Spieth, DJ, Webb tied for lead at Kapalua

By Ryan LavnerJanuary 6, 2014, 2:50 am

Defending champion Dustin Johnson bombed his way past a struggling Zach Johnson on Sunday, but his bid for back-to-back titles likely won’t be the biggest story in the final round in Hawaii. Here’s the skinny on Round 3 at Kapalua: 

The leaderboard: Webb Simpson, Jordan Spieth and Dustin Johnson at -14; Webb Simpson (-12); Gary Woodland, Jason Dufner, Brandt Snedeker and Kevin Streelman at -11.

What it means: Johnson continued to shine on the Plantation Course, where he now has shot in the 60s in 11 of his 18 career rounds here. It would be his third victory in the last 52 weeks. A bigger story, however, would be Spieth, who is trying to become the youngest two-time Tour winner since 1932, and the third youngest ever. At 20 years, 5 months and 10 days, he also would become the youngest champion of the winners-only event, eclipsing Tiger Woods’ record by more than seven months. He’ll play in the final group with Simpson.

Round of the day: Simpson made four birdies in a five-hole stretch on the back nine to shoot 68 and surge into a share of the lead, and he admitted afterward to playing with a “heavy heart” after learning that regular caddie Paul Tesori’s newborn son remains in the intensive-care unit. It’s a new year but the same old form for Simpson, who is looking to build on a run of four consecutive top-7 finishes. He already has a win in the 2013-14 season – his runaway victory in Vegas – and is searching for his fifth career PGA Tour title. 

Best of the rest: Gary Woodland’s bogey-free 67 vaulted him to T-5 on the leaderboard. Brian Gay went 6 under on his opening six holes en route to a record-tying 29 on the front nine. That score matched Mike Weir’s mark from 2002. Gay made an eagle-3 on the fifth hole, but he failed to birdie any of the remaining par 5s and dropped a shot on the par-4 16th. Nonetheless, his 8-under 65 was a nice bounce-back from his Saturday 76, and he now enters the final round six shots behind.

Biggest disappointment: It was not a good day for Zach Johnson, who began the third round with a three-shot lead but now trails three players by two shots. Without his best stuff he was able to stay ahead of the field for much of the day, but he made a mess of the short 14th, the bogey ending a streak of 38 consecutive holes without a dropped shot. Two holes later, Johnson blasted his tee shot right, into the trees, and took a drop for an unplayable lie. After a 74, he was one of only two players (Derek Ernst) who failed to break par on Day 3.

Biggest storyline heading into Monday: Quite simply, can Spieth notch another W? The win in the limited-field event would send Spieth into elite company and further his legend. 

Ogilvy urges distance rollback of ball

By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 8:49 pm

Add Geoff Ogilvy to the chorus of voices calling for a distance rollback of the golf ball.

In an interview before the start of the Emirates Australian Open, Ogilvy said a "time-out" is needed for governing bodies to deal with the issue.

"It's complete nonsense," he said, according to an Australian website. "In my career, it’s gone from 300 yards was a massive hit to you’re a shorter hitter on tour now, legitimately short. It’s changed the way we play great golf courses and that is the crime. It isn’t that the ball goes 400, that’s neither here nor there. It’s the fact the ball going 400 doesn’t makes Augusta work properly, it functions completely wrong.’’

Full-field scores from the Emirates Australian Open

Ogilvy used an example from American baseball to help get his point across to an Australian audience.

“Major League Baseball in America, they use wooden bats, and everywhere else in baseball they use aluminium bats,’’ he said. “And when the major leaguers use aluminium bats they don’t even have to touch it and it completely destroys their stadiums. It’s just comedy.

“That’s kind of what’s happened to us at least with the drivers of these big hitters; We’ve completely outgrown the stadiums. So do you rebuild every stadium in the world? That’s expensive. Or make the ball go shorter? It seems relatively simple from that perspective.’’

Ogilvy, an Australian who won the 2006 U.S. Open, said he believes there will be a rollback, but admitted it would be a "challenge" for manufacturers to produce a ball that flies shorter for pros but does not lose distance when struck by recreational players.

The golf world celebrates Thanksgiving

By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 6:01 pm

Here's a look, through social media, at how the golf world celebrates Thanksgiving.

Lexi Thompson:

Baking time!!

A post shared by Lexi Thompson (@lexi) on

David Feherty:

Jack Nicklaus:

GC Tiger Tracker:

Steve Stricker:

Golf Channel:

Frank Nobilo:

Ian Poulter:

Tyrone Van Aswegen:

Happy Thanksgiving: Biggest turkeys of 2017

By Grill Room TeamNovember 23, 2017, 3:00 pm

Thanksgiving brings us golf's biggest turkeys of the year. Donald Trump, Grayson Murray and a certain (now-former) tournament director headline the list. Click here or on the image below to check out all the turkeys.

Tributes pour in for legendary caddie Sheridan

By Randall MellNovember 23, 2017, 2:54 pm

Tributes are pouring in as golf celebrates the life of Greg Sheridan after receiving news of his passing.

Sheridan, a long-time LPGA caddie who worked for some of the game’s all-time greats, including Kathy Whitworth and Beth Daniel, died Wednesday in Indian Rocks Beach, Fla., at 63. He was diagnosed in July 2016 with brain and lung cancer.

Sheridan worked the last dozen years or so with Natalie Gulbis, who expressed her grief in an Instagram post on Wednesday:

“Greg…I miss you so much already and it hasn’t even been a day. 15+ seasons traveling the world you carried me & my bag through the highs and lows of golf and life. You were so much more than my teammate on the course…Thank you.”

Sheridan was on Whitworth’s bag for the last of her LPGA-record 88 titles.

“When I first came on tour, I would try to find out how many times Greg won,” Gulbis told Golfweek. “It’s a crazy number, like 50.”

Matthew Galloway, a caddie and friend to Sheridan, summed up Sheridan’s impressive reach after caddying with him one year at the LPGA Founders Cup, where the game’s pioneers are honored.

“Best Greg story,” Galloway tweeted on Thanksgiving morning, “coming up 18 at PHX all the founders were in their chairs. Greg goes, `Yep, caddied for her, her and her.’ Legend.”

In a first-person column for Golf Magazine last year, Gulbis focused on Sheridan while writing about the special bond between players and caddies. She wrote that she won the “looper lottery” when she first hired Sheridan in ’04.

“Greg and I have traveled the world, and today he is like family,” Gulbis wrote. “Sometimes, he’s a psychologist. Last year, my mom got sick and it was a distraction, but he was great. When I used to have boyfriend issues and breakup issues, he was my confidant. In a world where caddies sometimes spill secrets, Greg has kept a respectful silence, and I can’t thank him enough for that. He’s an extension of me.”

Four months after Gulbis wrote the column, Sheridan was diagnosed with cancer.

“The LPGA family is saddened to hear of the loss of long-time tour caddie, Greg Sheridan,” the LPGA tweeted. “Our thoughts and prayers are with his family and players he walked with down the fairways. #RIP.”

Dean Herden was among the legion of caddies saddened by the news.

“Greg was a great guy who I respected a lot and taught me some great things over the years,” Herden texted to GolfChannel.com.

Here are some of heartfelt messages that are rolling across Twitter:

Retired LPGA great Annika Sorenstam:

LPGA commissioner Mike Whan in a retweet of Gulbis:

Golf Channel reporter and former tour player Jerry Foltz:

Christina Kim:

LPGA caddie Shaun Clews:

LPGA caddie Jonny Scott:

LPGA caddie Kevin Casas:

LPGA pro Jennie Lee: