Category: Callaway


October 19, 2013

Video: Watch Phil Mickelson toss football like a pro

Posted at 7:49 PM by Mike Walker

Phil Mickelson knows how to liven up a golf-equipment photo shoot: start throwing football passes like a pro. In the video above -- posted on Instagram by Callaway Golf -- Mickelson sends his receiver long and delivers a perfect spiral.

Mickelson's football prowess shouldn't be a surprise. He is a longtime San Diego Chargers fan and NFL junkie, and he showed off his arm strength as a guest pitcher for the Toledo Mud Hens in 2003.


PHOTO GALLERY: Golfers at Football Fames

PHOTO GALLERY: Tour Pros and the Sports They Love

July 27, 2013

Phil Mickelson swings by Callaway headquarters, Claret Jug in hand

Posted at 8:04 AM by Josh Sens

They supply him with equipment. The least he could do is let them touch the Claret Jug.

And so it came to pass on Wednesday, when Phil Mickelson turned up at Callaway headquarters in Carlsbad, Calif., bearing a little something he picked up overseas.

Wearing a black shirt, black pants and flip-flops -- and carrying the British Open trophy -- Mickelson looked very much the So. Cal kid during his impromptu visit. And he sounded very much like a grateful champ.

“I know there’s a lot of you,” Mickelson said, according to Callaway’s Twitter page. “But I want everyone to hold the jug.”

It was his latest thank-you gesture since his big Open win. During the awards ceremony at Muirfield, Mickelson gave a shout out to Callaway engineers for their work on the clubs that he said played a key role in his victory.

Callaways staffers seemed genuinely surprised and star-struck. By the trophy, that is. They've seen plenty of Mickelson before.

January 23, 2013

Report: Callaway investigated Mickelson's gambling before signing him

Posted at 2:59 PM by Mike Walker

Phil_tiger

Phil MIckelson and Tiger Woods at the 2004 Ryder Cup, the first event Mickelson played with Callaway clubs. (Getty Images)

According to a column by Larry Dorman at PGATour.com, Callaway investigated Phil Mickelson's gambling before signing him to an endorsement deal in 2004.

Dorman, who was a senior vice president for Callaway when Mickelson left Titleist for Callaway just before the 2004 Ryder Cup, said that the company was aware that Mickelson liked to gamble, but their investigations showed that he actually won money in Las Vegas and that he had no outstanding debts when he joined the Callaway staff.

Phil had a stellar college career and won 23 PGA TOUR events, including the 2004 Masters, during his successful affiliations with Ping, Yonex and Titleist. He was ranked No. 4 in the world on the Official World Golf Ranking, his Titleist contract was expiring, and he was considering his options with other manufacturers. The month before the Ryder Cup was to be played at Oakland Hills, he signed with Callaway, swayed by the company’s new golf ball and driver combination. The surprise signing and the proximity of the Ryder Cup combined to cause quite an uproar in the media.

Baseless rumors arose in some quarters, questioning Mickelson’s motivation for signing. When I say baseless, I mean totally unfounded, manufactured rumors alleging gambling debts that had no basis in fact. Mickelson did like to gamble at the time, but he had zero outstanding debts and his betting patterns -- a stat that Vegas casinos keep -- had him even, to slightly up. All the information was checked out by Callaway’s head of investigations, a former head of counterintelligence for the U.S. Army, and no evidence was found to support the claims, either of gambling debt or any other charge.

Dorman told the story in an article about Rory McIlroy, who missed the cut at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Golf Championship in his first outing with new Nike clubs. Mickelson's first appearance with Callaway clubs was his disastrous pairing with Tiger Woods in the 2004 Ryder Cup. He got over it, and Dorman said the controversy over the switch created publicity for Callaway.

After the Ryder Cup, every golf fan knew what clubs and ball Mickelson was playing. And he has used the tools well in the nine years since, winning 17 times for his current total of 40 victories, including three more majors -- two of them Masters -- for a total of four.

If I were a betting man, I’d wager that Rory McIlroy will do at least that well in the next nine years, with whatever clubs he chooses to use. I don’t gamble. So I’ll just say it.

