Consensus for Ken
By Torleif Sorenson on 10/9/12
On September 28, oober Brian "bkuehn952" Kuehn noted the controversy surrounding the selection of Fred Couples to the World Golf Hall of Fame.

On Tuesday, the World Golf HOF announced another inductee that is far less likely to generate any grumbling:  Ken Venturi.  This gentleman's résumé is long and distinguished; a few of the highlights include:
  • 1951 and 1956 California State Amateur Championships, bookending Venturi's honorable service in the United States Army;

  • A stunning second-place finish at the 1958 Masters Tournament; Venturi shot a wind-blown 80 to just miss becoming the first amateur to win the Masters. Venturi also finished the 1960 Masters as runner-up to Arnold Palmer (again);

  • A truly memorable 1964 U.S. Open Championship victory, in which Venturi played 36 punishing holes in crippling, 100° heat at Congressional, a feat that earned him "Sportsman of the Year" and "PGA Player of the Year" honors;

  • An excellent and credible turn acting in the film Tin Cup, including the hilarious scene where he criticizes Kevin Costner's character for refusing to lay up at the long par-5 18th;

  • A stellar career as lead golf analyst for CBS Sports.
Given his accomplishments both on and off the golf course, including in the face of injuries he sustained in a 1961 automobile crash, Venturi is being inducted in the Lifetime Achievement Category.

But in this writer's opinion, Venturi would qualify for the HOF on the basis of his broadcast analysis work alone.  The World Golf Hall of Fame has no "broadcasters / media" category a la the prestigious Foster Hewitt Memorial Award, but we are approaching a point where the WGHOF should consider creating a media award - and naming it in honor of Venturi.

Ken Venturi, we love you, sir.  Congratulations.

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Image via PGA Tour


[ comments ]
bducharm says:
And if you haven't read the book The Match, you really need to. Venturi and Harvie Ward take on Ben Hogan and Byron Nelson. Awesome read!!!
10/9/12
 
mjaber says:
@bducharm... I was about to say the same thing.

Also, it appears there is an exhibition going on soon being billed as a "re-creation of The Match", though the only parrallel I see is that it's being played on the same course. Bubba & Fowler vs. DLIII & Nick Watney? I think they could have come up with a better 4some. Bubba & Fowler, OK. How about Tom Watson & Couples?
10/9/12
 
bducharm says:
I saw that and totally agree. Actually should be Jordan Speith and Patrick Cantlay versus Watson and Couples!!! Amateurs versus the old grizzled pros!!!
10/9/12
 
mjaber says:
@bducharm... Good call. That would be AWESOME!!!
10/9/12
 
joe jones says:
Venturi. Why did it take so long? Way overdue honor.
10/9/12
 
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