Golf Talk Live -Curtis Strange Transcript Segment 1

By Golf Channel DigitalFebruary 26, 2001, 5:00 pm
TEASE
CURTIS STRANGE HAS ALWAYS COURTED PRESSURE AS THOUGH IT WERE A WELCOMED FRIEND. HE ROSE TO THE OCCASION WITH A FINAL HOLE EAGLE TO SECURE THE INDIVIDUAL AND TEAM TITLES IN THE NCAA'S FOR WAKE FOREST. HE WON BACK TO BACK U.S OPENS DURING HIS REIGN AS THE WORLD'S BEST PLAYER.

HE'S AN ACCOMPLISHED BROADCASTER AND WRITER AND THE CAPTAIN OF THE 2001 U.S RYDER CUP TEAM. MEET CURTIS STRANGE, NOW, ON GOLF TALK LIVE.

TOM STRANGE WAS NOT ONLY AN INCREDIBLE FATHER, HE WAS A VERY GOOD PLAYER, AND HE UNDERSTOOD THE GOLF SWING HE WOULD TEACH TO HIS TWIN SONS, CURTIS AND ALAN. TOM WON THE VIRGINIA STATE OPEN FIVE TIMES,

IS A MEMBER OF THE MIDDLE ATLANTIC HALL OF FAME AND THE VIRGINIA SPORTS HALL OF FAME. TOM STRANGE WAS AN ASSISTANT TO SAM SNEAD AT THE GREEN BRIAR IN WEST VIRGINIA, BEFORE MOVING BACK TO VIRGINIA TO RUN WHITE SANDS COUNTY CLUB IN VIRGINIA BEACH. TOM LOVED TEACHING JUNIOR PLAYERS.

ESPECIALLY HIS SONS CURTIS AND ALAN. TOM DIED WHEN THE TWINS WERE 14 AND CLOSE FAMILY FRIEND AND 1950 PGA CHAMPION CHANDLER HARPER GAVE CURTIS HIS TIME, HIS LOVE AND HIS GUIDANCE. HIS DAD HAD GIVEN HIM THE SWING.

WAKE FOREST COACH JESSE HADDOCK WOULD BE CURTIS' LAST FATHER FIGURE AND WAS A TOUGH BUT LOVING DISCIPLINARIAN. CURTIS WOULD HELP WAKE FOREST AND JESSE HADDOCK TO THEIR FIRST NCAA TITLE IN 1974 WITH A FINAL HOLE EAGLE THAT GAVE CURTIS THE INDIVIDUAL TITLE AS WELL.

AS AN AMATEUR, CURTIS WON EVERYTHING BUT THE U.S. AMATEUR. AT HOME, HE WON THE VIRGINIA STATE JUNIOR CHAMPIONSHIP IN 1970 AND'72 AND THE STATE AMATEUR IN 1974 AND '75. HE WON THE EASTERN, THE WESTERN AND NORTH AND SOUTH AMATEURS. HE PLAYED ON THE WINNING 1975 WALKER CUP TEAM.

HE MAY HAVE BEEN THE BEST PLAYER IN THE 1976 PGA TOUR QUALIFYING TOURNAMENT, YET HE FAILED TO QUALIFY. AFTER A EUROPEAN TOUR STINT, HE JOINED THE PGA TOUR IN THE SPRING OF 1977. WHILE THERE WOULD BE DISAPPOINTMENTS, LIKE THE 1985 MASTERS, THE 1990 U.S OPEN, AND THE '95

RYDER CUP, CURTIS FULFILLED HIS POTENTIAL AND BECAME THE NUMBER ONE PLAYER IN THE WORLD. HE WON 17 TIMES ON TOUR FROM 1979 THROUGH 1989 INCLUDING BACK TO BACK U.S. OPENS IN 1988 AND '89. HE PLAYED ON FIVE RYDER CUP TEAMS AND IS THE CAPTAIN OF THE 2001 U.S. RYDER CUP TEAM. CURTIS HOLDS A COURSE RECORD, 62, AT THE OLDEST 18 HOLE COURSE IN THE WORLD, THE OLD COURSE AT ST. ANDREWS.

HE WAS THE FIRST TO WIN ONE MILLION DOLLARS IN A SEASON ON THE PGA TOUR. CURTIS WON THREE MONEY TITLES AND PLAYER OF THE YEAR HONORS. CURTIS IS IN HIS 40'S NOW AND THERE ARE OTHER WORLDS BESIDES WINNING TOURNAMENTS. HE'S AN ACCOMPLISHED TELEVISION ANALYST FOR ABC SPORTS.

HE'S A RESPECTED WRITER FOR GOLF MAGAZINE. HE'S A LOVING HUSBAND TO SARAH AND A GREAT FATHER TO HIS SONS DAVID AND THOMAS. LIKE MANY GREAT SPORTSMAN HE'S OPINIONATED, ARROGANT AND TOO TOUGH ON HIMSELF. FOR SO MANY YEARS HE DROVE HIMSELF TO BE THE BEST HE COULD BE. FORCED HIMSELF TO WORK HARD ENOUGH TO

REALIZE HIS MAGNIFICENT OPPORTUNITY. TO FULLY AND HAPPILY EXPLOIT HIS VAST POTENTIAL AND ALL THOSE 5 FOOT PUTTS HE HOLED AS A YOUNG TEENAGER TO WIN THE IMAGINARY U.S. OPEN, WHILE PUTTING ALONE ON THE PRACTICE GREENS NEAR HOME, WERE SUCCESSFULLY HOLED

AGAIN WHEN HE WAS THE BEST IN THE WORLD. HE DREAMT OF BEING A MAJOR CHAMPION AND ON ANY NIGHT HE CHOOSES HE CAN DREAM AGAIN OF WHAT WAS BECAUSE THE DREAMS, NOW MEMORIES, ALL CAME TRUE.

PETER KESSLER
WELCOME TO GOLF TALK LIVE, I'M PETER KESSLER. GREAT PLEASURE TO INTRODUCE YOU TO THE UNITED STATES RYDER CUP CAPTAIN, FORMER NUMBER ONE IN THE WORLD, CURTIS STRANGE. GREAT TO HAVE YOU HERE.

CURTIS STRANGE
THANK YOU PETER.

PETER KESSLER
AND I TELL YOU

CURTIS STRANGE
NICE TO BE HERE.

PETER KESSLER
NOBODY'S BEEN BETTER THAN YOU AT CALLING IN THE LAST 5, 6 YEARS AND CHECKING IN AND TELLING US WHAT YOU THINK AND I APPRECIATE IT.

CURTIS STRANGE
WELL SOME OF THE GUESTS YOU'VE HAD ON, YOU KNOW, YOU GET THE URGE TO CALL IN AND SAY HOW MUCH THEY MEANT TO YOU. YOU KNOW, I REMEMBER THE LAST THING WAS JERRY PATE. HE AND I WERE TRAVELING MATES WITH JAY HAAS IN AMATEUR GOLF AND, AND

BOB GOLBY MEANT SO MUCH TO ME OVER THE YEARS THROUGH JAY HAAS, AND THEY'RE, THE PEOPLE LIKE THAT YOU WANT TO KIND OF EXPRESS YOUR, YOUR APPRECIATION AND THANKS.

PETER KESSLER
I REMEMBER WHEN JER... WHEN YOU CALLED IN WHEN JERRY WAS HERE. YOU BASICALLY TOLD HIM THAT HE WAS LUCKY TO BEAT YOU IN THE U.S. AMATEUR.

CURTIS STRANGE
IT WAS NOT THE FIRST TIME I EVER TOLD HIM THAT EITHER. (LAUGHS) HE, YOU KNOW, HE WAS, JERRY PATE WAS, WAS, WAS A FANTASTIC PLAYER. HE WAS THE NEXT SUPERSTAR AND HE GOT ME THAT DAY.

PETER KESSLER
OTHER THAN PICKING OUT REALLY UGLY SHIRTS FOR YOUR TEAM, WHAT DOES A RYDER CUP CAPTAIN DO SEVEN MONTHS BEFORE THE RYDER CUP BEGINS?

CURTIS STRANGE
OH GOSH, I DON'T, DO WE HAVE ENOUGH TIME? UH, REALLY, SARAH AND I HAVE, HAVE BEEN DILIGENTLY WORKING SINCE DAY ONE. YOU HAVE TO REMEMBER THAT ALL THESE THINGS HAVE TO BE ORDERED AND PREPARED AND ORGANIZED WELL

BEFORE THE MATCHES GET HERE. AS A PLAYER, YOU KNOW, YOU GO INTO THE, TO THE MATCHES. YOU DON'T THINK TOO MUCH ABOUT THEM UNTIL YOU GET THERE MONDAY AND THEN YOU'RE READY TO PLAY AS A TEAM, BUT AS A CAPTAIN, YOU KNOW, ANYBODY EVER TELLS ME THAT ORDERING SHIRTS AND SWEATERS AND SLACKS IS AN EASY JOB, THEY'D BEST

START DUCKING IN A HURRY. I'LL TELL YOU. I'M SO SICK OF PIN STRIPES AND COLLAR STRIPES BUT, ANYWAY, WE'RE DOING EVERYTHING. YOU KNOW EVERYTHING REMOTELY CLOSE WITH THE RYDER CUP GOES ACROSS THE DESK. I MEAN IT'S KIND OF NEAT. IT'S, WE, WE

DESIGNED THE BAG ONE NIGHT AND WE, YOU KNOW, OBVIOUSLY THE CLOTHES AND UMBRELLAS AND LOGISTICS, SCHEDULES ALREADY. EVERYTHING THE PLAYERS MIGHT NEED DURING THE WEEK IS DONE.

PETER KESSLER
WHAT DO YOUR SONS THINK ABOUT THIS WHOLE RYDER CUP EXPERIENCE THAT YOU'RE GOING THROUGH NOW?

CURTIS STRANGE
I THINK PROBABLY THEY HAVE THE ATTITUDE THEY'VE HAD THEIR WHOLE LIFE WITH DAD AND WHAT HE DOES FOR A LIVING. IT'S JUST IT'S PART OF IT, IT'S ANOTHER THINGS HE'S GOING THROUGH, ANOTHER THING HE'S DOING AND YOU KNOW THEY WERE THERE AT THE '95 RYDER CUP WHICH WAS A WONDERFUL

EXPERIENCE FOR THEM, BUT YOU KNOW, IT'S JUST IT'S SOMETHING DAD'S DOING. YOU KNOW, WE KIND OF DO OUR THING AND PLAY OUR GOLF OR BASKETBALL AND GO TO SCHOOL AND, AND HOPEFULLY HE'S THERE TONIGHT WHEN WE COME HOME BUT A LOT OF TIMES HE'S NOT.

PETER KESSLER
WHAT KIND OF PLAYERS ARE YOUR SONS?

CURTIS STRANGE
OKAY. THEY, THEY'RE OKAY. THEY ENJOY THE GAME. I ALWAYS SAID TO MYSELF, AND THIS IS THE WAY I WAS BROUGHT UP, THAT MY DAD NEVER PUSHED ME TO THE

GAME, HE WANTED ME TO COME TO IT BECAUSE IF YOU COME TO IT YOURSELF YOU TRULY FALL IN LOVE WITH IT AND I DIDN'T WANT TO PUSH THEM. I, I JUST ALWAYS WANTED THEM TO, TO LEARN TO PLAY WELL ENOUGH SO THEY COULD ALWAYS ENJOY THE GAME IN ANY

BUSINESS OR ENDEAVOR THEY WOULD GO IN TO AND THEY ALREADY DO THAT WHICH IS, WHICH IS GREAT.

PETER KESSLER
HOW IMPORTANT HAS YOUR WIFE SARAH BEEN TO YOUR SUSTAINED SUCCESS OVER THE LAST 25 YEARS?

CURTIS STRANGE
YOU'RE NOT SUPPOSED TO ASK THOSE TOUGH QUESTIONS SO EARLY IN THE SHOW. I,

PETER KESSLER
LET ME READ YOU THROUGH MY NOTES.

CURTIS STRANGE
YOU KNOW IT'S, YOU KNOW WE MET IN COLLEGE AND YOU KNOW, SHE DIDN'T KNOW WHO I WAS OR WHAT I DID AT COLLEGE OR ANYTHING LIKE THAT AND, AND THEN WE TURNED PRO, AND I SAY WE, YOU KNOW WE TRAVELED AND WE, WE, WE YOU KNOW SCRIMPED PENNIES, WE HAD TO. I DIDN'T KNOW IF I COULD MAKE

IT ON TOUR AND YOU KNOW ALWAYS SUPPORT FROM BEHIND AND YOU KNOW, LOOKING BACK ON IT, IT MEANT MORE TO ME, IT MEANS A WHOLE LOT MORE TO ME NOW THAN IT DID THEN, BUT JUST SOMEBODY'S ALWAYS THERE.

NEVER TALKED GOLF AND AS WE PROGRESSED AND BECAME MORE SUCCESSFUL WE WERE JUST ALWAYS THERE AND THEN WE HAD KIDS AND ALWAYS THERE FOR THE KIDS AND YOU KNOW I HAVE TWO GOOD BOYS AND IT'S

NOT BECAUSE OF ME SO MUCH. IT'S BECAUSE OF MY, MY WIFE AND UH SHE'S BEEN WONDERFUL TO THE FAMILY AND, AND YOU KNOW, RECENTLY WITH THE RYDER CUP SHE'S BEEN PICKING A LOT OF PIN STRIPES AND STRIPES AND SWEATERS FOR ME. I WOULDN'T DARE TRY TO DO IT BY MYSELF.

PETER KESSLER
HOW INCREDIBLE DID YOU FIND HER SUPPORT WHEN YOU NEEDED IT AFTER YOU DIDN'T MAKE QUALIFYING SCHOOL THE FIRST TIME AROUND? HOW SOLID WAS SHE?

CURTIS STRANGE
WELL WHATEVER , I THINK, WHEN I LOOK BACK ON THAT, IT WAS, IT WAS '76, AT BROWNSVILLE, TEXAS, OF ALL PLACES AND I THINK, YOU NEED SUPPORT, PETER, WHEN YOU DON'T DO WELL. WHEN YOU'RE DOING WELL, YOU KNOW, EVERYTHING IS ROSIE AND YOU KNOW

YOU'RE HOLDING THE TROPHY UP OR, OR WHATEVER. YOU'RE PLAYING WELL, LIFE IS GOOD, BUT YOU NEED SUPPORT, YOU NEED PEOPLE THERE WHEN THINGS AREN'T GOING WELL, AND THAT WAS THE FIRST REALLY DEVASTATING TIME OF MY CAREER. I, I THINK AT THAT TIME, COMING UP THROUGH AMATEUR GOLF WAS

FANTASTIC. THAT WAS THE FIRST TIME I'D EVER HAD A REAL SET BACK. I LO...MISSED BY A SHOT. I WAS SUPPOSED TO BE THE, THE GUY YOU KNOW TO, TO PLAY WELL AND TO GET ON TOUR AND DO WELL AND NOW I DON'T HAVE A

CARD AND DIDN'T HAVE A PLACE TO PLAY AND WE CRIED LIKE BABIES THAT NIGHT IN THE ROOM. WE DID. AND, BUT WE CAME BACK.

PETER KESSLER
DID YOU CONSIDER DOING ANYTHING ELSE WITH YOUR LIFE EXCEPT PLAYING GOLF THEN?

