Brooks Koepka

USA Today

Day 1 Reaction

Koepka just told everyone: tell me how my ass looks and tell me how my ass tastes.

April 12, 2019 - 9:21 am

The biggest story coming into the Masters was how small Brooks Koepka had become. And if it wasn’t the biggest, it was definitely the weirdest. Who cares about Rory’s career Grand Slam and the annual claim that Tiger is in his best spot to win a Masters since 2005. It feels like we’ve heard that every year since 2005 and every year it hasn’t happened.

That was a lot of buzz and hype for a guy who hasn’t won a major since 2014. Meanwhile, Brooks and his drought stretch all the way back to… August 2018. Then again, that was the last time anyone won a major. 

His statement that he’d lost 24 pounds since November and had himself checked out to make sure everything was okay, was weird. Really weird. Especially when you consider it meant that the weight loss cost him 10 to 12 yards off the tee and three weeks in the gym.

Remember, you CAN’T KEEP THIS GUY OUT OF THE GYM.This is a guy who hits the weight room BEFORE rounds. A guy who hit a stationary bike and then spent an hour blasting his back and tri’s before shooting a 66 on Saturday of the 2018 PGA Championship. A guy who hit 14 reps at 225 on Sunday morning before winning the US Open on Sunday afternoon at Shinnecock Hills.

That guy missing a day, let alone three weeks, in the gym is wild. Especially when he’s on the heater that he’s on. He’s looking to win his third major in four starts. So why would you mess with that? AND THAT’S THE OTHER REALLY BIZARRE part. Because Koepka wasn’t saying. Was he sick? Didn’t appear to be. Was it for his long-term health? Not clear. The only thing he’d say is that “you’ll see.”

And immediately the speculation was that he did it for a photo shoot. Which might be the weirdest thing of all. He went on a restricted diet, lost 24 pounds, and 10-plus yards off the tee for a photo shoot?!? That’s insane. Almost as insane as doing it on the run that he’s on right now.

And even crazier when you consider that he wasn’t exactly waddling around the course like Monty or Hefty.

It’s not like anyone looked at Koepka before and said, hey, fat ass, mix in a salad

Nobody was glossing him Brooks Cupcake.

Hey, Snacks Koepka, how about you swing away from the custard and push away from the table.

But he dropped the weight and took a ton of heat for it. He was practically getting body-shamed for it….fort leaning out. For eating clean. Or in this case, for not eating much at all. And the whole thing seemed really weird. 

Until he went out and did what he did yesterday….firing A 6-under 66 tied with Bryson DeChambeau for the lead and one shot ahead of Phil Mickelson the guy who SHOULD swing away from the custard. If you’re still interested, Tiger shot a 70 and Rory had a 73.

As always, it’s time for a cliché and that cliché is that it’s just one day. Here’s another one: you can’t win the Masters on Thursday, but you can lose it on Thursday. And it turns out you can BURY a bunch of critics on Thursday too.

Because that’s exactly what Koepka did with that bogey-free round. I’ve got your weight concerns right here.

You think I’m being weird or reckless with my weight? Check out 15 of 18 greens in regulation. Sure, my pants fit a little differently these days, you know what else fits? 12 of 14 fairways.

You had questions about his length off the tee? He had an answer: Piping one down the middle, as he said, off the first tee. And then chasing that with a birdie on two. And then birdieing ten to go two under, and then running off four straight from 12 through 15.

This is a guy who was physically struggling not that long ago, to the point where he had to get himself checked out, and here he is, shredding Augusta National and looking shredded in the process.

So how does he do it? How does this guy peak for every major? Well, let’s start with the fact that he’s a machine, a monster…  A killer who builds his entire year around the majors. And when he gets there, he shows up.

“I get to whatever major championship it is and just when I arrive there, I just get a good feeling. I don’t know how to explain it. I’m just dialed in and focused the entire week.”

There’s more: “You're not thinking about anything. You're not thinking about missing. You're not thinking about the trouble. To be honest with you, I'm not even really thinking about it going in. My mind goes blank. It seems like an hour period where that goes by in about five, 10 minutes.”

According to him, he’s just going blank mind around the course and that is amazing. Three-putt on 8? Who cares. That’s gone. Immediately.

And you know what else is gone? The questions about his weight. He had something for everyone who had thoughts on his diet and his body. "Well, I lift all the time. I lift too many weights, and I'm too big to play golf. And then when I lose weight, I'm too small. So, I don't know. I don't know what to say. I'm too big and I'm too small.”

"Listen, I'm going to make me happy. I don't care what anybody else says. I'm doing it for me, and obviously it seems to work."

Leaderboard. Look up at it.

To paraphrase a famous poet, Koepka just told everyone: tell me how my ass looks and tell me how my ass tastes. And everyone taking a run at him was the absolute thing that could have happened to everyone else in the field. This dude is scary enough without the fuel…and all that hate as this dude topping it off with the craziest rocket fuel there is.  You just cannot get in this guy’s head or under his skin. And as weird as it all seemed, we all would have better off not poking that monster.