Rich Beem On The Golf Club: Augusta National Is ‘Mind-Bogglingly Difficult’
BOSTON (CBS) – Retired pro golfer Rich Beem was a guest of Hardy’s on The Golf Club Saturday morning reporting from The Masters in Augusta.
Beem was the PGA Championship winner in 2002 and has played Augusta National on numerous occasions, so he was smart enough to take his phone conversation with Hardy off the hallowed grounds.
There are no cell phones allowed on the premises and, unlike the U.S. Open, guys in the crowd aren’t yelling “PUT ‘ER IN THE HOLE,” “BA-BA BOOEY” or anything like that.
But that’s what makes The Masters so great.
“There are certain rules in place that have been around for ages. There’s a certain level of decorum that’s expected from the patrons, and they all know that going in. They make no bones about what their rules are. The post them everywhere and they say, ‘Listen, this is what’s expected of you, and if you can’t adhere to that we’re gonna politely ask you to leave,'” said Beem on Augusta.
“It’s just a very pure environment. … It’s refreshing. It’s just pure golf, and it’s fun.”
Hardy, although he’s never played the course personally, has heard Augusta National described to him as, “It’s either the hardest, easy course in the world or the easiest hard course in the world” — he wanted to hear from Beem if that description was accurate.
“Not for me! It’s one of the hardest courses I’ve ever played, ” Beem said in laughter. “I didn’t find a whole lot easy about it. Unless I had a six inch putt, I didn’t find anything easy. I’ve just never gotten comfortable on the course. … You’ve got to pay attention on every single shot you hit. … There’s maybe one tee shot where you can just kind of let it go, but beyond that there’s nothing easy about this course in my mind.
“It’s more mentally draining than anything else, especially around the greens. It’s just absolutely mind boggling to me how difficult this course is.”
Beem went on to describe the nuances of the 18th hole in particular and how there’s such a small margin for error that the pros make look so easy.
Back surgery forced Beem into an early retirement, but he’s still involved with the game of golf as much as he’s ever been — only this time as a talking head on PGA Tour radio.
They do talk winners and losers of recent events, but it’s also a lighthearted show that discusses the WAGs (wives and girlfriends), how hot they are and your typical “19th hole” talk with the guys.
“I have an absolute blast,” said Beem in closing.
Listen below for the full interview
MORE SPORTS FROM CBS BOSTON