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2012 John Deere Classic Discussion Thread

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Can Steve Stricker win his 4th John Deere title?

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Check out the reception Striker has received at the tournament so far this week

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SILVIS, Ill. – The Quad Cities is in the grips of Stricker-mania.

His presence looms large over the John Deere Classic with billboards around the metropolitan area promoting Steve Stricker’s quest to win the “Stricker Slam.”

His arrival here was greeted with almost as much fanfare as the year’s newest line of tractors.

Tournament officials gave away Steve Stricker bobbleheads during Tuesday’s practice rounds. They also gave them away at a Quad Cities River Bandits minor-league baseball game. Stricker saw them all over the place playing the pro-am Wednesday.

“I’ve signed quite a few already,” Stricker said.

As a University of Illinois graduate who grew up in Wisconsin, Stricker (45) is practically an adopted son here. A lot of folks will turn out at TPC Deere Run this week to root for him as he seeks to join Young Tom Morris, Walter Hagen, Gene Sarazen and Tiger Woods as the only players to win the same PGA Tour event four years in a row.

Even Woods is taking notice of all the fuss.

Stricker was paired with Woods for two days at the Greenbrier Classic last week.

“I talked to him about it,” Stricker said. “In his own little way – I think we all know what his way is – he told me to get it done. He had some really nice things to say, but he also threw a jab at me.”

Woods turned teasingly to Stricker in the middle of their conversation.

“You know, only one of us has won four tournaments in a row,” Woods cracked.

At the John Deere Classic, Stricker gains a more limited appreciation for all the crazy attention Woods endures.

“There’s a lot of focus and attention on me, and I’m not real comfortable with that position,” Stricker said. “I played with Tiger last week, and, I mean, that’s a different fish bowl. That’s a big fish bowl.”

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Does anybody know how much distance Stricker costs himself with his swing?  He has a very noticeable lack of wrist hinge that seems like it would cost quite a bit of power.  On the other hand, it creates a lot less moving parts and I imagine that must improve consistency.  It's definitely a swing I would love to have, I know that much!

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He's not in bad shape with an opening round 65.

Troy Matteson blistered the course with a 61, though. He's working with Matt Killen now on his golf swing. Good for him - I met Troy and talked with him (mostly about his wife's photography interest) and he's a cool, nice dude so far as I can tell.

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99 players below par today, in an event with a pretty weak field. 69-69 might not make the cut. This is why they have to use an adjusted scoring average for the Vardon. It's also why I say scoring average doesn't mean much, unless you compare guys playing similar schedules. You can't compare the averages in different eras to prove anything, because tournament organizers know that the fans want to see birdies and eagles, and so they compensate for weak fields by making their courses play easier. They did it in 1945, and they do it today.

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Originally Posted by Golfingdad

Does anybody know how much distance Stricker costs himself with his swing?  He has a very noticeable lack of wrist hinge that seems like it would cost quite a bit of power.  On the other hand, it creates a lot less moving parts and I imagine that must improve consistency.  It's definitely a swing I would love to have, I know that much!

How much distance does it "cost" him? I'd say not much. He's not the longest guy on tour but he's not in the short hitter club either. He gets a lot more hinge than it looks like. I think because he does not start to hinge his hands until later in the backswing than many guys, it looks like he doesn't hinge his hands. He does have less hinge on his wedges than many players. But full swing is a full backswing. Here's a 2011 analysis:

I hope it makes it fun and interesting this weekend.

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Originally Posted by rustyredcab

How much distance does it "cost" him? I'd say not much. He's not the longest guy on tour but he's not in the short hitter club either. He gets a lot more hinge than it looks like. I think because he does not start to hinge his hands until later in the backswing than many guys, it looks like he doesn't hinge his hands. He does have less hinge on his wedges than many players. But full swing is a full backswing. Here's a 2011 analysis:

I hope it makes it fun and interesting this weekend.

Interesting.  I would have sworn that on the range yesterday his wrist hinge was way, way less.  I guess maybe it's just an iron swing.  Either way, I still really like his swing!  Go Steve!

Thanks for this video.

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Originally Posted by iacas

He's not in bad shape with an opening round 65.

Troy Matteson blistered the course with a 61, though. He's working with Matt Killen now on his golf swing. Good for him - I met Troy and talked with him (mostly about his wife's photography interest) and he's a cool, nice dude so far as I can tell.

That's pretty cool. I've always liked how Troy hits a lot of greens. Wasn't working out with B&P;? He seemed to drop off a bit since winning a couple of years ago. I read he's not a great putter, but I think he was 2nd in Strokes Gained at 4.82 strokes gained in the first round, which is unbelievable.

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Originally Posted by michaeljames92

That's pretty cool. I've always liked how Troy hits a lot of greens. Wasn't working out with B&P;? He seemed to drop off a bit since winning a couple of years ago. I read he's not a great putter, but I think he was 2nd in Strokes Gained at 4.82 strokes gained in the first round, which is unbelievable.

