About Rory Spears

Rory spent over 8 years growing up working at Rob Roy Golf Club in Prospect Hts.IL, then two years at Chevy Chase in Wheeling. He has covered golf in Chicago since 1986. Rory was one of the initial members of WSCR all-sports radio Chicago and covered golf there for 5 seasons, before moving on to work for ESPN/Sportsticker and ESPN Radio. In addition to hosting Golfers on Golf Radio on WNDZ Am 750 Chicago, he writes for both Chicagoland Golf and the Chicago District (CDGA) Magazine. Rory has played over 460 courses in 37 states, and rates golf courses. He does golf course management and communications consulting, in the golf industry.

THE GOG BLOG SPEAKS OUT-RORY WINS BIG

COMING TO LONG GROVE IL. THIS FALL, IRONS & WOODS. On Rt. 53 North of Lake Cook Road (behind Menards). HDGolf simulators will keep the golf season going year round. Need more-how about slot machines. Stay clicked in to see the build out that is starting shortly. Follow Irons & Woods on Facebook, for news on opening day.   _____________________________________________________________________

Golfers on Golf Radio the final show in the current WNDZ studio’s. L-R Ed Stevenson-Bill Berger and Rory Spears. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy-Facebook or Linkedin.

RORY HIT’S PAYDIRT, 15 Million for a weeks work on the golf course, not bad.

THE 2019 PGA TOUR season and Tour Championship is in the books. And Rory McIlroy is the winner. McIlroy “roared past” Brooks Koepka on Sunday for the win.

So the only remaining question now is, whether or not, it’s Brooks or Rory for the Player of the Year Award.

All of us at Golfers on Golf, send our best wishes to those injured by the lightning strike at the Tour Championship on Saturday. Because it looked pretty bad on television, it’s surprising that nobody was more seriously hurt.

The back nine on Sunday is where McIlroy broke away from Koepka, and the field to win his second tour title. 2019 turned out to be a great year on the PGA Tour for McIlroy, with wins at the Players Championship, the Canadian Open and in the playoffs. Congrats to Rory on a great 2019. ICYMI my thoughts on the playoff format, was posted yesterday.

The 2019 Illinois PGA Section Championship is at Ruth Lake Country Club.

THE ILLINOIS PGA has cancelled Round 1 of the Section Championship at Ruth Lake Country Club, long after it started.

So with at least 36 players of the field, in the clubhouse and posted, and many others almost complete with Round 1. Then rain halted play for the third time, and so the decision was made to cancel Round 1, and have a do-over. Seriously. I know about having half the field in and posted. But this isn’t the PGA Tour and or the the U.S Open. Play should have continued until dark, and pick it up where everyone left off in the morning. Other than Round 1 tomorrow, the schedule is unclear for the rest of the championship.

BIG 3 partner Tim Cronin has a story posting soon on the IPGA website and likely on his IllinoisGolfer.net website.

GOLFERS ON GOLF RADIO is done for 2019, our final show for the year, was last Saturday on Am 750 WNDZ-Chicago. Ed Stevenson, Bill Berger and I, would like to thank all of our sponsors for the year.

Our final show was filled with breaking news. From the Dupage County Forest Preserve District, comes the news that the board has approved the money for the new clubhouse, on the Preserve at Oak Meadows. Great news. Ground-breaking will be in September, and construction should take about a year. With some luck in the weather, maybe it can open around Labor Day weekend of 2020.

And the Rambo Scramble will be played Saturday October 12th at Maple Meadows, see Dupagegolf.com for sign up information.

While in town to play in the BMW Championship. PGA Tour player Joel Dahmen, his caddie and two other tour caddies went out to play the Presevre at Oak Meadows. Here (above) are his comments about the golf course. SPOILER CLUE-they all loved it.

AT MISTWOOD GOLF, the Mistwood Golf Dome needs a new dome-shell says owner Jim McWethy. The plan is for a new dome before winter. If not, Mistwood will have to get another year out of the current dome.

LEN ZIEHM is playing in the World Largest Amateur Championship in Myrtle Beach South Carolina, and you can learn more at lenziehmongolf.com. There was great weather today for Round 1.

AND FROM THE CDGA-Chadd Slutzky had a 54 hole total of 10 under par, to win the CDGA Mid Amateur at Stonebridge Country Club, by 3 shots. Congratulations to Chadd on his win.

Hawthorne racing and the OTB have left. Open space will be transformed. Becoming restaurant space, and a room for private functions. A new outdoor area that faces Rt. 53, is planned. Mistwood Golf Club in Romeoville has a Taylor-Made ball-fitting event this Thursday from 4-7 PM. Info. at (815)-254-3333.

FROM INNISBROOK RESORT in Tarpon Springs Florida, one of the Rory Spears favorite golf destinations. Comes word from GM Mike Williams, that the room renovations that started a year ago are almost complete. And the four golf courses are in great shape after the renovations. More details and great fall and winter golf packages can be found at Innisbrookgolf.com. Home of the Copperhead Golf Course and the Valspar Championship on the PGA Tour.

WORD FROM THE UNIVERSITY OF ILLINOIS, is that Tristyn Nowlin will compete starting Thursday in the LPGA Q-School qualifying event. The top 60 players after 54 holes advance to the final round. Players from there, move on to Stage 2 of Q-School.

CONGRATULATIONS is in order to Kevin Frisch and Frisch PR, on taking over the public reletions for the Harbor Shores Golf Club, in Benton Harbor Michigan. Harbor Shores will host the 2020 Senior PGA Championship.

THE GOG BLOG will now heat up with the radio season behind us. Keep it here all winter long, for all the golf news Chicago area and beyond need to know. I’ll be at the Illinois PGA Section Championship starting tomorrow. Stay clicked in. RS

THE PGA TOUR CHAMPIONSHIP-COULD IT BE BETTER

                                                               IRONS & WOODS COMING THIS FALL TO LONG GROVE ILLINOIS. RT. 53 North of Lake Cook Road. Irons and Woods will be a HDGolf Simulator driven facility. It will include slot machines and other fun activities. Because now the Chicago area golf season is year round. So stay clicked in to monitor the build-out up to the opening. #fun  ______________________________________________________________________

Golfersongolf.com by RORY SPEARS-Director of Content and Creation. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy Looking at the world through some rose colored PEAKVision sunglasses.

 

TOUR CHAMPIONSHIP ROUND 3 was not completed.

Because lightning hit the golf course, and injured six spectators who were taken to a local hospital. And none of the injuries are reported to be, life-threatening.

Besides that, nothing much happened at the tour championship. But brooks Koepka and Rory McIlroy are over par in their third rounds, so that leaves Justin Thomas back on top by a shot. So it should be some interesting golf in the final round.

But what will the ending be. Is 30 players enough to playing in the final week of the PGA Tour for this year. There have been complaints that several players are missing, that should be in the field. Okay-like who?

Tiger Woods, Shane Lowery, Phil Mickelson. While the first two won a major, they didn’t play well enough the rest of the year, to make the field. Mickelson won a WGC tournament, but didn’t play good enough the rest of the season to make the field. One stellar week, does not make a year regardless of what tournament you win.

As for Tiger, enjoy the green jacket.  So for Shane, enjoy the jug and the drinks from it.

McIlroy wondered out-loud this week about the format, that had Thomas winning by two shots before the week even started. While at Medinah, Thomas joked about sleeping on a Wednesday night lead, but it was no joke. He had a lead before he even tee’d off.

So why did he have a lead. Because last year when Woods won the tour championship, he did not win the FedExCup. Justin Rose did. So if your trying to make the winner in Atlanta, the overall winner. Why have three playoff events in the first place.  If the FedExCup is about the season long race, then take the full season into account. Not just the last three weeks.

I suggest the how low can you go format for earning extra points. The bigger the winning margin is, the bigger amount of bonus points you can get. This would encourage leaders to not put it on auto-pilot when they lead by 3 shots, with 3 holes to play. That, would make things more exciting, wire-to-wire.

