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19th Hole

WMPO headcover report: College love, patriotism, and furry friends

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Even before custom wedge stampings, colorful grips, bold driver heads, and boutique putters became all the rage at OEMs and on the PGA Tour, golfers gave a hint of personality amid otherwise bland staff bags and stock setups with unique headcovers. Ditto, putter covers.

So, while we fixate on, say, Rickie Fowler’s wedge stamping or Justin Thomas’ custom Scotty Cameron X5, there’s still an interesting assortment of golf club covering devices out there, and we’re going to give them some recognition, darn it!

Let’s take a look at a few of the more interesting ones from our photos of the Waste Management Phoenix Open range and practice rounds this week.

While Mr. X is a company man with his Callaway Rogue headcovers, notice his ode to the King with his AP umbrella alignment stick cover.

Tony Finau’s Peretti money bag putter cover. Appropriate for a rising star on the PGA Tour…

Ryan Armour with plenty of pomp and circumstance.

Nick Taylor’s Washington Huskie has seen better days. In fact, it doesn’t look to be seeing much of anything at the moment…

Kevin Streelman: A Duke alum that would make Coach K proud.

Keegan Bradley’s…dog?

Justin Thomas likes the U.S. and knit headcovers.

Jordan Spieth’s new headcover is an ode to his alma mater.

Blayne Barber’s headcover for his ailing caddie. Nice work by Gibbons Handmade. And a reminder, you can donate to a GoFundMe for Gilmer’s medical expenses here.

Martin Piller: Texan.

Hideki Matsuyama is holding onto his Presidents Cup alignment stick cover.

Greg Chalmers has been playing a Bobby Grace putter forever. Putter cover too. Also pictured: The “Pray for Cory” towel many players are sporting in honor of Blayne Barber’s caddie, Cory Gilmer.

Gary the Jayhawk.

Derek Fathauer eschews embroidered leather for a classic knit pom-pom headcover.

Bettinardi certainly wins the Most Appropriate Headcover this week.

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  1. Tony

    Feb 2, 2018 at 9:22 pm

    Those headcovers are weak compared to my set up.

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19th Hole

The Florida Mid-Am final ended with a player getting punched in the face. Or did it?

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On paper–that is the Florida State Golf Association’s paper, not the police report–Marc Dull won the Florida Mid-Am when his opponent, Jeff Golden, withdrew.

Dull had just birdied the 16th hole to pull even, when the skies opened.

A FSGA statement on the final match indicates what happened next

“With the players on 17, play was halted by heavy rains. When conditions permitted play to continue nearly two and a half hours later, Golden was unable to continue due to an unfortunate injury and defaulted the match.”

Indeed, the statement is technically correct. However, it hardly tells the full story…and what a story it is.

Golf Channel’s Ryan Lavner did some digging into the “unfortunate injury,” and what he found was certainly surprising.

Per a Charlotte County Sheriff’s Office police report, Jeff Golden (the man who suffered the “unfortunate injury”) called police. Golden claimed he was assaulted in the Coral Creek Club parking lot by his opponent’s caddie. According to Golden, Dull’s caddie, Brandon Hibbs, punched him in the face.

Why in the world did this happen? Apparently, during the ninth hole of the Golden-Dull match, Golden asked Dull about the condition of one of the holes, inquiring as to whether the cup was damaged.

“Don’t worry about it,” Hibbs (again, this is Dull’s caddie) told Golden. “If you’re going to make it, you’re going around it.”

Following this, Golden told a rules official that he believed the caddie’s statement constituted advice (to Golden, who was not his player). Apparently/incredibly, the rules official agreed, and Golden was awarded the hole.

Hibbs, presumably furious, left the course at this point and returned to the clubhouse.

During the previously mentioned rain delay that interrupted the match, Golden claims Hibbs approached him in the parking lot while he was at his car getting additional clothing.

Per the report, Hibbs “approached him, apologized, then punched him on the left side of the face.”

Now this story would be ridiculous enough if these facts were agreed upon. However, Hibbs says the incident never happened. He claims after leaving the course, he was in the clubhouse during the entire rain delay.

Nobody saw the alleged attack, and there were no surveillance cameras trained on the parking lot. Further, Golden’s face was not swollen or cut and Hibbs’ hands showed no evidence that he’d punched anything.

Golden maintains he was punched and that his shirt had blood on it, also claiming that he suffered “concussion symptoms.”

Golden declined to press charges, and both Hibbs and Dull maintain nothing happened.

Per Ryan Lavner, FSGA executive director Jim Demick said that Golden “didn’t want to play anymore.”

“Regrettably, the golf course was very playable and Jeff understood that he needed to resume the match. I think he was just ready to go,” adding police “found absolutely no evidence of an assault.”

What do you make of this, GolfWRX members? The scales of justice don’t seem to be tipped in Mr. Golden’s favor, do they?

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19th Hole

Ricky Barnes DQd at the Byron Nelson

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Ricky Barnes took a trip to Dairy Queen at the AT&T Byron Nelson. Barnes was disqualified following his second round 1-over 72. He signed for a three at the par-4 sixth hole, when in fact he had made a par.

Ultimately, he won’t rue his impromptu trip to get a Blizzard: Barnes was 3 over and was in no danger of making the cut.

Because this is the world we live in, Barnes apparently found out about the DQ via LuckyTrout Golf Pool on Twitter.

Of course, no scorecard error will ever top “What a stupid I am,” Roberto De Vicenzo signing for 66 when he shot 65, handing the green jacket to Bob Goalby at the 1968 Masters. Such an unfortunate legacy for a man who won hundreds of tournaments around the world.

Also unfortunate: Ricky Barnes is on the way for being remembered as a man who never lived up to the promise he showed at that same tournament, The Masters, as an amateur.

Let’s hope that changes.

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19th Hole

WATCH/LOOK AWAY: Jordan Spieth misses a 15-inch putt

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Aren’t you glad there isn’t video of all the 15-inch putts you’ve missed? I certainly am.

Unfortunately for Jordan Spieth, his failed attempt from little more than a foot at the Byron Nelson was captured on video, and it will exist on the internet for all eternity.

Spieth, who has struggled with the flatstick lately, stood over a short par putt at the par-4 15th hole, and well…

Spieth is currently 183rd on the PGA Tour this season in strokes gained: putting, losing .412 strokes per round to the field on the greens.

But at least he hit the hole, right?

Here’s the offending weapon: Spieth’s trusty Scotty Cameron 009.

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19th Hole

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