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Barstool Sports founder shot a 66 (of sorts) at Shinnecock, our Swing Analysis

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Dave Portnoy, Barstool Sports’ founder, just brought upcoming U.S. Open venue Shinnecock to its knees…kind of.

How did El Pres wind up teeing it up in Southampton? Portnoy wrote about the genesis of the challenge in a characteristic blog post.

“So Riggs and I got in a huge debate a couple weeks ago on Barstool Radio. The question at hand was whether I could win the US Open with unlimited mulligans. For me the answer was a no brainer. Of course I would. That’s not even me bragging. That’s just me knowing what I’m capable of and knowing what unlimited mulligans actually means. I’d 100% birdie every par 3 and then par everything else. That’s -4 a day. Riggs projects the winner at Shinnecock this year will shoot -4 for the entire tournament. The ENTIRE TOURNAMENT. That means I’ll win by roughly 12 strokes. Easy peasy”

“Well apparently the good folks at the USGA caught wind of our argument and have generously offered to let me play Shinnecock on Monday with unlimited mulligans…When I said I’d win with unlimited mulligans I assumed that for the first 2 rounds I’d play from dawn to dusk to achieve my perfect score of -4 per day.”

Was this an insane expectation or something easily achievable? First of all, what do you think Portnoy’s handicap is? 20-25?

Here’s his action

Our Tom Stickney had these remarks after watching the video.

“His shoulders open and tail needs to be stuck out more. Portnoy gets the club rotated a touch too much to the inside and it gets laid off on the way back. An over-the-top transition and a faulty pivot causes the fire-and-fall-back finish.”

Having seen his swing, knowing he had a wheelbarrow’s worth of golf balls and a crew of mulligan retrievers, how do you think El Pres did?

Surely, Barstool will produce video of the round beyond the few cell phone videos on Twitter and Instagram. And if you’d like to see those fragments, check out Portnoy’s Twitter, the Barstool Instagram, and well, the myriad of Barstool-related accounts.

But here’s the bottom line: With an innumerable amount of mulligans, the Barstool founder managed to shoot 66.

Even say he averaged 10 mulligans per shot, shooting four under with, what we’ll label as an “extremely average” swing is impressive. .

Maybe it’s a feat of endurance, determination, and strategy more than it is a great golfing performance, but Portnoy’s performance in Southampton was more than a mere publicity stunt.

And even though we might stereotype the Stoolies as members of the “mashed potatoes” crowd, it’s tough to say the exposure and interaction is bad for the USGA and the U.S. Open.

What do you think, GolfWRX members? Interested? Impressed? Don’t care.

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10 Comments

10 Comments

  1. Patricknorm

    May 23, 2018 at 7:01 am

    Is this not the exact opposite way to promote golf amongst millenials? Unless I had satellite radio I’d have no idea what Barstool Sports was about. I first heard about this shenanigans on PGA Tour radio yesterday during the drive time broadcast. Talk about making a mockery of a fantastic golf course and further, making a mockery of golf altogether. If he wanted to test his “ mulligan “ concept I’d prefer he do it on a course that doesn’t rank in the top 100 in the world. I know there is a market for this kind of culture ( Barstool Sports), but , seriously I have no respect for this kind of experiment.

    • Teeps

      May 23, 2018 at 7:33 am

      You have no idea what you are talking about. Why does it matter what course he did it on. The argument was (from non dedicated golf fans) with unlimited mulligans anyone could win the US Open (shoot under par in one round.) Dave is a horrible golfer and said he could do it while everyone who knows and understands golf said he could not. The USGA itself offered the opportunity to try this. The point was proven in a big way, He managed to shoot under par while under tournament conditions.

      I consider myself a golf “hardo” and do not see any issue with this. It is a fun thing that allows people that don’t have the ability or the connections to play a course like this connect with it and see what it would take for someone of their skill level to compete on a course of this stature.

      They were welcomed by not only the Course Staff but the USGA itself so you are in the minority here. Either except the new age of golf and where it is going or golf will be dead in the near future.

  2. peedeecue

    May 22, 2018 at 2:40 pm

    That swing is worth about as much as his website.

  3. TheCityGame

    May 22, 2018 at 11:58 am

    This doesn’t make sense. He had unlimited mulligans only on tee shots? Or every shot?

    If it was only tee shots, then I don’t know how he shot 66. So, he has a ball out there 225(?) on every tee shot? No way he shoots 66.

    On the other hand, if it was every shot and every putt, 66 seems too high. Anyone who can contact a ball should be able to shoot 60 before sunset.

    • 3puttPar

      May 22, 2018 at 12:03 pm

      I agree, he should have shot closer to 60.

      I’d like to see what he shot, from the tips, no mulligans, 150?

