Saturday, February 27, 2010

What was in the Bag: 2009

If you are a regular reader of this blog, you know that I am a regular equipment junkie. Clubs, balls and gloves find their way in and out of my bag fairly often. Last year, as part of my year in review for 2008, I did my own version of the Darrell Survey by examining all the equipment I played with in 2008. For those of you who don't know what the Darrell Survey is, it is an independent company that for the past 70-plus years has been checking the equipment of each golfer at a Tour event, whether it be the PGA Tour, Champions Tour, Nationwide Tour LPGA, European Tour or other professional tournaments. The information is compiled into a weekly report for the various golf equipment companies. They also used to produce a yearly almanac of equipment usage by the pros.

I had so much fun doing it last year that I decided to do it again for 2009. So here is The Muni Golfer's version of the Darrell Survey for last year. During the nearly 25 regulation and practice rounds I played last season, I used 5 Drivers, 6 Fairway Woods, 11 Hybrids, 5 different models of Irons, 3 Wedges, 5 Putters, 7 different models of Golf Balls and 5 different versions of Golf Gloves. They represented 14 different equipment companies. I also worn PGA Tour Golf Shirts and adidas Golf Shoes.

In true Darrell Survey fashion, here is a breakdown of the equipment in The Muni Golfer's bag during 2009:

Wilson Staff Spine
TaylorMade 360XD
TaylorMade Burner
TaylorMade Tour Burner
Tommy Armour 845 Stripe

Fairway Woods:

TaylorMade Burner 3-Wood
Golfsmith XPC Plus 3-Wood
Sonartec 4-Wood
Golfsmith Big Gun 5-Wood
TaylorMade 300 7-Wood
Wilson Staff FwC 7-Wood


Alpha Golf Rx 4
Wilson Staff Fybrid
Elevon Tour
Nickent 3DX DC Utility 3+
Nickent 3DX DC Utility 3
Nickent 3DX DC Utility 4
Nickent 3DX DC 3
Nickent 3DX DC 4
Nickent 3DX Ironwood 2+
Nickent 3DX Ironwood 4+
TaylorMade Raylor 4H


Wilson Staff Di7s
TaylorMade 200s
TaylorMade LCGs
TaylorMade Tour Burners
TaylorMade r7 CGB 4-Iron


Solus 4.1 53-degree
Solus 4.1 56-degree
Solus 4.1 59-degree


Odyssey White Hot XG-9
Odyssey White Hot Rossie
Never Compromise Z/I Omega
Carbite B-4
Snake Eyes MCS2

Golf Balls:

Wilson Staff 50
Wilson Staff Zip
TaylorMade Burner
Maxfli Fire
Titleist NXT
Titelist HP
Titleist DT

Golf Gloves:

Wilson Advantage
Wilson Staff Pro Soft
TaylorMade React
Taylor Made Tour Ltd.
FootJoy SofJoy

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Golf Digest Sr Writer to Speak @ Temple U

While the world's top golfer is a man of color, African Americans have historically struggled for the opportunity to tee it up, as well as access the nation’s golf courses and tournaments.

Golf Digest Senior Consultant Pete McDaniel will discuss the struggles that have been faced by black golfers in a free public talk at Temple University on Thursday evening, Feb. 25, 6 p.m. on the 2nd Floor of the Entertainment and Community Center, 1509 Cecil B. Moore Ave. His talk is being held in honor of Black History Month and is being sponsored by Temple University's Office of Community Relations.

McDaniel is the author of "Uneven Lies: The Heroic Story of African Americans in Golf," which was produced into a documentary called “Uneven Fairways”, narrated by actor Samuel L. Jackson, which aired last year on the Golf Channel.

I had the privilege of meeting McDaniel last year at Temple as he discussed "Uneven Lies" and the obstacles that African Americans have overcome to make it into recreational, amateur and professional golf. He is a very engaging speaker and I encourage anyone who has an interest in golf, particularly this often overlooked part of the game's history, to come out and hear McDaniel speak.

McDaniel's Book "Uneven Lies"

In addition to authoring "Uneven Lies" and being a Senior Consultant at Golf Digest, McDaniel has also co-authored two best-selling books: "Training a Tiger--The Official Book on How to Be the Best" with Tiger Woods, and "Training a Tiger--A Father's Guide to Raising a Winner in Both Golf and Life" with Earl Woods, Tiger's late father.

For more information on McDaniel's talk or to RSVP for the event, contact Temple’s Office of Community Relations at 215/204-7913.

Monday, February 15, 2010

Greater Philadelphia Golf Show

Yesterday I attended the third and final day of the Greater Philadelphia Golf Show, which was held Friday through Sunday at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center in Oaks, Pa. It was the second of what was supposed to be two golf shows held in the region, but the Victory Golf Show had been canceled the previous weekend due to the economy.

