CBSSports.com’s Steve Elling got a good laugh after taking a look at Phil Mickelson’s results in the last year and cross-referencing the golf courses with Rees Jones’ designs. I chuckled, too. It’s a little ironic after all:
* In the second half of the 2010 season, Mickelson’s lone top-10 finish came at Cog Hill, where he finished T8.
* In 2011, his lone victory was claimed in Houston, at the Redstone course designed by Rees Jones.
* Mickelson has two other top-5 finishes this year, but only one in the United States, at Torrey Pines, on a course redesigned by Jones before the 2002 event.
So, in other words, in his last four finishes of T8 or better, three have come at courses Jones built or redesigned. The fourth was a T2 at the British Open in July.
Asked whether he thought it was ironic that his last win came at a Jones redesign, Mickelson, who shot a one-over 73 in the first round of the BMW Championship, dodged the question, saying, “Everybody has got to play it.”
Meanwhile, Cog Hill owner Frank Jemsek would be open to a sit-down chat with Phil, according to Golfweek‘s Alex Miceli:
“I would look forward to talking to him,” Jemsek said. “I would guarantee I would listen. I really feel badly for his hatchet job on Rees, I don’t think Rees deserves it. It would be a great chance to talk to someone I wouldn’t get a chance to talk to (otherwise). “
Phil also would agree to a conversation:
“I feel like the Jemsek family has meant a lot to golf,” Mickelson said. “And there’s a lot of families that have meant a lot to the game, and I feel like as a player I would owe it to them to at least answer questions that they may have.”
“You have to give the player an avenue to play the game running the ball on the ground,” Mickelson explained. “So you want to create the ground that helps the ball get to the green. To make it challenging for the good player, then what you do is you create a little roll off at the green. But you’re giving the guy that can’t fly it on a vehicle to have the ball kind of funnel towards the green.”
I know the renovation already cost the Jemsek family millions of bucks, but I wonder if they would bring someone else in — like one of the names Phil suggested on Wednesday — to redo it again. I mean, I don’t feel like they should spend more money just to get the approval of a bunch of tour pros, who have all pointed out that it’s an all-around unfortunate situation.
I really want to know why Phil loathes Rees so much. What happened? Did Rees run over Phil’s dog? Or date his mom? What is it?? It’s one thing to have a difference in opinion, but this is personal. Maybe it had something to do with Jones’ redo of Torrey Pines in 2001?