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 (2:59 PM)
It's the fastest hour in golf! Tiger takes a bad drop and Rory is NOT used to his new clubs yet. Who are you more worried about? BRING IT!
At the point where you need an agronomist to determine the type of soil underneath vegetation, maybe it's time to look at the rule?
Michael Collins (3:00 PM)
HAHA!! Yes, from now on, every golf course must have the same grass as rough.
Chris Fiegler (Latham,NY)
What is the Hottest PGA Tour Event Each Year?
Michael Collins (3:01 PM)
The one with the highest temperature.
Avi (Steubenville , OH)
Rory missed the cut in Abu Dhabi. Is it too early to judge Rory's performance with Nike? or Nike played huge gamble on Rory?
Michael Collins (3:02 PM)
Too early to judge, but I said it before and I'll say it again... It ain't the clubs, it's the ball.
Hi Michael - I feel Rex Hoggard crossed a line today in bringing a possible violation to an official's attention. Do you think a reporter or fan should be able to do this? Tiger did not try to cheat...
Michael Collins (3:05 PM)
If a reporter helped a guy find his golf ball would you have an issue with it? If the answer is no, than you're being a hypocrite. Can't have it both ways. I don't know a golfer that would be mad at the reporter for making sure the rules were followed if they were right there when it happened.Don't get me started on calling stuff in... that's bull
If you were in charge of scheduling the PGA Tour Season: how many events? When would it start and end? How would it end?
Michael Collins (3:09 PM)
It would start the week after the Super Bowl and it would end the first week of November. There'd be playoffs and a Championship but the Championship would be 30 guys for a winner take all $10 million. Who ain't showing up?
Is there something with that Nike driver and hooks? Tiger and Rory both had a few snappers and missed left more often than not...
Michael Collins (3:11 PM)
I don't think they're playing the same driver. And Rory's is adjustable (not during play) but Rory plays a draw and Tiger's bane is the hook when he's trying to hit a draw. Don't think it's the club.
James (Oceanside, CA)
Phil Mickelson stated on Friday that he is working on a new putting grip/stroke. Do you think that will affect his early tournament playing and confidence?
Michael Collins (3:14 PM)
well last year when he went to a modified claw grip he did ok. I think it will take a couple weeks for him to get comfy with it the question is will he stick with it or try something new later.
James (Oceanside, CA)
Rory seemed to struggle with his new Nike equipment. Is it the adjusting to the equipment the challenge or getting the mindset to have confidence in what you are using?
Michael Collins (3:16 PM)
It's both, because the golf Nike ball sounds so much different than the Titleist coming off the face (especially the putter) that you have to train your mind that it is not the sound of a miss hit cause that's what it sounds like. That can take a long time unless you have success very quickly. ie Phil and Callaway.
Steve w (Golf course)
Hey Mikey, heard any good curling iron stories lately? ;)
Michael Collins (3:17 PM)
HAHA!! No. Hurry, hurry, hard, hard!
Jared Klein (Miami)
Which underdog player are you rooting for in 2013?
Michael Collins (3:18 PM)
I want every guy who made it thru q-school to get their card this year.
Tyler C. (Michigan)
I love your columns and you videos, your humor is great and your insight is even better. I am a journalism student in college and my question is this: What does it take to make it as a journalist? I love golf and having your job would be "playing at work". Keep up the solid work you are doing and I hope to hear back from you.
Michael Collins (3:21 PM)
I'm the wrong guy to ask. Never went to college and failed high school English. I've been blessed and very lucky to have people in my life who believed in me and were willing to take a chance. I just try to be myself and to not disappoint. And thank you for the kind words. Wish I could be more helpful. It IS a dream job!!
So, adjusted my sleep schedule, now ready for a full weekend of Rory and Tiger abroad! Great start to the golf sea-wait, what?