Their would be incentive, for margin of victory. Maybe extra points for a hole-in-one, or that holed out shot from over 100 yards. How about points for putts, made over 50 feet. Holed out bunker shots would qualify for some extra points as well.

Don’t lag it up there, go for it. Regardless of who wins the FedExCup this year, the format again needs some tinkering. Lets shoot for some style points. RS

GOLFERS ON GOLF RADIO-WE PUTT OUT FOR THE YEAR

IRONS & WOODS OPENING THIS FALL on Rt.53 north of Lake Cook Road in Long Grove. Stay tuned to watch the build out, both here and on the social media sites. Irons & Woods will have HDGolf Simulators slot machines, and more. #golfseasonyearound.  _____________________________________________________________________

Golfers on Golf Radio is L-R Ed Stevenson, Bill Berger and Rory Spears. In studio at Am 750 THE BIG WNDZ.

THE SEASON HAS RACED BY and our round for the year on the radio, is ending. So we wrap it up tomorrow morning (Saturday) for the season.

We hope you will join us from 10-11 am, for a great hour of golf talk.

Our topics include, wrapping up the BMW Championship. looking ahead at the tournaments still on the schedule.

Including the Senior Women’s LPGA Championship at the French Lick Resort, in October. This week the Illinois PGA Championship at Ruth Lake Country Club tee’s off on Monday morning.

Our guests include Mike Williams GM at the Innisbrook Resort in Florida, just North of Tampa. And Jim McWethy owner of the Mistwood Golf Course in Romeoville, and the Mistwood Golf Dome in Bolingbrook.

Join us on the tee at 10 AM. As we get ready to putt out for the 2019 golf radio season.

CATCHING UP WITH US OPEN CHAMPION GARY WOODLAND

IRONS & WOODS IS COMING TO LONG GROVE IL. ON RT.53 North of Lake Cook Road this fall. HDGolf simulators, slots and more fun. Golf season is now year round.    ______________________________________________________________________

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS-Director of Conent and Creation. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy, and on Linkedin or Facebook. At Medinah Country Club.

GARY WOODLAND finally had a round of golf that worked for him. An 8 under par 64 that was maybe his best round of golf since Round 4 at the U.S Open.

Woodland is the U.S. Open Champion but he is still looking for a place on the Presidents Cup Team.

The top 8 in points after the BMW Championship made the team, but Woodland is only in 9th place.

AFTER HIS FIRST ROUND AT THE BMW-CHAMPIONSHIP Woodland spoke with Golfers on Golf about winning the U.S. Open, life since the open, his deal with Chicago based Wilson Golf. And what has sunk in, since winning the open at Pebble Beach.

Click here, to hear the interview with U.S. Open Champion Gary Woodland.

Since the U.S. Open victory, Woodland’s wife has given birth to twins, and with the demand for his time. Woodland freely admits he is so in need for some practice time.

Woodland (white pants) leads the way down the 4th fairway on Medinah 3, during Sundays round. With Tommy Fleetwood and Adam Hadwin.

Because of the scheduled after the open, Woodland talks about not being ready to play at what was his next tournament in Detroit.

But add’s he is well aware of the Wilson Driver vs Driver 2 winner, the Cortex Driver. And during the offseason ahead, he will spend sometime trying to dial it in. Right now it does not go straight enough for him. But he add’s it’s a “hotclub” and it hits drives a long way.

Woodland is 9th place in the FedExCup points standings, and will play in the PGA Tour Championship this week in Atlanta.

For more on Gary Woodland with Wilson Golf, see Wilsongolf.com

KINGMADE THE OFFICIAL JERKY OF THE PGA TOUR

IRONS & WOODS-COMING THIS FALL TO LONG GROVE IL. Follow the build out on Facebook or here. HDGolf Simulators, slot machines. Rt.53 north of Lake-Cook Road.    _____________________________________________________________________

      KINGMADE JERKY has now become the official beef jerky snack of the PGA Tour .

In a joint announcement, the PGA Tour and Kingmade Jerky have started a new multi-year marketing relationship, that designates Kingmade Jerky as the “Official Jerky and Meat Snack of the PGA Tour.”

