exhibition for the four major winners which starts Tuesday. Bradley is filling in for PGA champion Rory McIlroy.

''I'm friends with a lot of the R&A guys and the USGA guys. It's nothing personal, and I know they are trying to do it for the betterment of the game,'' Simpson said. ''But I don't think it's a good decision.''

Simpson said the PGA Tour's new putting statistic, known as ''strokes gained,'' shows no discernible advantage for players using long putters.

''If the USGA bans it, I think it's going to be a whole other ballgame if the PGA Tour bans it,'' Simpson said. ''It's going to be tough if they do ban it. It's going to be tough for a lot of people. Not players, I think it's going to be tough for the committees to really have their stance on it. If you look at the facts, last year there was no one in the top 20 of strokes gained category that anchored a putter.''

''So the argument of, 'It's an advantage,' you have to throw that out there,'' he said. ''There's a bunch of arguments going around, but I haven't heard a good one yet.''

USGA executive director Mike Davis has said he expects to announce a decision by the end of the year, though he has stressed the USGA and R&A have not decided anything yet.

Simpson switched to a belly putter in 2004 and said he felt the club made him more consistent, something he believed would ultimately give him a longer career.

''What I found was that I just became a more consistent putter,'' he said. ''I don't get hot quite as much, I don't get cold quite as much. With the short putter, I was a real streaky putter. The best players in the game, who have had long careers, have been steady players, which is why I switched.

''But I'm not worried about it. I'm ready, and if they do it for next year, I'll be ready.''

If there is a rules change, it likely would not be made until 2016. The Rules of Golf only make permanent changes every four years.

Simpson is more concerned with the rulings on other equipment.

''We all know that the R&A and USGA love to keep golf as original as possible,'' he said. ''But I think with the changes in the grooves, the golf balls, the drivers – you've got a little persimmon head 20 years ago the size of a fist and now a titanium head 460 cc. In 1980, the long drive guy was hitting it 285, and now if you hit it 285, you're one of the shortest guys on the Tour. To me, it's a bigger change to go from that size head to what we play now than the putter.''

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Rose leads halted Indonesian Masters; Snedeker WDs

By Associated PressDecember 15, 2017, 2:04 pm

JAKARTA, Indonesia - Justin Rose held a three-stroke lead at the Indonesian Masters when bad weather stopped play Friday during the second round.

The Englishman, who shot a 10-under 62 on Thursday, had completed 13 holes and was 5 under on the day at the Royale Jakarta Golf Club course.

Kiradech Aphibarnrat (64) was in second place.

Brandt Snedeker withdrew wit on the 11th hole at 2 under for the day after shooting an opening 72.

There was no reason given for his withdrawal, but the American has been affected by a rib-sternum injury for most of the season. Ranked 51st in the world, he flew to Jakarta looking to move inside the top 50 by the end of the year and ensure a spot in next year's Masters.

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 2, Donald Trump

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 1:00 pm

Even away from the White House, President Donald Trump generated plenty of headlines this year.

Trump’s first year in office didn’t dim his enthusiasm for the game, as he made splashy appearances at two big events, tweeted about golf to his more than 44 million followers, teed it up with some of the sport’s biggest stars, including Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy and Lexi Thompson, and fired a few eyebrow-raising scores. Logging more than 75 rounds since his inauguration, the 3-handicap has only bolstered his reputation as the best golfing president, particularly after his alleged 73 with Sen. Lindsey Graham.

None of his appearances created a bigger stir than when he attended the U.S. Women’s Open. Despite protests and calls for the USGA to move its premier women’s event from Trump Bedminster – the president reportedly threatened to sue – his weekend there went off without incident, as Trump watched the action and hosted players in his private box near the 15th green.


Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year


Despite his controversial rhetoric on a variety of national issues, Trump has remained a staunch supporter of women’s golf, and he became the first sitting president to attend the U.S. Women’s Open.

An honorary chairman of the Presidents Cup, Trump also flew to Liberty National for the biennial team event, where he presented the trophy to the U.S. team and dedicated the victory to the hurricane victims in Texas, Florida and Puerto Rico.

In late November, amid tweets about the national anthem, Turkey, Egypt and Time Magazine, Trump announced that he was playing a round in South Florida with Woods and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson.

Yes, that too became a headline, just like everything else Trump did in 2017.


Playing with the pros

Tiger, DJ and Faxon

Article: Video, images from Tiger, DJ's round with Trump

Article: After DJ and Tiger, Trump plays golf with Jack

Rory faces criticism

Article: Rory: Round with Trump about respect for presidency

Article: Rory: Round with Trump not a 'political statement'


President at the Presidents Cup


Video: President Trump makes the rounds at Liberty National

Article: President Trump presents trophy to U.S. team

Article: Stricker: 'Great thrill' to get trophy from Trump


Purported round of 73 with Lindsey Graham

Article: Senator tweets Trump shot 73 in windy, wet conditions

Article: Graham offers details on Trump's round of 73


Cart on the green


Article: Trump appears to drive cart on Bedminster green


Presence and protests at U.S. Women's Open


Article: Trump makes presidential history at Women's Open

Article: Trump supporters, protesters clash near Women's Open

Article: UltraViolet takes protest inside Trump National


Photo gallery: President Trump at the U.S. Women's Open


Trump golf properties

Vandalism

Article: Environmental group vandalizes Trump golf course

Article: Man accused of vandalizing four Trump courses

Finances


Article: Two Trump courses in Scotland losing millions

Article: Eric Trump denies Russia helped fund golf courses

Article: Trump company ordered to pay $5.77M in dues dispute

Reportedly fake TIME covers


Article: Trump clubs display fake Time magazine cover


Trump apologizes for voter-fraud story

Report: Trump's voter fraud claim tied to Langer

Langer: Trump 'apologized' for story mix-up


Pros comment on the president

Article: Players defend Trump at Senior PGA Championship

Article: Trump congratulates Daly; Daly congratulates Trump

Getty Images

Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 15, 2017, 12:30 pm

Spieth, Thomas headline winter break trip to Cabo

By Grill Room TeamDecember 15, 2017, 1:05 am

Justin Thomas and Jordan Spieth. Really good at golf. Really good at vacationing.

With #SB2K18 still months away, Thomas and Spieth headlined a vacation to Cabo San Lucas, and this will shock you but it looks like they had a great time.

Spring break veteran Smylie Kaufman joined the party, as did Thomas' roommate, Tom Lovelady, who continued his shirtless trend.

The gang played all the hits, including shoeless golf in baketball jerseys and late nights with Casamigos tequila.

Image via tom.lovelady on Instagram.

In conclusion, it's still good to be these guys.