Chat with Michael Collins
Welcome to Sportsnation! On Friday, ESPN.com golf writer Michael Collins brings his unique perspective as a former caddie into the chat.
Collins, who joined ESPN in August 2011, started his career as a stand up comedian and became a caddy by accident. He started looping for fun in 1999, but by 2003 decided to make it a full-time gig. He was the caddy for Chris Couch in 2003 when he won the Nationwide Tour championship.
Collins has never won an award for his writing, but he'll tell you that's probably because he failed high school English and still types with only his index fingers. But he's smart, funny and, most importantly, knows the game and what players and caddies go through on a weekly basis.
Send your questions now and join Collins Friday at 3 p.m. ET!
Michael Collins (3:00 PM)
It's the fastest hour in golf!!! And it seems the 14year not only has picked up his pace but is gonna make the cut on a golf course that played almost 7400 yards long. Don't act like you're not impressed... BRING IT!!!
Sergio Garcia fan. Good all around game except for on the greens. Any chance he would go and work with the Stockton's?
Michael Collins (3:00 PM)
I seem to remember he has already done work with Sr.
thomas janowski (park ridge il)
have you heard anything on how merion is shaping up for the US Open? I'm afraid the players will rip that course a new one
Michael Collins (3:02 PM)
all my buddies who've been there recently say it's the longest 6800 yard course they've ever seen and the course will destroy you with it's par three's. But if there's rain it'll be like Congressional.
MC - If Guan Tianlang approaches you for career advice what would you tell him, go to college or go pro. He can clearly play but may not have the length to win on pro courses. Some say Michelle Wie should have beat kids her own age before turning pro. But looking at the list of NCAA individual champs you see big names (Tiger, Phil) and other guys you never heard from again. So putting on your career advisor hat, what advice would you have for Guan?
Michael Collins (3:04 PM)
I would tell him not to worry about college but definitely play a whole bunch of amateur events. Figure those kids are gonna bomb it past him too but if he can win there, he can win on tour.
Paul (U of Portland)
MC, I like those new wedges that you got. I'm guessing you've played Merion since its so close to your neck of the woods, how do you think it will set up compared to Olympic Club last year? Both are relatively short by tour standards, but Olympic is more hilly and undulating no?
Michael Collins (3:07 PM)
I'm going nuts wanting to go hit 'em. But alas... duty first! I am from up that way (Lancaster) but I've been living in FL for the last 18 years. I haven't seen Merion yet but when I make the trip there WILL be a video blog on it!
With the resodding of a couple of greens, no chance now of Quail Hollow ever hosting a major, right?
Michael Collins (3:11 PM)
They're already scheduled to hold the 2017 PGA Championship. Scary to think of that course with bad greens. Would be a shame because it has alway been so great. But here in Gainesville the are having an issue with disease on greens as well.
Maybe Guan's performances will get people to stop complaining about the Masters inviting the Asian Amateur champion.
Michael Collins (3:13 PM)
If kids who win the Asian Amateur play like this kid is playing, I'm going to be getting a whole lot of frequent flier miles!
QH has 2017 PGA and I don't see it being yanked over the greens. If a major was to be yanked over green conditions, it would have been the '95 PGA at Riviera.
Michael Collins (3:14 PM)
2017 is a LONG time from now.
Mo Money (Here)
I hope there are questions today about Tiger. Also Rory. Also your new wedges. Chat on, baby!!!
Michael Collins (3:15 PM)
Well throw me something... other than Mo' Problems.
Tom (Verona, WI)
An amateur doesn't receive prize money so his caddie typically would receive a flat fee? Guan Tianlang loses money by playing? Thanks for chat!
Michael Collins (3:18 PM)
Yeah, caddie gets a flat fee and sometimes a nice tip but no percentage of what would've been won. At 14 years old, he doesn't have to worry to much about "losing" money, there are gonna be plenty of sponsorship dollars waiting when he turns pro.