Kingmade Founder Jeff King, discovered golf at age 9, and then started working as a professional caddie in 1998. King’s career covers working with some of the top players in the game.

While working in his home kitchen in McKinney Texas, King started creating recipes in 2012. King would then bring his jerky out to the golf course as a snack.

“Players tried it and called it, the best jerky they ever had,” King said. “Within a few weeks, players were asking me for some, and then started sending me flavor ideas.”

Because of the growing demand, King started working to improve the recipes players had given him. King says he tried to “create the healthiest and best-tasting jerky ever.”  So when demand still continued to grow, King realized he was onto something.

“Kingmade Jerky is a natural fit for the PGA Tour and its players,” says Matt Iofredo, Vice President of Licensing and Merchandising PGA Tour. “Because we share a committment to health, active lifestyles and quality. We look forward to working together with Kingmade to share this product.”

Tom Ponder, General Partner of Bushwood Investment Partners LLC, is now serving as the CEO.

See Kingmade on PGATOUR.com, and SiriusXm Radio. Besides TPC Network clubs.

Kingmade Beef Jerky is available in three nutritious flavors. Classic, Buffalo, and Sweet Chili.

Find more information at Kingmadejerky.com and on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and Linkedin.

THE GOG BLOG SPEAKS OUT- THE LAST OF TIGER ?

IRONS & WOODS coming this fall to Long Grove IL., Chicago area are you ready for a year round golf season. HDGolf simualtors, slots and more in the new fun location. You can find Irons & Woods on Rt. 53 North of Lake Cook Road (Behind the Menards store). ______________________________________________________________________

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS. Director of Content and Creation. Follow Rory on Facebook, Linkedin or Twitter @GogBlogGuy. On the putting clock at Medinah CC.

WHAT A WEEK that came to an end on Sunday night.

Medinah, the BMW Championship, the PGA Tour, Tiger Woods, and golf in general, are raising a lot of questions.

First of all, it’s not a surprise that Justin Thomas won the championship. But how he did it, with a course record 61 and by shooting 25 under par. Has left some folks with raised eyebrows.

The Medinah membership has to be stunned. Because seeing the famed #3 Course get shredded like a second course at some amateur event, that needs two courses because of field size shouldn’t happen.

The 18th hole on Medinah #3.

If 25 under par can happen on Medinah 3, what will happen on the Olympia Fields North Course, during the 2020 BMW Championship.

One former Olympia Fields member suggested on social media this past weekend, that 30 under par is not out of the question, and he might be right.

Because of the low numbers, there is some discussion, about how the PGA Tour is setting up its golf courses. But when given perfect scoring conditions, PGA Tour players will chew up any course. Maybe, the tour as they look to shrink the field each week during the playoffs, should make each course a bit tougher each week. Tighten up the fairways, and make the rough a little more penal. Instead of 3 or 4 tough pins, it should be 7 or 8 per round. Both Erin Hills and the Pete Dye Course at the French Lick Resort can play at over 8,000 yards, now that could be fun to watch.

The late Joe Jemsek always suggested, he would put the pins in the bunkers on  Course 4, Dubsdread, if the pro’s shot to low at Cog Hill. Maybe he was on to something, Joe was always ahead of his time.

THE NEW FORMAT heading into East Lake, gives Thomas a 2-shot lead over Patrick Cantlay and a score of 10 under par on the first tee come Thursday. I’ll tackle that issue on Thursday in another column.

BMW IS BACK, for at least 3 more years. That one snuck out of the car-park early in the week and caught many folks by surprise. Kudo’s to Teddy Greenstein of the Chicago Tribune (The official media outlet for years, of the Western Golf Association) for breaking the story.

I spoke with Greenstein and even he was surprised at the turn of events. Greenstein said that on the Friday before championship, that he had learned that the company LG was going to be the new sponsor. But by last Monday that had all changed. And it appears yet another change at the top of BMW management, cleared the way to stick around the PGA Tour for three more years.

The champions wall by the first tee at Olympia Fields Country Club, host of the 2020 BMW Championship. Which name will join the wall in 2020, after the BMW Championship.

