Golf Channel Academy Facilities Begin to Roll-Out Nationwide Next Week

By Golf Channel Public RelationsApril 2, 2015, 6:45 pm

Golf Channel Academy, a dedicated network of teaching facilities and a hands-on extension of Golf Channel’s Golf Channel Academy primetime instruction programming, will begin to roll out next week with an initial 57 locations in 26 states and Canada.

Golf Channel Academy offers golfers the opportunity to receive personalized instruction from some of the game’s finest coaches, including 46 lead teaching professionals at launch. The primary mission of Golf Channel Academy is to bring these top teachers together, and make it easier for avid amateur golfers to experience the benefits of high-quality instruction. Each location’s teaching philosophy will be based on that coach’s proven methods that elevated him or her to the top of the golf teaching profession. A directory of all Golf Channel Academy locations and additional information on the facilities, programs, PGA of America and LPGA teaching credentials, and the inaugural group of more than 190 lead and staff coaches can be found at GolfChannelAcademy.com.

“Golf Channel Academy is a natural brand extension of our popular, high-quality instructional programming,” said Mike McCarley, president, Golf Channel. “Our viewers will have the opportunity to interact with Golf Channel’s brand beyond traditional media platforms as Golf Channel Academy facilities open in markets across North America. Golf Channel works closely with PGA of America and LPGA teaching professionals and values their ability to enhance golfer’s enjoyment of the game, which ultimately encourages their students to play more golf. With this goal in mind, Golf Channel Academy coaches are committed to engaging golfers through instruction to make the game more accessible, inviting and fun.”

Golf Channel Academy coaches all share the philosophy that good coaching takes place over a period of time, and that the relationship between coach and student is an on-going one devoted to long-lasting improvement. The inaugural group of Golf Channel Academy lead coaches includes:

Arizona

  • Jeff Fisher                   Fisher Bryan Golf Academy, Longbow G.C., Mesa
  • Lynn Marriott             VISION54, Talking Stick G.C., Scottsdale
  • Pia Nilsson                  VISION54, Talking Stick G.C., Scottsdale
  • Mark Polich                 Mark Polich Golf, Tucson
  • Craig Renshaw            Legacy Golf Performance Center, Phoenix

Canada

  • Henry Brunton            Henry Brunton Golf at Eagles Nest G.C., Maple, Ontario

California

  • Henry Brunton            Strawberry Farms G.C., Irvine
  • Don Parsons               Don Parsons Golf Instruction at Twin Lakes GC, Santa Barbara
  • Kip Puterbaugh           Kip Puterbaugh’s Aviara Golf Academy, Carlsbad
  • Jeff Ritter                    MTT Performance at Poppy Hills GC, Pebble Beach

Colorado

  • Trent Wearner             Trent Wearner Golf Academy, Meridian G.C., Englewood

Connecticut

  • Paul Ramee, Jr.           Bull’s Bridge G.C., South Kent

Florida

  • Ed Bowe                     Omni Amelia Island Plantation Resort, Amelia Island
  • Fred Griffin                Grand Cypress Academy of Golf, Orlando
  • Martin Hall                 Martin Hall Golf, Ibis G&CC, West Palm Beach
  • Kenny Nairn               Celebration Golf Academy, Celebration G.C., Celebration
  • Kellie Stenzel              Kellie Stenzel Golf Academy at Palm Beach Par 3, Palm Beach

Georgia

  • Charlie King                Reynolds Golf Academy, Reynolds Plantation, Greensboro
  • Chad Phillips               Blue Giraffe Golf Institute, Alpharetta

Hawaii

  • Claude Brousseau       Ko Olina G.C., Kapolei (Oahu)

Illinois

  • Todd Sones                 Todd Sones Impact Golf at White Deer Run Golf Club, Vernon Hills
  • Kevin Weeks               Cog Hill G&CC, Lemont

Kansas

  • Chuck Evans               Chuck Evans Golf at Canyon Farms G.C., Lenexa

Kentucky

  • Ralph Landrum           World of Golf, Florence
  • Larry Ward                 High Performance Golf Academy, Lexington

Louisiana

  • Rob Noel                     Rob Noel Golf Academy at Money Hill G&CC, Abita Springs

                                       Rob Noel Golf Academy at Big Easy Sportsplex, Jefferson

                                       Rob Noel Golf Academy at Carter Plantation, Springfield

Maryland

  • Rick Krebs                  Waverly Woods G.C., Marriottsville
  • Mitchell Spearman      Mitchell Spearman Golf Academy at Oak Creek Club, Upper Marlboro

