Nicklaus: Muirfield could host PGA if major moved

By Nick MentaMay 30, 2017, 9:41 pm

DUBLIN, Ohio – If the PGA of America decides to move the PGA Championship to May, Jack Nicklaus is potentially willing to offer up Muirfield Village as a major venue.

Nicklaus said Tuesday in his annual news conference that he’s spoken with PGA of America CEO Pete Bevacqua and PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan about how a potential schedule shakeup would impact the Memorial.

“We just finished having a meeting [with Monahan],” Nicklaus said. “I’ve met with the PGA of America on this. And I’ve said, ‘If you wish to have us be part of a solution, rather than part of the problem, we’re happy to work with you to do that.’”

Should the Tour and the PGA of America come to an agreement that would move the year’s current final major between the Masters and the U.S. Open, Nicklaus believes that would only be a boon for his own tournament, which in his mind would serve as the marquee event between future years’ second and third majors.

The potential of moving the PGA Championship gained momentum last summer when golf’s re-entry into the Summer Olympics led to the Tour reorganizing its schedule and the PGA to move ahead of the Games, away from its standard position in the middle of August.

Memorial Tournament: Articles, photos and videos

The Tour encounter Olympic scheduling issues again in 2020 (and every four years thereafter), but the Olympics’ impact on the PGA Championship would be mitigated with a move to May.

In the meantime, Nicklaus is positioning himself as a willing facilitator in a potential deal.

“We’ve talked about Olympic years. The PGA Championship could come to Muirfield,” Nicklaus said. “That would be fine to me, to help them out. As I say, try to help if there’s a way.”

If Muirfield were to host a future PGA, that would necessitate either a temporary change of venue for the Memorial or, as Nicklaus brought up himself, “a year off.”

“If we took a year off the Memorial Tournament, I’m not sure I’d want to do that or not. I’m not sure that’s what we want for our brand, our tournament. But whatever is best for the game of golf and however it works, I’m more than happy to about it and try to do it.”

Pressed on the issue of a PGA Championship at Muirfield, Nicklaus clarified, “I said we would consider it.” 

In general, the five-time PGA champion talked up the benefits of a May PGA and Labor Day end to the PGA Tour season, citing the Tour’s current year-end challenges.

“The ratings on the Tour Championship have been dismal, right? You guys would know better than I,” Nicklaus said. “But they have been dismal. … To compete against college and pro football, it’s very difficult to do.”

He went on to suggest that some of the “weaker” summer tournaments might even welcome a change.

“Those tournaments might ask to be relieved, might want to be relieved of the burden they have of being played in the middle of the season from a purse standpoint so they could move into the fall” he said.

“I think Jay has got a really tough problem. He does not have a contractual problem to move the FedExCup earlier. He just thinks it’s right for the Tour to move in and finish up like the week before Labor Day, which is probably when they would try to finish. To do that, he’s got problems with a lot of other … he’s got many moving parts.”

Bradley, wife welcome baby boy, already rocking Patriots gear

By Grill Room TeamNovember 20, 2017, 6:40 pm

Keegan Bradley and his wife Jillian announced on social media that they welcomed a baby boy, Logan James Bradley, to the world last week.

The Bradleys both posted photos on Instagram over the weekend, introducing their healthy newborn baby, who was (not-surprisingly) already decked out in head-to-toe New England Patriots gear.

Bradley, 31, grew up in New England and is not shy about showing his support for the area's sports teams.

Logan James Bradley 11/13/17 He’s changed @jillian_bradley and my life forever. We couldn’t be happier #gopats #dab

A post shared by Keegan Bradley (@keeganbradley1) on

A big congratulations is in order for the new parents.

And all you other adorable kids of PGA Tour golfers, you've officially been put on notice. You've got some new competition.

Country music star Owen to play in event

By Will GrayNovember 20, 2017, 6:19 pm

Country music star and avid amateur golfer Jake Owen has accepted a sponsor invitation to play in the 2018 Nashville Golf Open on the Tour.

Owen, 36, has sold millions of albums while becoming one of the top male singers in the country genre. He has also been frequently spotted on the links, teeing it up last week alongside host Davis Love III in the RSM Classic pro-am and participating each of the last three years as the celebrity partner for Jordan Spieth at the AT&T Pebble Beach Pro-Am.

Owen will now try his hand in competition against some of the game's rising stars at the May 24-27 event, held in his hometown and benefitting the charitable foundation of PGA Tour pro Brandt Snedeker.

"I am truly honored to have this opportunity to play golf with guys whose work ethic I admire so much, like my buddy Brandt Snedeker," Owen said in a release. "I know how hard everyone works to get to play in these ( Tour) tournaments. I'm really grateful, and I can't wait for this week in May 2018 to get here."

Owen will be following in the footsteps of NBA superstar Steph Curry, who played on a sponsor invite earlier this year at the's Ellie Mae Classic and, while missing the cut, largely exceeded expectations. Curry is currently listed as a 0.8 handicap, while Owen played at Pebble Beach in February as a 3 handicap.

Like Curry, Owen will play via an "unrestricted" sponsor invite and will retain his amateur status.

Jeremy Roenick uses golf clubs to catch rattlesnake

By Jason CrookNovember 20, 2017, 6:00 pm

Jeremy Roenick has never seemed to be afraid of much, whether it was another guy breaking his jaw on the hockey rink or an alligator interrupting his golf game.

The retired American hockey legend who currently works as an NBC Sports analyst was at it again over the weekend, coming across a rattlesnake in Arizona and just casually using a couple of golf clubs to catch it before grabbing it with his bare hands and showing it off for the camera.

The person recording can be heard calling Roenick "psycho" and "nuts" several times before the snake is thrown off the property.

That person is not wrong.

What's in the bag: RSM Classic winner Cook

By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 20, 2017, 3:52 pm

PGA Tour rookie Austin Cook earned his first Tour title at the RSM Classic. Take a look inside his bag.

Driver: Ping G400 (8.5 degrees adjusted to 9.2), with Fujikura Speeder Evolution 661X shaft

Fairway wood: Ping G400 (13 degrees), with Fujikura Motore VC 7.0 shaft

Hybrids: Ping G400 (19, 22 degrees), with Matrix Altus Red X shafts

Irons: Ping S55 (5-PW), with KBS Tour S shafts

Wedges: Ping Glide 2.0 (50, 56, 60) with True Temper Dynamic Gold S400 shafts

Putter: Ping Sigma G Tyne

Ball: Titleist Pro V1