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Home Jim Furyk drops from 5th to 45th in a year


Jim Furyk didn’t have the kind of year he was looking for. In the off season he switched equipment companies moving from Srixon to  TaylorMade. Throughout history its been debated whether its the arrow or the operator that has the greatest influence on performance. The former Arizona Wildcat said in his instance, the buck stops with him.

“I hate to sit here and blame it on equipment because I don't really think that's the major thought,” he said. “I definitely tried to go a little bit different route in my game and maybe tried to address some of my weaknesses and trying to get a little longer off the tee, trying to hit the ball a bit farther. I like the ball that I was playing. It was spinning a little bit less than the products that I had played in the past. The driver was spinning a little less than the products I had played in the past, so there was an adjustment period to that,” he explained. “And I'll say that I didn't do a very good job adjusting at times either. In hindsight if I had it to do over again, I may have done things a little bit differently. I may have addressed my equipment a little bit different, but I think I learned a lot in the process.”

His words shouldn’t be confused as any form of retraction regarding his decision to change equipment companies. “I really believe in the products I play with. TaylorMade makes a great driver and I've said all year in commercials, they make a good golf ball. I agree with that. I learned a lot from them as far as from testing equipment. And I asked a lot of questions, and I was struggling trying to get fit for a driver this year, and I think I learned a lot of information in the process that hopefully will make me a better player in the future.”

The former US Open Champion confessed to being someone who fiddles with his equipment. “I've always tried to tinker with irons a little bit and go to a set of blades, which I did for a couple of months in the season, but I ended up playing the majority of the year with my same irons that I played last year, so the irons weren't really a difficult change,” he said. “Balls, you're always looking for a better product. You're always looking for something that helps you compete and play better. I was hitting the ball higher, I was hitting the ball farther, and in order to do so, if you're going to launch the ball higher, the spin has to be a little less, and I was anxious to see how that played out.

“I expected it to be able to help me, and figured that I would hit the ball a touch farther off the tee, but I felt like I was hitting my irons anywhere from about a quarter to half club farther with the short irons and a half to a full club long in the long irons, and was anxious to see if I could turn that into something positive. And a lot of it might be trumped in that I felt like I had some pretty good experiences and some pretty good ball‑striking events this year and some pretty good opportunities even earlier in the year to win some events, Harbour Town being one of them,” he said. But the old adage, drive for show and putt for dough was ultimately what caught up to Furyk. “I had some very poor putting experiences. I was very consistently poor, I guess, for a lot of the year putting.  And you can't play well if you're not knocking in putts. It doesn't matter how well you hit the ball, and it was a little frustrating and put a lot of pressure on the rest of my game,” he acknowledged.

In the end, Furyk, who went from being ranked 5th in the world starting the year to 45th today, thinks the internal pressure he generated is what caused him to not live up to his expectations this year. “You feel like you gotta get the ball in the fairway and you have to get the ball in the green because I didn't feel like I was playing that well with the putter and probably forced too many shots to get them closer to the pin,” he said.