A tip of the cap to Geoff Shackelford for pointing out this tidbit in Dorman's story.

November 15, 2012

Truth & Rumors: PGA, LPGA, Champions, and Web.com Tour stars tee off together

Posted at 1:08 PM by Samantha Glover

The Callaway Pebble Beach Invitational, now in its 41st year, is the only event in golf that features players from the PGA, LPGA, Champions and Web.com tours all competing against each other.

The field includes a wide variety of players, including big names like Annika Sorenstam, Fred Funk, Juli Inkster and Jonas Blixt; new pros like Cheyenne Woods and Luke Guthrie; and 324 amateurs, according to the The Herald of Monterey County.

"I'm really looking forward to competing in this year's Callaway Invitational at Pebble Beach," said Sorenstam, who'll have her husband Mike on the bag as caddie. "Callaway has been a wonderful partner of mine for my entire career and now beyond, and the Monterey Peninsula is one of our favorite places to spend time."

The tournament, which uses a tee placement system based on the average length of shots on each tour to give each player a fair chance at the $300,000 purse, will take place Thursday through Sunday at Del Monte, Spyglass and Pebble Beach. There will be a cut after Saturday's round, and the top 40 golfers will advance to a final round at Pebble.

March 26, 2012

Video: 'Callaway customer service, this is Bones'

Posted at 12:38 PM by David Dusek

Some golfers take the office to the golf course. In this video, Phil Mickelson's caddie, Jim "Bones" Mackay, takes his job to the office.

February 28, 2012

Truth & Rumors: Callaway names Chip Brewer CEO

Posted at 12:17 PM by Michael Chwasky

The small company started by Ely Callaway, which originally sold hickory shafted golf clubs, has come a long way since it officially became Callaway Golf in 1988. Over the years some of the company's most successful products, like the original Big Bertha driver and the titanium Great Big Bertha, have had enormous effects on both the golf industry and the way the game is played. Callaway's acquisition of Odyssey putters and the Top-Flite and Ben Hogan brands, as well as the launch of Callaway golf balls, have helped transform the Carlsbad-based company into one of the biggest in the world. 

In recent years, however, business hasn't been booming for the former leader in metalwood sales, as Callaway reported net losses of $171.8 million in 2011 and $18.8 in 2010.  For the past eight months the public company has been looking for a new leader to replace interim president and CEO Tony Thornley, and it has finally settled on industry veteran Chip Brewer, according to PGA.com. President and CEO of Adams Golf since 2002, Brewer is widely credited with transforming Adams from a niche company known largely for fairway woods and hybrids into a significant player in the industry. 

"Chip has extensive knowledge of all facets of the golf business, particularly in the sales and marketing area, and has a real passion for the game of golf. Chip also has great relationships with customers and others in the golf industry and he has done a great job turning around and leading Adams Golf," said Callaway Board Chairman Ronald S. Beard. “We believe he is the right leader to entrust with our valuable brands, and the board looks forward to working with him to restore profitability and increase shareholder value."

Brewer, who has an MBA from Harvard Business School, will officially start his tenure at Callaway Golf on March 5th. 

"Having been around golf my entire life, I know Callaway and its products very well and I am very excited about joining such an iconic company and being part of its great heritage," said Brewer. "There is a lot of opportunity ahead for Callaway and I look forward to working with the board and senior management team to build upon the strength of its brands to restore profitability and increase shareholder value."

Callaway currently has sponsorship agreements with a number of notable players including Ernie Els, Phil Mickelson, Alvaro Quiros, J.B. Holmes and Tommy Gainey, among others. 

Tiger Effect Felt at Honda Classic
The mere presence of stars like Michael Jordan, Arnold Palmer and Dale Earnhardt, among others, brought a certain extra excitement to their sports, but never has there been an individual who could make or break an event like Tiger Woods. Clearly, the officials at the upcoming Honda Classic were aware of this fact when the 14-time major winner confirmed he was in the field this year, but it still seems they may have underestimated his power, according to The Palm Beach Post.

“We were ready, so we haven’t been overwhelmed,” tournament executive director Ken Kennerly said, “but Tiger’s impact has exceeded our very high expectations.”