WHAT WE DO KNOW, is that the new deal is for three more years. And 2020 will stay at Olympia Fields on the Southside. Besides that, the future is up in the air. Apparently even the WGA doesn’t know where the tournament going beyond next year.

So the rumor-mill is this. 2021 to either Caves Valley in Maryland, outside of the great city of Baltimore. And or back to Cherry Hills near Denver Colorado. But it’s there where the picture gets fuzzy. If those sites are named as the out of town courses, what years will they host.

So will the new contract stipulate the championship must be in Chicago every other year. Could the BMW drive out of town for two straight years in 2021 and 2022. Or could 2022 be a Chicago course year, before a travel date in 2023. But again in 2023, there is no contract. Might Conway Farms in Lake Forest be on tap for 2022 ?

Conway Farms Golf Club in Lake Forest hosted the BMW Championship in 2013, 2015, and 2017. Might they play host again in 2022.

WGA Sr. Vice President of Tournaments, Vince Pellegrino suggested the following idea during an interview with BIG 3 partner Tim Cronin and yours truly, during the Sr. Players Championship at Exmoor in 2018.

That if the tournament would be staying in town every year, he wouldn’t mind having it at Jackson Park once the course gets redone. But will it ever get done ?

So that question still lurks, but it could get answered tomorrow when City of Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot addresses city issues, and needed budget cuts. There was supposed to be a press conference at Medinah with Tiger Woods, and other key players such as Mike Keiser and Mark Rolfing, that never happened. Supporters of the course, seemed in the gloom and doom mode, and fearing the mayors comments on Tuesday might not be good news. Word is steps that need to be taken, in order for some work to get done this fall have not been completed.

SPEAKING OF WOODS the story that did not get written last weekend, was this Tigers last appearance in a tournament in Chicago. Because some people believe it is.

Tiger Woods walks to his ball in the left rough and trees, on the ninth hole. During Sunday’s final round.

Woods apparently is looking at a reduced schedule in the years ahead. Which begs the question, can he earn enough FedExCup points to make the BMW next year. Or any year.

The USGA and the PGA don’t seem to have any plans to bring the U.S. Open, or the PGA Championship, or the Ryder Cup to Chicago any time soon. That doesn’t give Woods any options to play here. Down the road if a Senior U.S. Open were to come to Chicago, and Woods actually plays in the them. That seems to be the best chance for Woods to ever play in Chicago again, if he fails to make the field at Olympia Fields next August.

THE FINAL GOLFERS ON GOLF RADIO for 2019 airs this Saturday at 10 AM, 23 weeks has flown by quickly. I hope you will join Ed Stevenson, Bill Berger and I for one more hour of golf talk on the BIG Am 750, WNDZ. The Gog Blog returns this week. Go Play, area courses are in great shape. RS

THOMAS WINS BMW CHAMPIONSHIP

IRONS & WOODS coming this fall to Long Grove Illinois. North of Lake Cook Road on Rt. 53 (Behind Menards). Golf season goes year-round at Irons & Woods. #slots #fun    _____________________________________________________________________

BMW CHAMPIONSHIP-CHAMPION JUSTIN THOMAS records a Thank You message to his supporters on social media after his press conference. THE GOG BLOG by Rory Spears-Director of Content and creation. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy, andon Linkedin or Facebook. On the putting clock at Medinah, during the BMW Championship _____________________________________________________________________

THAT’S TEN, career wins for Justin Thomas in the professional ranks. And he did it in fine form, winning the BMW Championship by three shots over Patrick Cantlay.

Who, would have ever thought that 25 under par would happen on Medinah #3. Second place was 22 under par. Besides that, 20 under par (Hidecki Matsuyama) was only good enough for third place. Poor Tony Finau, 18 under par only got him 4th place.

So after shooting 61, a course record in Saturday’s third round. What could Thomas possibly do for an encore. What Thomas did accomplish besides winning the BMW, and taking home $1,665,000 for a weeks work. Was shooting a 4 under par 68, and showing the world when needed, he can flip a club upside down and hit a lefthanded shot. As he did on the par 5 tenth hole, where he almost put his second shot out on Lake Avenue. The ball hit the top of the fence before coming down under the branch of a small tree.