Michael Collins (3:22 PM)
Rory's swing was off this week, loopy & he couldn't buy a put. Neither he nor Tiger could buy a golf shot. On a certain level wonder how much they were into being there. Rory was off to Australia, and TW spent half the week in the gossip mags
Michael Collins (3:24 PM)
I just wonder how difficult it must be looking around and thinking someone in the crowd isn't there to see me golf but to write stuff in tabloids. Would make it tough to play for me.
Most disappointing week - Tiger, Rory or Phil? Or Phil Knight?
Michael Collins (3:26 PM)
Phil Knight everytime that Nike commercial runs this weekend people are gonna think, "Yeah, but you ain't playing now are you?"
anything noticeably different about mcilroy's ball flight with the new sticks? (you may be at pga west as i think about it) who's the best american golfer away from tiger right now, and at year end?as a former looper, love your insight
Michael Collins (3:27 PM)
Love Bo Van Pelt's game, he's due to bust out big. Still think Tiger will be the highest ranked American at the end of the year.
Michael- would you rather have a clean golf ball dispensing belly-button or a tee-dispensing nostril?
Michael Collins (3:28 PM)
Golf balls are much more expensive than tees. Give me the ball dispenser... sounds to painful though. I'd decline both if offered either.
Aaron (North Carolina)
So how did you get into caddying by accident and what is the best way to get a full time gig caddying?
Michael Collins (3:29 PM)
email me... ESPNCaddie@gmail.comtoo long to write it here
PGA Tour Merchandise Show 'bout to roll...any inside tips for the chat on the brand new newest latest best(-es) hottest stuff that I cant afford that I need in my bag to replace last years latest newest stuff that only sorta worked?
Michael Collins (3:30 PM)
I'm going to the show and gonna do video blogs from there. I'm gonna do a bit on what you can get for $500, $1000, and then unlimited $! Keep your eyes open.
Tyler C. (Detroit)
Which golfer on tour gives the best interview?
Michael Collins (3:31 PM)
Lee Westwood and Ian Poulter are both great. Honest and funny.
Henley for two in a row?
Michael Collins (3:32 PM)
How great would that be? Kid comes out and wins first two!?! would be great for the golf world.
Kirk Larson (Lincoln, CA)
I am not worried about either one, both are amazing golfers and will not be held down, even with ridiculous rules that clearly need to be changed!(see also Dustin Johnson hose job a couple yrs ago)
Paul ((U of Portland))
What do you expect out of Tiger at Torrey Pines? Should we continue to expect the unexpected?
Michael Collins (3:34 PM)
Well the good news is he'll be rested... I expect him to make the cut and finish inside the top 20.
Jared Klein (Miami, FL)
What are your thoughts on Callaway Golf's new team and the signing of Ryo Ishikawa to a lucrative deal?
Michael Collins (3:37 PM)
If Gary Woodland can stay healthy he's could be the best "get" Callaway got this year. Ryo is great for the market he's so popular in but he needs a much better play on the PGA Tour for it to pay off globally. That would start with him making the cut at the Masters
Bill (vermont )
I think big question mark for rory switching putters already. Bad sign even if its just growing pains who to say this doesn't get into your head thinking it could be the equipment. I will Faldo this was not a good move for Rory. Never mess with a winning combination equipment or swing or routine. Look at Duval
Michael Collins (3:39 PM)
The funny thing, when a guy says the putter wasn't heavy enough, I always think, lead tape. You can't put some lead tape on the putter to make it heavier?
Lennay Kekua (Carson, CA)
Michael, May I get Tiger's email address from you?
Michael Collins (3:41 PM)
No. But you can ask my fake twitter girlfriend.
Who's the funniest tour player?
Michael Collins (3:43 PM)
There isn't one guy who's funnier than the rest. There are a few really funny guys out there. Andres Gonzales, Kris Blanks, Rickie Fowler, Bubba, Vijay (yes he is very funny) just to name a few.
Michael, Would you have known Tiger ruling for your former players? Lacava, Rory[ After Fact] and Martin looked at lie, all said it was embedded in overgrown veg. Are you supposed to get carry toy sand shovels in your bag to find sand ?