In fact, Kennerly is now considering halting ticket sales not only for the famed Bear Trap, but for the entire event. Last year the Honda drew approximately 110,000 fans, but this year attendance may exceed 160,000, and tournament officials are concerned about overcrowding having a negative effect on fan experience as well as security.

“We’ll make sure extra security attention is paid to entry points away from the main gate and along the perimeter of the course,” Kennerly said. “We don’t want anyone jumping a fence to get in. We’ll have two and three times the route flow from our lots with special attention paid to Tiger’s tee times when we expect the greatest increase in attendance. We’re well aware of the fact that we’ll have more people arriving and departing at certain times than we’ve had in the past.”

TWEET OF THE DAY

PGATOUR: Tiger Woods out practicing on back nine at The Honda Classic, where he's playing for the first time as a professional. About 150 following.

January 24, 2012

Truth & Rumors: Timberlake-crafted Callaway ads to debut this weekend

Posted at 4:16 PM by Jillian Whalen

Callaway's new ad campaign, which was featured in Truth & Rumors in December and will air for the first time this weekend, was crafted in part by Justin Timberlake, who was named creative director for the company in December. According to The Wall Street Journal, the ads, featuring trick shots by staff pros on the Vegas strip, are designed to reach a younger audience and spice up Callaway's image.

The marketing effort features golf pros such as Phil Mickelson and Annika Sorenstam using Callaway products to perform jaw-dropping golf feats on the Las Vegas Strip. One TV ad shows golfer Alvaro Quiros on a floating platform on the strip, hitting a golf ball 310 yards over the Bellagio fountain.

In another, several golfers including Ms. Sorenstam hit balls from rooftop to rooftop along the strip. Helicopters fill in for golf carts.

"We wanted to make a statement that was more rock 'n' roll," said Mr. Timberlake, who has been a paid endorser for Callaway for several years but isn't in any of the new ads. Mr. Timberlake worked with Factory Design Labs, a Denver ad agency that began creating the new pitch in April 2011.

Callaway spent far less on advertising in 2011 than rivals TaylorMade and Titleist, The Journal reported, and plans to increase this year's spending by $25 million. Timberlake summed up the company's efforts by saying that Callaway is hoping to give golf a "nice injection of kickassery."

Big fee lures Tiger, but how big was it?
Tiger Woods will be paid between $1.7 and $2.7 million in appearance fees to play in Abu Dhabi this week, according to GolfChannel.com. The article only cites "practice-tee buzz," and Woods did not disclose the amount, but rest assured that this has already been a lucrative trip for Woods.

Vandals strike Texas course
The Pecan Grove Country Club in Richmond, Texas, suffered at least $80,000 worth of damage when carts were stolen and left all over the course, according to Click2Houston.com.

The vandals broke into a golf cart barn and stole more than two dozen carts. Six were submerged in the golf course's water hazards. Eighteen other carts were found parked all over the golf course, including the greens.

Tweets of the Day
Caroline Wozniacki's tough loss in the Australian Open seems to have been softened somewhat by a present from one Irish pro and a compliment from another.

December 15, 2011

Truth & Rumors: Overton arrested for public intoxication

Posted at 10:10 AM by Ryan Reiterman

Jeff Overton hasn't generated many headlines since his famous "BOOM, BABY!" moment at the 2010 Ryder Cup, but he is back in the news now and it has nothing to do with golf.

According to the Evansville Courier & Press and Bloomington Herald-Times, Overton was arrested and charged over the weekend with three misdemeanors for public intoxication, yelling at people from his limousine and resisting arrest.

Overton appeared at Assembly Hall during the Indiana-Kentucky basketball game to present a $50,000 check to the university to support the Play Golf America University program, the Herald-Times reported.

According to a police report, officers said Overton was yelling at people from a limousine that blocked traffic in front of Kilroy’s Sports Bar on Walnut Street.

The limousine driver told police they were waiting on others, and the driver was instructed to not block traffic.

Later, the limo carrying Overton pulled up next to Bloomington police, and officers report Overton was yelling at people on the street again. Police pulled the limousine over, according to the Herald-Times.

