EDITORIAL – HOW CAN WE UNDERSTAND “GOLF GAME” FROM THE SCORE OF BRYSON DECHAMBEAU SHOOTS 58 ON 10TH LIV GOLF TOURNAMENT?

   
If you’re only a PGA Tour fan, you may have missed that Bryson DeChambeau shot a 58 at the Greenbrier in West Virginia to win his first title on the LIV Tour. In reviewing his round, it’s evident the skills he’s worked hard to develop paid off.  He famously turned himself into a legitimate long-drive competitor, last year finishing second in the world championship.  Two things stood out when looking at DeChambeau’s 58:  his balance when hitting the driver and how well he putted.
 
His superior balance allowed him to hit long, accurate drives, giving him a lot of short irons and wedges into the greens on the par-70 course. It also helped that the course was softened by rain, as he was able to fire his wedges into the greens like hitting a dartboard. He rolled the putter as well as it could be. DeChambeau remarked how hard he’s been working on his game, and it paid off in perhaps the greatest round of golf that he’ll ever shoot.
INDUSTRY PARTNER SPOTLIGHT – MIZUNO

INDUSTRY PARTNER SPOTLIGHT – MIZUNO

mizuno
Many people associate Mizuno Golf irons with better players, and they would be correct.  However, to assume that Mizuno makes irons only for better players would be incorrect.  New in the JPX lineup for 2023 is the Hot Metal HL iron, designed to provide a slightly higher launch angle than the regular Hot Metal.

Not only that, but it offers the maximum amount of forgiveness of any iron in the Mizuno line.  It is specifically designed for mid- to high-handicappers, although an argument can be made that players of greater ability would benefit from them, too.  USGTF members enjoy a generous discount from Mizuno Golf.  To take advantage of this program, please contact the USGTF National Office at (772) 88-USGTF.
STUDENT SPOTLIGHT – COOPER FISCHER

STUDENT SPOTLIGHT – COOPER FISCHER

By Sean Moore, USGTF, Alexandria-Virginia

Throughout my career in athletics and golf, I have had the privilege of working with numerous talents of all ages and genders. One of my first students when taking over as director of golf at Rudy’s Golf and Sports Bar in Alexandria, Virginia, was a young man named Cooper Fischer. He was an 11-year-old that was very new to golf but had tremendous experience in soccer. He wanted to give golf a try and was incredibly shy and unsure of what the future held for him in the sport.

We began our journey together once a week and truly started from scratch. We wanted him to eventually gain enough skill sets and confidence that he could play with his uncle and father. Cooper quickly began to show improvement, but more importantly, he started to get that sparkle in his eye when we worked together as you could see he was beginning to love the sport. Cooper was persistent in his pursuit to not only improve his swing, but he thrived on learning about course management, terminology, history and the people that have paved the way for golfers of all ages. With the support of his entire family, Cooper developed a tremendous swing and has built his confidence as a young man. He hits the range two or three times a week, including his structured lessons, and now reports back to me weekly regarding his strengths and weaknesses from his previous sessions.

Cooper and I have built a tremendous friendship as instructor and student. We grind on the range together while sharing a bag of sour gummies or a basket of fries. His post-lesson tradition: to sit with his family and have the famous grilled cheese from Rudy’s Golf. The Fischer family has not only supported their son and his drive to be a better golfer, but they have embraced the lifestyle. Cooper’s dad has also found a new spark as well and is excited about sharing the game again with his son. Cooper and I will continue to work together, and he may choose to try competition at some point.

However, in my eyes he has already won. He discovered the sport we all love so much. He’s improved his swing, his knowledge and his confidence. He is a tremendous example of hard work and commitment. He reminds me every week of why I choose to teach golf for a living, and I can’t wait to see the things Cooper is able to accomplish on and off the course.
“PRO” FILE – USGTF MEMBER JAMES O’NEIL

“PRO” FILE – USGTF MEMBER JAMES O’NEIL

By Jim O’Neil

My golf story is a long one; I’ll give everyone a break with some highlights. At 10 years old, I had my first golf lesson at Eagle Haven Golf Course with head pro Lefty on Little Creek Amphibious Base in Virginia. Yep, very close to Seal Team Six training quarters.

My journey in golf is actually a very humbling one, so please understand this is my story. I’m not at all bragging about my accomplishments in this wonderful game of golf. In 1980, I made the Kempsville High School golf team, mainly because of head pro Jack Harvey at NAS Oceana in Virginia Beach (Aeropines Golf Course). My father would buy me two lessons a year, and then both my father and Jack told me to practice. I practiced so much I ended up on a college NAIA golf team and won player of the year twice.

In 1986, I took my first PGA apprenticeship job under the then-active president of The Middle Atlantic PGA section, Don Saylor, at River Bend Country Club in Great Falls, Virginia. In 1990, I moved home to Virginia Beach and took a job under, again, an active president of the MAPGA, Gene Mattare.

