Keeping Up with the Jones: Welcome to the second-ever Golfdom Tour Guide

By |  April 22, 2024 0 Comments

In this special issue, we change the entire format of the magazine to celebrate professional golf tournaments and the superintendents who host them. In this issue is a complete list of every professional tournament with the host superintendents, their education and years of experience in the industry — proudly sponsored by our friends at Underhill.

It also includes more than 20 interviews with these host superintendents. We talked to them about the challenges they must overcome to successfully host their tournaments, the workforce they assemble to make it come together and what advice they have for others in the business who aspire to reach the top of the profession.

This is certainly a strange time in professional golf. PGA Tour television ratings are down. The PGA Tour’s final groups have been filled with — let’s call them unfamiliar — players. PGA Tour players and LIV golfers alike are placing the blame on the divide in the fields … the game was better off with one field of players, which sadly, most weeks, is a thing of the past.

That’s something none of us can control. The golf industry and golf fans must sit in the grandstands and see what plays out with the two entities and in turn, what can be done to inject some excitement back into the game after a few years of negativity.

One thing that can be controlled — that you (our readers) try to control, to the best of your abilities — is the conditions of the venues where these tournaments are contested. A quick flip through this issue shows some of the very best courses the game has to offer, places where golf fans dream of playing. For those of us stuck dreaming, we can at least watch and see how these courses look on TV.

Pinehurst No. 2, Valhalla, Torrey Pines, PGA West, Harbor Shores, Detroit Golf Club — the list goes on. Collecting the dazzling photography for this issue alone was enough to get me excited for professional golf — I don’t care whose name is on the leaderboard. But then as I got further into the issue and started reading the stories of the superintendents and the team supporting them… then I really got fired up.

There are commonalities among the turf professionals profiled in this issue, but above all else, it’s clear that these superintendents, directors of maintenance, directors of agronomy — whatever title they go by — have a unique drive that sets them apart from others. They don’t mind going toe-to-toe with Mother Nature. A microburst, flooding, drought, a heat wave or a cruel winter … there are no excuses with the people profiled in this issue. There is only a date on the calendar when the course needs to be in peak condition — no questions asked.

Which is more important? Jordan Spieth or Scottie Scheffler in the final group, or that the golf course looks amazing? I’m a Jordan Spieth fan from back when, but I’m a golf fan no matter who is on the tee.

I’m tuning in to see some drama play out in the tournament, but even if there is no drama, even if Scheffler is blowing away the field, I’m sticking around to see the golf course. I’m here to see the handiwork of the people profiled in this issue. That, to me, is must-see TV.

To the superintendents who took time away from their tournament preparations to talk shop with me and my team, thank you. To those of you in the industry striving to keep up with the conditions of TV golf, even though your workforce and your maintenance budget are a fraction of what they have, thank you, too. You’re all cut from the same cloth, and we celebrate you, too.

Welcome to the 2024 Tour Guide.

About the Author: Seth Jones

Seth Jones, a 25-year veteran of the golf industry media, is Editor-in-Chief of Golfdom magazine and Athletic Turf. A graduate of the University of Kansas School of Journalism and Mass Communications, Jones began working for Golf Course Management in 1999 as an intern. In his professional career he has won numerous awards, including a Turf and Ornamental Communicators Association (TOCA) first place general feature writing award for his profile of World Golf Hall of Famer Greg Norman and a TOCA first place photography award for his work covering the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina. In his career, Jones has accumulated an impressive list of interviews, including such names as George H.W. Bush, Samuel L. Jackson, Lance Armstrong and Charles Barkley. Jones has also done in-depth interviews with such golfing luminaries as Norman, Gary Player, Nick Price and Lorena Ochoa, to name only a few. Jones is a member of both the Golf Writers Association of America and the Turf and Ornamental Communicators Association. Jones can be reached at

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