    • Teeps

      May 22, 2018 at 1:29 pm

      It was media day, it was a shotgun start, they had a group behind them all day. USGA said they would give him 5 hours and 15 mins to finish, but they actually told him he had to leave a green before he could make the birdie because there was a group waiting on the tee.

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19th Hole

I wasn’t ready for the 2019 Rules of Golf

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We weren’t ready. We thought we were, but we weren’t.

For the last year, the USGA reminded us that in 2019 Rules of Golf were coming, but we didn’t listen. We heard the flag stick could remain in and we heard that you could take a penalty drop from knee-height.

But we didn’t listen.

I bet none of you have even practiced using your putter to flatten the entire green between your ball and the cup. You can do that now.

I’m also sure that you and I will continue to hover our club in all hazards, er, penalty areas. Yeah, we’re calling it a penalty area now.

The USGA went to the extreme depths of changing words all to simplify the game for you.

I don’t think the USGA listened either.

The rule changes were intended to speed up play and simplify golf for amateurs. Seems like a good idea. In turn, they may have bamboozled the PGA Tour while confusing the only amateurs who kind-of, sort-of knew the rules.

The pros didn’t need a new rule book, the amateurs just needed a simple one.

Us “locals” as the USGA refers to amateurs, do have one extremely fluid perk. When hitting a ball OB, or following a lost ball, you can drop with a two-stroke penalty instead of walking back to the tee. This of course, is dependent on your course, head professional, tournament conditions, and other factors including and not limited to what phase the moon is in.

If that’s somewhat confusing, read up, ask about your local rules, and buy a few extra sleeves. Reason being, in 2019, the limit on searching for a golf ball has been cut from five to three minutes.

2019-rules-of-golf

But wait, there’s good news.

Thanks to the USGA, if you accidentally move your ball as you frantically high-step through fescue, it’s no longer a penalty! What an exciting 180 seconds that will be!

If you somehow don’t find your golf ball in the hazard penalty area, the USGA tried to help us out, which they did, yet regrettably took away a more iconic portrait on the golf course.

The rigid, stoic stance and forceful drop of a ball at shoulder-height.

And we let it happen.

Now, we’ll watch a defeated man deliberately bend to his knees and gingerly drop his ball…Which, by the way, appears to be a convenient way for cheaters to “take a drop” that ideally doubles as “identifying my first ball”.

Don’t even get me started on the back issues this could flare up.

We heard in late 2018 that Bryson DeChambeau would use the flagstick when the odds were in his favor. He even laid it out simply for us.

“It depends on the COR, the coefficient of restitution of the flagstick.”

Simple.

We didn’t listen Bryson, we didn’t believe. We also have absolutely no clue what you’re talking about.

But hey, as Bryson would say, don’t hate the player, hate the game. Yeah, he’d clearly never say that, but here’s to hoping!

We heard he would do it, but we didn’t believe it. We had to see to believe. What we saw was DeChambeau first in strokes gained putting in the very first round he was allowed to do it.

Obviously, this trend will continue for DeChambeau, and others may join in, because what is golf if not a constant chase for a marginally better opportunity at success.

Watch your back, because those others that may join in could be closer than you think. You may turn around to find a fellow member asking for the flag on their next 12-footer.

It should be a fun year of commentary and confusion at your local club and on the PGA tour. Professionals will have constant questions for rules officials, and commentators will consistently question Bryson’s methods.

There is one real question I hope is answered this April.

What will we do when Bryson banks in a downhill putt at No. 2 of Augusta?

Will we be ready? Will Augusta?

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19th Hole

Tweets of the Week: Justin Rose shows off his Honma clubs, Justin Timberlake does Happy Gilmore and Barack Obama’s new swing

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ho-sung-choi-swing

Over the last seven days, Matt Kuchar brought home the bacon at the Sony Open, while golf fans got a look at plenty of new equipment releases for 2019. But here’s some things you may have missed, and some of the quirkier moments from the world of golf dished out in the Twittersphere in the last week.

Justin Timberlake’s Draw

Ten Grammy Awards, four Emmy Awards, and he can hit a perfect draw Happy Gilmore style. Bit annoying.

Rose Showcases His New Honma Clubs

Still waiting to make his first start of 2019, the World Number 1 is ready to go as a member of Team Honma.

Chez Reavie Goes Bananas

In case you missed it, Chez Reavie became the first player since the PGA Tour began keeping records to make three eagles on three par 4’s in a single round. The fact that he holed out each one from the fairway is quite incredible.

Obama’s New Swing

Barack Obama has had a bit more free time over the past couple of years, since, well you know, he’s not running the country anymore. How do you rate his swing, GolfWRXers?

Double Hit Rule

This video has caused much confusion over the past week on social media. The double hit rule may have changed in 2019, but this attempt is still illegal. Impressive either way you look at it though.