CURTIS STRANGE
WELL I THINK I REMEMBER THAT NIGHT, YOU KNOW, AS YOU, AS YOU BEAT YOURSELF UP A LITTLE BIT, I DIDN'T KNOW WHAT I WAS GOING TO DO FOR A LIVING BUT I THINK YOU COME TO YOUR SENSES WHEN YOU WAKE UP THE NEXT MORNING

AND REALIZE THE SUN DOES COME UP THE NEXT DAY, UH, AS MUCH AS YOU MIGHT NOT WANT IT TO SOMETIMES, IT CAME UP. WE WENT BACK TO CAROLINA. I PRACTICED AND, AND WENT TO PINEHURST. ONE OF MY FAVORITE PLACES, FOR THE NEXT QUALIFYING SCHOOL AND JUST

EVERYTHING KIND OF EVOLVED FROM THERE, BUT, YOU KNOW IT'S, IF YOU DIDN'T HAVE THOSE TIMES, IF YOU DIDN'T

HAVE THE SET BACKS, IF YOU DIDN'T HAVE THE TIMES THAT YOU NEVER THOUGHT YOU'D COME BACK FROM, YOU WOULDN'T BE ABLE TO ENJOY THE GOOD TIMES. YOU WOULDN'T APPRECIATE THEM.

PETER KESSLER
WHEN WE COME BACK LET'S TALK ABOUT YOUR DAD A LITTLE BIT, AND WE'LL DO THAT IN JUST A MOMENT.

(MUSIC)

(BREAK)

NEXT SEGMENT
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Watch: Furyk throws out first pitch at Yankees-Mets

By Golf Channel DigitalAugust 14, 2018, 12:59 pm

As part of a a New York media tour to promote the Ryder Cup, U.S. captain Jim Furyk threw out the first pitch at Monday evening's game between the Yankees and Mets at Yankee Stadium.


Here's a look at some more photos from Captain Furyk's Ryder Cup Trophy tour.




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Randall's Rant: Woods' message to young rivals: Bring it on!

By Randall MellAugust 13, 2018, 11:24 pm

Bring it on!

OK, I’m not fluent in body language, and maybe that’s not exactly what Tiger Woods was communicating with his exuberant fist pump after closing out a 64 Sunday at the PGA Championship, but there was so much hope in the excitement he let loose with his closing birdie.

Hope beyond what was still going on behind him at Bellerive.

Hope in what lies ahead.

Bring it on!

You know Woods wanted Brooks Koepka to hear his legion roar, to let Koepka know he better not stumble back there behind him. You know he also wanted Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Rory McIlroy, Jordan Spieth, Jason Day, Rickie Fowler, Jon Rahm and all today’s stars to hear all those roars, to let them know he’s finally fit for a fight again.

Bring it on!

Yes, Koepka refused to flinch, and Woods ultimately finished second, but that rollicking last fist pump told you what Sunday’s finish meant to Woods.

He’s going to win again.

That’s the confidence won closing the way he did, celebrating at the 72nd hole in a way we’ve only ever seen him do on his way to hoisting a trophy.

Because that’s where he is headed again.

He can and will win again.

Bring it on!

That’s the thrilling promise Sunday brought to all of golf.

Koepka wasn’t about to get out of Woods’ way, in the fashion the players of another era seemed to do when weekend roars preceded a Woods stampede. Koepka did today’s players a favor sending his own message. He was a rock. He didn’t flinch and didn’t fold in the wake of all those deafening Tiger roars.


PGA Championship: Scores | Live blog | Full coverage


If Koepka flinches Sunday, it sends the wrong message to all these other young guys. It gives them all pause. It makes them all wonder if Tiger’s aura really does come with some unfair advantage, with a one- or two-shot advantage in his ability to ride the noisy chaos to heights they can’t. We heard more than one young star complain this spring about the boisterous crowds that followed Woods.

These young guys don’t need that in their heads.

So Koepka didn’t back down, and Johnson, Thomas, McIlroy, Spieth, Day, Fowler and Rahm aren’t likely to, either.

That’s the great fun Woods’ comeback brings. The battles all these young guys say they want with the legend are real possibilities now, with all those Tiger birdies and Tiger roars confirming Sunday that he is ready to begin giving them what they want.

“I’ve always wanted to battle it out in a major with Tiger,” Jordan Spieth said during The Open last month. “Who hasn’t? It’s kind of a dream come true, just to have the opportunity.”

