And if You Play Golf, You’re My Friend: Further Reflections of a Grown Caddie
And If You Play Golf, You’re My Friend picks up where the Little Red Book left off. It features the same blend of simple wisdom, sound golfing instruction, and good common sense that has made the Little Red Book so popular with golfers of all ages and levels of ability. And, as in the previous volume, Penick’s deep love for the game and his delight in teaching shine through on every page.
Penick tells the story of his son-in-law’s first golf lesson, a story with a twist right out of O. Henry. He relates the tale of a player from Houston who had only one flaw in his game — that his scores were too high — and who exploded with anger when Penick told him so. He gives advice to parents on how to help their children learn golf, shows how to overcome a slice by “playing baseball,” and shares the pride and joy he felt while watching his pupil Tom Kite win the U.S. Open.
Harvey Morrison Penick (October 23, 1904 – April 2, 1995) was an American golf professional and coach, who coached many Hall of Fame players. Late in life, he became a best-selling writer. He was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame in 2002. Born in Austin, Texas, he began his golf career at age 8 as a caddy at the Austin Country Club, and as the the club’s assistant pro five years later. After high school graduation he was promoted to head professional in 1923, where he remained until 1973. After 1973, Penick continued teaching at the club. He was the golf coach at the University of Texas from 1931 to 1963, coaching the Longhorns to 21 Southwest Conference titles in 33 years, including 20 out of 23 seasons from 1932 to 1954. He coached the following members of the World Golf Hall of Fame: Tom Kite, Ben Crenshaw, Mickey Wright, Betsy Rawls, and Kathy Whitworth. Other outstanding players he coached include: Sandra Palmer, Judy Kimball, Terry Dill, Don Massengale, Rik Massengale, Davis Love, Jr., and Edward White. In 1989, Penick was honored by the PGA of America as Teacher of the Year. During his final illness, he gave lessons from his deathbed to longtime student Ben Crenshaw. The day after serving as a pallbearer at Penick’s funeral, Crenshaw began play in the 1995 Masters Tournament. With the memory and spirit of his longtime friend and mentor to guide him, he became the second oldest Masters champion, winning his second Masters at the age of 43. In the post-tournament interview, Crenshaw said: “I had a 15th club in my bag,” a reference to Penick. (The “15th club” reference is based on the golf rule that limits a player to carrying 14 clubs during a round.)
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