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Hittin’ the Links

Volume Three Hundred Sixty-Two

Oct. 21, 2013     By     Comments (0)

Hittin' the LinksSomething weird was in the air this week. Brandel Chamblee came right out and accused Tiger of cheating. Three events on the big tours went to playoffs, while on the PGA TOUR Webb Simpson ran away and hid. The U.S. Government got back to work, and so did Obama (on his game). And can you believe that Brazilian wildlife may find it's way onto the Olympic golf course in Rio?

Here's a quick tour in links around the world of golf, including a sighting of Michelle Wie's game, more playoffs than you can shake a 3-iron at, and one more reason to keep your ball in the fairway. Let's hit the links.

Volume Three Hundred Sixty-One

Oct. 14, 2013     By     Comments (0)

Hittin' the Links2014 started this week, at least according to the PGA TOUR. European Tour players just can't quite shoot that magic number. Sneds says PEDs are no problem on the PGA TOUR. And an 18-year-old wins (again)!

The calendar still says 2013, but FedExCup points earned at this week's Open count in the 2014 points race. In all, six events of what we used to call "the silly season" are now the start of the 2013-2014 PGA TOUR season. With the matter of tour cards already decided for next year, players can get on with the business of amassing points in the race toward the playoffs. While the biggest names will likely continue to skip these events, the new system should attract many others looking to get a leg up in the points race, resulting in improved fields, more viewers, and higher ad revenues. At least, that's the plan.

Here's a quick tour in links around golf, including those tours on the 2014 calendar and those still on 2013.

Volume Three Hundred Sixty

Oct. 8, 2013     By     Comments (0)

Hittin' the LinksThe U.S. team, with laid-back Freddie Couples at the helm, won the tenth edition of the Presidents Cup over Nick Price's International Team, but the golf was at times upstaged by the weather. Why? Perhaps it was The Curse.

The (sub)urban legend around Dublin is that the Muirfield Village Golf Club is built on land that contains a Native American burial ground. These rumored burial grounds may or may not host the remains of Shateyaronyah, a real-life Wyandot chief known by the unlikely moniker Leatherlips. According to the legend, the fact that wealthy non-natives now smack a little white ball around on this sacred ground has angered the Wyandot spirits who express their rage by bringing rains down on the Memorial Tournament more years than not and now on the Presidents Cup, as well. Whether it was the "Curse of Leatherlips" or a simple meteorological aberration, the Presidents Cup and Muirfield Village got hit with nearly 2" of rain this weekend.

While those of us looking forward to seeing the pros play a firm and fast Muirfield course (for once) were deprived of that spectacle, those who like birdies certainly got a great show as the soft conditions and the lift/clean/place rule let the players shoot right at the pins. This week, HtL looks at the Presidents Cup that was and other happenings in golf.

Volume Three Hundred Fifty-Nine

Sep. 30, 2013     By     Comments (0)

Hittin' the LinksHere's a good question to throw out for your next 19th hole discussion: What week of the golf season features the best group of venues? I think it would be tough to beat this past weekend.

First of all, the Champions Tour players and selected juniors from across the U.S. played the Nature Valley First Tee Open at Pebble Beach Golf Links. Not bad for openers, but the week also included the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship, which was contested on the Old Course at St. Andrews as well as Kingsbarns and Carnoustie. Not a bad trio at all. And just to sweeten the pot a little more, the Tour Championship wrapped up the finals series on Dye's Valley Course, you know, the other course at TPC Sawgrass.

Speaking of the Tour, you could say that the Tour Championship put the seal on the 2013 PGA TOUR season by determining the final card holders for 2014. This week, HtL looks at the finale, the Presidents Cup, and more.

Volume Three Hundred Fifty-Eight

Sep. 23, 2013     By     Comments (0)

Hittin' the LinksThe calendar says that it is now officially fall; and though the weather is beginning to cool down, the golf is as hot as ever.