The wonder in Sunday’s finish is that Woods was so good spraying his driver all over the place early in the round. Back in the day, he would have said he shot that 64 with his “B” game. You won’t hear him say things like that now, but the beauty in the round was knowing how he may have turned a 70 into a 64. It was in knowing how much better he still might get on these old legs.

It’s a shame we have to wait eight months for the Masters to see if his run of T-6 at The Open and 2nd at the PGA Championship continues on a majestic trajectory, because the message I heard in his last fist pump is still ringing in my ears.

Bring it on!

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Eight Men, Four Women Advance to "Tennessee Big Shots," Airing Monday, Aug. 13 at 6 p.m. ET Live on Golf Channel

By Golf Channel Public RelationsAugust 13, 2018, 7:25 pm

Airing Live on Golf Channel, Fourth Televised Event of 2018 is Final Tour Stop Prior to Season-Culminating Volvik World Long Drive Championship

Field Boasts Six of Top-10 in World Led by No. 1 Justin James, Three-Time 2018 Winner Will Hogue; & Two-time World Champion Phillis Meti

The World Long Drive Association (WLDA) season continues tonight with the Tennessee Big Shots benefiting Niswonger Children’s Hospital, airing live at 6 p.m. ET on Golf Channel. The live telecast will showcase the eight men and four women having advanced from preliminary rounds where they’ll compete in single-elimination matches until respective champions are crowned. The Open (Men’s) Division field will feature six of the top-nine competitors in the World Long Drive rankings, including No. 1 Justin James (Jacksonville, Fla.) along with Will Hogue (Memphis, Tenn.), who has accumulated three wins to-date in 2018. The Women’s Division will feature two-time world champion Phillis Meti (Auckland, New Zealand) and Alexis Belton (Ruston, La.,) who won the Clash in the Canyon earlier this year. Chloe Garner (Johnson City, Tenn.,) also is returning from injury in her first competition of 2018 in what will be a de-facto “home game,” while LPGA Tour player Emily Tubert (Burbank, Calif.) is the fourth semifinalist, competing in her first-ever WLDA competition.

“We’ve finally reached the home stretch of the season,” said Jonathan Coachman, play-by-play host for World Long Drive Association events on Golf Channel. “With the World Championship only weeks away, the competitors understand the need to be on their game. I’ve always said that champions show up anytime, anywhere, for anything. They better have that mind-set, beginning with tonight’s Tennessee Big Shots.

 

OPEN DIVISION QUARTERFINAL MATCHES (Seeded by world ranking):

(1) Justin James (Jacksonville, Fla.) vs. (25) Wes Patterson (St Louis, Mo.)

(5) Ryan Steenberg (Rochester, N.Y.) vs. (8) Paul Howell (Wilson, N.C.)

(4) Ryan Reisbeck (Layton, Utah) vs. (9) Kyle Berkshire (Orlando, Fla.)

(2) Will Hogue (Memphis, Tenn.) vs. (24) Stephen Kois (Wheaton, Ill.)

 

WOMEN’S DIVISION SEMIFINAL MATCHES:

Alexis Belton (Ruston, La.) vs. Phillis Meti (Auckland, New Zealand)

Chloe Garner (Johnson City, Tenn.) vs. Emily Tubert (Burbank, Calif.)

 

Being staged from Cattails at Meadowview Golf Course in Kingsport, Tenn., the inaugural event – in partnership with Ballad Health’s Niswonger Children’s Hospital – is the fourth WLDA event of 2018 scheduled to air live on Golf Channel. Tennessee Big Shots is being contested in association with the Niswonger Children’s Hospital Classic. The eventalso marks the penultimate WLDA competition of the year, with the season-culminating Volvik World Long Drive Championship taking place Aug. 30-Sept. 5.

COVERAGE: Live coverage of the Tennessee Big Shots will air on Golf Channel from 6-8 p.m. ET on Monday, Aug. 13, with Golf Central previewing the event from 5-6 p.m. ET. Encore showings of the competition are scheduled to air on Golf Channel following the live telecast, from 10 p.m.-Midnight ET and 12:30-2:30 a.m. ET.

