Ken Martin, Instructor for College of Golf, Qualifies for PGA Senior PNC

August 25th, 2014

ken-martinKen Martin, PGA Professional Certified in Instruction and General Management and Keiser University College of Golf & Sport Management Instructor, competed in the South Florida Senior Section Championship last week at the Turtle Creek Golf Club. The Top 10 finishers in the Senior Section Championship also qualified for the PGA Senior Professional National Championship (PNC), which will be held at the PGA Golf Club in November of this year.

Ken opened the competition with a 3-over par 75, which placed him tied for 26th place after the first round. Ken turned the front nine of day two in 2-over par 38. Knowing he had to play well on the closing nine, Ken recorded five birdies to shoot 31 on the back-nine, and a 3-under par 69 for the day, placing him in a tie for the final qualifying spot for the Senior PNC.

His par on the first playoff hole secured his entry into the Senior PNC and placed him in a tie for ninth overall in the 81 player field of the Senior Section Championship. Ken has qualified for and competed in the PGA Senior PNC for the last four years, finishing fourth in the nation in 2010 and second in the nation in 2011. Keiser University College of Golf & Sport Management staff and students wish Ken the best as he competes against the best senior players in the country in the 2014 PGA Senior PNC in November.

The Story Behind Sam Snead’s Side Saddle Putter

August 15th, 2014

With the upcoming USGA ban on anchored putters just around the corner, I thought it would be interesting to look back at another putting method that was banned because of its “unorthodoxy.” Tony Parker, writing for World Golf Hall of Fame, penned the following article about the great Sam Snead:

“Players who will have to adjust their putting styles for the upcoming ban on anchored putting can take heart in the success that World Golf Hall of Fame member Sam Snead found after he was forced into a similar situation in the 1960s. Slammin’ Sammy Snead was an eight-time winner of the Greater Greensboro Open. The tournament, which is now known as the Wyndham Championship, is celebrating its 75th anniversary this week. Snead’s final PGA TOUR victory came at the 1965 Greater Greensboro Open at the age of 52. He set the record for oldest PGA TOUR winner with that victory. Snead was still a strong ball-striker in his 50s, but struggled with the yips on the greens.

During the second round of the 1966 PGA Championship at Firestone he double-hit a 2-foot putt and in desperation changed his putting style in the middle of the round. As Billy Farrell, Snead’s playing partner, told Al Barkow, “On the very next hole, it’s Sam’s turn to putt and this time he straddles the ball; he goes croquet style.” It worked for Snead and for the rest of the round he continued to use the croquet style of putting. He tied for sixth place that week.

The following January, Snead would win the PGA Seniors’ Championship by nine strokes at the PGA National Golf Club in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida. He would go on to win the PGA Seniors’ three more times after that commanding victory. Snead tied for 10th place in the 1967 Masters using his unique croquet putting style. It was his best finish since 1963. His success with this new approach to putting drew the attention of golf’s governing bodies.

The USGA and the R&A met just before the Walker Cup in England to discuss the matter and decided to outlaw croquet putting by proposing a rules change, effective Jan. 1, 1968. Rule 16-1e states that “on the putting green a player shall not make a stroke from astride, or with either foot touching the line of the putt, or an extension of that line behind the ball.” Joseph C. Dey, the Executive Director of the USGA and fellow future Hall of Fame member, said, “We made the decision with great reluctance, but we felt it was the only way to eliminate the unconventional styles that have developed in putting.

It was some other game, part croquet, part shuffleboard and part the posture of Mohammedan prayer.” Snead responded by saying that, “I might be able to alter my stance and still putt my way.” He did just that by improvising a side-saddle stance for the rest of his days to great success. At age 62, he put on a remarkable show and tied for third at the 1974 PGA Championship at Tanglewood, losing out to Lee Trevino. It will be interesting to see how players respond and adapt to the ban on the anchored putter. Will Snead’s side-saddle putting style make a comeback? If they need inspiration, players and fans can get a look at Snead’s side-saddle putter, along with his trademark hat and other unique items, in the World Golf Hall of Fame’s Major Moments exhibition.”


Sam Snead’s side-saddle putter — along with his lunch box and irons — is on display at the World Golf Hall of Fame. (Keyur Khamar/


It will be interesting to see what adjustments players will make to ensure they putt legally once the ban takes place. Rumor has it that long putters will still be used, but players will find a way to stroke the putt without anchoring the putter. Stay tuned for an interesting display of putting!

Melbourne Central Catholic HS Girls Golf Team Visits the Keiser University College of Golf

August 8th, 2014

melbourne-central-catholic-hs-girls-golf-teamThe Melbourne Central Catholic High School Girls Golf Team visited Keiser University College of Golf this past Saturday to prepare themselves for the coming golf season.  A team of seven members worked with College of Golf PGA Professionals John Callahan and Brian Hughes on various aspects of their games.  Current College of Golf Student Neftali Rivera also assisted with the instruction.

For the second consecutive year, Coach Kelly brought his team together to with an emphasis placed upon a full swing evaluation of each player, putting techniques and drills, chip shot basics, approach wedge play and numerous fitness drills designed for increased performance and injury prevention.  With the season right around the corner, continued hard work and dedication to the instruction given should help them continue their tradition of fine play this year.

Keiser University College of Golf & Sport Management Hosts Merritt Island High School Boy’s Golf Team

August 6th, 2014

merritt-island-high-school-clinicKeiser University College of Golf & Sport Management staff and students hosted the Merritt Island High School Boy’s Golf Team on Friday from 9:30am – 2:00pm.

The session began with an overview of proper grip, aim, and setup, provided by Mr. John Callahan, PGA and Golf Magazine Top 100 Adjunct Teacher, and the importance of properly preparing for each full swing motion. Mr. Brian Hughes, PGA Master Professional and College of Golf Program Director, and Mr. Callahan then conducted live golf swing evaluations of each of the players, using V-1 Computer video analysis and Trackman launch monitor equipment.

The Merritt Island High School Golf Team coaches observed and took notes on what recommendations each of their players were offered. College of Golf Advanced Teaching students Zack Anderton, Brad Holden, and Duane Medlin conducted Chipping and Putting clinics, emphasizing the proper grip, aim, and setup for the critical short game scoring shots.

Students then visited the fitness gym, where Mr. Brett Cook, Sport Medicine and Fitness Instructor and Golf Fitness Instructor for the PGA of America, took them through some basic fitness routines to improve flexibility and stamina before, during, and after their rounds of golf. The Golf Team also competed in a long drive competition using the Foresight Launch Monitor and a closest to the pin competition on the Full Swing Golf Simulator.dr-wilson-instructing-merritt-island-hs

The training concluded with lunch and a putting contest, where winners were awarded sleeves of golf balls. Keiser University College of Golf & Sport Management will host the Martin County High School Girls Golf Team for a similar clinic this Friday. These clinics are a continuing effort to provide training to local high school golf teams using the Keiser University College of Golf & Sport Management indoor training facility and equipment throughout the summer months.


Keiser University College of Golf & Sports Management Conducts Student Enrichment Day

August 4th, 2014

Ken Martin Student Enrichment DayKeiser University College of Golf & Sport Management (KUCOGSM) conducted Student Enrichment Days on Tuesday, July 29th, and Thursday, July 30th. Dr. Eric Wilson, PGA Master Professional and Director of Golf Operations for KUCOGSM, presented for the first half of the session and discussed “How to Gain Membership in the PGA of America” and “Career Opportunities in the Golf Industry.”

Dr. Wilson has been a PGA of America Professional Golf Management Program Adjunct Instructor since 1994, and he shared his experience and advice with the student body concerning how best to prepare for PGA Membership and what students could do to most effectively prepare for careers in the golf industry. Following Dr. Wilson’s presentation, Mr. Ken Martin, PGA Professional Certified in Instruction and General Management, talked to students about “Playing Golf for a Living.”

Mr. Martin, a full-time instructor with KUCOGSM, recently competed in the U.S. Senior Open Golf Championship and has competed in two Senior PGA Championships, making the cut in the 2011 event at Valhalla Golf Club, the site of this year’s PGA Championship. Mr. Martin has been competitive throughout his PGA Career on the Section and National levels and shot a
course record 6-under par 66 at Creighton Farms Golf Club during the 2011 Senior National Professional Championship, where he finished 2nd in the nation.

Student Enrichment days will be held for students once each semester, and topics will change each semester based on student and staff input. Many thanks to Mr. Frank Longabucco, PGA Professional Certified in Instruction and Golf Operations and KUCOGSM TLC Coordinator, for scheduling and organizing the event.

Tiger Woods at The Honda Classic

March 6th, 2014

The town and golfers from all walks of life were abuzz with the 2014 Honda Classic, featuring the best field of the year and highlighted by an appearance from Tiger Woods. What a wild and crazy finish to a great golf tournament. Tiger barely made the cut with rounds of 71 and 69, then roared back into contention on Saturday with an amazing round of 65 to put him in the top 20, even though his ball-striking was questionable. Everyone wanted to see what he would do on Sunday, and he continued his preparation for the upcoming Masters. To everyone’s surprise, Tiger struggled mightily, playing the first 13 holes in 5-over par. Then, after shaking hands on the 13th green with his playing partner Luke Guthrie, Woods got into a black SUV and withdrew from the tournament. As Golf Channel’s Ryan Lavner reported, “What we do know is this: This is Woods’ seventh career withdrawal, and his fourth in the past five years. That he has pulled out for four different ailments – knee, Achilles, neck and now back – only casts further doubt as to whether he will ever again be able to play an injury-free season.

If nothing else, Sunday served as a stark reminder that it is Woods’ brittle body – not his mind or game – that stands as his main obstacle to Jack Nicklaus’ record of 18 majors. This marks the first time in Woods’ career that he has failed to record at least one top-10 finish in his first three starts of a season. His previous worst opening stretch was 2011, and that eventually turned into a lost year, after missing three months (and two majors) with injuries to his knees and Achilles’ tendon. Now, Woods is rusty, injured and seemingly disinterested at times. He clearly eased into the year because of a late-2013 injury and can’t chisel off the rust or, more importantly, return to 100-percent health.

To recap, he missed the 54-hole cut at Torrey Pines, where he had won eight times as a pro. Then came the listless T-41 in Dubai, where he was a two-time winner. And now, after an efficient Saturday 65 that prompted many to proclaim that all is right with the world No. 1, he was 5 over par (and back to even for the tournament) when he walked off after 13 holes. Prior to withdrawing, he was missing fairways with irons. He was flubbing pitches around the green. He was fighting a two-way miss with the driver – on the par-5 third, he blasted one 40 yards right into the pond; three holes later, he sniped one left into the drink. Luke Guthrie, who was paired with Woods during both weekend rounds, noticed that Woods began gingerly teeing up the ball and plucking it out of the cup on the 11th hole. Soon after, Woods made a short par putt on 13, walked up to Guthrie and said, “I can’t go anymore,” and headed toward the white van. “If you’re hurting, you’re hurting,” Guthrie said afterward. “You don’t need to risk injuring yourself even more. He’s had his share of problems with injuries. There’s no reason for him to chance it if he’s really hurting.” Much like in 2012, when Woods withdrew from Doral only to return two weeks later and win at Bay Hill, this injury is even more significant because of the timing. Here’s a trivia question: How many times has Woods won the Masters without a victory earlier in the season? Answer: Zero.” And the golf world waits and wonders once again as Augusta approaches.

Australian PGA Professional Peter Croker Visits College of Golf

March 3rd, 2014

Peter Croker returned to Keiser University College of Golf & Sport Management on Tuesday to visit with Dr. Eric Wilson, Executive Director of Golf Operations, and present to the College of Golf student body. Following his presentations, he provided individual instruction to College of Golf students.

Peter has been a prominent figure in the Australian Golfing Industry since becoming a PGA Member in 1971. He has been both a touring and teaching professional throughout the duration of his career. Some career highlights include winning the 2007 PGA Victorian Teacher of the Year award.

At age 64, Peter believes that his coaching career has only just begun, and that it is education and lessons that are the future of the golf industry and individual success. He also says that he is in training to make a comeback to competitive golf on the E-Z-GO Legends Tour.

Peter has coached many high profile golfers using his Croker System including Vijay Singh, Arnold Palmer and Fred Funk, but says that every one of his clients is a celebrity in his books!

While he might think his clients are the celebrities, it could just be that their coach is also. Peter made the cover of the April 1995 of Golf Digest Magazine. The article was written about his teaching program, and it was the first time an Australian golf instructor had the privilege of gracing the cover of Golf Digest Magazine.

Keiser University College of Golf & Sport Management students were enthusiastic in their comments about Mr. Croker’s presentations, and he plans to return to the College of Golf in the future to talk with our students once again.

COGSM Students at the Honda Classic today

February 28th, 2014

More than 40 students from the Keiser University College of Golf & Sport Management (COGSM) are enjoying an excellent educational opportunity serving as volunteer caddies at the Honda Classic PGA tournament event being held this week at the PGA National Resort & Spa in Palm Beach Gardens, Florida.  The students participate in the Gold Pro-Am segment of the event on Wednesday, February 26 where guests team up with a PGA TOUR Professional in an 18 hole shootout for prizes on the Champion Course.  The students received training and preparation for the event from COGSM Executive Director of Golf Operations and PGA Master Professional, Dr. Eric Wilson and COGSM Program Director and PGA Master Professional Brian Hughes.

“Demonstrative, hands-on activities always provide the best learning experiences, and Keiser University College of Golf & Sport Management regularly incorporates opportunities in which our students receive fun and educational hands-on experiences,“ says John McMurry, Campus Vice-President.“  Whether it’s attending the PGA Merchandise Show, training at the PGA Center for Golf Learning & Performance or helping with Special Olympics golfers, our students are deeply involved in many aspects of the industry as a daily part of their education. It makes for a better learning experience and they make great friends and memories along the way.”

College of Golf Honors International Diversity

February 5th, 2014

PORT ST. LUCIE, Fla. — Golf is a universal ‘language’ that unites people from diverse and unique cultures, and Keiser University College of Golf & Sport Management (COGSM) is proud to pay homage to the international diversity on its campus. Keiser University COGSM recently celebrated the campus’ international diversity with an inspiring flag presentation ceremony that brought together nearly a dozen students currently attending the university from countries around the world.

Among the students honored in the ceremony were Cameron Windjack of Canada; Jialu Chen and Zhou Ye of China; Benjamin Brown of England; Mihir Shah of India; Wono Yoo of South Korea; Chee Then of Malaysia; Sergey Safonov of Russia; and Sarut Chittapatra and Sattamate Nopsuwanwong of Thailand. Students were presented with framed flags of their home countries, and the flags will be displayed in the Keiser University COGSM’s 5,000-square-foot, indoor practice area.

“Since we opened our campus in 2010, we have had students attend our university from 14 countries, including Australia, Colombia, Costa Rica, Ecuador, Poland and Zambia just to name a few, and that number continues to grow. Golf is a sport that knows few geographic boundaries and the game’s international popularity increases every day,” said John McMurry, Campus Vice-President of Keiser University College of Golf & Sport Management. “We are extremely proud to support such a diverse culture of students from around the globe who share a common passion for the game of golf and a passion for higher education.”

The Keiser University COGSM campus features a 20,000-square-foot facility which includes a 1,500-square-foot indoor putting green, advanced launch monitor technology, an interactive golf simulator powered by Sports Coach Systems, TaylorMade MAT-T swing analysis system, and a golf club repair lab equipped by Mitchell Golf Equipment. Students also receive access to the highly acclaimed PGA Center for Golf Learning and Performance where they can practice on a 35-acre lighted practice range, short game areas, bunker facility and extensive putting greens. In addition, Keiser University College of Golf & Sport Management gives students access to several PGA Master Professionals, such as Brian Hughes and Dr. Eric Wilson, as well as Golf Magazine top 100 teacher Dr. T.J. Tomasi.

Keiser University COGSM degree in Golf Management prepares students for a variety of positions in the golf industry. In this program, students are prepared to provide golf instruction, manage golf course operations, ensure appropriate maintenance of golf facilities and equipment, as well as integrate the play of golf into the broader hospitality and recreation domain. Keiser University COGSM’s Bachelor of Science in Sport Management degree (with a concentration in golf management) focuses on the managerial and business aspects of a career in golf. The curriculum supports an expanded professional role of sports managers and graduates of associate degree programs in golf, hospitality, fitness, sports, recreation and other related fields.

For more information on attending Keiser University College of Golf & Sport Management, please contact the College of Golf campus at 1860 Fountainview Blvd, Port St. Lucie, Fla.; online at; or call 888.355.4465.

About Keiser University:
Keiser University is a private, not-for-profit university serving nearly 20,000 students pursuing doctoral through associate degrees on 17 campuses, online and internationally, employing 3,500 staff and faculty. Keiser University is accredited by the Commission on Colleges of the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools to award certificates and degrees at the associate, baccalaureate, masters, and doctoral levels. Contact the Commission on Colleges at 1866 Southern Lane, Decatur, Georgia 30033-4097 or call 404-679-4500 for questions about the accreditation of Keiser University.

And You Think Golf Isn’t Tough?

January 27th, 2014

For those of you who are disillusioned about the difficulty of the game of golf, how about what Tiger Woods, Number 1 ranked player in the world, did on Saturday at the Farmer’s Insurance Open? As reported by ESPN Golf:

“SAN DIEGO — It meant nothing other than pride. Tiger Woods rolled in a 10-foot putt for par on his final hole Saturday at Torrey Pines, avoiding another bogey but managing to break 80, a number no pro wants on his scorecard. But it wasn’t enough to keep him on the course Sunday. For the first time in his career, Woods failed to make the PGA Tour’s secondary cut, a reduction in the field that comes into play only when the 36-hole cut leaves more than 78 players. Woods’ 7-over-par 79 at Torrey Pines’ South Course was his highest in 14 appearances in the event he has won seven times. He failed to birdie any of the par-5s over three rounds, finishing 4 over par on those holes. And he heads to the Middle East for the Omega Dubai Desert Classic on the European Tour with, at the very least, some issues in his game. “I’ve never seen him play like that,” said Jhonattan Vegas, who played with Woods during the third round. It was among the five worst scores of Woods’ professional career. Only once has he failed to break 80 — an 81 in brutal wind conditions at the 2002 Open Championship at Muirfield. There have been three other 79s — the 1996 Australian Open, the 2010 Wells Fargo Championship and last year’s Memorial Tournament.

Woods, the No. 1-ranked player in the world, had a mind-boggling stretch for him. Starting on the back nine, things appeared routine enough through eight holes. He had made three birdies and two bogeys to stand at 2-under par for the tournament. He then hit a perfect drive, 302 yards, at the par-5 18th. From there, everything unraveled. Woods’ second shot from 254 yards found the pond that fronts the green. His fourth shot went into a bunker over the green and plugged. He blasted out and two-putted for a double-bogey 7. He then went to the front side where he doubled the first hole after a 3-putt — the first time he made consecutive double bogeys since the 2011 PGA Championship — and followed that with five straight bogeys. Woods hit just 6 of 14 fairways and only 7 of 18 greens. He birdied the seventh hole which along with his par-save at the ninth hole kept him from shooting in the 80s. When he made the birdie at the seventh, Woods bowed to the crowd, mocking himself. He shot 42 over his final nine holes. Twice, Woods stubbed chipped shots; several times he short-sided himself with approaches to greens. And to not birdie a single par-5 — in 12 chances — is stunning. Woods dominated those holes on his way to victory here last year. That was his seventh victory at the Farmers Insurance Open and he has eight total at the venue, including his 2008 U.S. Open triumph, his last major title.”