Michael Collins (3:44 PM)
I know the rule and I always say call an official in instances like that but when Kaymer said yes, that would have been enough for me. Lecava is a great caddy.
Ed (Long Island)
When a player is paid an appearance fee, is there any clause in it that if they miss the cut, part of the fee is returned?
Michael Collins (3:45 PM)
nope, there should be though.
Mike, Has Tiger ever spoken to you? He seeems very friendly with all the caddies...True?
Michael Collins (3:46 PM)
We've spoken a bunch. He's a great guy. And also very funny.
They already had to take embarrassing pictures with camels. When you have a bad week at ESPN do you have to return half your salary?
Michael Collins (3:47 PM)
no but when I have a great week I don't get a trophy and a bonus check either.
Bill (vermont )
Michael what happened to Nicklaus golf company? It seems soon it will be only callaway, adams, taylormade,ping and nike. I dohn't have anything against them but seems we don't have many golf companies with mid priced equipment. 4oo dollars for a driver in this economy who can justify it.
Michael Collins (3:48 PM)
if you wait long enough, every $400 driver will be $200 or less.
Shoshana is too quiet... I need some obscure golf stuff today!
Thorbjorn Olson scoffs at the idea that switching to nike balls and clubs is hard
Michael Collins (3:49 PM)
Does anyone get more out of their game, so to speak, than Tim Clark? Seriously...guy hits hybrid into every par four and lights it up. Good to see him getting healthy again.
Michael Collins (3:50 PM)
tells you how good a putter he is. too bad his putter will be illegal in a couple years.
Do you think players, as Dufner most recently stated, should have 'input' on who the Ryder Cup captain is? Media make big noise that Rors was a major reason McGinley go selected in Europe. You think the selection process will ever evolve somehow to adapt player input directly?
Michael Collins (3:52 PM)
How many guys should have input? What if the guys with input don't make the team? I like the thought in theory, but it could only be one or two guys who should have input two years out.
Aaron (North Carolina)
Sent ya an email Mike, going to be back in Charlotte for the Wells Fargo again this year? What is it you don't like about the new 2013 Nike Balls?
Michael Collins (3:53 PM)
I love the new Nike Golf ball. I am just stating a fact. They sound different. Not worse or better, just different. And getting used to that sound especially off wedges and putter is not easy.
Really obscure, only two players last year putted as good as Henley did last week, and won (+3 strokes gained putting) - Phil and Keegan
Tiger still uses the one tour D ball, you wonder (or think) if Rory had a sound issue why he didn't use that
Michael Collins (3:56 PM)
that's not what the Nike rep told me, I was told he uses the new One control
Mike - Is it true that when Tiger made the switch from Titleist to Nike that he originally played with Titleist clubs stamped with the Nike swoosh?
Michael Collins (3:57 PM)
That's rumor, never been verified
Have a great day Michael. I'll be tweetin' you later this weekend to double or nuttin my $3 wager lost on the Broncos / Ravens last week. Friggin Flacco... LOL
Ed (Long Island)
Don't ever question Shoshana!!!!!!! Rory will be fine, just the newness of equipment, ball, fan fare of Nike debut, a lot going on. He'll get it figured out sooner than later.
Michael Collins (3:58 PM)
better be sooner cause the longer it goes the more it'll get in his head.
Do Tiger and Rory both get their entire appearance fee even if they miss the cut?
Michael Collins (3:59 PM)
James (Oceanside, CA)
Thoughts on Rickie Fowler winning a major in 2013? Or still a couple years away?
Michael Collins (3:59 PM)
No major this year, but next year he wins one.
Michael Collins (4:01 PM)
GEEZ!! That goes way too fast!NO chats for me next week. But email me with any questionsESPNCaddie@gmail.comI WILL answer.@ESPNCaddie on twitter and don't worry, I'm real. HAHAHAve a great week y'all!!MC