Though the 2013 PGA TOUR concluded this past weekend, the 2013-14 season is just a few weeks away. The Tour Championship this coming weekend will help determine who will be fulltime participants on the PGA TOUR next year and who will be seeking their 2014-15 cards on the Tour. The LPGA is on sabbatical, but will return Oct. 3 at the Reignwood LPGA Classic in Beijing. And a little thing called the Presidents Cup also tees off Oct. 3.

It's just a great time of the year for a little golf. Let's get started.

Volume Three Hundred Fifty-Seven

Sep. 17, 2013     By     Comments (0)

Hittin' the LinksIt was a big weekend in golf: an LPGA major and the third legs of the playoffs on both the PGA Tour and the Tour.

Weather played a major role at both the BMW Championship in Chicago and at the Evian Championship in Evian, France. The LPGA's fifth major was shortened to 54 holes, the last 18 of which were played under lift, clean, and place rules. Rain pushed the final round to Monday at the BMW Championship, where Tiger's final round woes of 2013 continued as he shot even par 71 and finished T11. Meanwhile, another past Masters winner raced up the leaderboard and toward a possible date with destiny in Atlanta.

In this edition of HtL, we have some saucy fare from France, a deep dish or two from Chicago, and some home cooking (for me) from Columbus.

Volume Three Hundred Fifty-Six

Sep. 9, 2013     By     Comments (1)

Hittin' the LinksJust like the NFL, Hittin' the Links is back! Even though the PGA Tour and LPGA took the week off, there was still plenty of action on and off the links.

If you haven't been paying attention to the inaugural Tour Finals, maybe you should take a look. While it lacks the star power of the FedExCup Playoffs, you will recognize a lot of names (Trevor Immelman, Ricky Barnes, Will MacKenzie, Ryo Ishikawa, Vaughn Taylor, et al.), and the drama doesn't end when the tournament leader has a three-stroke lead on the 18th tee. While the top 25 money winners from the Tour's regular season have already earned PGA Tour cards for 2014, the four week Finals will determine who gets the remaining 25 cards and the final pecking order of those cards. Next week, the Tour Finals visit my town -- Columbus, OH -- for the Nationwide Children's Hospital Championship at The Ohio State University Scarlet Course, before wrapping up the playoffs and season Sept. 26-29 at Dye's Valley Course in Ponte Vedra Beach, FL, for the Tour Championship.

In this edition of HtL, we ask the following: Who is the best PGA Tour player with only one win? Is Tim Tebow's swing speed really 141 mph? And why you should probably consider Newton's Third Law of Motion when deciding whether to cut a shot around that tree or just chip back into the fairway.

Volume Three Hundred Fifty Five

Aug. 5, 2013     By     Comments (0)

Hittin' the LinksHello golf fans and welcome to yet another Hittin' the Links. Its time for the final Major Championship of the year. Will Tiger continue his great play from Firestone? Will Phil the thrill make another surprise run? Or will there be another storyline unfolding at Oak Hill? I love to watch Major Championship golf, it will be exciting no matter who is in the lead come Sunday.

In this edition of HtL we begin with a look at Rory's emotions, then check out Tiger being a dad, and investigate what Tiger did to Mark O'Meara. Also, we peruse the captain's picks for the Solheim Cup, find out who really loves burritos, and do a wrap-up of the week's events. Read on.

Volume Three Hundred Fifty Four

Jul. 22, 2013     By     Comments (1)

Hittin' the LinksHello golf fans and welcome to another Hittin' the Links. I don't know if I have ever enjoyed watching a golf tournament more than Sunday's final round at The Open Championship. Lead changes galore, and nobody really looked like they really wanted to win until Phil decided to kick it into gear and run away with it. Congratulations, goes out to Lefty for getting the third part of his career grand slam. We will have to wait until next year to see if he can get his hands on that elusive U.S. Open Trophy.

In this newest HtL we begin with a look at this week's celebrity event, then check out the car Lexi got with her hole in one, and find out what was going on with Rory McIlroy. Also, we find out who got a slow play penalty this time, investigate a senior citizen golf fight, and do a wrap-up of the week's events. Read on!

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