Massachusetts

  • Jane Frost                    Jane Frost Golf Performance Center, East Sandwich
  • Skip Guss                    GolfRite, Southborough Golf Practice & Learning Center, Southborough
  • Cathy MacPherson      Cathy MacPherson Golf at Ferncroft CC, Middleton

Michigan

  • Dave Kendall              Kendall Academy at Miles of Golf, Ypsilanti

                                      Gull Lake View G.C. & Resort, Augusta 

Minnesota

  • Rod Lidenberg            Halla Greens Executive GC and Training Center, Chanhassen

Missouri

  • Chuck Evans               Chuck Evans Golf at Tiffany Greens G.C., Kansas City

                                       ChuckEvans Golf at Staley Farms G.C., Kansas City

                                       Chuck Evans Golf at Drumm Farm G.C., Independence

Nevada

  • Mike Davis                  Royal Links G.C., Las Vegas

New Hampshire

  • Jason Sedan                Lake Winnipesaukee G.C., New Durham

New Jersey

  • Jason Birnbaum           New Jersey Golf Academy, Roseland

New York

  • Kelley Brooke             The Golf Academy of Randall’s Island, New York City
  • Anders Mattson          Saratoga National G.C., Saratoga Springs
  • Mitchell Spearman      Mitchell Spearman Golf Academy at Doral Arrowwood, Rye Brook

North Carolina

  • Dana Rader                 Dana Rader Golf School at Ballantyne Hotel & Lodge, Charlotte

Pennsylvania

  • Dom DiJulia                DiJulia Golf, Jericho National G.C., New Hope

Tennessee

  • Virgil Herring              Higher Performance Golf Academy at Westhaven G.C., Franklin

Texas

  • Chris O’Connell          The Plane Truth at The Courses at Watters Creek, Plano
  • Jon Sinclair                 Sinclair’s Golf Training Center, Euless
  • Brech Spradley           Barton Creek Golf Academy, Austin

Virginia

  • Chris George               Golf Academy at Kingsmill Resort, Williamsburg
  • Erika Larkin                 Larkin Golf Learning Community at Virginia Oaks G.C., Gainesville
  • Mitchell Spearman     

Mitchell Spearman Golf Academy at Belmont CC, Ashburn

Mitchell Spearman Golf Academy at Dominion Valley CC, Haymarket                                       

Washington

  • Gregg Rogers             

Gregg Rogers Golf Performance Center, Bellevue 

Gregg Rogers Golf Performance Center, Willows Run G.C., Redmond

Gregg Rogers Golf Performance Center, Safeco Field, Seattle 

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Ortiz takes Web.com Tour clubhouse lead in Bahamas

By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 16, 2018, 2:19 am

Former Web.com Tour Player of the Year Carlos Ortiz shot a bogey-free, 4-under-par 68 Monday to take the clubhouse lead in The Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals Emerald Bay.

Four other players - Lee McCoy, Brandon Matthews, Sung Jae Im and Mark Anderson - were still on the course and tied with Ortiz at 6-under 210 when third-round play was suspended by darkness at 5:32 p.m. local time. It is scheduled to resume at 7:15 a.m. Tuesday.

Ortiz, a 26-year-old from Guadalajara, Mexico, is in search of his fourth Web.com Tour victory. In 2014, the former University of North Texas standout earned a three-win promotion on his way to being voted Web.com Tour Player of the Year.

McCoy, a 23-year-old from Dunedin, Fla., is looking to become the first player to earn medalist honors at Q-School and then win the opening event of the season.

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Randall's Rant: Can we please have some rivalries?

By Randall MellJanuary 16, 2018, 12:00 am

Memo to the golf gods:

If you haven’t finalized the fates of today’s stars for the new year, could we get you to deliver what the game has lacked for so long?

Can we get a real, honest-to-goodness rivalry?

It’s been more than two decades since the sport has been witness to one.

With world No. 1 Dustin Johnson and former world No. 1 Rory McIlroy at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship this week, an early-season showdown would percolate hope that this year might be all about rivalries.

It seems as if the stars are finally aligned to make up for our long drought of rivalries, of the recurring clashes you have so sparingly granted through the game’s history.

We’re blessed in a new era of plenty, with so many young stars blossoming, and with Tiger Woods offering hope he may be poised for a comeback. With Johnson, McIlroy, Jordan Spieth, Jason Day, Justin Thomas, Jon Rahm, Hideki Matsuyama, Brooks Koepka and Rickie Fowler among today’s dynamic cast, the possibility these titans will time their runs together on the back nine of Sundays in majors excites.

