News & Opinion

Searching for answers as season wraps up

Questions while killing time until the Ryder Cup:

How hot was Brooks Koepka that Tiger Woods got so much more attention than he did? How big is that chip on Koepka’s shoulder?

Is Golf Channel putting the muzzle on its on-air talent? No one says a critical word about anyone or anything anymore. We don’t get any on-air fights between Brandel Chamblee and Frank Nobilo, which was some of the best golf TV. Even GC pundit Geoff Shackelford, who doesn’t like anything, is being uncommonly nice. What gives?

Brooks Koepka takes a couple of major steps in his development in 2018, perhaps signaling to Augusta National officials that he might look good in green.

Brooks Koepka takes a couple of major steps in his development in 2018, perhaps signaling to Augusta National officials that he might look good in green.

The PGA of America put its president, Paul Levy, out front to present Koepka with the Wanamaker Trophy at the recent PGA Championship. Levy was arrested in June on suspicion of DUI, and he hasn’t said one word publicly about it. Did the PGA do the right thing?

Speaking of DUI, no one has said for certain that Tiger Woods went into treatment after his arrest in May 2017. But don’t you think he appears to be a different person since then?

If this is as good as Woods gets, will that be enough for you?

Will Ryder Cup captain Jim Furyk have enough guts not to use a pick on Phil Mickelson?

How about a Woods-Tony Finau partnership in four-balls at the Ryder Cup?

Good for Lexi Thompson for hitting the pause button. The 23-year-old Thompson has been playing stressful, elite level golf since she was 15. Should Lydia Ko be paying attention?

This is the 12th year of the FedEx Cup playoffs on the PGA Tour. Are you any more excited about it now than you were in 2007?

If you were not a contestant, did you care about the recent U.S. Amateur? Did the Pebble Beach setting make it any more interesting?

Could it be that Jordan Spieth’s confidence is just as fragile as it is for the rest of us? That doesn’t make either us or Spieth feel better, does it?

Wonder what percentage of women who played college golf are still playing golf 10 years after they graduated?

Before we go ahead and fit Koepka for a green jacket, don’t you think the men of the Masters will have something to say about the course that Koepka will/won’t be able to attack in April?

Is it time for the Masters to have its own golf ball to be used in the tournament?

The First Tee is a noble undertaking, doing as much – or more – good for the game as any organization in golf. But shouldn’t the U.S., like other countries, have a mechanism for specifically developing elite players? Especially for women and minorities?

Wonder what Peter Uihlein thinks about Koepka’s sudden rise to stardom? They traveled Europe together on the Challenge Tour and the European Tour. Did Uihlein see it coming?

Would you rather make two more putts per round or hit it 20 yards farther off the tee?

The average driving distance on the PGA Tour is about 295 yards. Does that bother you?

Do you believe there should be two sets of equipment rules in golf – one for pros and one for amateurs?

Do you get the feeling that Koepka would rather be a pro football or pro basketball player but he wasn’t big enough, well… or fast enough?

Have you seen the really odd way Vijay Singh holds his long(er) putter? If that’s an improvement, can you imagine how he was putting before?

Can you imagine how good Adam Scott would be if he could putt at all?

Anybody seen Tim Clark?

Is there any chance at all that Mickelson plays the Champions Tour in two years? Will PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan come begging?

Rory McIlroy hasn’t won a major championship since 2014. Is that a problem? Surely, he’s not done at 29. Is he?

Whom would you rather have putt a 10-footer for your life: Woods or Spieth?

If you are European Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn, aren’t you secretly smiling?

Mike Purkey has written about golf for more than 30 years for a number of publications, including Golf Magazine and Global Golf Post. He lives in Charlotte, N.C. Email:; Twitter: @mikepurkeygolf