rationing, so we didn’t travel much. Everything was pretty
tight. But the good news was that my sister and I had the opportunity to spend a lot of time with our parents. My father
would take us to movies and things like that when it cost
a dime and a penny for the movie and five cents for an ice
cream cone. Those were tough times, but we had each other.
˘ I turned 25 on Sept. 10  and Nov. 18 I turned pro.
I had spent three years in the service after college. I always
had it in my mind that I wanted to be a pro golfer. The Coast
Guard was very good for me. Some people turn pro and they
haven’t grown up yet. The service gave me a chance to play
some golf and learn to be a young man.
˘ I met Mark McCormack when he was at William &
Mary College playing on the golf team. By the time I was a
pro, he had become a lawyer and said he’d like to represent
me. I told him that I didn’t need anybody at the time. So we
just kind of let it rest for a few months, and then he came
back to me in 1959 and said, “Well, how about now?” He had
organized with a guy from Carling Brewery, and they had
Gene Littler and a bunch of golfers they were representing.
And I told Mark that I didn’t need to be with all those guys—
if you want to represent me, you have to leave them and just
go on with me yourself. About a month later, he said OK.
˘ Mark is instrumental in many of the things that we
know today in golf. When he created IMG it was a godsend
because it brought everybody into the picture, not just the
players but the tournaments, sponsors, television, the PGA, the
USGA—and he got the attention of everyone, which was key.
˘ Bob Drum was sort of my newspaper mentor. When I
was playing high school golf, he was writing for the Pittsburgh
Press. He kind of told me what was going on. He was a good
friend, but he was also critical. And he had a lot to do with me
playing the British Open in 1960 after I won the Masters and
the U.S. Open at Cherry Hills. On the day of the 36-hole final
at Cherry Hills, before I played my last 18, I was about to eat
a hamburger. I said to Bob, “What do you think if I shoot 65
this afternoon?” And Drum said it wouldn’t do me a damn bit
of good. Well, he was a friend of [Mike] Souchak, too, who was
leading. Drum pissed me off, and I said, “I’ll see you later” and
went out and hit a couple of drives and was called to the tee
and drove the green. That’s how that all happened.
˘ How do we make the game of golf accessible again to
regular people? That’s a hell of a question. For one thing, the
pros have to do a better job of connecting with the fans. I
see players and I wonder sometimes when they ignore the
press why they’re not interested. It may be that the money
just came too easy for them. Hell, the 100th money winner is
making a lot on the tour today. And that may be a problem.
It’s something that I tried to create—the money, the purses—
and it may be working a little in reverse. Players need to
remember they didn’t make golf. Golf made them.
˘ The players today are different about the media. Hell,
Doc Giffin, Bob Drum, some of the British writers were my best
buddies. You develop trust when you get to know each other.
˘ I finished second fifty-some times, so there are a lot
of mulligans I wish I could have. But the PGA is one I would
have liked to have won. I finished second three times. And
the Open: I won at Cherry Hills, but I think about the Opens
that I didn’t win [runner-up four times from 1962-67] that
I should have won. I’ve always felt every tournament was
important. You get in there and you are playing and you want
to win. And that’s the way I approached them all. But a PGA
and some of those other Opens would have been nice.
˘ I never felt I had a rivalry with Jack [Nicklaus]. I always
felt like I was helping him, from the first day I played with
him in Athens, Ohio, when he was an amateur and we had an
exhibition with Dow Finsterwald. Jack came to me a few years
later and said, “I’m going to turn pro, would you help me?” I
said, “Sure, whatever you want.” That answer was kind of an
obligation from me to him. And I’ve done that ever since.
˘ There may be more good players now, but there were
more great players then. Gary Player was a great golfer, and
Billy Casper at his peak was better than anyone ever gave
him credit for. In his prime he was one of the most under-appreciated players. Lee Trevino was terrific.
˘ I was very much in favor of banning touching the body
[anchoring] with the long putter. And having two sets of rules
is a terrible, terrible idea. If we ever get into that, we will ruin
the game. One set! That’s it.
˘ One of the bad things that has happened is that we
have fewer caddies. That’s absolutely been very bad for the
game. They should still be in the process, but it’s golf carts and
all the other stuff. Caddieing brought a lot of kids to the game.
I was on the high school golf team for four years and most of
the caddies were high school golfers too. When I was a teenager, there wasn’t junior golf. Us caddies would play against
each other. Other than that, it was high school matches—the
Western Pennsylvania Interscholastic Athletic League, the
WPIAL. I won the state individual championship twice.
˘ That comeback at Cherry Hills in 1960 was when the
whole “charge” thing really took off, but “Arnie’s Army”
started at Augusta in ’ 58. The Masters people offered soldiers from Fort Gordon free admission if they would help out
with the scoreboards and other things. I guess they knew I
was a Coast Guard vet and they liked the way I played—I was
just 28—and they got behind me. I was tied with Snead going
to Sunday, and those soldiers cheered me on, which got a lot
of the rest of the gallery behind me. I went on to win my first
major championship and the first of my four Masters.
˘ Ben Hogan never called me by my name. Never. It was
always, “Hey, you,” or “Hey, fella.” I don’t know why. Jackie
Burke and Jimmy Demaret were good friends of his. That
may have had something to do with it.
˘ A lot of the young players today are overcoached. There
is so much information out there, and it can get in the way
of developing a feel for the game. I have two grandsons, both
pretty good players. Watching them, I mostly just try to help