The production centering around live coverage of the competition will utilize six dedicated cameras, capturing all angles from the hitting platform and the landing grid, including a SuperMo camera as well as two craned-positioned cameras that will track the ball in flight once it leaves the competitor’s clubface. An overlaid graphic line on the grid, the “DXL Big Drive to Beat,” (similar to the “1st & 10 line” made popular in football) will display the longest drive during a given match to signify the driving distance an opposing competitor will need to surpass to take the lead. The telecast also will feature a custom graphics package suited to the anomalous swing data typically generated by Long Drive competitors, tracking club speed, ball speed and apex in real-time via Trackman. Trackman technology also will provide viewers with a sense of ball flight, tracing the arc of each drive from the moment of impact.

BROADCAST TEAM: Veteran sports broadcaster Jonathan Coachman will conduct play-by-play alongside Art Sellinger, World Long Drive pioneer and two-time world champion (1986, ’91). Golf Channel’s Jerry Foltz will offer reports from the teeing platform and conduct interviews with competitors in the field.

DIGITAL & SOCIAL MEDIA COVERAGE: Fans can stay up-to-date on all of the action surrounding the Tennessee Big Shots by following @GolfChannel and @WorldLongDrive on social media. Golf Channel social media host Alexandra O’Laughlin will be on-site contributing to the social conversation as the event unfolds, and, the telecast will integrate social media-generated content during live coverage using the hashtag, #WorldLongDrive.

Golf Channel Digital also will feature content from the Tennessee Big Shots leading up to and immediately following the live telecast.

 

2018 WORLD LONG DRIVE ASSOCIATION SCHEDULE:

DATE

EVENT

LOCATION

WINNER(S) / DEFENDING CHAMP

March 15-17

East Coast Classic

West Columbia, S.C.

Justin Moose

April 21-24

Clash in the Canyon (*Golf Channel*)

Mesquite, Nev.

Alexis Belton, Will Hogue

May 11-15

Ak-Chin Smash in the Sun (*Golf Channel*)

Maricopa, Ariz.

Phillis Meti, Will Hogue

June 4-5

Atlantic City Boardwalk Bash (*Golf Channel*)

Atlantic City, N.J.

Sandra Carlborg, Mark Costello

June 21-23

Bluff City Shootout

Memphis, Tenn.

Will Hogue

July 6-8

Bash For Cash

Port Rowan, Ont., Canada

Ryan Steenberg

August 2-4

WinStar Midwest Slam

Thackerville, Okla.

Kyle Berkshire

August 12-13

Tennessee Big Shots benefitting Niswonger Children’s Hospital (*Golf Channel*)

Kingsport, Tenn.

(New Event)

September 1-5

Volvik World Long Drive Championship (*Golf Channel*)

Thackerville, Okla.

Sandra Carlborg, Justin James

Showcasing the truly global nature of World Long Drive, several events throughout 2018 are staged through officially sanctioned WLDA international partners, including stops in Germany, Japan, New Zealand, South Africa and the United Kingdom, along with an all-encompassing international qualifier for the Open Division of the Volvik World Long Drive Championship in September.

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Making Ryder Cup picks: Furyk begins his toughest task

By Rex HoggardAugust 13, 2018, 6:41 pm

ST. LOUIS – By the time Brooks Koepka teed off for the final round of the PGA Championship, Jim Furyk was already back at his rental house and settled in to watch what would be an eventful final round.

Furyk's day was just getting started.

Although he’d been up since dawn and had already put in a full day at Bellerive with a 7:56 a.m. tee time, Sunday began a process the U.S. Ryder Cup captain has prepared for and anticipated for two years.

“I didn’t get a lot of sleep this week,” Furyk conceded on Sunday following a closing 71 at Bellerive. “At times I found myself with my mind wandering. The afternoon tee times I’m sitting around in the morning and my mind starts wandering and I start looking at stats and start thinking about the Ryder Cup. There’s a million things going on.”

