How do I explain the Golf Channel Guy?

Perhaps there’s a better name for this character—such as “wanna-be”—but I’ll do my best to tell you about this peculiar fellow.

The Golf Channel Guy watches a lot of The Golf Channel. Consequently, he’s picked up the mannerisms, fashion sensibilities, and general external qualities of the professional golfers who often appear on said Golf Channel.


Trevor Immelman: The idol of Golf Channel Guys everywhere. (Image: Matthwj)

Problem is, the Golf Channel Guy is a mediocre golfer at best. Most of the nation’s reported Golf Channel Guys have handicaps in the 15-18 range. He may look and sound the part, but that topped 7 iron and bladed wedge tell you otherwise.

If you’ve played golf long enough, you can smell the Golf Channel Guy from a mile away. He talks a big game. Braggadocio is his thing. After all, with those pleated khakis and svelte Nike shirt, who wouldn’t believe this guy is a scratch golfer?

The Golf Channel Guy is closely related to The Mulligan Golfer and the as-yet-unexplained—and future pet peeve article—Distance Exaggerator. All three fellows are quite concerned with image upkeep on the golf course.

To help you spot The Golf Channel Guy at your local course, I’ve compiled a list of The Golf Channel Guy’s characteristics.

  • Carries a pro-style bag.
  • Applied for Big Break on multiple occasions.
  • Wears pleated khaki pants on the golf course in August.
  • Reads every putt from six angles.
  • Treats every par as if he just made a birdie.
  • Enjoys reverse sandbagging–in actuality, that 15 is probably a 20. See The Mulligan Golfer.
  • Offers on-course instruction without prompting.
  • During practice swings, he stops mid-swing to check his plane. Though he’s off plane by a foot, he seems pleased.

They try so hard. They try too hard. They are golfers in the midst of an identity crisis. Lord bless the Golf Channel Guys.

Previous Golf Pet Peeves:

#4: Stewart Cink’s Green Shirt

#3: The Mulligan Golfer

#2: The Shot Jinxer

#1: The Shot-By-Shot Recap Golfer


For those who read my blog for The Haney Project recaps, the show is on hiatus until May 11th.

Tune back in then to find out if Chuck is able to keep flattening that swing and losing the hitch following the DUI mishap.

For a recap of last week’s episode, click here.

Not much of an episode tonight on The Haney Project, in my opinion.

A little bit of golf. A lot of filler.

Chuck's horrid swing keeps getting better.

Chuck's horrid swing keeps getting better.

We learned Chuck has been boxing to lose weight. We learned that he wants to beat down Dave the Bartender on the golf course.  We also learned that Barkley’s dismal golf game has caused His Airness, Michael Jordan, to take a pass on playing with Barkley.

There was a few minutes of golf-related video tonight. Barkley’s swing is definitely improving. Even though producers make edits to show just the best and the worst, it’s obvious that Chuck’s best swings right now are miles ahead of where he was before last week’s episode.

Flatten the swing. That’s his key. And he hits thousands of golf balls, Hank Haney watching, practicing on that swing plane.

So there you have it. Your unoffical recap of episode two. Not much to watch this week. A bit of letdown after last week’s great premiere.

It’s late. I’m out.

That’s how tonight’s premier of The Hank Haney Project began.

This is entertaining television, people. As bad as Barkley’s swing is, he’s just fun to watch.


Hank Haney hopes to make Barkley's swing suck less. (Image: Rachelle/Flickr)

In tonight’s first episode, Haney put Charles through the ringer–basically, a “Tiger Day.” Barkley was on the course from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m., whacking balls like it was his job…and, for the purposes of this show, it was his job.

A few things stood out to me tonight. I forgot that Barkley once had a respectable golf game. In the early 90s, he actually maintained a 12 handicap.

Video of his swing in 1994 showed a solid backswing and follow through, much closer to being on plane, and with a lot less movement than he has today.

But then he started playing in televised celebrity tournaments, and his game went south. All the bad shots seemed more pronounced, maybe he would hit someone in the gallery–all of this nationally televised. The bad shots kept building, his confidence detiorated, and he slowly developed one of the worst golf swings ever caught on tape.

The other thing about tonight’s episode: you could see his progress after just one day. Chuck’s swing was much smoother after a few hours with Haney. He was still way off plane, he still dipped his head, but the mid-swing hitch was gone and his swing seemed much more fluid. Nice job Hank Haney.

In next week’s episode, Big Chuck takes the course, so that should be interesting. To quote Hank Haney, “This is a project of a lifetime. And I don’t have a lifetime left.” Should be fun to watch.

Finally, we know when this show will start: March 2, 9 p.m. ET.

Titled The Haney Project with Charles Barkley, the new show’s tagline is “Unscripted. Uncensored. Unreal.” And, believe me, Barkley’s swing is quite unreal. Hank has his work cut out for him.

Click here to watch the Golf Channel’s promotional video about the show. You can see my previous posts about the Barkley show here and here.

And if you want to relive Sir Charles’ fantastically dreadful swing, here you go.

If you’re into golf history at all, this documentary is worth taking a look at. I’m definitely going to add this to the DVR recording list.

Uneven Fairways takes a look at the history of African-Americans in golf. Everyone knows about Tiger Woods, but what about Ted Rhodes?

Rhodes competed in the United Golf Association–the African-American tour that competed before the PGA dropped it’s segregation stance in 1961.  Basically, the United Golf Association was the equivalent of the Negro Leagues in baseball.

According to Pete McDaniel, who authored the book which is the basis for Uneven Fairways, Rhodes is the best African American golfer before Tiger Woods. And that’s saying something when you consider players like Charlie Sifford, Calvin Peete, and Jim Dent.

Uneven Fairways will show old video of Rhodes, plus an in-depth look at golf’s segregated past. Should be good stuff.


It may be awhile before you see this awful swing on The Golf Channel. (Image: Tsar Palpatine/Flickr)

Back in August, I mentioned the upcoming Golf Channel series in which Tiger Woods’ coach, Hank Haney, will undertake the overwhelming task of fixing Charles Barkley’s horrifying golf swing.

Well, as most people have probably read by now, Sir Charles was arrested for DUI last month and, consequently, given a leave of absence from his studio job on TNT’s NBA broadcasts. T-Mobile has also dropped Barkley as spokesman, and pulled all the great ads featuring him and Dwayne Wade.

According to John Hawkins’ article in Golf Digest, five of the eight episodes of the Golf Channel show had already been filmed. But no word on when the remaining three will film, or how Barkley’s antics will affect the start date of the show.

I’m assuming it’s been temporarily suspended, since they wouldn’t start the show until all eight episodes have been filmed. And who knows when that will be, considering Barkley’s current situation.

Sad situation. Barkley’s always been known for his drinking and gambling, and it looks like his overindulgence finally caught up with him. I’m guessing he has more urgent issues to address right now than fixing his golf swing.

But let’s hope the Round Mound of Rebound gets this messed sorted out soon. He’s a refreshing presence on TV. I get the feeling most sports  “analysts” and studio talking heads say stupid crap just to get a reaction. But when Barkley says stupid crap–and he sometimes does–he genuinely believes it.

The guy is just good television. I think this Golf Channel show would be an instant hit and encouragement for all the hackers out there who think they have awful swings. Good luck to Charles getting his life straightened out.