Brooks Koepka is Too Cool for School
How did Brooks Koepka get to be the number one ranked player in the world?
You might ask how can you start a blog with a question you already know the answer to. Well, I had to start somewhere. And that seemed like the best jumping-off point.
Obviously winning 2 majors last year didn’t hurt his chances. Neither did winning 1 this year and beating 99.1% of the field in the 4 majors. A WGC win in Memphis this week certainly helps. His length, touch, and consistency could qualify as answers, too.
But let’s come at the question from another angle. One much less obvious.
All caps. IT’S HIS DEMEANOR. In other words, his “super relaxed attitude.”
Now I know you want to scream at me right now. What about his swing? What about his putting stroke? His touch around the greens? All of that is well and good and certainly he wouldn’t have a snowball's chance in hell to win once let alone multiple times without those attributes. But, consider this. Every one of the top 125 players in the world has those physical golf game qualities. What they don’t have is his relaxed, confident attitude.
On his late Sunday arrival and his attitude:
“I always take less time on Sunday. I’m already loose when I get to the golf course — I don’t even need to hit balls,” he said. “I’ve already stretched, I’ve already done everything. I don’t know why everyone else is in a panic, I’m not. I mean everybody else is stressing. I’m sure you didn’t see one ounce of stress on my face. I’m usually out there maybe 55 minutes before a normal tee time, but on Sundays it’s always like 45.”
Koepka battled a cold all week but didn’t say it affected his play. “I don’t feel good, I haven’t felt good all week, but I don’t want to make an excuse,” he said.
So his late Sunday arrival was just strategic, and turns out it worked quite well.
“I have played for three straight days, it’s hot, I don’t feel that great, so I’m not going to go out there and waste my energy on the range when I could do it on the course,” Koepka said.
Translated. He’s put all the work in. The round of golf is just that. A round of golf. He’ll approach it like any other round because Sunday doesn’t matter. The round will play out as it will. Stress can only be an inhibitor, never a contributor for Brooks.
Think about it. Yogi Berra once said- “50% of the game is 90% mental”. In golf that 90 is more like 150.
But for Brooks Koepka, world number 1, it’s just another part of his arsenal. The most important part.