Tom (Verona, WI)
A UK news report quotes an R
Michael Collins (3:23 PM)
Don't know why an R&A official would be commenting on a PGA Tour issue. Last time I talked to someone extremely close to the issue I was told they didn't expect a decision for months.
Keith H (Seattle)
What wedges did you get?
Michael Collins (3:25 PM)
Titleist Vokey. I bent my 60 degree while I was playing over Christmas break, so I got a new 60 M and the new 54 M.
Saw that the USGA got a record number of entries for the US Open at Merion in June. Anybody think the golf course had something to do with that?
Michael Collins (3:29 PM)
If you want my honest opinion, I think it's partly that and partly that most famous picture of Hogan hitting the 1 iron. It's a course with such history that if you're gonna try... it's one that seems like a dream can come true.
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
Where is the coldest PGA Tour event held at each year?
Michael Collins (3:30 PM)
I'd say it's probably every year at Match Play, that course is on a mountain in AZ in Feb. it's ALWAYS cold there
The previous record was set in 2008 or 2009, so entries had been down lately.
Michael Collins (3:31 PM)
And the record was broken by around 800 entries!
Jared (San Diego)
Will your man Streelman break through to win a major this year or next? I play Wilson irons as well, so I like rooting for the guy.
Michael Collins (3:32 PM)
He sure is looking like Y.E. Yang did the year he won his major. And Kevin has been at the top o f the leaderboard at the US Open before so it won't freak him out.
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
Where is the worst golf course that you played on?
Michael Collins (3:33 PM)
I played a course in Aruba that had astro turf tee boxes and astro turf greens and no grass on the fairways. Didn't care though... I was golfing in Aruba!
MC, do you know if there's a British Open qualifier in the USA like there is in Asia and Australia?
Michael Collins (3:35 PM)
Yeah man. There are a few qualifying sites. I've caddied 3 of them. It's the one qualifier I've never got thru. Never caddied Masters or Open Championship
jeff (san jose, CA)
what shafts in those new vokey wedges of yours?
Michael Collins (3:39 PM)
I honestly don't remember, and they don't have stickers.
Michael Collins (3:44 PM)
Tiger has played 6 tournaments so far this year and Adam Scott has played 5. Next week is tournament #17 there's 19 remaining. Everyone ok with that?
I wanted to put on 10 lbs this weekend; should I have just headed to the Zurich and hung out a while?
Michael Collins (3:47 PM)
Two days and you'd be GOOD to GO.
What single hole in the world would you feel the best about birdieing?
Michael Collins (3:50 PM)
My next one! Seriously though, if someone said you can make one more birdie in your life... It'd have to be 18 at St. Andrews. Make my last birdie where it all began. I'd put out and walk out into the ocean with a bagpipe playing in the background and hopefully there'd be fog rolling in.
Road Hole @ St. Andrews for me. All that history, plus harder than... "insert saying here"
Any insight on why TW skipped Wells Fargo? Too close to The Players, injury, needed time off after Augusta?
Michael Collins (3:54 PM)
From what his agent said, he always takes three weeks after the Masters, just turns out this time the event is two weeks after.
do you think camilo villegas is ever gonna win again??
Michael Collins (3:55 PM)
Man, that's a tough one. I believe he can win again but believing it and having it happen are two different things.
Tom (Verona, WI)
Cart or no cart when you play?
Michael Collins (3:56 PM)
Really depends on the course. I play UF a bunch and I like to walk it. But If I'm really trying to play fast and the course is empty... LOVE the cart!
Number 8 at Pebble. Especially for the view you get when you look back down the fairway.
Michael Collins (3:59 PM)
Yeah, that's a good one too!
Michael Collins (4:00 PM)
Fun hour y'all! Thanks everyone!@ESPNCaddie on TwitterESPNCaddie@gmail.com is the email.Have a great weekend. Go practice for an hour... you'll thank me!MC