September 19, 2011
Sizing up the TV coverage from the BMW Championship ... and away we go.
Adidas' spikeless shoes got a huge boost in exposure with Rose's victory, and were discussed on multiple occasions during Thursday's opening round, when the Englishman went out an fired an 8-under 63 to establish a lead he never relinquished.
"There shoe change a couple weeks ago at the Deutsche Bank for Justin Rose," Dottie Pepper said. "He went to a soft shoe, almost loafer-like. I talked to Sean Foley, his teacher, a couple minutes ago and said it's really freed up his footwork. It also enabled him to make his hips rotate through, because there's not as much restriction down below."
Obviously, Rose wasn't a trendsetter in making the switch from conventional golf shoes to the street shoes. Fred Couples really set the whole trend in motion when he sported the Ecco street shoes at last year's Masters.
Since then, Tiger Woods and Vijay Singh have hopped on board and tested out the shoes. While the shoes look stylish, Frank Nobilo and Dottie Pepper continued to discuss if the shoes were really good for the game.
"I talked to Vijay yesterday during the pro-am and told him I thought this turf, because it was sort of well watered, would be slippery. But he assures me he gets the same amount of grip as regular golf shoes, which I sort of find hard to believe."
Pepper, who talked to Sean Foley about the new kicks, said the instructor told her the shoes were worth a try ... so long as you're fit.
"Sean [Foley] feels like it you're a fit person, there really isn't a great reason to have nine spikes in the ground. If you have good foot work and you're fit, you can make these shoes work."
More follows ...
Johnny Miller sticks up for Cog Hill's redesign, Rees Jones
Following some critical comments from Phil Mickelson regarding Rees Jones' redesign of Atlanta Athletic Club at the PGA Championship, Steve Stricker and Mickelson kept the heat on Jones a month later at the BMW Championship, where his Cog Hill redesign was the hot topic early in the week.
Both Stricker and Mickelson blasted Jones' updates, calling the course almost unplayable for the casual golfer. Following the verbal missiles, NBC's Johnny Miller stuck up for Jones on Saturday at the end of the broadcast.
"I think it's a great ball striker's course," Miller said. "You've also got to drive it well and hit good irons. I don't really see anything to complain about. The greens are pure, and they're playing for a bigger purse this week than we played for all year back in the 70's. Anybody who complains about this course needs to have their head examined."
FedEx Cup's fuzzy math
Leave it to NBC to add a little extra confusion to Sunday's broadcast. With a host of names in the mix for the final few spots in the Tour Championship's 30-man field, the network spent much of the final round offering up stats and fuzzy math that probably left the casual golf fan very confused.
The network has tried its best in recent years to simplify the formula for fans, but things still seem confusing. Instead of trying to crunch numbers and make it seem like a convoluted system, why not put it into birdie and bogey terms?
For example, when Geoff Ogilvy needed to make birdie on the 72nd hole at the Deutsche Bank to get into the BMW, you really didn't need the fuzzy math. Simply saying what was at stake on the final hole would suffice.
Trying to do the exact same thing early in the round -- or mid-round -- makes zero sense, because a lot can still change along the way. The only place where that kind of math is needed is when $10 million is on the line.
Presidents Cup preview
Geoff Ogilvy snagged the final spot on the International team for the upcoming Presidents Cup at Royal Melbourne, but with a lot still at stake on Saturday, and Ogilvy possibly moving from a lock to a possible Captain's pick, NBC's crew had a chance to sit down with NBC/Golf Channel analyst, and assistant captain to the International team, Frank Nobilo on Saturday to discuss the scenarios.
The discussion offered some fantastic insight into the decision-making process, and what would happen if Ogilvy didn't make it as an automatic pick. With the matches moving back to Australia this year, Nobilo noted that getting Ogilvy on the team was critical.
"If this had been in South Africa this year, we may have looked at Louis Oosthuizen or Rory Sabbatini a little closer. But it's being played in his backyard, so you have to bring that into consideration."