Golf Course Spotlight: Torrey Pines [San Diego, CA]

Torrey Pines Golf Course located in Southern California’s beautiful city of San Diego is an incredible stretch of land that overlooks the Pacific Ocean. This course is the pursuit of perfection, and if this isn’t perfect then I don’t know what is. The course hosts The Farmer’s Insurance Open every year in late January when the tour is making it’s way through the southern states and Hawaii. However, Torrey Pines was also host of the U.S Open in 2008 and if you recall that was when Tiger Woods won his last major in one of the all-time performances while injured.

The course is great for so many reasons but one of my favorite is that average Joe’s like myself are able to play there. The golf course is located in a state park and the city of San Diego has made it open to the public to play. It’s not impossible to get a tee time and it’s not incredibly expensive to play (relatively speaking). I’ve lived in San Diego for just over a year now and have been able to play 3 times already.

Golf Course Spotlight: Torrey Pines [San Diego, CA]

If you are in the San Diego area for vacation or business I highly suggest making a tee time for Torrey. This is definitely one of the best courses in the world and the opportunity to play a course that Tiger and other legends have walked is something you don’t want to pass up. Now for you twilight golfers, Torrey is the best twilight course there is. Not only does their twilight start early, the view of the sun setting over the Pacific is something so beautiful I won’t even attempt to put it into words.

If this course isn’t on your golf course bucket list then you best be sure to pencil it in right now. And if you don’t have a golf course bucket list, can you even consider yourself a golfer?

Ryder Cup Preview 2016

Well folks the 2016 Ryder Cup is right around the corner this year. I’m hoping I’m not the only one getting excited about this one. Many of you may be thinking this year’s battle may be a bore, since the Europeans have been dominating the Ryder Cup since Earth’s continents were all hanging out together in the days of Pangea. But this year feels different. As a stars and stripes, red-blooded American I am sick of seeing the European’s chemistry and winning ways. Thankfully, something feels different this year. No one is giving the boys in red, white, and blue a shot, and I think that’s exactly where they want to be. Don’t get me wrong, this European team is a powerhouse, but the American’s aren’t so bad themselves and have a lot of young talent up front. A lot of folks may make the argument that the young players are inexperienced and will thusly crack under pressure, however, after seeing veteran Phil Mickelson stink it up year in and year out in the Ryder Cup I think we will benefit from some young-blood.

Speaking of good ol’ Phil, I recently read a conversation that he had regarding the Ryder Cup, and it seems that Mr. Mickelson is just as sick of getting his ass kicked as I am watching it happen. Phil was quoted as saying that he has been studying the European’s winning ways and believes that he has their winning formula worked out. Being a Mickelson hater, I say that if this is true then he should shut his big mouth up and keep things like that out of the media. However, Philip is also an American, so in times like these I am sort of forced to root for the guy. When asked further about what he meant, Phil went on to say that he sees the team chemistry and leadership playing large factors towards the European’s success. But he was timid with his projections saying that people shouldn’t expect that his plan to work immediately and was incredibly vague with the details of his”plan.” Now, it would be incredibly easy for me to tear him apart here, but like I said before, Phil is an American so I will back him up in this situation.

Ryder Cup Preview 2016

All of this reminds me of a similar setup 36 years ago in sports. The year was 1980 and it was the Winter Olympics in Lake Placid, NY. The Soviet Union boasted the greatest hockey team in the world, and at the height of the Cold War, competitions like these were incredibly important in the battle for an emotional advantage in case real war broke out.

It was one crazy college hockey coach hired by the U.S Olympic staff to take a bunch of college hockey players and mold them into a team that could beat the Soviets. Herb Brooks studied the Soviet’s winning ways and emulated his Olympic team after the Russians. Herb whipped his boys into shape and really focused on team chemistry and endurance so that they wouldn’t be tired at the end of a hockey game. The strategy of emulating the Russians paid off and it won Herb and the U.S hockey team Olympic Gold. It was accurately dubbed “The 1980 Miracle On Ice.”

My favorite thing to do in all of sports is to root for the underdog. Freud would probably tell me that I’m just projecting my ego onto the world, but who cares about that psychoanalytic mumbo jumbo, underdogs are always fun to root for. And that’s what I’m doing this year. To quote Herb’s famous speech in the movie “Miracle” with Kurt Russell, “This is our time, their time is over. I’m sick and tired of hearing about what a great team the Europeans have. Screw em!”

You heard it here first folks, the Americans win in a thriller that will come down to some of the final matches on Sunday. Look for Rickie Fowler and Jordan Spieth to play clutch roles for the Americans down the stretch.

The Olympics Should Never Be Compared To Winning A Major

Congrats to Justin Rose for winning the first Olympic Gold in golf for the first time in over 100 years. Let’s give credit where credit is due, to win the first Olympics in golf in over a century is a big deal. Who the hell was even playing back then other than Bobby Jones? Anyway, it was a great win for a world-class player, and to see fellow greats Henrik Stenson and Matt Kuchar on the podium was great as well.

Ok, enough with the lovey dovey stuff. I’ve been hearing a lot of rumblings from individuals saying that in the future we should go ahead and hold Olympic medals in the same or higher regard as major championships. Johnny Miller stated at the end of the Olympic broadcast that these were his thoughts because of the fact that Olympics happen only once every four years so your shot at winning gold in one’s career happens a lot less than the attempts at a major. I can understand where people are coming from with that point but get out of here if you think that winning a gold medal in golf compares to winning a major. It’s comparing apples and oranges. Jack Nicklaus never ate any of those metaphorical oranges. Arnold Palmer never had a chance to eat any of those oranges either but the two of them sure ate a hell of a lot of apples. How can we measure a golfer’s legacy if the legends of golf never had an opportunity to compete for the same medals?

The Olympics Should Never Be Compared To Winning A Major

The other point I want to make on this argument is that people believe the Olympic medals to be worth more because if a golfer has a 20 year career, in theory they have 5 attempts to go for gold, in contrast with 80 attempts to win a major. For some reason, they believe that this makes the Olympics more valuable than major wins. For me, I believe that the sample size is just too small to prove someone worthy of greatness. What sounds better to you; a golfer that wins 10 majors in his career or a golfer that wins 1 Olympic gold medal and no majors? If you’re basing your argument on statistics given the numbers I just gave you, you might be inclined to say that winning 1 Olympic gold in 5 attempts is better than the 10 majors because it’s a winning percentage of 20% versus 12.5%. But who in their right mind would choose winning one Olympic gold medal versus 10 majors in 80 attempts? The one Olympic medal winner and zero majors will forever be forgotten in the history books. The 10 majors winner would be heralded among the greats of golf and would be fourth in the record books behind Nicklaus, Woods, and Hagen.

Having golf back in the Olympics is an amazing thing don’t get me wrong. But let’s collectively pump the brakes on thinking this will be on major championship status. I’ll wait until a single golfer collects 4 Olympic golds to start talking about legacy’s and Olympics in the same breath.