The Ageless Fred Couples

Fred Couples is a fan favourite! His calm demeanor and unflappable disposition are traits that all golfers envy. Turning pro in 1980, “Boom Boom” has thrilled the golfing world with 15 PGA Tour Wins, 11 Champions Tour wins and a plethora of other wins outside of the PGA. During the 1990s, he was considered one of the players to beat. His silky smooth swing and long drives never appeared to falter.

After winning the Shell Houston Open in 2003, Couples fell off the radar. Fading into the sunset, this Major Champion’s career seemed to be over. However, once he joined the Champions Tour something strange happened. He started winning again. Adding two more Majors on the Champions Tour for good measure, he became a fan favorite all over again.

In 2013, Couples was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame. Long overdue, in my opinion, it was not until his career was revitalized on the Champions Tour did Couples regain enough notoriety to be nominated for the induction.  He was very proud of that moment and said:

“Thanks for taking a kid from Seattle and putting him into the Hall of Fame. This is the coolest night of my life.” – Fred Couples, on his 2013 Induction

Interestingly, even during his darkest times as a player, Couples always played well at the Masters. Not any other Major. only the Masters. Finishing 6th in 2010, he is always in the mix. Is it possible he could win his second Masters? It would be great to see.

Throughout Fred Couples’ career, he has been plagued with a back injury. There is little doubt, that his long powerful swing attributes to his medical woes, but he always seems to recover long enough to compete. His current challenge is to keep healthy long enough to continue playing on the Champions Tour. Beating Billy Andrea in a playoff at the The Shaw Charity Classic  this weekend is strong evidence that “Boom Boom” is continuing his winning ways.

Fred Couples has a very interesting swing. The most important aspect of how he generates power is how long he holds the club on his down swing before he releases his hands towards the intended target. It really is amazing. The following video really demonstrates the power he generates in a very short distance.

He also releases his club head “down the line”. He explains the importance of not following your hips during the golf swing, but clearing the hips and releasing the club head on its swing path.

Fred Couples has provided many memorable moments from the golf course such as: his only PGA Tour Major win at the Masters in 1992, his play during five Ryder Cup teams, four Presidents Cup teams, and, of course, his crazy long drives. For me (actually saw this shot live on TV), his most memorable golf shot is his hole-in-three on the 17th hole, TPC Sawgrass, at the 1999 Players Championship.

“I don’t really know how hard I was trying on my third shot,” Couples, a two-time Players Champion, admitted years later (he shot a 77 in that opening round, by the way). “If I don’t make that shot, I think I shoot 80, 81 and probably miss the cut. Three days later, I was in fourth place.” (PGA.com)

Fred “Boom Boom” Couples is one of my all time favourite professional golfers. I enjoy watching his silky smooth swing and his patient approach to playing golf. He may not be the best-ever, however he is definitely one of the more entertaining players.

Who is one of your all-time favorite golfers? I would like to know!

I am a grateful golfer! See you on the links!

12 thoughts on “The Ageless Fred Couples

  1. Pingback: 2016 USA Ryder Cup Captain | The Grateful Golfer

  2. Jim,

    Great write-up on Freddy! I was at the tournament Sunday and followed him much of the way. He by far had the biggest crowd, and for good reason. I was about 15 feet away from him when he chipped in for eagle on 18 for the course record 61. Exhilarating!

    Thanks for the good read

    Josh

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  3. Good stuff. Gotta like Couples. Figures he’s from that perfect blend of east and west coast silicon-valley type cities (heh heh – had to slip that in there). Seattle is a cool town. But his insane lag is even cooler. I will watch often!

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  4. Jim, I love watching Freddy play and root hard for him whenever he’s in contention. My favorite of all time is Big Jack, though. Also might be interesting to poll to your readers who they like to root against. Let’s face it, we all do it. Put me down for Rory Sabbatini. Never liked him since he dissed Ben Crane in the 2005 Booz Allen.

    Thanks!

    Brian

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      • Watching and listening to Freddy at The Masters tells you he can still bomb it with the younger guys, but hearing him try to convince himself that he could win if only his putter would come around is difficult to take. Freddy’s never been great with the flatstick and knowing that he still fights those mental putting foibles makes him a long shot at Augusta. It’s still exciting when he gets in the hunt on the weekend.

        Brian

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      • Brian,

        You are so right. But he always seems to be within the top 20! At the Masters, that is awesome. Is it possible the pressure is getting to him more now that he is a bit older? Who knows, but I still like seeing the older guys in the mix. Freddy especially.

        Cheers
        Jim

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