Dave Hill

Golfer

1937 – 2011

81

Who was Dave Hill?

James David Hill was an American professional golfer. He was the brother of golfer Mike Hill.

Hill was born in Jackson, Michigan. He attended the University of Detroit, where he played on the golf team. Hill won 13 times on the PGA Tour, three of which came during his career year of 1969, when he also won the Vardon Trophy for lowest scoring average. He was a member of the United States Ryder Cup team in 1969, 1973, and 1977.

Hill was known for his quick wit and biting sarcasm, and was sometimes referred to as "the Don Rickles of the golf tour". He frequently led the tour in fines and was once suspended for two months after he deliberately broke his putter on national television. At the 1966 PGA Championship, Hill signed his second round scorecard that included a score of 108 on the 18th hole. Hill played in the acrimonious 1969 Ryder Cup that ended in a 16-16 tie when Jack Nicklaus made his famous "concession" of a short but missable putt to Tony Jacklin on the 18th green in the final match.

In 1970, Hill had his best finish in a major championship, placing second at the U.S. Open played at Hazeltine National Golf Club in Chaska, Minnesota. What gained him the most notoriety, though, was not his excellent play but his criticisms of the golf course. When first asked what he thought of the golf course, he said "I'm still looking for it". When asked what Hazeltine needed, he retorted, "Hazeltine really did lack only 80 acres of corn and a few cows. They ruined a good farm when they built this course". Hill was far from alone among the pros in his criticism of Hazeltine, which had to be extensively redesigned before getting a chance to host another men's major, again the U.S. Open, in 1991. Afterward, Hill claimed to have paid a farmer cash to borrow his tractor. If he had won the 1970 U.S. Open, Hill planned to ride the tractor out onto the golf course as he hoisted the trophy.

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Born
May 20, 1937
Jackson
Nationality
  • United States of America
Profession
Died
Sep 27, 2011
Jackson

Submitted
on July 23, 2013

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