After three years of soul-searching, wondering if I was a player or a businessman in the PGA, I decided to get away from the game completely and focus on my new love. Mrs. Mia O’Neil entered my life, and we started our family under the wonderful global company Stihl Incorporated in Virginia Beach. Team Stihl allowed us to raise our three children Lashar, Brenden and Tameria for 28 years.

Currently, the United States Golf Teachers Federation has given me a rebirth in golf. I’m currently a Stihl retiree who plays in our company golf league on Thursdays. Now – praise God – I’m the full-time golf instructor at NAS Oceana and I’m in training to win again on what I call the teachers tour.
“PRO” FILES – TOURING PROFESSIONAL VIKTOR HOVLAND

“PRO” FILES – TOURING PROFESSIONAL VIKTOR HOVLAND

He came onto the PGA Tour in 2019 with two other heralded collegiate stars, Matthew Wolfe and Collin Morikawa.  Most pundits said Morikawa had the highest ceiling followed by Wolfe, with Hovland third.  Wolfe was the first to win on Tour, and Morikawa lived up to his billing by winning two majors relatively quickly.

Hovland?  It took him a while, but he has now reached the pinnacle of achievement for the season-long FedEx Cup competition by winning the Tour Championship at East Lake in Atlanta, Georgia.  It caps off an amazing two-week run for Hovland, who also won the previous week’s BMW Championship.  He took home the richest prize in golf, $18 million, and has set himself up to be one of Europe’s stars in the upcoming Ryder Cup in Italy.
USGTF REGION TOURNAMENT UPDATE

USGTF REGION TOURNAMENT UPDATE

Central – The USGTF Central Region Championship will be played Sunday and Monday, September 24-25, at Walden Ponds Golf Course in Hamilton, Ohio, a suburb of Cincinnati.  The entry fee of $250 includes two tournament rounds, range balls, and prize money which includes not only tournament finishes but any side games.  To enter and for more information, please call region director Tony McMullin at (513) 479-6895.
CANADA CUP 2023

CANADA CUP 2023

By Peter Jaklic   Under an overcast sky with a steady drizzle, the stage was set for the 2023 CGTF Cup at Tyandaga Golf and Country Club in Burlington, Ontario, August 24. Although not long, Tyandaga proved to be quite a challenge, especially in the wet conditions. Our longtime member, Brad Weake, and his entire team at Tyandaga were, once again, incredible hosts.   In the end, there were almost 30 CGTF members competing. This year, more golfers were able to break the 80 mark than last year. Our president, Marc Ray, had the tournament round of his life, shooting a 71 despite a triple bogey on the narrow par-5 17th. Peter Jaklic was runner-up, carding a 76, and new member J.P. Van Rooyen rounded out the top three by overcoming some early nerves to shoot an impressive 77. Mel Hennigar, Alex Chan and Urb Van Bendegem came in at 78. A friendly putting and chipping competition was awaiting all members upon the completion of their rounds. Our CGTF educational lead, Jeff Howe, continued to provide us with teaching tools, training aids and discussion points to help us all learn from one another’s experiences. This sharing of knowledge simply added to the sentiment of camaraderie.   As the afternoon progressed, all of us were honored by a visit from our former president and founder, Bob Bryant. Bob eloquently shared his thoughts about our growing organization and reaffirmed that our present leadership, under Marc Ray, is one of the pivotal reasons to our great success. As a token of appreciation, the CGTF Cup has now been renamed the Bob Bryant Trophy to recognize the growth of the organization over the formative years under Bob’s tenure.
MASTER COURSE FOR NOVEMBER

MASTER COURSE FOR NOVEMBER

Are you interested in taking your teaching skills to the next level?  The next USGTF Master Golf Teaching Professional® certification course will be held Monday-Wednesday, December 11-13, at the USGTF National Office in Fort Pierce, Florida.  In addition to lower playing ability test requirements, candidates must submit a written thesis, do a shotmaking demonstration and pass a written teaching test.  Candidates must have been a fully certified member in good standing for a minimum of 12 months.  To register, please visit http://www.usgtf.com/master-golf-teaching-professional.
U.S. CUP DEADLINE FAST APPROACHING

U.S. CUP DEADLINE FAST APPROACHING


The deadline to enter the 2023 United States Golf Teachers Cup, to be held Monday and Tuesday, October 9-10 at the Revere Golf Club in Las Vegas, Nevada, is Wednesday, September 13.  As in recent years, this tournament will feature a concurrent pro-am (although bringing an amateur partner is not required for participation).  The entry fee of $595 includes two rounds of tournament golf plus range balls, prize money, and an awards luncheon following play.  Play will be contested in three divisions:  Open, Senior and Super Senior, with women competitors placed in the appropriate age division playing from shorter tees.
For more information and to register, please visit http://www.usgtf.com/uscup.