New year, same mission for Spieth

By Rex HoggardJanuary 6, 2016, 1:37 am

KAPALUA, Hawaii – It’s been less than a month since Jordan Spieth put the finishing touches on 2015 - a historic season by any measure - and began the process of reloading.

Five wins, two major championships and a shot at the single-season Grand Slam through 71 holes at the Open Championship all speaks to Spieth’s dominance last year. Now he faces the daunting task of following up what would be a once-in-a-career year for most players.

At 22 years old, Spieth knows he will be judged by 2015. It’s the way of sports.

“It just seems that you're judging from the previous year in my mind,” he said on Tuesday at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions. “That's the general public, so I give you my perspective as being in the general public.”

But the demands of a “now” public aside, Spieth also realizes that the realities of the modern Tour and a split-schedule create a blurred line between seasons that can be exploited.

For Spieth, there has been little distinction between the 2015 season, which ended with his victory at the Tour Championship in September, and the start of a new campaign.

He’s already posted a top-10 finish this season, a tie for seventh at the WGC-HSBC Champions in November, and admittedly didn’t have a lot of time to dwell on what he achieved in ’15.

“I'm not even thinking of it as a new year. I'm just thinking of we had a three-week break and we're just continuing to hopefully stay at the same level,” Spieth said.

There was time to assess his game and focus on the areas he felt were needing, like his wedge play, which he called “average” in 2015, from 60 to 140 yards.

He and swing coach Cameron McCormick spent the abbreviated offseason devising a plan to improve his wedge game, which will be put to the test this week in Maui.

As for how he plans to improve on that 2015 campaign, which would not exactly qualify as low-hanging fruit, he does have goals for the new year, but is reluctant to give details.

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Getting in contention at the year’s major championships is the most obvious area of interest after giving himself a chance at all four Grand Slam stops last season.

“If I can get there at least a couple times this year again, that means that our plan building up to the majors is working, continuing to work, and then it comes down to each individual event, being able to close them out,” he said.

Although it’s a small sample size, he also has room for improvement over the next two months.

Spieth, who turned pro in 2012, has never won before March as the Tour makes its way through the West Coast swing.

To be fair, it’s not as though Spieth is winless on the West Coast. Last year at Chambers Bay in Washington he won his second consecutive major, which would suggest it’s more about time than place.

His best finish to start the year on the West Coast is a runner-up showing the only other time he’s played in Maui, when he finished a stroke behind Zach Johnson.

On Tuesday at Kapalua, he explained that he “loves the grainy Bermuda” greens on the Plantation Course, which are largely considered some of the circuit’s most challenging putting surfaces.

It’s a nod to growing up in Texas on Bermuda greens, and he admitted that poa annua greens at other West Coast stops are more difficult for him.

“Poa annua throws me off with my speed a little bit. It takes breaks a bit different,” he said. “I've struggled a little in San Diego putting. Here and there I have good putting rounds, but I would say that makes a difference being on comfortable grass versus the normal California tournaments.”

But then getting off the West Coast swing schneid would only heighten the anticipation going into the major championship season, and he seemed to acknowledge the inevitable realities of unrealistic expectations born from 2015.

At such heights, only Tiger Woods in the modern era was able to maintain a level of profound consistency from year to year. Even Rory McIlroy, whose career now includes four majors, has proven himself vulnerable to the occasional swoon when he failed to add to his Grand Slam total in 2013 and '15.

Instead, Spieth has embraced the long view as evidenced by his answer on Tuesday when he was asked how he plans to pull off an encore in 2016.

“Doesn't an encore mean that the show is then over?” he smiled. “I hope I've got like 40 years out here . . . To be honest, I'm not thinking of this as anything different. When you write the date, that's about it in my mind. I think we've just had a little bit of a break.”

It may be a new calendar for the Tour, but for Spieth the mission remains the same.

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Rose's Saturday 64 matches Carnoustie Open record

By Ryan LavnerJuly 21, 2018, 1:03 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Justin Rose needed to sink a 14-foot putt on the final hole Friday just to make the cut on the number at The Open.

Freewheeling when he came to the course Saturday, Rose tied the lowest score ever recorded in an Open at Carnoustie.

Entering the weekend nine shots off the lead, the world No. 3 carded a bogey-free, 7-under 64 to at least make things interesting. It won’t be known for several hours how many shots Rose will be behind, but his back-nine 30 gives him an opportunity, if the wind blows 25 mph Sunday as forecast, to challenge the leaders.

Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

After all, Paul Lawrie was 10 shots back entering the final round here in 1999.

“I think the birdie on 18 last night freed me up, and I’m just very happy to be out on this golf course and not down the road somewhere else this morning,” said Rose, who is at 4-under 209. “So that might have been part of the shift in mindset today. I had nothing to lose from that point of view.”

Rose’s 64 matched Steve Stricker and Richard Green’s record score at Carnoustie (2007).

It also was Rose’s career-low round in a major.

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Tiger Tracker: 147th Open Championship

By Tiger TrackerJuly 21, 2018, 12:45 pm

Tiger Woods, in search of his 15th career major championship title, started the weekend six off the lead at Carnoustie. We're tracking him in Round 3 of The Open.

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Watch: Full replays of The Open coverage

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 21, 2018, 12:20 pm

NBC Sports and Golf Channel are showcasing nearly 50 hours of live coverage of the 147th Open. Missed anything? Well, you can catch up right here. Click on the links below for replays from Carnoustie, broken down into daily segments:

Saturday, Day 3 (Times ET)

4:30-7AM (Watch): Sunny skies and birdies were on the menu early in Round 3, as Justin Rose made his way around Carnoustie in 64 strokes. Click here or on the image below to watch.

Friday, Day 2 (Times ET)

8:20AM-3PM (Watch): As the skies cleared on Friday afternoon, defending champion Jordan Spieth made a run to try and regain the claret jug. Click here or on the image below to watch. Also, click here to watch the full replay of the marquee group: Jordan Spieth, Justin Rose and Kiradech Aphibarnrat.

1:30-8:20AM (Watch): On a rainy Friday morning at Carnoustie, Rory McIlroy shot 69 to reach 4 under, while Zach Johnson fired a 67 for the early lead. Click here or on the image below to watch. Also, click here to watch the full replay of the marquee group: Brooks Koepka, Ian Poulter and Cameron Smith.

Thursday, Day 1 (Times ET)

Noon-4PM (Watch): Tiger Woods was up and down in the afternoon, as winds picked up a little and no one could catch Kevin Kisner. Click here or on the image below to watch. Also, click here to watch the full replay of the marquee group: Woods, Russell Knox and Hideki Matsuyama.

1:30-8:25AM (Watch): Defending champion Jordan Spieth got off to a good start, while Kevin Kisner (66) set the early pace. Click here or on the image below to watch. Also, click here to watch the full replay of the marquee group: Rickie Fowler, Jon Rahm and Chris Wood.

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How to watch The Open on TV and online

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 21, 2018, 8:30 am

You want to watch the 147th Open? Here’s how you can do it.

Golf Channel and NBC Sports will be televising 182 hours of overall programming from the men's third major of the year at Carnoustie

In addition to the traditional coverage, the two networks will showcase three live alternate feeds: marquee groups, featured holes (our new 3-hole channel) and spotlight action. You can also watch replays of full-day coverage, Thursday-Sunday, in the Golf Channel app, NBC Sports apps, and on  

Here’s the weekly TV schedule, with live stream links in parentheses. You can view all the action on the Golf Channel mobile, as well. Alternate coverage is noted in italics:

(All times Eastern; GC=Golf Channel; NBC=NBC Sports; or check the GLE app)

Monday, July 16

GC: 7-9AM: Morning Drive (

GC: 9-11AM: Live From The Open (

GC: 7-9PM: Live From The Open (

Tuesday, July 17

GC: 6AM-2PM: Live From The Open (

Wednesday, July 18

GC: 6AM-2PM: Live From The Open (

Thursday, July 19

GC: Midnight-1:30AM: Midnight Drive (

GC: Day 1: The Open, live coverage: 1:30AM-4PM ( Day 1: The Open, Spotlight: 1:30AM-4PM ( Day 1: The Open, Marquee Groups: 4AM-3PM ( Day 1: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 4AM-3PM (

GC: Live From The Open: 4-5PM (

Friday, July 20

GC: Day 2: The Open, live coverage: 1:30AM-4PM ( Day 2: The Open, Spotlight: 1:30AM-4PM ( Day 2: The Open, Marquee Groups: 4AM-3PM ( Day 2: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 4AM-3PM (

GC: Live From The Open: 4-5PM (

Saturday, July 21

GC: Day 3: The Open, live coverage: 4:30-7AM (

NBC: Rd. 3: The Open, live coverage: 7AM-3PM ( Day 3: The Open, Spotlight: 4:30AM-3PM ( Day 3: The Open, Marquee Groups: 5AM-3PM ( Day 3: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 5AM-3PM (

GC: Live From The Open: 3-4PM (

Sunday, July 22

GC: Day 4: The Open, live coverage: 4:30-7AM (

NBC: Rd. 4: The Open, live coverage: 7AM-2:30PM ( Day 4: The Open, Spotlight: 4:30AM-2:30PM ( Day 4: The Open, Marquee Groups: 5AM-2PM ( Day 4: The Open, 3-Hole Channel: 5AM-2PM (

GC: Live From The Open: 2:30-4PM (