Yes, he used to work with them, but they've lost a few of their previous students to folks like Grant Waite or Nick C or Sean Foley (they may not have literally lost people to Foley, but he teaches something very similar) and some have just left for other teachers. I think they currently teach two or three students on the PGA Tour these days (Charlie, JJ (who took a break but then came back), and a guy from Korea I think). Tour players switch instructors almost as frequently as they switch caddies, so you can't read much into that. And as I've said before about Weir and Baddeley, they don't just immediately forget everything they learned from previous instructors nor do they immediately change their swings. Troy's swing is very similar, as you'll note, and I heard that he was working with Matt Killen from the S&T; Facebook group. (Then later heard that he hasn't worked with Killen since May, so who knows?).

I hope Troy plays well. He's a nice guy.

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Whatever Matteson is  doing must be working as he has started out birdie, birdie today.

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Originally Posted by Golfingdad

Does anybody know how much distance Stricker costs himself with his swing?  He has a very noticeable lack of wrist hinge that seems like it would cost quite a bit of power.  On the other hand, it creates a lot less moving parts and I imagine that must improve consistency.  It's definitely a swing I would love to have, I know that much!


I think when you look at his position on the downswing, when his lead arm is parallel to the ground, he has plenty of wrist hinge--and that's all that really matters.  He does keep his wrists fairly quiet with his wedges all the way through the swing, which is the reason why he's consistently one of the best wedge players on tour.

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Originally Posted by k-troop

I think when you look at his position on the downswing, when his lead arm is parallel to the ground, he has plenty of wrist hinge--and that's all that really matters.  He does keep his wrists fairly quiet with his wedges all the way through the swing, which is the reason why he's consistently one of the best wedge players on tour.

It's a wider angle than your "average" pro but the angle is less than halfway on the backswing.  Very similar to Hunter Mahan.  And obviously that handle is forward coming into impact.  What makes his swing look like he's not hinging his wrists is the way he sets up with his hands at address.  Notice where the butt of the club is pointing compared to other players, very high.  Another way to say it is that he ulnar deviates his wrists (especially the left) at address.  This can be very useful for hitting pitches and short wedges.  When I took these swings at the US Open he was barely taking a divot and hitting towering draws.  I loved watching him in person.

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Originally Posted by k-troop

I think when you look at his position on the downswing, when his lead arm is parallel to the ground, he has plenty of wrist hinge--and that's all that really matters.  He does keep his wrists fairly quiet with his wedges all the way through the swing, which is the reason why he's consistently one of the best wedge players on tour.

Yes, he does have plenty of wrist hinge, but less than a lot of other guys it seems.  Maybe it's just mostly in the backswing ... in Mike's video at A3 it looks like the angle between his left arm and the shaft is around 130 or so.  (I went to the "P's and A's" thread to get my terminology down and there is a pic of SS at A3 there too labeled as 121*)  Even at the top of the backswing, it doesn't appear to me like that angle gets too much smaller.

Of course, I tried to freeze it at A5 and he is around 90* at that point.

Regardless, it certainly seems like there are less moving parts here than the average good swing.  Something I would like to emulate.

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Its always cool to watch a tournament in which you've played the course before.  This is the only course in all the PGA events that I've played.  Just watching and remembering the holes, and saying to myself, "Hey, I birdied that hole!"  I did well on the par-3s there... haha!  Im hoping for Stricker to pull another one off!

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Originally Posted by phillyk

Its always cool to watch a tournament in which you've played the course before.  This is the only course in all the PGA events that I've played.  Just watching and remembering the holes, and saying to myself, "Hey, I birdied that hole!"  I did well on the par-3s there... haha!  Im hoping for Stricker to pull another one off!

Very true!

Lot`s of guys to root for this weekend including:

Stricker- Currently -10.  Seems like a nice guy and a 4 peat would be something special for him.

Jamie Lovemark- Currently -10.  Was in a playoff right out of College and was the youngest leading $ winner on the NW Tour in 2010 before hurting his back and having surgery.  Running out of time on his major medical.

Lee Jansen- Currently -10.  Two time US Open Champ has been in 4 Web.com events this year along with 8 tour starts.

Eric Compton- Currently -9.  On his third heart!

Billy Hurley III- Currently -9.  Navy Vet and Tour rookie.

Duffy Waldorf- Currently -8.  back playing and gearing up for the Sr Tour after missing several seasons due to a knee injury.

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I just saw Troy Matteson's swing on tv today and it looks different - I've been watching the latest Stack and Tilt videos and haven't seen him play for awhile so I'm in the dark as far as how his swing has progressed since the videos.

The braking is not there, his hands are behind his head on the follow through. The pronounced weight forward "look" isn't there either although I never got a FO look at his swing so maybe I saw incorrectly. It also looks like his backswing is longer. Am I seeing things right?

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Note: This thread is 2913 days old. We appreciate that you found this thread instead of starting a new one, but if you plan to post here please make sure it's still relevant. If not, please start a new topic. Thank you!

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