News & Opinion

Plenty of Open-ended questions to ponder

Questions while staying up late to watch the U.S. Open:

Yes, Pebble Beach captures our imagination, but isn’t it really a seven-hole golf course? Paul Azinger said on Fox that players would have 8-10 approach shots with wedges each day. Doesn’t that make Pebble as outdated as Merion?

Matt Kuchar leaves Pebble Beach still searching for a major championship.

Matt Kuchar leaves Pebble Beach still searching for a major championship.

Is Matt Kuchar too nice to win majors? Or is he so ultracompetitive that he maxes out his abilities?

Did Gary Woodland win the U.S. Open when he chipped in for par at No. 12 on Saturday? Or when he reached the par-5 14th in two on Sunday?

How much do you think Tiger Woods was hurting physically at the Open? Mentally?

Do you think Axis1 is getting a lot of orders for the putter that Justin Rose used at the Open? (It’s the Axis1 Rose, and it’s a gentle $449, claw grip not included.)

Have you ever seen a world-class player hit it as badly and score as well as Rose did? Does it make you want to go practice your short game?

Anybody seen Bubba Watson?

Aren’t you glad that Graeme McDowell made that putt on the 72nd hole at the RBC Canadian Open that got him into the British Open in his hometown of Portrush, Northern Ireland?

Say what you will about Brooks Koepka and his brute strength, but doesn’t he qualify as one of the two or three best putters on the PGA Tour? Have you tried running your index finger down the putter grip?

Don’t you wish that announcers would stop calling them “fairway metals”? No, they’re not made of wood, but irons aren’t made of iron, either.

Is it “good shot” or “nice shot”?

Whom are you buying: Viktor Hovland or Matthew Wolff?

The LPGA has a Korea problem. Whose fault is that? The LPGA’s? The media’s? The players’? The fans’? Should the LPGA encourage the players to speak English and give interviews? Should the media try harder to introduce the players to the public? Should the players step up and give back to the LPGA for the opportunity they’ve been given? Should American fans be more open-minded?

Which do you think Koepka likes more: the way he plays or the way he looks? Wouldn’t he look better if he got rid of that bulge in his left cheek that’s likely filled with some kind of tobacco product? Isn’t spitting unbecoming in a major champion?

Is it looking more and more like 2015 was just one magical year for Jordan Spieth and probably won’t be repeated?

Anybody seen Cameron Champ?

What happened to saddle oxfords? Do you miss them?

Rory McIlroy
Rory McIlroy leaves Pebble Beach with some unanswered questions.

Rory McIlroy leaves Pebble Beach with some unanswered questions.

Isn’t Rory McIlroy really a riddle wrapped in a mystery inside an enigma? Is he the most physically talented player out there? If anyone can figure out why he can’t perform at the top level in the biggest events, would you please tell him?

Is Lexi Thompson the Rory McIlroy of the LPGA?

Ernie Els says that now that he’s 50, he’s going to play events on the Champions Tour. Isn’t that the best gift that tour could have received? Don’t you think PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan is putting a gentle full-court press on Phil Mickelson to join the Champions a year from now? What’s the likelihood that happens?

Why don’t we hear on TV or read in print the money list or the winner’s share on the PGA Tour? Has the Tour dictated to the networks that money not be mentioned in favor of FedEx Cup points?

Anybody seen Lydia Ko?

What do you think the percentage is of players who were out of the running in the final round of the U.S. Open who didn’t try their hardest?

Did you have to stay up past your bedtime to watch the U.S. Open on television?

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