Kepple, a 27-year GCSAA member who holds an agronomy degree from Ohio State, explains that it is difficult to maintain a good, dense root system in September, because there is a limited root system this time of year. He knows that well because he managed bentgrass greens the first 16 of his 18 years at East Lake before switching to bermuda after the 2007 Tour Championship.
There have been no changes to the golf course since the 2007-08 renovation, but Kepple says the rainy summer has helped the 2 ¼-inch bermudagrass rough become much thicker than in the past. The recent flooding has forced his staff to repair the washed-out bunkers four times since last Tuesday. Reinforcements arrive this week though, as a group of 72 volunteers made up of nearby turfgrass students, area superintendents and assistant superintendents, as well as various vendors from around the region join Kepple's staff of 27, illuminating the camaraderie of the profession.
Weather: Isolated thunderstorms are forecast all week.
Yardage: 7,374 yards, par 72
Not-so-fun fact: Record rain has engulfed the Atlanta area over the past several days, which has forced East Lake's maintenance staff to repair the washed-out bunkers four times since last Tuesday.