We haven’t seen a real rivalry since Greg Norman and Nick Faldo sparred in the late '80s and early '90s.

Woods vs. Phil Mickelson didn’t really count. While Lefty will be remembered for carving out a Hall of Fame career in the Tiger era, with 33 victories, 16 of them with Tiger in the field, five of them major championships, we get that Tiger had no rival, not in the most historic sense.


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Phil never reached No. 1, was never named PGA Tour Player of the Year, never won a money title and never dueled with Woods on Sunday on the back nine of a major with the title on the line.  Still, it doesn’t diminish his standing as the best player not named Tiger Woods over the last 20 years. It’s a feat so noteworthy it makes him one of the game’s all-time greats.

We’ve been waiting for an honest-to-goodness rivalry since Faldo and Norman took turns ruling at world No. 1 and dueling in big events, including the back nine of multiple majors. 

In the '70s, we had Nicklaus-Watson. In the '60s, it was Nicklaus-Palmer. In the '40s and '50s, it was Hogan, Snead and Nelson in a triumvirate mix, and in the '20s and '30s we had Hagen and Sarazen.

While dominance is the magic ingredient that can break a sport out of its niche, a dynamic rivalry is the next best elixir.

Dustin Johnson looks capable of dominating today’s game, but there’s so much proven major championship talent on his heels. It’s hard to imagine him consistently fending off all these challengers, but it’s the fending that would captivate us.

Johnson vs. McIlroy would be a fireworks show. So would Johnson vs. Thomas, or Thomas vs. Day or McIlroy vs. Rahm or Fowler vs. Koepka ... or any of those combinations.

Spieth is a wild card that intrigues.

While he’s not a short hitter, he isn’t the power player these other guys are, but his iron game, short game, putter and moxie combine to make him the most compelling challenger of all. His resolve, resilience and resourcefulness in the final round of his British Open victory at Royal Birkdale make him the most interesting amalgam of skill since Lee Trevino.

Woods vs. any of them? Well, if we get that, we promise never to ask for anything more.

So, if that cosmic calendar up there isn’t filled, how about it? How about a year of rivalries to remember?

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McIlroy: 2018 may be my busiest season ever

By Will GrayJanuary 15, 2018, 6:28 pm

With his return to competition just days away, Rory McIlroy believes that the 2018 season may be the most action packed of his pro career.

The 28-year-old has not teed it up since the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in early October, a hiatus he will end at this week's Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship. It will be the start of a busy spring for the Ulsterman, who will also play next week in Dubai before a run of six PGA Tour events leading up to the Masters.

Speaking to the U.K.'s Telegraph, McIlroy confirmed that he will also make a return trip to the British Masters in October and plans to remain busy over the next 12 months.

"I might play more times this year than any before. I played 28 times in 2008 and I'm on track to beat that," McIlroy said. "I could get to 30 (events), depending on where I'm placed in the Race to Dubai. But I'll see."

McIlroy's ambitious plan comes in the wake of a frustrating 2017 campaign, when he injured his ribs in his first start and twice missed chunks of time in an effort to recover. He failed to win a worldwide event and finished the year ranked outside the top 10, both of which had not happened since 2008.

But having had more than three months to get his body and swing in shape, McIlroy is optimistic heading into the first of what he hopes will be eight starts in the 12 weeks before he drives down Magnolia Lane.

"I've worked hard on my short game and I'm probably feeling better with the putter than I ever have," McIlroy said. "I've had a lot of time to concentrate on everything and it all feels very good and a long way down the road."

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What's in the Bag: Sony Open winner Kizzire

By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 15, 2018, 6:05 pm

Patton Kizzire earned his second PGA Tour victory by winning a six-hole playoff at the Sony Open in Hawaii. Take a look inside his bag.

Driver: Titleist 917D3 (10.5 degrees), with Fujikura Atmos Black 6 X shaft

Fairway Wood: Titleist 917F2 (16.5 degrees), with Aldila Tour Blue 95 TX shaft

Hybrid: Titleist 913H (19 degrees), with UST Mamiya AXIV Core 100 Hybrid shaft

Irons: Titleist 718 T-MB (4), 718 CB (5-6), 718 MB (7-9), with True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 shafts

Wedges: Titleist SM7 prototype (47, 52, 56, 60 degrees), with True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 shafts

Putter: Scotty Cameron GoLo Tour prototype

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x