Class Continues Nov 8, 2011

By Martin HallNovember 9, 2011, 12:00 am

Q: I have noticed that a number of professionals play the ball off the heel of their driver at the address position. Can you tell me why they do this?

Bill Cremins

A: All really good players tend to address the ball where they make their best contact from. Some players have a natural bias to mishit on the toe and therefore do well by setting up with the ball in the heel, other players have a bias to mishit slightly in the heel and accordingly set up with the ball off the toe, Ben Hogan did this. I think what you are seeing is players whose mishit tendency is on the toe. Hope this helps you understand it.

Q: At some point on the downswing the right hand is released over the left. Where is that point?

Garth Greer (Sydney, Nova Scotia, Canada)

A: In the words of the great Harvey Penick,'now that depends'. The right hand rollover or release is part of how you square up the club face at impact. Players with weak grips usually need to roll the right over the left early to get it square at impact, example Corey Pavin. Players with strong grips usually have to delay the roll until after impact, example Paul Azinger. Players who slice should roll earlier as one way of fixing their ball flight. Players who hook should not roll until after impact. So as Harvey said,'it depends.'

Q: My problem is that I'm a big guy, 6'2' weighing 255 and I have great difficulty transferring my weight to my left side. Yet, when I try to hit a draw or a hook and close the blade I finish well, getting my weight transferred easily. When I finish well, I usually hit a strong solid shot. I sure could use your help!!!

Bob Folmsbee

A: Most of the time the things you put into your swing to create a draw shot will improve your swing. It sounds as if you may ordinarily chicken wing your left arm after impact and un-turn your chest to the target too soon causing your weight to stay on the back foot. By attempting to hit a draw you probably fix these two flaws and this is why you can get off your back foot and finish your swing. Keep trying to draw it.

Q: I am having 'Tin Cup' moments around the greens.  I'm just now getting to play more after retiring from working on a maintenance crew at a golf course for 30 years, and was too tired to play on a regular basis. Now that I'm not dodging golf balls, I need a little help to get back in the swing of things. Thanks.

Leslie Jones (Facebook)

A: The single most important part of the short game is the skill to make solid contact on a regular basis. To me that means that you brush the ground and hit the ball at the same time. Try taking several practice swings just to the side of the ball, notice where you brush the ground, address the ball in that 'brush zone' then make your motion. I suggest that brushing the grass, not digging should be a higher priority than even hitting the ball in your mind. Let the ball be just part of your brushing technique, that should help.

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

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: