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Alan Blondin
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Anonymous surveys are always fun, especially in the world of golf in which few players will say anything negative against a competitor. ESPN.com surveyed 103 tour pros early in the 2015 season, 21 of whom were major champions, and gathered their thoughts on myriad topics. The players came from 20 different countries. Not all players answered every question. What did we learn? Among other things, two-time Masters champion Bubba Watson isn’t the most popular player on tour. The results included: Will Rory win complete the career Grand Slam this week? Yes 28, No 72 Will Tiger finish his career with... Continue reading
Posted Apr 7, 2015 at Green Reading
The National Golf Foundation reports that it believes golf is well-positioned to attract more junior players, possibly leading to the game's growth in the coming years. Parents' concerns about their children's athletic and non-athletic activities puts golf in good stead. According to an NGF newsletter: "As more and more parents become increasingly concerned by the risk of sports-related injuries and the lack of computer-free social engagement for their kids, they are looking for alternative activities that promote children’s physical and mental well-being. That could be good news for golf, which can satisfy the safety concerns and desire for increased recreational... Continue reading
Posted Oct 31, 2014 at Green Reading
It should be a fun few mornings later this week, turning on the television upon rising to watch the most entertaining golf tournament in the world -- the Ryder Cup. The U.S. team has earned its title of the underdog with its recent Ryder Cup performances, including blowing a four-point lead entering the Sunday singles matches that had been a six-point lead with just two Saturday afternoon best ball matches to be completed. The U.S. has lost seven of the past nine Ryder Cups, and hasn't won on foreign soil since 1993. I give a rather decided edge to the... Continue reading
Posted Sep 22, 2014 at Green Reading
Several of the PGA of America professionals who qualified for next week’s $10 million PGA Championship through last month’s PGA Professional National Championship at The Dunes Golf and Beach Club have been profiled in the CBS Sports special “The Road to the PGA Championship.” It’s a documentary-style look at eight competitors in the 96th PGA Championship, along with PGA teaching professionals who have guided three of the game’s current stars – Jason Dufner, Jordan Spieth and J.B. Holmes. The PGA teaching professionals profiled are Chuck Cook, the 1996 PGA Teacher of the Year, Cameron McCormick and Mike Kehoe. The show... Continue reading
Posted Jul 30, 2014 at Green Reading
With its handling of the Whispering Pines Golf Club situation, I believe the city of Myrtle Beach passed on a rare opportunity to better the community, particularly with The First Tee. The First Tee of Brunswick County founder Rusty Petrea met with both city leaders and Will Mann, who along with fellow past PGA of America president Gary Schaal formed a group that was vying for the management contract at the course, in the hopes Whispering Pines could become the home of The First Tee of the Grand Strand, which is now still seeking a headquarters. Mann and Schaal had... Continue reading
Posted Jul 11, 2014 at Green Reading
The Myrtle Beach Pelicans are hosting a night for The First Tee of Brunswick County and First Tee of the Grand Strand on Saturday. Tickets can be purchased and paid for through http://bit.ly/1iEwwPg or www.thefirstteebrunswickcounty.org. Any tickets purchased through the site will be available at Will Call at TicketReturn.com Field at Pelicans Ballpark, and $4 from every $11 ticket will go to local First Tee chapters. Tickets can be purchased for First Tee students to attend the game, as well. In addition to the Pelicans’ donation, PGA Tour Superstore will also be making a donation based on ticket sales. The... Continue reading
Posted Jun 17, 2014 at Green Reading
This week's BMW Charity Pro-Am in the Greenville area has the Web.com Tour's most unique and fun format with about 25 celebrities taking part in the event, which is held on three courses, and raises an abnormal amount of money for charity for a Web.com Tour event. Organizers and title sponsor BMW try to make the event special for players. This year, participating professionals and their caddies were invited to the BMW Performance Center in Greenville on Tuesday to get behind the wheel of a BMW and test their driving skills in a series of on-track exercises. The tournament is... Continue reading
Posted May 15, 2014 at Green Reading
Don’t be surprised if Adam Scott becomes this week the fourth back-to-back winner in Masters history. He has a calmness and confidence about him as a holder of a green jacket that is evident. He had become more comfortable playing Augusta National in recent years, culminating with last year’s win following a tie for second in 2011 and tie for eighth in 2012. And he appears to be enjoying his rounds on the course now, rather than either pressing or playing defensively, both of which Augusta National can entice in players. He was appreciative of his reception throughout the course... Continue reading
Posted Apr 10, 2014 at Green Reading
