by John Andrisani
Teacher’s Comments: Too many anecdotes and not enough substance.
Hogan On The Green is subtitled “A Detailed Analysis of the Revolutionary Method of Golf Legend Ben Hogan.” Before reading, I supposed that the book would be to putting what “Five Lessons” is to the swing. In that, however, I found it a disappointment. The book is three quarters Hogan anecdotes and one quarter putting tips.
The first half of the book is almost entirely composed of anecdotes: how Ben Hogan was a very good putter, how he had developed a secret four stroke foolproof putting method, how he worked hard, how he had tremendous powers of concentration, how he experimented with equipment. Yada Yada Yada. If you have ever read a book on Hogan, you have heard all of this before.
After about thirty pages, the book starts to repeat itself. It was like listening to my grandfather tell stories. He used to say “I’ve probably told this story before but I like it so much I’m going to tell it again.” I found myself skipping entire pages and then having to go back so that I c about the flat stick.uld say I had read the entirety.
If there’s a new angle here, it is the image of Ben Hogan as a deadly putter. Golf mythology has so often glorified Hogan’s ball striking ability that his prowess on the greens has been forgotten. It is, however, impossible to win on Tour—let alone win Majors—without being a highly skilled putter. Hogan won 68 times on Tour and nine majors, so he knew more than a little.
If you’re more interested in how to improve your putting than the continued deification of Hogan, just start on page 69. Even that portion, however, is interspersed with increasingly repetitive and annoying anecdotes. For the real nuts and bolts, you can turn to page 107. It is as that point that Andrisani offers some useful tips on how to use the Hogan model to address various putting faults. There also are several good sections on how to deal with short, medium and long putts on various types of greens.
I wonder what Andrisani’s goal was with this book. He certainly has an encyclopedic knowledge of Ben Hogan, and it is reflected here. I do not, however, think that he accomplished his goal of presenting the “detailed analysis of the revolutionary method of golf legend Ben Hogan.”
I’d recommend this for Hogan fans who would like to know more about his putting, and perhaps how to incorporate some of his theories into their own game.