Class Continues Sept 27, 2011

By Martin HallSeptember 28, 2011, 12:42 pm

Q: On the tee, do you recommend teeing the ball up when using a club other than the driver?

-    Joe P.

A: Short answer, I always tee the ball up if possible no matter what the club and this is a no-exception policy for me. I think just about all Tour pros do the same, except some will not use a tee if hitting a hybrid or 5-wood because they may hit the ball too high.

Q: I have volunteered at the Western Open/BMW Championship for many years, mainly as a standard bearer. At this year's Wednesday Pro-Am I walked with Matt Kuchar. I noticed he lifts his club off the ground and holds it there for a split second before taking it away on his backswing. Now, these guys are good and they've put in a great deal of time and effort to have a consistent swing. What would be the pros and cons of us weekend golfers, who rarely see a practice range, trying to do what Matt does? Thanks.
-    Gene L. (Madison, WI)

A: A number of good players 'hover' the club head off the ground at setup; Nicklaus and Norman to name two. It promotes a smoother takeaway and very often a slower takeaway, both of which usually help. It is certainly not beyond the reach of any golfer to do this, but some still prefer to keep the club head resting on the ground at address. It really is something you need to try and see which works best for you.  Good luck.

Q: I sometimes tend to let the driver slip or turn within my grip as I hit the ball. It is difficult to judge the proper pressure one should apply to the grip. Do you think a thicker grip on my driver would help me with this? Do you have some advice on how to judge the proper amount of pressure I should apply as I grip the club? I use the Ben Hogan interlocking grip.

-    Nick N. (Germantown, TN)

A: I have found many times when the club moves in your hands that it is often because of an off- center hit, not too light a grip pressure. Try using a dry erase marker on the face of your club to help you detect where you are hitting on the clubface. If you see the hits are off-center, you have found the reason the hands slip on the club. If you hit in the center and the hands move, you can pinpoint the problem and then work on eliminating it.  Good luck.

Q: I love your show!  I am an avid golfer, but I have only been playing for a year.  Now that I am being a tad more consistent, can you break down the pros and cons of a one-plane versus a two-plane swing?  Thanks!

-    Matthew H.

A: The one plane/two plane philosophy is the work of Jim Hardy, who has written two excellent books on the subject and has another coming out very soon. The one plane swing requires more flexibility but less timing as there is less clubface rotation in the hitting area and so theoretically will be more consistent. The two plane swing is more of a hand and wrist sling of the club head at the ball. It requires more timing but is probably easier on the body, especially as you get older and less flexible. Both can work equally well, both have won major championships. If you read Jim's first book you should get a sense of which suits you best. It’s called, 'Plane Truth for Golfers'.  Good luck.

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: