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August 29, 2007
JOE CHEMYCZ: We welcome Jack Nicklaus to our interview area. Thank you for taking some time out during week two of the Playoffs, the Deutsche Bank Championship, and I know that coming up in a month there's a little event that you're going to captain the United States team. Maybe chat a little bit about the Presidents Cup. I think you're going to meet with the team later today, as well, and then we'll open it up for some questions.
JACK NICKLAUS: Obviously we've selected our team, the ten fellows that qualified, and then two fellows I selected, which is Hunter and Lucas. Anyway, this is the first time I'm meeting with the actual team. We had a meeting at Muirfield, I guess, that was the last meeting we had, and it was just about 20 or so fellows then or 30 fellows who might be on the team.
Now it's 12 fellows, and Jeff Sluman is now my assistant captain, and we are having our meeting after this. We hope we don't interfere with the Deutsche Bank Championship, but we're here to talk a little bit about what's going to happen in Montreal. I'm sure Gary will have a meeting with his team. I don't know when he's doing that. Do you?
JOE CHEMYCZ: No, I don't.
JACK NICKLAUS: I would imagine it was either last week or next week I would guess.
Q. Last week.
JACK NICKLAUS: He had one last week, did he? Okay, so anyway, I visited Royal Montreal at the first part of June, and it should be a nice venue. They're very excited in Montreal about having the event, and we're looking forward to having a good set of matches.
Q. I think people would agree that the International Team is equal if not greater than Europe. Why do you think it is that the U.S. gets waxed by Europe and The Presidents Cup is close?
JACK NICKLAUS: Well, I don't know. I can't answer that question specifically. I think that -- I think if you look at the world team, I think that if I'm not mistaken, the whole team comes from about the top 26 or something in the world. That's about what it is, isn't it? And the U.S. team, we go clear down to, I don't know where we are, 40-something. So on paper I think that the world team is a little stronger than the U.S. Team on paper.
However, we seem to have -- I think when I said that in Washington, it was the same thing. I thought that the world team was stronger on paper there, too. But that's why you play the matches.
Why the fellows have not done well in the Ryder Cup, that would be a very difficult question for me to answer. I haven't been involved or been there or been asked about it since I was last captain.
Q. What was your answer then?
JACK NICKLAUS: Well, I lost the last time, so I don't know.
But the Presidents Cup is an event that our guys, except for when we played in Australia, played fairly well. I've tried to make the matches fun for them. I've tried to let them be themselves. I like to let them be part of the process and part of the solution to everything. I haven't tried a force them or have them do one thing or the other.
I think they've responded with -- I've asked them who they'd like to play with. I think I gave them all a sheet of paper one night, and I said, "I'd like you to put down on a sheet of paper who you'd like to play with or who you don't want to play with. So you don't embarrass yourself, we'll keep it confidential and try to match it up."
That's sort of what I've done, and I think it -- I remember the first day we were at the -- we met in Washington, went out on a bus, and Phil challenged Tiger to ping-pong, a game of ping-pong. That's one of my favorite stories, but they went out and played the first game, Tiger won; they played the second game, Tiger won. And Phil said, "I've got this buffet behind me and I can't swing. Tiger, switch sides with me." He said, "Sure."
So they switch sides and Phil wins. Phil says, "Let's play another one," and Tiger says, "Uh-uh, two to one." And they never played again. But they were giggling about it and had fun.
We had dinner every night together, we spent time talking about what we were doing, very little golf, and it was fun. I think that's what the matches are supposed to be.
So I suppose maybe that's why I've had some success. I hope we'll have fun this time and have some success again.
Q. Phil was losing because he had one hand in the buffet?
JACK NICKLAUS: Well, there was a buffet right behind --
Q. I'm kidding.
JACK NICKLAUS: I know that. That's quite possible. But the buffet was -- he's one of these ping-pong players that plays off the floor from behind and gives it a lot of -- he needed some room and he didn't have any room, so that was why.
Q. My real question would be --
JACK NICKLAUS: And they're both pretty good incidentally.
Q. I guess shortly thereafter all of the players basically demanded that you come back and captain the team again.
JACK NICKLAUS: I don't think they demanded.
Q. Well, Chris DiMarco said they weren't going to take no for an answer. I was wondering what that meant to you.
JACK NICKLAUS: Well, I miss a couple of guys like Chris, too. I miss Chris and Davis and guys that were on the team before that did not make the team, Justin, I'm sure there's one or two others, I'm not sure. But I miss those guys, and they were a great team. I kept -- we all kept in touch during the year, and we said, "Hey, come on, I can't pick everybody. You've got to go play."
But anyway, we have a good team this time, and I think it was nice that the guys wanted me to come back.
My wife said, "Jack, why would you want to go back?" I said, "Barbara, I'm only going to go back because the guys asked me back. I love being involved in the game of golf, I've had a blast doing it. I don't have much involvement in the game anymore, and to do that is fun." She said, "But the last time was so perfect." I said, "I understand that, and I'm really stupid. I'm not real smart. Nobody accuses me of that." So I'm back again.
Q. You said you had a piece of paper, who do you want to play with and not want to play with. Rory Sabbatini was in here earlier and he was asked, if you were Gary Player who would you put out against Tiger, and he said, I would put myself out there against him, it would make for great TV. What do you think of Tiger and Rory possibly playing against each other and how that match would be?
JACK NICKLAUS: Well, I --
Q. You know the background, right?
JACK NICKLAUS: Oh, yeah. How could you miss it (laughter)?
I don't know, a lot of times, too, I'll ask Tiger, and I'm sure that Gary will ask his guys, who would you like to play? In other words, at the matches the last time, I went down and I had -- Phil said, "I'd like to play Cabrera." "Tiger, who would you like to play?" "I don't care, it doesn't make any difference to me." Freddie said, "I'd like to play Vijay." I don't know what Gary's guys did.
Those are the only two that I had a mandate if I could get them. As the selection process goes, I pick a player, Gary matches him, Gary picks a player, I match. So forth and so on, it goes back and forth.
It's like the last two times I captained prior to that, I had -- let's see, I had Tiger in Australia ask me to pick Norman for him. I got him Norman. We were in South Africa, and both Ernie and Tiger would like to play each other, so Gary and I talked and tried to figure out, can we get Tiger and Ernie to play. So that's fine.
So if Gary comes to me and says, Jack, I've got Sabbatini wants to play Tiger and Tiger says he wants to play Sabbatini, then we'll try to make that happen. But if Tiger says I don't care and I've got somebody else -- a lot of guys, they say, I want that guy. I had one guy on the other team I had five of my guys say I'd like to have him. They just want to try to beat him. I'm not going to tell you who that is.
That's sort of the way it works. If it turns out that that's a good match, it's a good match. I think frankly that probably Tiger and Vijay or Tiger and Ernie would be a better TV match, but Sabbatini has had a great year. He's played very, very well. He's had a lot of press.
Q. What about Tiger and Weir, given that it's in Canada?
JACK NICKLAUS: Anyone could be -- you've got the 12 best players basically in the world outside of Europe on each team. You know, I think any match is a good match.
Q. I'm wondering, captain's picks are never easy to make, but could you sympathize with the pressure that was on Gary perhaps because of Mike Weir, the Canada influence? It could not have been -- it would have been a tough omission.
JACK NICKLAUS: Well, I think that Gary probably did it the correct way. I mean, I think he'd have had an even tougher choice if Stephen Ames had played a better round the last round of the PGA. I mean, he's from Canada but he's not naturally born in Canada. Mike being sort of the hero darling of Canada would be the guy that they wanted to have on the team if they could have him, and I think Gary politically thought it was the right thing to do. I think he either succumbed to that situation or came to that conclusion that he would like to have him anyway. You should really talk to Gary about that because I don't know, I haven't discussed it with him.
I mean, I had my problems, too. I'm trying to figure out did I want to go for experience or did I want to go for youth or go for what. I wasn't sure. And I frankly -- Jeff and I got on the telephone on Sunday night, and I made four or five different picks before I made the final two picks. You know, because I think if you looked at the experience I had, I had Calcavecchia and I had Davis and I had -- and Chris had played pretty well the last few weeks, and even Kenny Perry had played well this year, all guys I had had before, all experienced guys, guys that I would have welcomed any one of them on the team. Unfortunately none of them played well the last couple weeks of the selection and moved way up.
Calc was probably the closest and probably the toughest competitor of the bunch. Calc did not play well at the PGA if I recall. I don't remember what he did, but he didn't play very well. I don't know if he made the cut. I don't think he did make the cut, did he? It doesn't make any difference. He didn't move up, he moved down a couple places. I didn't really have a play there.
Hunter played very, very well, and he had been playing well all year and has continued to play well. It was pretty hard not to pick him, even though he was probably not as far up on the list as some of the other guys, he had moved well up. I felt like Lucas had been in the Top 10 all year long, and because of Woody Austin's finish at the PGA, it just bumped him by a few points.
I had John Rollins sitting there next, and John had had a little bit of the same experience that Lucas had had. If John had been in the same position as Lucas was and had switched, I would have probably ended up picking John rather than Lucas only because he would have been ahead of him at 11. It's a tough pick. Could I pick 11, 12? Sure, I could pick 11, 12, but I looked at that neither Lucas or John had played well lately and Hunter had played well. But Lucas had been there all year.
That's sort of what we tried to do, and of course Woody jumped in and that threw a little bit of a monkey wrench, which was fine. Woody played well and earned his way on the team, so that's fine. A captain never has an easy choice, and it's never -- you always hate leaving somebody out, guys that you've had before that you'd like to have again unfortunately didn't work out.
Q. Going back to Rory a little bit, he makes these comments about Tiger, everybody gets excited, Tiger is supposed to be kind of offended a little bit or taken aback, he called him out --
JACK NICKLAUS: You guys are writing the story.
Q. I know, I know. From your day, you were No. 1 for so long, you must have heard comments like that from people below you.
JACK NICKLAUS: Constantly.
Q. How did you handle it? And is this atmosphere a lot different in the sense that everybody seems a little bit more sensitive, so to speak?
JACK NICKLAUS: Well, I don't know. We didn't have that much press. The only time -- I had several times, but the one that I remember a lot was -- I was still an amateur, and I was a defending champion. I had won in '59 and '60 going into St. Louis. Phil Rogers in those days, Phil just (motioning talking with hand), and he was holding court at St. Louis about -- he said, "I see in the brackets here if Nicklaus wins his first few matches, he gets to play me." Like he had a bye the first two rounds.
My dad heard it, and my dad said I heard that in conversation, Phil was really running his mouth. I said, I've got to win my first two matches. I won the first two matches, and we went out and played 12 holes and Phil was one under par and the match was over. I beat him 8 & 7.
It turned out Phil turned out to be one of my best friends. I mean, he's a wonderful guy. But in those guys Phil was just all mouth.
And Rory is a little bit going this way a little bit right now. So I think when you get that kind of a thing, a guy says, "I think I want to take care of that situation." And I think Tiger probably said he wanted to take care of that situation.
Now, did I get a little bit of that as I went along? Yeah. But I didn't pay much attention. When I was a 20-year old kid it got my dander up a little bit. I'm sure Tiger is very used to it, I don't think Tiger paid a whole lot of attention to it. He just paid attention, took care of business and went out and played very, very well, as usual.
Q. But it is an slightly extra incentive do you think?
JACK NICKLAUS: A guy doesn't miss it (smiling). You don't miss that comment. It doesn't pass by the way.
Q. You say you asked players for their opinions on who they'd like to play with. What's your philosophy on what works? Is it like personalities or like games?
JACK NICKLAUS: I don't have any philosophy. I think these players know each other far better than I know them. I mean, I'm 67 years old. These kids are all 25 to 40. They know each other better. They play with each other every week. I'm far more -- and Jeff is far more attuned to them than I am, even though he is a senior now in another week or so.
JEFF SLUMAN: Two weeks.
JACK NICKLAUS: But he's far more attuned than I am. I'll listen far more to Jeff than I will myself.
But I'm listening to the guys first. I had in South Africa down there playing, I had both Charles Howell and Tiger come to me and say, "We'd like to play together." I had both Furyk and Tiger come to me at Washington and say, "We'd like to play together." I said, that's fine. They played together and they played very well. I'll listen to that.
The last two guys I'd put together would be Furyk and Tiger. I mean, two opposites if you've ever seen two opposites. And yet they played very, very well together, so you never know.
When I played I was paired with Dave Stockton in St. Louis. I mean, I wasn't used to hitting 2-irons into greens and Stockton wasn't used to playing 7-irons out of the rough, and we just got murdered, but that's the way it is. You just don't know.
Q. I have two questions. Given the hubbub over Sutton putting Tiger and Phil together in '04 I think at the Ryder Cup, and neither of them had been playing very well at the time anyway, did you give any consideration to putting them together?
JACK NICKLAUS: The two of them did not have their names on the piece of paper to play together. That doesn't mean I wouldn't. I asked him, "Tiger, who do you want to play with?" He said, "I'll play with anybody. It doesn't make any difference." He could care less. But I didn't do that.
Q. And secondly, you alluded a minute ago about this giving you a chance to stay involved in the game, being the captain. If you didn't have The Presidents Cup, what would you do to stay involved in the game, and how important is it for you to stay involved in the game?
JACK NICKLAUS: Just The Memorial Tournament. I'm obviously relatively visible there. I don't know, I'd probably -- maybe I don't need to be visible or maybe I shouldn't be visible anymore. Maybe I should disappear off into the sunset somewhere.
But I still enjoy the game. I don't play anymore. And this is really strange for me to say. I didn't hit a golf ball in June; I played once in July; and I haven't hit a golf ball in August, haven't been to the golf course.
Q. What did you shoot in July?
JACK NICKLAUS: Let's see, I opened up a golf course somewhere -- where did I play?
SCOTT TOLLEY: Last one was Keowee Falls in May.
JACK NICKLAUS: But I played an event someplace in July. No, I played that event, First Tee event, in Dublin, in Ireland. I think I shot 74 or something like that. That's my game. If I can shoot 74 or 75, I'm on top of the world. That and about ten bucks to get me a cup of coffee.
Q. With the Presidents Cup, beyond the Memorial, you have the Memorial, planning the tournament, the week itself, whereas the Presidents Cup you're probably paying attention to what they're doing throughout the year. It seems like you would have quite a bit to offer.
JACK NICKLAUS: I'll tell you, I don't watch golf on television, and I've actually the last couple of months, I've watched it a little bit because I want to see how the guys are playing and what they're doing. I see guys finishing, how they're handling pressure and so forth and so on. That was one of the reasons why I watched before my selection was to do that.
Q. We're in week two of a new playoff system. Just curious to get your take on it. Does it interest you at all?
JACK NICKLAUS: I don't understand it to be very honest with you. Tim told me it was supposed to be good for the game of golf so I went along with him (laughter). I think that the whole objective was to get the guys to play, and the first week Tiger skips. So I didn't understand that at all.
I sort of thought that the system was that when you had the Playoffs that everybody started over. But no, the Playoffs carry on.
Now, I can understand that if they didn't carry on and Tiger decided to play the first week and Phil missed the cut, they're gone.
But I would like to find out what does a guy have to do that's 100th on the Money List or 120th to win the FedExCup? What does he have to do?
JOE CHEMYCZ: Pretty much three out of four.
JACK NICKLAUS: He's got to win two or three. You've got to win a lot. So I don't know.
Do I like the idea? Yeah, I think it's great to try to get the guys to play at the end of the year, great to have a season-ending playoff. My bet is that it'll get tweaked after this year. Like every event we have ever had the first year we have it, we'll have tweaks in it, and I think the whole objective was to get the guys to play. That was what it was, beyond the PGA Championship, and to be able to have a season-ending thing.
They end it with the TOUR Championship, so it's going to be the TOUR Championship, but it's how you get to the TOUR Championship and create more interest and so on and so forth. I commend them for that. I wish I understood what it was, and I think you guys fall into the same category trying to understand it, too.
If I were Rich Beem trying to figure out the projected 130, 124, when somebody makes birdie, par, bogey, give me a break. How does he win? I just don't know. I just don't know that. And frankly if I don't know it and I'm involved in the game of golf, how is Mr. Joe Public going to know it? That's the problem.
To get the public interested, they've got to understand what's going on. Very simple when you play a football game and you're in the Playoffs, you're a wildcard team and you're playing the division leader, you win, you go on. You lose, you go home. We don't exactly have that here. So I don't really -- I think they'll tweak it someplace.
Q. Do you think that four weeks is a lot to ask, four consecutive weeks?
JACK NICKLAUS: Yes and no. Would I like it when I played? Absolutely not. I'm sure that's why Tiger sat there and -- I have a little sympathy for that. When you win, you put a lot more energy into a game than if you finish 20th or 30th, and particularly mentally and physically, both ways.
So when he won at Firestone and won at Tulsa, he's got to be spent. So for him to recharge his batteries, seeing that he really isn't going to lose much by not skipping the first, that was probably a pretty darned smart move on his part because now he's got to play three, and that's what it does.
I'm sure Barclays weren't exactly happy with that after advertising what was going to go on.
I don't really know how to do that. I wish I had an answer for it. I don't have an answer. I'm sure Tim would like to have an answer, too, that's better. But it is what it is this year. I'm sure that when they get down to the TOUR Championship and find out what's going to happen, it'll be an exciting finish. A lot more interest will be on the TOUR Championship than there's ever been before. I don't think there's any question about that.
Q. How long did the season run during your, let's say, late '60s, early '70s?
JACK NICKLAUS: I never played past -- we played the PGA and usually had the World Series, and I never played past -- I didn't touch a golf club until the next year. Maybe I went down to Australia for maybe a week or two in November, and that was all I played. I had no interest in wanting to play. We didn't have much to play anyway. You had a few small tournaments, but -- you had a little bit of a silly season but not much.
Today they play in pretty significant events all the way through. Not as much this year with what's happening because they've actually reduced it down, haven't they?
JOE CHEMYCZ: We have seven more after.
JACK NICKLAUS: But they're lesser tournaments. The TOUR has almost gone to a two-season -- two Tours anyway with the events that they have for the TOUR and the events that they have that are not. It's almost become that world tour that we talked about a while back. I don't really know. I forgot what your question was anyway (laughter). I'm sorry.
Q. You were involved in that whole stepping away from the PGA of America, creating the TOUR, creating the 125. What were the issues that you had to do all that, and do you see any of those parallel issues now?
JACK NICKLAUS: You're asking me something back 30-some years. I don't have a clue what I did 30 years ago.
JACK NICKLAUS: Yeah, that was the late '60s. Most of it was that the PGA of America had all the rights to the players according to who entered into a tournament. The players objected to that, and they felt like they ought to have their own rights and their own way to govern themselves. The PGA of America was not willing to give that up, so the TOUR decided they'd form their own -- we called it the Tournament Players Association or something like that, whatever it was, and Gardner Dickinson was our chairman, I was on the board, and I'm not sure who else was on the board. I don't know whether Arnold was or not, I can't remember. Anyway, we got Sam Gates, who was a fellow that we used, an attorney. I don't really remember.
Do I see parallels to today? In what respect are you asking about?
Q. A lot of the players complained about different things during the year, and they seem like they don't have much say in what's happening, which is similar to what it sounded like you guys were --
JACK NICKLAUS: I don't really agree to that. Every time that we want to do anything at Muirfield or any other tournament, which I've talked to a lot of the tournaments, wanted to do something, and Tim takes it back to the players and the Players Board, I think that gets utilized quite heavily.
Now, the players individually, do they have a say? They vote for their representatives to do what they want. If they don't want those representatives, they vote them out, like any other democratic situation.
No, I think the players have a very big say in what they do. To a large extent I'm sure a lot of players don't pay much attention to it. You interview a lot of the players, a lot of them will say, I don't know what's going on. I don't understand that. Well, that's because they're not involved or they don't want to find out.
The information is there. I think the TOUR actually provides a yearly report, and you have weekly reports -- weekly magazines that come out. I mean, there's plenty of information out there.
Once I got back from being on the board and tired of that, I wouldn't tell you what was going on, either, because I could have cared less. For the most part my representatives were handling what they're doing. I think that's pretty good.
I don't see any parallels here. I don't think the Tours are violating anybody's rights. I don't really think that there's -- I think they're doing pretty well, frankly.
Q. Can you tell us if there are any holes at Royal Montreal that are maybe going to be a drivable type of par 4?
JACK NICKLAUS: I couldn't tell you one hole from the next. I've been there, but I can't remember.
Q. Can you talk then in general about kind of the interest in short par 4s we're seeing at a lot of tournament venues and if that's maybe impacting your philosophy at all?
JACK NICKLAUS: My favorite holes are short par 4s. I think they're the most fun to design, and I think they're the most fun to play.
I think if you look at Muirfield Village, I think the players love the 14th hole at Muirfield Village, and that's a nasty little hole. It can be a nice hole, too. I mean, it can be a nasty little hole if you play it wrong. And I'm sure there are some other holes throughout the year on the TOUR that you'll find. Royal Montreal has one hole where we'll play the tee up and the tee back. I don't remember what number it is.
I was up there as I said in June, went around the golf course on a rainy day and we went around as fast as we could go because we were freezing to death. It's totally different than when I played there in the '70s, so I don't remember much about the actual holes.
Q. I just wonder if you've seen any of Tiger's designs yet, and if you have seen them what your opinion on them might be?
JACK NICKLAUS: I don't think Tiger has any designs yet.
Q. He has the course in Dubai that --
JACK NICKLAUS: He's got a contract. I don't know that he's got a golf course.
Q. He has laid out some of the holes already for it. I don't know if you've seen them at all?
JACK NICKLAUS: No, I'm not going to Dubai to see his golf course (laughter). He'll go through the same process as the rest of it if he is truly interested in design and learn the business.
I started in 1967, so I've been doing it for 40 years. I would say there's a lot of golf courses that I did in a lot of my early years that I'd like to go back and redo because -- as a matter of fact we are redoing a lot of them (laughter). They're obsolete and worn out (laughter).
You know, it's like anything else. I'm sure he's got great ideas. He's a very smart young man, and he'll figure it out. But it depends at this point in his life whether he'll be doing it himself or lending his name or both. That'll just take time to figure that out.
He certainly can't go out and do a design himself. He wouldn't understand that. He wouldn't understand all the things that happen with it. It takes time to learn that. Can he make an input? Absolutely, he can make an input, and he'll grow. But until he gets some golf courses, I can't really make any comment on it.
I love his price incidentally, it just raises all the rest of our prices.
Q. Just as a follow-up, if you got involved in '67, do you recall at what point that you felt you went from being involved in golf course architecture to being an architect?
JACK NICKLAUS: Well, I felt like -- it started in about '67 or '68 when we actually started construction or design at Harbour Town. I did my first golf course by myself at Glen Abbey, which we opened in '76. So that's been involved seven or eight years and probably about a dozen courses I did there. Glen Abbey was sort of a rehash, in my own philosophy, of Muirfield in many ways, a lot of similarities.