Because he had a six shot lead to start the round, Thomas said he was nervous on the way to the course, because what was on his mind was not losing the tournament.  And  wanting a good position going into the tour championship.

So when that six shot lead shrunk to just 2 shots on the 11th tee, Thomas did need to refocus a little. So Thomas just went out, and birdied three of the next five holes, and that was good enough to hold off Cantlays late charge.

Click here, to listen to Justin Thomas and his championship press conference.

Tiger Woods will not be defending his title in Atlanta this week. Saying he’s disapointed to miss the tour championship. Tiger called 2019 a great year for him, by winning another green jacket.

Phil Mickelson had an interesting day, that started before he left his hotel room. Staying in the hotel next door to Medinah, Mickelson had to be evacuated from the top floor when it was struck by lightning, and a small fire started on the roof. Because he left without his clubs, there was some question if he could get back in to get them. So Mickelson told his Twitter world, I don’t have my clubs and I don’t know if can play. But he got them in time to warm up and play.

Lucas Glover and Jason Kokrak finished 29th and 30th, to be the last two players into the tour championship. Shane Lowery fell back to 33rd to miss the top 30, along with Jordan Spieth who dropped to 44th, and misses the tour championship for the second straight year.

The BMW Championship returns to the Chicago area in August of 2020 and held at Olympia Fields Country Club. The Gog Blog Speaks Out, returns tomorrow.

RAIN SOFTENS MEDINAH-NOT JUSTIN THOMAS

IRONS & WOODS COMING THIS FALL TO LONG GROVE IL., where your golf season never ends. Irons & Woods will be golf and sports simulator driven. But slots and more. ______________________________________________________________________

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy, Linkedin and Facebook. Justin Thomas is interviewed, after his 3rd Round 61, on Medinah #3.

IF THERE WAS any question about the course record on Medinah #3, there is not one anymore.

Because Justin Thomas simply crushed any record that stood, and he made it look so simple.

Besides the fact he shot an 11 under par 61, he now holds a six shot lead heading into Sundays final round.

So now unless Thomas stubs his toe, like Greg Norman did at Cog Hill one year. This championship is over. And the only remaining questions will be, who will finish second, who will finish third, and who will be going to East Lake next week for the Tour Championship.

There are several players fighting hard, trying to move into the top 30 on the points list to qualify. But some players look like their time is up, and so they will be at home next week, season over. And Tiger Woods is expected to be, one of those players

But one thing is now certain. Justin Thomas will play in Atlanta next week. Because the show Thomas put on Saturday at Medinah. Is nothing short of, one of the best rounds ever played on the PGA Tour.

61, yes 61. Besides the Medinah members standing around the bar asking, 61, what happened. The plain truth is that, when the games best players have great conditions. They can tear a tough course apart.

Thomas started off with birdies on holes 1,2,3,4,and 5. Maybe he should have shot 54. And it looked like he could have, after making an eagle on the par 5, 10th hole. And he wasn’t done. Thomas chipped in from the rough next to the par 5, 14th green for birdie. Need more. Okay, how about an 8-Iron from 179 yards on the par 4, 16th hole. And that was the club and distance, on his “eagle 2”, that 1-hopped into the cup.

So when partner Tony Finau holed an eagle on the fourth hole. Thomas had to be thinking, maybe I need one of those too. And two eagles is what he got. Besides the 11 birdies.

Click here, to hear the post round interview with Justin Thomas, who carded a Medinah Course #3 record 61.

Click here, and hear Tony Finau’s third round interview. As he describes watching the 61 shot by Thomas.

Because of a mid-day storm, play was delayed for 75 minutes. And with overnight storms expected on Saturday. Sunday’s final round is delayed until 10 AM.  So players will tee off in threesomes, between 10 Am and Noon. And will tee off both, 1 & 10 tees.