The American captain is officially on the clock. The final round of the year’s final major was the deadline to qualify for this year’s Ryder Cup team, and Furyk now begins the process of narrowing the list of potential captain’s picks.

Davis Love III, who took two turns in the captain’s chair, will tell you this is the toughest part of the gig. Forget about pairings and course setup and vice captains - getting the picks right is what separates a good captain from a great one.

“I saw him around this week kind of frazzled like I was; they are pulling him everywhere,” Love said. “Now it’s a tough couple of weeks. At dinner the other night we were talking about what we were going to do [regarding picks] and I was like, ‘Well, you have to wait for [Sunday] and you’ll get a better idea.”

On that front, the wait is over. The top eight players on the U.S. point list are now locked in and Furyk and his vice captains – Love, Steve Stricker and Tiger Woods – can begin the artful process of creating a list of possible picks based on a wide variety of criteria.


PGA Championship: Scores | Live blog | Full coverage


The automatic qualifiers are Koepka, Dustin Johnson, Justin Thomas, Patrick Reed, Bubba Watson, Jordan Spieth, Rickie Fowler and Webb Simpson, who held on to the final spot thanks to his tie for 19th at the PGA.

“For some guys we’re going to look at the body of work for a year, for some players we’re going to look at a hot player right now, some guys we’re going to look at pairings and how they fit into the team we have right now,” Furyk said.

Furyk will make three of his captain’s picks on Sept. 3 following the Dell Technologies Championship and his final selection a week later after the BMW Championship.

The short list of possible picks would include Bryson DeChambeau, Phil Mickelson, Woods, Xander Schauffele, Matt Kuchar, Kevin Kisner and Tony Finau, Nos. 9 through 15, respectively, on the final point list.

Schauffele and Finau had something of a playing interview at Bellerive when they were paired with Furyk for Rounds 1 and 2.

“Tony made a pile of birdies, he’s explosive as far as firepower and how far he hits it but I was impressed with his putting, to be honest with you. I knew he could hit it far and kind of knew how he played, but he really played well,” said Furyk, who also played with Finau on Saturday at the PGA.

Mickelson will be a particularly interesting option for Furyk. For the first time in his Ryder Cup career, which began in 1995, Lefty failed to qualify for the U.S. side and the de facto team room front man would be tough to pass over.

“His game has been in a good position all year, he’s putted great, I think Jason Day is the only player with better putting stats this year,” said Furyk, who met with Mickelson after he missed the cut in St. Louis. “He’s working on a couple of things in his game right now that we talked about.”

Woods also creates some interesting scenarios. His runner-up finish at the PGA vaulted him from 20th to 11th on the final point list and essentially assured what many believed to be a foregone conclusion. Woods will be among Furyk’s captain’s picks, the only real question when it comes to the 14-time major champion is whether he can play and drive a vice captain’s cart.

“He’s on that list we’ve talked about and I think we still need to hash that out,” Furyk said. “Is it possible [to do both jobs]? Sure, we just need to decide if that’s best for the team.”

If Woods and Mickelson have already been penciled in as picks, which many believe they have, that essentially leaves a half dozen players vying for the final two spots.

An 11th-hour charge over the next three weeks could certainly sway Furyk, and he’s made it clear that Le Golf National, site of this year’s matches outside of Paris, favors a certain type of game, think a fairways-and-greens type like Kisner or even Brian Harman, who finished 17th on the point list.

“I’ve taken a look at the golf course and what I think will really work,” Furyk said.

There’s also an undercurrent of interest in Furyk going young with his picks to give a player like DeChambeau or Schauffele a chance to experience the unique pressures of a Ryder Cup “road game,” but Furyk didn’t seem as interested in developing future talent as he is in winning.

“Our goals for long term are important and young blood is a good thing, but I would never sacrifice this team or 2018 for 2022,” he said. “The goal is still to go to Europe and try to retain the cup. That said, having a mix of veteran and young players is a good thing.”

If Furyk sounds a little vague when it comes to his potential picks it should be no real surprise. Getting the picks right is the most demanding part of any captain’s job and he’s just getting started.