To where I created variety, probably another five or six years beyond that. It probably took me -- well, I did Shoal Creek and I did Castle Pines in that period right after that. So they've gotten pretty good acclaim.
Where I thought I probably knew something, probably around that time. Probably late '70s. It takes about -- if you work at it full-time you learn a lot faster. I was playing golf and doing other things and trying to learn, and I had a couple guys working with me, Jay Morrish and Bob Cupp, and the two of those guys were terrific, they were Mr. Inside-and-Outside. Cupp did the plans and Morrish did the fieldwork and I worked very well with both of them, both nice guys and both very accomplished.
I went through the other day, I went through the list of the American Society of Golf Course Architects, and what was there, 22 or 23?
SCOTT TOLLEY: 20 or 22.
JACK NICKLAUS: There was 22 fellows that I've been involved with that are members of the American Society of Golf Course Architects. That's a lot of guys that have come through your organization. Guys I've worked for like Pete Dye and Jay Morrish and Bob Cupp who have worked for me, but I've got a lot of guys who through a similar philosophy have learned together. It takes time. It doesn't happen overnight.
When I first started I could do a golf course one way. I could do a golf course 20 different ways now. If you give me the same piece of property, I can give you 20 different designs for it. They won't look anything alike. They've all have 18 holes, but hopefully I can do them all different. And style, also. Some you'll like and some you won't like.
Design is coming a lot from an owner. My definition of a good golf course is not necessarily doing Muirfield Village or Castle Pines or whatever it might be. My idea of a good golf course is a golf course that serves the purpose for which I was hired. In other words, if Joe Jones hires me to do a golf course in Timbuktu, that's a little far to go to Africa to do that, but that's okay, you asked me to do a golf course.
Say he says, Jack, I want this to be a resort facility, and I expect it to be mostly senior citizens. Now, if I do a golf course that attracts the senior citizens and it's a resort golf course and it sells his hotel and sells his rooms and sells his lots and what he was doing, that's a good golf course because it's only an amenity.
Now, I'm long beyond doing golf courses for my ego. When I first started, sure, I wanted to prove that I could do a golf course, macho-macho. But everybody always tries to do that. But that's not what you do. Your job is to do what somebody asks you to do and to serve a purpose.
In other words, I just redid the second golf course at Bear Lakes. They used it for qualifiers for Tour qualifiers. They said the first course was their tournament golf course and they wanted to make it tougher. And the second golf course they said they wanted to have it four shots easier.
Now, Chris Cochran, a guy that works for me, is a member at Bear Lakes. He doesn't want anything easy so I have a hard time working with him. But I worked with opening the greens, worked with shortening the members' tees, got good bounce-ins, things different than what I had before to try to make sure that the members had a better chance at playing that golf course, but still if they wanted to use it for Tour qualifier and use the back tees, they still had a chance to hide the pins.
There's a lot of times when you're asked to do things, how do you get it accomplished. What in somebody's opinion, which might not be a good opinion, is a golf course for the purist golfer. I'm not working for the purist golfer, I'm working for the guy who hired me. That's what people misunderstand what you've really got to do.
Q. What's the last golf course you did for your ego?
JACK NICKLAUS: For my ego? Oh, gosh. I don't really know, but I would say probably -- I mean, I didn't even do the Bear's Club for my ego. I had a membership there that I thought was going to be a fairly elderly membership. I would have done that course a lot more difficult if it was for my ego. I would have made it a lot stronger and a lot different, but I didn't do that. It's still plenty tough enough.
But for my ego, oh, probably back to -- probably Castle Pines maybe, back in that area, early '80s because Jack Vickers really wanted a very difficult golf course. Jack Vickers keeps changing it and making it tougher. Of course you guys aren't going there anymore, but he'll have events there again. I'd say it's been 25 years since I've really done one for my ego. I've been involved with other people's ego, but that's okay.
JOE CHEMYCZ: Thank you. We appreciate your time, Jack.
JACK NICKLAUS: Pleasure.
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