Mike Davis chosen as head of USGA

By Associated PressMarch 2, 2011, 9:45 pm

JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP)—Mike Davis is taking over as executive director ofthe U.S. Golf Association without having to give up part of his old job that heloved the most—setting up golf courses for the U.S. Open.

The USGA said Wednesday it has selected Davis to be its seventh executivedirector. He replaces David Fay, who retired in December after 21 years incharge.

Davis, a 21-year veteran of the USGA and its senior director of rules andcompetition since 2005, has become popular with the players over the last fiveyears for his sense of fairness in setting up U.S. Open courses. He introducedthe concept of graduated rough, and twice in the last four years has declined tochange a par 4 into a par 5 because he felt it made those holes fair andexciting.

One of those was the 18th at Torrey Pines in 2008, where Tiger Woods madebirdie on the 72nd hole to force a playoff that he won.

Staying involved in course setup was key to Davis taking over as executivedirector.

“They knew I very much wanted it,” Davis said of his new job. “I tried toargue the point that not only is it something I very much like, it’s somethingI’ve gotten decent at. So why look for a change?”

When asked if the job description was altered for Davis, USGA president JimHyler replied, “The short answer is slight.”

“Obviously, Mike has done a terrific job with the U.S. Open setup and we’dbe nuts if we pulled him out of that,” Hyler said. “We want him to continue tobe involved in our signature event from a course setup standpoint. When wetalked with Mike about this job, we never dreamed he would not be involved inthe setup. It fits very well. We get the best of both worlds.”

There’s more to the job than setting up a golf course, however.

Davis, 46, will be responsible for the day-to-day operations of the USGA,which governs golf in the United States and Mexico and works with the Royal &Ancient, which governs the rest of the world, in setting the rules andregulating equipment standards.

He reports to the USGA president, who serves two one-year terms.

Davis said he will delegate the jobs of course setup at the U.S. SeniorOpen, U.S. Women’s Open, U.S. Amateur and the Walker Cup. He said Jeff Hallwould be his temporary replacement in charge of rules and competition, and thatthe USGA is looking at reorganizing the department because of how much it hasgrown over the years.

Along with running 13 national championships, the USGA oversees some 700qualifying events.

Davis said he was apprehensive about some of his new responsibilities, whichinclude overseeing the USGA staff and working with the governing body’scorporate and broadcast partners and state associations. His only concern is nothaving enough time.

Otherwise, he said there will be only a few differences from what Fayhandled.

One of them is the broadcast booth.

Fay was famous for his bow ties, and he often sat in on NBC Sports telecastsof the U.S. Open in case a rules question arose.

“You won’t see me in a bow tie,” Davis said, adding that he most likelywould not be in the booth during a U.S. Open. Davis also said he would only getinvolved in the U.S. Open in the early morning before competition. He would notdeal with championship details such as pace of play or deciding when to stopplay in case of bad weather.

“I’ve very organized and detail oriented,” Davis said. “When it comes toother people’s areas, I believe in giving them responsibility and holding themaccountable. The stuff I do myself, I’ll get my hands dirty. But I’m not goingto micromanage people.”

Davis grew up in Pennsylvania and played college golf at Georgia Southern.

He attended his first U.S. Open in 1980 with his father, and was amazed tosee shots that barely missed the fairway disappear into deep rough, while shotswell off line landed in trampled grass where the spectators were walking. That’swhere he came up with the idea of graduated rough—shorter near the fairway,thicker as the it got farther away.

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Watch: Pieters snaps club ... around his neck

By Golf Channel DigitalMay 25, 2018, 1:19 pm

After opening in 3-over 75, Thomas Pieters was in no mood for more poor play on Friday.

Unfortunately for Pieters, he bogeyed two of his first three holes in the second round of the BMW PGA Championship and then didn't like his second shot at the par-5 fourth.

Someone - or some thing - had to pay, and an innocent iron bore the brunt of Pieters' anger.



Pieters made par on the hole, but at 5 over for the tournament, he was five shots off the cut line.

It's not the first time a club has faced Pieters' wrath. 