 

 

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19th Hole

Exploring Ireland: Where to golf, drink and stay on the Emerald Isle. Pt. 4. Bearna Golf Club, Galway

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In these series of articles, I will be taking you around the Emerald Isle providing you with great golf courses to visit in some of the loveliest spots in Ireland. I’ll also be highlighting the best and most authentic Irish bars in these spots, as well as places to stay, eat and how to get there. Whether you’re taking a golfing holiday to Ireland in 2019 or are interested in doing so sometime in the future, I’ll make sure to let you in on the best places to spend your time.

In Part Three of our Exploring Ireland Series, we went west and focused on Spanish Point Golf Club in Clare. Now it’s time for Part Four, and we’re staying on the west coast and taking the short trip up to County Galway.

Galway city is famous for its bustling nightlife, and in terms of bars to choose from, there are few better places in Ireland. Whether it’s a quiet night out and a meal, enjoying a few pints with some live traditional music, or a wild all-nighter you’re looking for, Galway certainly has you covered. Conveniently, the city also homes some top golf courses, which makes it a must-visit destination for anyone coming to this island.

Bearna Golf Club, Galway

@kevinmarkham

Galway Golf Club and Galway Bay Golf Resort are usually the two golf courses that people think of when they mention this county. But lurking under the radar is Bearna Golf Club, which will provide you with just as incredible an experience as those two courses, at a lower price.

Located within a 15-minute drive of Galway City, Bearna GC offers an authentic Irish golfing experience. Surrounded by bogland, you can expect your nose to take in all of the scents of Ireland as you navigate your way through the rugged land of humps, gorse bushes and ditches that will give your game a real workout.

@kevinmarkham

Creeks will appear on most fairways, so don’t expect to be able to turn up and grip it and rip it. Bearna is a golf course that is going to make you think, and with the challenges provided, will most likely test your patience as well as your skill.

The track offers five different sets of tees, all of which provide for a fun test. The course ranges between 4,897 yards and 6,271 yards and plays as either a Par 72 or 71 depending on the tees you choose. Thirteen holes feature water, and the one relief that you will find here that is different than other courses in the area is the lack of fairway bunkers.

@IrishGolfPhotos

Robert J. Browne designed the course back in 1996, and as well as the feeling you will have of being amongst nature, you will also have impressive views of the Aran Islands, Galway Bay and the famous Burren.

During the week, 18 holes around Bearna GC will set you back just under $50, while to play on the weekend the rate rises to $75. Don’t be surprised if after your round you want another crack at this deceptive course.

Food & Drink – Tig Coili, Galway

@DBloom451

There is no “best pub in Galway.” The city has an inordinate amount of amazing watering holes to spend your night, and it just comes down to personal taste and what experience you are looking to have for your night. As someone who loves the feel of an old traditional Irish pub though, Tig Coili gets my vote.

@stacy_sobieski

Located in the Latin Quarter of Galway City, this place will often have swarms of people flooding out from the bar onto the street. Traditional music plays here every night, with 14 music sessions each week. The pub prides itself on its music, with pictures of famous musicians that have played here in the past covering the walls.

Also, Tig Coili’s pint of Guinness is renowned for being one of the best in the area, and it’s what 90 percent of folks will be drinking for the night here.

@MeetInGalway

As for food in Galway, it can only be oysters. Described by multiple top chefs as the “best flavoured in the world,” the oysters here come from Galway Bay and are so popular in the city that should you visit here in September you can enjoy Galway’s three day Oyster festival.

You can hop into most bars in Galway serving food and throw back half a dozen oysters, but if you want to experience them for a sit-down meal then go and visit Oscars Seafood Bistro, where the flavour will blow your socks off. An early bird two-course meal of half a dozen oysters and a plate of steaming hot mussels with fries will cost just $20. The perfect drink pairing for oysters? Guinness. Ideal.

Where To Stay

My recommendation is to stay in the center of Galway. We’ve gone traditional in our visits to Donegal and Clare, but for Galway, the city is so alive that you will want to stay right in the heart of it. The Jury’s Inn is a solid option, which will leave you within walking distance of the best bars, restaurants and sights to see in the city. A double room here will set you back in the region of $100 a night.

@WriterVicYates

If you like to shop then visit Quay Street, where you can take in the shops while plenty of buskers on the street entertain you, while the bronze statue of Irish writer Oscar Wilde and Estonian writer Eduard Vilde is an imposing outdoor sight that is a trendy spot for a photo.

@IndoSport

But as we’re sports lovers, then when in Galway do whatever you can to catch a game of hurling. Galway’s hurling side are currently one of the best teams in the land, winning the All-Ireland title in 2017, and they possess some of the most passionate fans. Just try not to mention the last final when you get here.

How to Get There

Galway is about as accessible as it gets from anywhere in the island. You can take the train from any major city in Ireland, and it’ll take you right into the city center of Galway. A direct train from Dublin City will arrive in Galway in just over two hours.

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