Golf Digest Issue 1, 2021

Golf Digest empowers the modern golfer, delivering monthly content on how, what and where to play. Golf Digest provides "how-to" articles by an unparalleled team of the game's top professionals, the most in-depth equipment rankings, the Hot List and is the No. 1 authority for golf course rankings.

United States
Conde Nast US

in this issue

3 min
what’s right with jordan spieth

“All golfers struggle to explain what they’re feeling.” ’ve been asked a lot lately, “What’s wrong with Jordan Spieth?” It’s curious when a guy who has flown so high above his peers at every level of the game since childhood drops back to Earth. Not since the 2017 Open Championship at Royal Birkdale has the 27-year-old won—or much contended. Greatness usually finds a way to rise again, but for now I can offer only insight into what’s right with the three-time major champ. In December 2020, a short video made the rounds of Spieth giving an autistic 14-year-old, Joseph Maguire, a golf lesson via Zoom. The boy hitting balls in a simulator in New York City as Jordan looked on from Dallas spoke volumes even with the sound off. Their split-screens symbolized…

2 min
raise your golf iq

We’re all probably guilty of making this game harder by taking too complex an approach to our playing strategy. If you want to overcome issues you’ve had in your game for years, it’s time to address them more sensibly. To get you started, here are three common problems that can be overcome with simple solutions. —WITH RON KASPRISKE GET TO WHERE YOU WANT TO GO There are a lot of different swings in pro golf, but all of them eventually look like this (left). There’s a weight shift toward the target, there’s body rotation toward the target, and there’s an extension of the arms and club through impact. The lesson: If you struggle to consistently hit good shots, you can simplify things by focusing on where you want to go. Just like programming…

3 min
undercover caddie

Amenity? That’s a foreign word on the Korn Ferry Tour. Just last year a player fired me, and I can’t find another full-time bag on the PGA Tour. That’s why I’m here. It’s not where I want to be. Hell, it’s where I can’t be—not for very long, at least. The truth is this: I can’t make a living as a caddie on the Korn Ferry Tour. Simple economics, really. Fifteen players on the KFT made $200,000 or more in 2020. Worse ways to punch a timecard, right? But for us, well, what we take home varies depending on who we work with and what he does in a given week. Let’s say 8 percent of those winnings come to us. Scrolling through the top 15 money winners (Will Zalatoris led at…

4 min
when covid takes a golf friend

Editor-in-Chief I got a call the other night from my old buddy Moon Man who wanted to let me know that the hero of our glory days had died of COVID. Close readers of this column might remember him from a 2004 ranking of the Top 5 Putters I’ve Ever Seen: (1) Tiger Woods, (2) Jack Nicklaus, (3) Bobby Locke, (4) Billy Casper, (5) Ed (the Bear) Billus, an opponent of mine on Philadelphia munys who did not miss a single putt that mattered, 1973-’88. Actually, upon reflection, I think he was a little better than Locke and Casper. The Bear is what we called him at Juniata Golf Course in Northeast Philly, where everybody had a nickname, and the regular wager was $2 per nine holes. I’d stand on the first…

24 min
cool collin collected

No two golfing journeys are identical. But if there is a common theme, it’s turbulence. Golf drags you on a rollercoaster ride—you fall in love with the game and then fall out of it. You make a breakthrough and then hit a wall. The exhilarating successes are sandwiched by humbling failures. This is true even for the best players in the world. Of course, their ebbs and flows are on a different scale, and their general trajectory is upward. Still, even the superstars have had their struggles. Brooks Koepka wasn’t good enough to get a scholarship offer from his beloved Florida Gators. Phil Mickelson couldn’t get over the major-championship hump until he was 33. Jordan Spieth stormed onto the scene a conquering hero and then dropped out of the top 75…

2 min
9 questions for collin morikawa

1. What’s your ideal off day? Wake up, eat a great breakfast, probably go to the beach and just hang out with my girlfriend, Katherine Zhu, and family. Eat a great lunch, hang out again at the beach and eat an amazing dinner. Always food. 2. If you weren’t a professional golfer, what would you be? I would be another professional athlete—if I were taller and stronger and everything else that a basketball player or a baseball player would be. 3. Favorite professional sports team? Lakers and Dodgers. 4. Who would play you in a movie? Maybe Jackie Chan. Jackie Chan’s a lot older than me, but I have a lot of wrinkles. [Laughs.] 5. How many pairs of Adidas sneakers do you own? Too many to count! And I’ve only been with Adidas for a year and a…