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Woods would 'love' to see Tour allow shorts

By Golf Channel DigitalMay 25, 2018, 12:59 pm

Players on the European Tour are allowed to wear shorts during practices and pro-ams.

The PGA of America permitted players to show some leg while prepping for last year’s PGA Championship.

Tiger Woods would like to see the PGA Tour follow suit.

"I would love it," he said Thursday in a Facebook Live with Bridgestone Golf. "We play in some of the hottest climates on the planet. We usually travel with the sun, and a lot of our events are played in the summer, and then on top of that when we have the winter months here a lot of the guys go down to South Africa and Australia where it's summer down there.

"It would be nice to wear shorts. Even with my little chicken legs, I still would like to wear shorts."

Caddies are currently allowed to wear shorts on Tour, during events.

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Feasting again: McIlroy shoots 65 to lead BMW PGA

By Golf Channel DigitalMay 25, 2018, 12:04 pm

Updated at 9:42 a.m. ET

Rory McIlroy made seven birdies and no bogeys on Friday for a 7-under 65 and the second-round lead at the BMW PGA Championship.

After opening in 67, McIlroy was among the early groups out on Day 2 at Wentworth Club. He made three birdies and no bogeys on the par-35 front nine on Friday, and then went on a run after the turn.

McIlroy made four consecutive birdies, beginning at the par-5 12th. That got him to 12 under, overall, and gave him a clear advantage over the field. With two closing par-5s, a very low number was in sight. But, as he did on Day 1, McIlroy finished par-par.

"I've made four pars there [on 17 and 18] when I really should be making at least two birdies, but I played the other par-5s well," McIlroy said. "It all balances itself out."


Full-field scores from the BMW PGA Championship


McIlroy has made 14 birdies and two bogeys through two rounds. At 12 under, he has a three-stroke lead over Sam Horsfield.

"The work has paid off, to some degree," McIlroy said of his practice with swing coach Michael Bannon. "I still feel like I'm hitting some loose shots out there. But, for the most part, it's been really good. If I can keep these swing thoughts and keep going in the right direction, hopefully this is the type of golf I'll be able to produce."

This event has been feast or famine for McIlroy. He won here in 2014, but has three missed cuts in his other three starts. This week, however, he’ll be around for the weekend and is in position for his first European Tour victory since the 2016 Irish Open and his second worldwide victory of the year (Arnold Palmer Invitational).

"I have the confidence that I'm playing well and I can go out and try to just replicate what I did the day before," McIlroy said about his weekend approach with the lead. "On the first tee box tomorrow I'll be thinking about what I did today. Trying to just keep the same thoughts, make the same swings. I went a couple better today than I did yesterday. I'm not sure I'll keep that progression going but something similiar tomorrow would be nice."

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Goat visor propels Na to Colonial lead

By Will GrayMay 25, 2018, 1:29 am

Jason Dufner officially has some company in the headwear free agency wing of the PGA Tour.

Like Dufner, Kevin Na is now open to wear whatever he wants on his head at tournaments, as his visor sponsorship with Titleist ended earlier this month. He finished T-6 at the AT&T Byron Nelson in his second tournament as a free agent, and this week at the Fort Worth Invitational he's once again wearing a simple white visor with a picture of a goat.

"I bought it at The Players Championship for $22 with the 30 percent discount that they give the Tour players," Na told reporters. "It's very nice."


Full-field scores from the Fort Worth Invitational

Fort Worth Invitational: Articles, photos and videos


Perhaps a change in headwear was just what Na needed to jumpstart his game. Last week's result in Dallas was his first top-35 finish in his last six events dating back to February, and he built upon that momentum with an 8-under 62 to take a one-shot lead over Charley Hoffman after the first round at Colonial Country Club.

While many sports fans know the "GOAT" acronym to stand for "Greatest Of All Time," it's a definition that the veteran Na only learned about earlier this year.

"I do social media, but they kept calling Tiger the GOAT. I go, 'Man, why do they keep calling Tiger the GOAT? That's just mean,'" Na said. "Then I realized it meant greatest of all time. Thinking of getting it signed by Jack (Nicklaus) next week (at the Memorial)."