Tiger Woods is missing his first Masters since turning pro because of recent surgery on his back, and his absence from Augusta National Golf Club has been evident and will be evident throughout the tournament. “Having Tiger in a tournament definitely creates more buzz, more of an atmosphere,” Rory McIlroy said. “You know where he is on the course just by the crowd and the gallery that follows him.” The Woods’ effect is perhaps its greater at Augusta National, where he has won four green jackets. But a fantastic Masters finish is likely with or without Woods in the field.... Continue reading
Posted Apr 9, 2014 at Green Reading
Due to inclement weather conditions and safety concerns, Augusta National's gates were closed around 10 a.m. Monday, and the forecast did not permit the reopening of the grounds. The last time gates did not open due to bad weather during a scheduled day was Monday, April 7, 2003. Purchasers of Monday Practice Round tickets will be sent refunds in May, and will be guaranteed the opportunity to purchase 2015 Practice Rounds tickets. Further information will be included with the refund. “We are disappointed that our patrons could not enjoy today’s practice round, however safety must be our first concern. We... Continue reading
Posted Apr 7, 2014 at Green Reading
This from Chris King of Myrtle Beach Golf Holiday on John Ponter of Baden, Pa.: There is an old saying that timing is everything in life and at least one Myrtle Beach golfer isn’t likely to argue. At 7:30 a.m. on March 19, John Ponter and the three friends he had traveled to Myrtle Beach with called Oyster Bay, one of the area’s most popular courses, in search of an unlikely tee time. "We had a cancellation in the morning and they called like five minutes later and got an 8:20 tee time,” said Brian Altena, Oyster Bay’s first assistant.... Continue reading
Posted Mar 27, 2014 at Green Reading
Brian Selfridge of Marlton, N.J., will be displaying his STEP into Golf junior golf concept during a Myrtle Beach Junior Golf Foundation Clinic conducted by Russ Brown and other teaching pros at the Golf School of Myrtle Beach at River Oaks Golf Club at 4:30 p.m. Thursday. The cost of the one-hour clinic is $10 for juniors not already registered. The Slotted Driver is the concept’s key product. It’s a cavity-back driver made for juniors to assist with aiming and training and can also be used for everyday play. Selfridge says it conforms to USGA regulations. The cavity back is... Continue reading
Posted Mar 19, 2014 at Green Reading
The Grand Strand-based NGA Tour (formerly the Hooters Tour) is struggling to fill fields in this new age of mini-tour developmental golf, but its worth was proven again this past week. Tour alums swept both the Web.com Tour and PGA Tour events with victories. In fact, NGA Tour alums grabbed the three top positions at the PGA Tour Valspar Championship with winner John Senden, runner-up Kevin Na and third-place Scott Langley. It’s the third week in a row an NGA Tour alum has won on the PGA Tour following Chesson Hadley’s Puerto Rico Open win and Russell Henley’s win at... Continue reading
Posted Mar 18, 2014 at Green Reading
Found this interesting article by Will Gray on the Golf Channel's website. The article is about a course in Florida: If Tampa-area golfers want to play for a couple bucks, they're probably well-served to steer clear of Tarpon Springs Golf Course for the time being. That's because the course is currently under investigation by Tarpon Springs police for the gambling that occurs among the various golf leagues it hosts. According to a Tampa Bay Times report, regulars at Tarpon Springs were told on Feb. 8 that they needed to either eliminate their side action - usually on the scale of... Continue reading
Posted Mar 17, 2014 at Green Reading
On Friday, representatives of National Golf Management are marking the 40th anniversary of the opening of Arcadian Shores Golf Club in Myrtle Beach. The course is a 6,800-yard, par-72 layout, as it was when it opened in 1974. The layout is considered the first solo design project of accomplished course designer Rees Jones, who revisited the course last year. “What’s fascinating about Arcadian Shores is that my footprint is still here,” Jones said in a release, referring to the course’s intact routing in an age when so many golf courses are compromised by new construction around them. “When I got... Continue reading
Posted Mar 6, 2014 at Green Reading
With his recent success and increasing popularity, Coastal Carolina University alumnus Dustin Johnson is increasingly becoming the poster boy for TaylorMade-adidas Golf, which has had an endorsement and club agreement with the Columbia native since he turned pro in 2007. TaylorMade-adidas has released the second episode in its “adidas Golf Innovations” video series. In this episode, adidas Golf Tour staff professional Dustin Johnson, who averages over 12,000 steps throughout 18 holes, participates in several scientific experiments to determine just how much comfort impacts a golfer’s performance. The in-depth episode tests the cushioning properties of traditional golf shoes against the new... Continue reading
Posted Mar 6, 2014 at Green Reading