The annual golf show is opportunity pick up new or used golf equipment, often at discount prices; learn about local golf courses; or if for those who like travel can find out about golf courses--golf resorts, golf destinations and golf packages. You can also try out the latest golf golf equipment at the manufacturers' demo range, get a free lesson from a PGA pro or test your skill in the long drive and putting competitions. There were also presentations by "Professional Long Driver" Brian Pavlet and "Professional Golf Entertainer" Dan Boever.

Although there wasn't any specific that I needed, I went to the golf show with an eye out for a potential bargain in a few select areas: a 4-wood, Solus wedge and any interesting accessories. While I saw a few 4-woods, none had that "too good to pass up" price tag. One reason I like to go to the golf show on Sunday is that by late in the afternoon, a lot of exhibitors are willing to start negotiating prices on equipment. I was hoping that would be the case with a 61-degree Solus Wedge at the Golfology booth, but no one ever approached me to ask if I needed help or had any questions. So I walked away. I also saw a See-More Putter that had my attention, but again, the price didn't motivate my purchase. So I left the golf show with a nice reusable tote bag from the Shawnee Inn and a handful of brochures and pamphlets.

I did have the pleasure, however, of meeting Joe Logan, former golf writer for The Philadelphia Inquirer, who is now the creator of a great new local golf Web site, If you haven't checked it out yet, I urge to do so. The site contains national and local golf news, reviews of area courses, Joe's golf blog, discussion boards, equipment news and reviews, and highlights and commentary. I've had a link to this site for several months now and I was really pleased when Joe said he was familiar with this blog!

I also met Tony Leodora, a local golf writer and editor of GolfStyles Philadelphia Magazine. Tony, who hosts weekly radio golf show--Golf Talk Live on WNTP 990--can be seen on several local channels doing commercials for Myrtle Beach and he is also a frequent guest on Comcast SportsNet's Inside Golf. With Tony was Inside Golf host Harry Donahue, an anchor on KYW News Radio and the radio voice of Temple University athletics.

This year's crowd at the golf show seemed smaller than in previous years. I heard that Friday's crowd was very small also, while Saturday's was very strong. Perhaps it is the economy. Or maybe people were still digging out from the two snowstorms that dumped over 45 inches of snow on the region. Whatever, I was just glad to be around golf again, if only for the few hours. The groundhog seeing his shadow may predict six more weeks of winter, but The Muni Golfer seeing the golf show predicts golf season isn't too far off.

Photos by The Muni Golfer

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Seeing White, But Thinking Green

Today's record snowfall that blanketed the Delaware Valley has everything looking white, but it has me thinking--or more appropriately--longing for the green fairways of the golf course. Hopefully, sometime in the next six weeks or so, the weather will permit heading to the Driving Range to start knocking off the winter's rust and honing the swing for the upcoming golf season.
The Driving Range at Fisher's Glen in Juniata

As you know from previous posts, all the nearby Driving Ranges have artificial mats as opposed to natural turf. While a lot of golfers I know proclaim that they would never hit golf balls off an artificial mat, my view is you need to make due with the facilities that are available. This view is also shared by Golf Digest Top-20 under 40 teacher Zach Heusser.
The Driving Range at Bethlehem's Golf Complex

"Golf doesn't happen only on grass," writes Heusser in the February issue of Golf Digest. "I teach at a driving range that has synthetic mats, the kind of place where a lot of people do their practicing. Sure, mats have limitations--you can hit a fat shot and get a deceptively good result--but they're cheaper to maintain than grass. As a result, you can find these ranges all over, probably one close to you. But hitting off mats doesn't mean you can't make meaningful improvements in your swing."
Heusser shows how incorporating such range accessories as ball buckets, bag stands and the mats themselves into drills can help a player visualize and feel the proper motion for a swing. "On the next few pages (see above and below), I'll show you how to develop your golf swing at the practice range--and get ready for the real grass on the course," he says.
(Click images to enlarge pages)
So hurry up and melt snow. Let the temperatures rise. I'm getting that golf itch and I can't wait to hit the Driving Range and try out these drills.
Photos by The Muni Golfer

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Victory Golf Show Cancelled

The 2010 Victory Golf Show, which was to have been held this coming weekend in Valley Forge, has been canceled due to the economy. The announcement was made on the show's Web site. It also stated that the show would return in 2011. The show was created in 2007 when the Greater Philadelphia Golf Show was unable to be held in the area because of the closure of the old Fort Washington Expo Center. The Greater Philadelphia Golf Show will be held Feb. 12-14 at the Greater Philadelphia Expo Center in Oaks, Pa.