The newspaper reported that Overton repeatedly refused to give his ID to police and refused to step out of the limo. A police report described Overton’s behavior as “belligerent,” and he reportedly told officers “he wasn’t going to do anything.” Police say he smelled of alcohol, his eyes were glassy and his speech was slurred.

Overton told the Bloomington paper that he would fight the charges.

"I feel my rights were violated," he told the newspaper. "I'm sitting in my own limo and got pulled out. Other than that, I'm going to let my lawyer handle it."

Sergio chucks 4-iron into water after bad shot
Sergio Garcia was on a roll in October, winning twice on the European Tour following a self-imposed hiatus from the game last year. But it seems his fiery temper got the best of him in Thailand after a poor tee shot on a par 3.

The Ryder Cup star, who twice finished second at the PGA Championship, chucked his 4-iron into the water in fury after a poor connection at a par-3 during a nightmare opening round in Chonburi, Sky Sports reported.

Garcia's day failed to improve as he finished with a 4-over 76 to end tied for 100th in the 130-strong field.

Volcanoes, flames and Phil! Oh my!
Callaway took over the Las Vegas Strip recently to shoot its upcoming ad campaign directed by David Kahn, who is known more for music videos than filming golfers. According to Steve DiMeglio at USA Today, the commercials will feature several Callaway staffers, including Phil Mickelson, Justin Timberlake and Alvaro Quiros, hitting balls all over the Strip with 25-foot flames and erupting volcanoes.

"I like this out-of-the-box thinking," Mickelson said. "It has the 'wow' factor and it shows how excited Callaway is about its products. And instead of just telling you how great the products are, we show you in unique ways."

Timberlake is lending creative input and talents behind the camera during both the pre- and post-production work. He and Kahn have worked together on music videos in the past, and Timberlake, who brought sexy back and now wants to bring fun back to golf, jumped at the chance.

"It's always great when professional projects surround subjects that I am passionate about, and the sport of golf and my work with Callaway definitely fit that criteria," said Timberlake, who in 2008 became the first non-tour player to join Callaway's team of Staff Professionals that includes Mickelson, Ernie Els, Annika Sorenstam and Arnold Palmer.

Tweet of the Day

Jenkins_tweet

May 26, 2011

Justin Timberlake launches Father's Day Facebook contest in Brooklyn

Posted at 9:50 AM by Jessica Marksbury

Timberlake in BrooklynIt's good to be Justin Timberlake. The man of many titles (recording artist, actor, philanthropist, all-around pop culture phenomenon) not only owns a golf course and maintains a single-digit handicap, but he also enjoys a Callaway endorsement deal.

Fresh off hosting the "Saturday Night Live" season finale, Timberlake spent one of New York City's most beautiful spring days holding court at the CityParks Junior Golf Center in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn.

Timberlake's appearance Wednesday was open only to invited media at the junior golf center, which is adjacent to Dyker Beach Golf Course, one of the most crowded munis in New York. Business was booming as groups played their rounds nearby, but Timberlake's presence was apparently under the radar. A chain link fence was all that separated him from the dozens of groups that passed as he was interviewed, but if any of the weekday warriors recognized the superstar, they kept his identity to themselves.

On hand to promote Callaway's new Diablo Octane driver, Timberlake met with various media outlets for one-on-one interviews, including ESPN and "Access Hollywood." He and Callaway also announced the launch of their Father's Day contest, "Tee Off with Diablo Octane and Justin Timberlake."

Fans can enter the contest on Callaway's Facebook page by submitting entries that describe how golf has brought them closer to someone in their lives. Entries can be up to 100 words and must be submitted by June 19. In July, Callaway will announce 25 finalists, each of whom will receive a new Diablo Octane driver. The grand prize winner, chosen from among the 25 finalists by a vote on Facebook, and a guest will win a round of golf at Timberlake's Mirimichi golf course in Millington, Tenn., range time with Timberlake, and a custom-fit set of Callaway clubs. Enter here.

Timberlake also took time out to film a lesson for Golf.com's "Practice Like the Pros" series. How does Justin warm up for a round? It involves a trip to the 19th and a few arm curls.

And, just because, here are some highlights from this week's Saturday Night Live appearance.

 





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