Is this a sign of things to come for Dustin Johnson? It has to be a good omen for Johnson to be selected along with Jessica Korda to be the two players chosen to take part in a press conference naming adidas Golf as the official uniform provider for USA Golf athletes, coaches and staff for the 2016 Olympic Games in Brazil in 2016. The press conference took place Tuesday and both Johnson and Korda have endorsement deals with TaylorMade-adidas, but then again so don’t a lot of other U.S. players. USA Golf is the national governing body for golf... Continue reading
Posted Mar 4, 2014 at Green Reading
From assorted sources, including the PGA Tour: This year's Waste Management Phoenix Open set a tournament and PGA Tour record with weekly attendance of 563,008. The previous record of 538,356 was set in 2008 when the Super Bowl was held on the same day as the tournament's final round at University of Phoenix Stadium in nearby Glendale, Ariz. The Super Bowl will return to Glendale next February. With attendance of 563,008 for the week, TPC Scottsdale was Arizona’s second-most populated “city.” By comparison, Tucson has a population of 520,116. The big crowds have helped the community in return, as the... Continue reading
Posted Feb 5, 2014 at Green Reading
Maya Prabhu, who covers the Myrtle Beach area for The Sun News, provided an update on the fate of Whispering Pines: The Myrtle Beach City Council is not expected to vote on a motion Tuesday that would close the struggling Whispering Pines Golf Course and it is unclear when the topic will be discussed. The motion was suggested by Councilwoman Susan Grissom Means, who will not attend Tuesday’s meeting. “I asked them to delay that item because I’m not going to be there,” Means said. Assistant city manager Ron Andrews has said the golf course has lost an average of... Continue reading
Posted Feb 3, 2014 at Green Reading
LPGA Tour star and model Natalie Gulbis will not only be representing Myrtle Beach golf management company National Golf Management on the road in 2014, she’ll also be a part-time resident on the Grand Strand this year. And she expects to continue her frequent visits to the area in the coming years. The California native and Las Vegas resident is making Pawleys Plantation – where she has been granted honorary member status – her East Coast and second home. She’ll regularly be staying in a villa at the PawleysIsland golf resort. “Over the next couple years I think I’ll be... Continue reading
Posted Jan 15, 2014 at Green Reading
If you're looking to play some golf on the Grand Strand this winter, there are a couple charity tournaments upcoming, as well as a couple groups that will meet regularly this winter. Jan. 18 | Mike Schroder Benefit Tournament, True Blue Plantation, 10 a.m. shotgun start, four-person team captain’s choice format. The entry fee of $75 per player includes post-round food, awards, door prizes, goodie bag, 50/50 raffle and mulligan opportunities. Hole sponsorships are $100. All tournament proceeds will help Schroder, a golf instructor on the Grand Strand for three decades who is employed at the SteveDresserGolfAcademy at True Blue,... Continue reading
Posted Jan 14, 2014 at Green Reading
The benevolent PGA Tour Wives Association is partnering with Yap On It to host a question-and-answer series during the 2014 PGA Tour season. Yap On It’s web platform allows the PTWA to connect directly with fans and raise awareness for the charities they serve. Each event will offer fans a unique opportunity to pose questions online to PGA Tour stars and their wives. The Series will kick off Weds. Jan. 15 during the Humana Challenge with current PTWA President Amy Wilson, who is married to tour member Mark Wilson. The second of 10 events will be Jan. 22 and feature... Continue reading
Posted Jan 14, 2014 at Green Reading
There will be a lot of opinions both before and after the tournaments on the USGA's decision to stage the U.S. Open and U.S. Women's Open on consecutive weeks in June a couple hours up the road in Pinehurst, N.C. LPGA star Michelle Wie gave her thoughts on the consecutive events this past week during an interview on Golf Channel's Morning Drive. “I have thought a lot about it," Wie said. "I think it is very interesting to see how it plays out. Pinehurst No. 2 has a lot of great history, and if all else fails I heard there... Continue reading
Posted Jan 11, 2014 at Green Reading
NBC/Golf Channel analyst Johnny Miller believes he saw something in Dustin Johnson's putting during the final round of the Hyundai Tournament of Champions that contributed to his five-birdie, five-bogey 73 and tie for sixth finish after he entered the final round tied for the lead. "He has the heel of the putter beating the toe coming through it. You want to putt bad – that’s one of the easiest ways to do it," Miller said. Of course Johnson must have putted alright through the first three rounds to be 14 under and tied for the lead. Hopefully he'll be able... Continue reading
Posted Jan 6, 2014 at Green Reading
Both defending champions and the Carolinas boys and girls junior players of the year highlight the field in the 24th Charles Tilghman Junior Championship, which started Saturday and is finishing up Sunday at The Surf Golf and Beach Club. Defending boys champion Austin Zoller, 17, of Summerville and defending girls champion Madison Mossa, 16, of Charlotte, are in the field, as are the 2012 Carolinas Golf Association players of the year in Keenan Huskey of Greenville and Kelli Murphy of Elgin. The 2013 Players of the Year as selected by the Carolinas Golf Association through a points system will be... Continue reading
Posted Dec 14, 2013 at Green Reading