I've been lucky enough to cover just about every major sporting event in the United States, plus a handful of Olympics. If I believed in bucket lists, there would be one item left for me: Covering the British Open.
My friends who are golf writers say it is the most rewarding experience in sportswriting, to savor the history and the cultural differences one encounters on the other side of the pond.
Watching the British Open this morning, I was reminded by a conversation I had with Zach Johnson at The Masters.
I covered Zach's Masters win, and found him to be quite classy. He's also a completely admirable golfer, a player who can't rely on power and thus has become a technician: A great wedge player and putter. He won the Masters by dominating the Par-5s as three-shot holes, using his wedge to make birdies.
This year, Johnson didn't win, but in interviews I found him to be thoughtful and gracious.
He leads the British Open at the moment, at five-under. An Iowa native, he insists on playing the John Deere Classic the week before the British Open to honor his Iowa roots, meaning he has to deal with jet lag while preparing for the British.
He's a guy you can root for.
Radio schedule: Noon today and tomorrow on 1500ESPN with Judd & Dubay. Sunday: 9:30 Gardenhire Show, then 10-noon Sunday Sports Talk with at least one surprise guest.