MATSUYAMA LEADS BMW AFTER 36 HOLES

IRONS & WOODS COMING TO LONG GROVE THIS FALL. It’s golf simulator driven, but Irons & Woods will have slot machines and more fun activities. Golf season all year.  ______________________________________________________________________

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS, Director of Content and Creation. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy or on Linkedin and Facebook. With BMW artist Cassy Tully, in the merchandise tent.

THE BMW CHAMPIONSHIP is halfway home. And after 36 holes it’s Hidecki Matsuyama with a 1shot lead over Tony Finau, and Patrick Cantlay.

Matsuyama fired a course record for Medinah’s Course #3, in competition with a 9 under par 63.

Harry “Lighthorse” Cooper shot 63 on the orginal Medinah Course #3 design, during the 1930 Medinah Open.

But the course, and routing was changed over time. The current routing has been in place since 1986. Prior to the 1988 Senior Open and the 1990 U.S. Open. There were changes to the 15th hole prior to the 2012 Ryder Cup. A pond was added, and the green was rebuilt. Yardage grew to it’s current 7,613 yards. The course record prior to Round 2 was 65, recorded several times. Including by Justin Thomas and Jason Kokrak, during Round 1.

Both Thomas and Kokrak fell back in Round 2. Thomas is still lurking near the lead, 2 shots back of Matsuyama. Kokrak suffered a triple bogey 7, on the 15th hole that left him six shots off the lead.

(L) Tony Finau speaks with the media after his round. (R) Patrick Cantlay is feeling good about his game, headed to Round 3.

Finau shot 66, and Cantlay 67 to share second place. Both players are playing good golf, and say they are ready to keep moving forward this weekend. Finau says his style is pedal to the metal “all weekend” long, and that he is ready to win. Finau one shot down on 18, ripped the longest drive of the day on 18. 333 yards, but his wedge from 115 yards spun-backwards. So that left a 20-foot birdie putt that Finau could not convert.

Click here, to hear the second round interview with Tony Finau.

Cantlay says he loves the old-classic style golf courses, and is really enjoying a Medinah course that he says is in great shape.

Click here, to hear the postround interview with Patrick Cantlay.

Tiger Woods who is playing with a strained oblique muscle, doesn’t seem to have enough left in his tank to reach Atlanta next week. Because Woods needs to jump over 8 players in the FedExCup point standings. In order to make the top 30. Woods is ahead of only two players, he needs to beat. Eight players just behind Woods in the standings, are leading him this week after 36 holes. At this time, Woods is likely to fall back in the standings after Medinah.

Brooks Koepka, the #1 player in the point standings, is at 5 under par. Rory McIlroy had a late birdie binge and is 4 shots back at 8 under par.

Because the players will tee off in twosomes on Saturday. Shane Lowery will head out first as a solo at 7:25 Am.  The final tee time is at 1 PM, it includes Matsuyama and Cantlay.

IAN POULTER TALKS RYDER CUP-SLOW PLAY

IRONS & WOODS the build out is getting ready to go. And you should be getting ready to go to Long Grove this fall, when Irons & Woods officially opens. Golf Simulators and slot machines are just part of this entertainment venue. Golf season now is year-round.  _____________________________________________________________________

THE GOG BLOG by RORY SPEARS. Director of Content and Creation. Follow Rory on Twitter @GogBlogGuy Linkedin and or Facebook. Ian Poulter (L) speaks with the media at Medinah earlier this week.

HE IS one of the most outspoken players in professional golf. But his answers to questions are so good, he is always in demand for comment or a quote.

Ian Poulter is not only a great golfer he is frequently the killer of Team USA at Ryder Cups.

It was Poulter who helped turned the European tide of fortune, during the 2012 Ryder Cup at Medinah. With the USA up five points on Saturday, the matches seemed over. That was until Poulter kicked things into a higher gear, and decided he had not yet begun to fight. The rally started, and Europe overcame a four point deficit on Sunday, to take home the Ryder Cup..

While meeting with the media about his return to Medinah, seven years after the Ryder Cup win. Poulter shared memories about the 2012 Ryder Cup at Medinah, and was outspoken on slow play and other issues in golf.

Click here, to hear the media session with Ian Poulter.

The Gog Blog is back with more from Medinah later today. So stay clicked in.