Golf Links: Friday, July 14 news and notes

SILVIS, IL - AUGUST 14: Ryan Moore acknowledges the crowd after his winning putt on the 18th green during the final round of the John Deere Classic at TPC Deere Run on August 14, 2016 in Silvis, Illinois. (Photo by Anna Papuga/Getty Images)
SILVIS, IL - AUGUST 14: Ryan Moore acknowledges the crowd after his winning putt on the 18th green during the final round of the John Deere Classic at TPC Deere Run on August 14, 2016 in Silvis, Illinois. (Photo by Anna Papuga/Getty Images) /

Golf Links connects you to Friday day morning’s golf news: get ready for cut day at the pro events and check in on the Trump v U.S. Women’s Open drama and other news that keeps the golf world keeps turning.

The ProGolfNow Golf Links column provides a quick way to get your Friday morning golf news and stay on top of the game, wherever it’s being played.

The pros are playing in Scotland, Illinois, and New Jersey this week. The women are at Trump National Golf Club in Bedminster, NJ contending the 72nd U.S. Open and the men are making their final tune-ups for next week’s Open Championship a two events,t the European Tour’s Scottish Open and the PGA TOUR John Deere Classic.

Let’s take a quick look at the pace setters and get ready for cut day.

Aberdeen Asset Management Scottish Open

Golf Links
TROON, SCOTLAND – JULY 13: Daniel Im of the United States tees off on the 18th hole during day one of the AAM Scottish Open at Dundonald Links Golf Course on July 13, 2017 in Troon, Scotland. (Photo by Gregory Shamus/Getty Images) /

Finland’s Mikko Ilonen has set the pace at Dundonald Links with a 7-under 65 but that’s probably not going to last, not with Padraig Harrington, Rickie Fowler, and Ian Poulter chasing him down. Matt Kuchar isn’t far behind and Rafa Cabrera Bello, Alex Noren, and Luke Donald are within easy reach of Ilonen’s pace.

McIlroy made a sluggish start and there’s already talk of him missing a second consecutive cut, but I’d like to let him get in a few holes today before I start shaking my head.

McIlroy’s not alone in his misery. Patrick Reed, Martin Kaymer, and Matt Fitzpartick all need to step up their game today if they hope to play the weekend.

Golf Channel begins broadcast of the Scottish Open second round at 5:30am ET, so you can follow this one while you have your morning coffee, unless you have to hustle off to work.

72nd U.S. Women’s Open

Golf Links
BEDMINSTER, NJ – JULY 13: Golfers leave the course during a weather delay in the first round of the U.S. Women’s Open Championship at Trump National Golf Course on July 13, 2017 in Bedminster, New Jersey. (Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images) /

The 72nd U.S. Women’s Open has weather problems, beginning with two first round weather delays that left about half the field still on the course when play was suspended for the day just after 8pm local time Thursday.

Shanshan Feng has set the pace, sort of, with a 6-under 68, but so many players still needing to complete first rounds there’s a caveat.

I’m looking for Feng’s first round lead to hold despite the situation, but it really doesn’t mean much. There’s quite a mob coming up behind her. We need to be patient and see how today plays out.

More from Pro Golf Now

Lydia Ko felt very pleased with her first round 68 and So Yeon Ryu is always a threat. Michelle Wie fought her way past a muscle spasm to complete her first round in good order. Let’s see if Wie dials in today.

The weather forecast for Bedminster isn’t good. More thunderstorms are predicted so it’s possible that there will be delays again and second round play could spill over to Saturday. Although USGA has published second round tee times and pairings, be prepared for the best laid plans to collapse.

While it’s still early days at Trump National, rookies Angel Yin and Bronte Law, who have been delivering strong games lately, are both struggling. Major championship jitters? Perhaps.

Fox Sports begins live broadcast coverage at 2pm ET. I hope it will be second round coverage.

John Deere Classic

Golf Links
SILVIS, IL – JULY 13: Bryson DeChambeau hits his tee shot on the sixth hole during the first round of the John Deere Classic at TPC Deere Run on July 13, 2017 in Silvis, Illinois. (Photo by Stacy Revere/Getty Images) /

In Silvia, Illinois Charles Howell III and Ollie Schniederjans set the pace with a pair of 8-under par 63s. Nice work, guys!

Zach Johnson, who likes to limber up his sticks for The Open by playing the John Deer, is right there behind Howell III and Schneiderjans, lurking two shots back and waiting for the breaks. And right behind Johnson Bryson DeChambeau and one of Mike Randleman’s sleepers, Chez Reavie, are also in the early mix.

Related Story: Five John Deere Classic sleepers

Bubba Watson and Ben Martin are among those who need to step up their game and do it quickly.

PGA TOUR LIVE begins streaming the second round at 8am and Golf Channel begins live broadcast coverage at 4pm with a rebroadcast beginning at 9:30pm. All times are ET.

He’s There, Even When He’s Not

There’s been considerable conflict around the issue of Donald Trump and the U.S. Women’s Open. It’s being contended at his golf course. He might show up, although right now he’s in France joining in the celebration of Bastille Day. But that hasn’t stopped the swirling controversy that threatens to take the focus off golf and put it on politics. Nobody’s happy about the situation.

Related Story: For the integrity of the game and the players . . .

No PGA Championship Coverage for UK Fans

More from Golf News

Sky Sports had a 10-year contract with PGA of America to provide broadcast coverage of the PGA Championship but it’s expired and won’t be renewed.

That’s bad news for UK golf fans. There’s a lot of confusing talk about “broad distribution” and “multi-platform distribution” but at the moment it’s not clear if live streaming of the Championship will be available outside the United States. What’s this about?

Royal Birkdale Flyover

Most of us are going to watch The Open from in front of a television and that may be an advantage in terms of perspective. Check out this video flyover, and then bookmark it so once play begins you can go back and look again at what the players are confronting and navigating.

Next: OWGR: Ranking the world no 1s

Who are you following at the Scottish Open? The John Deere Classic? The 72nd U.S. Women’s Open? How’s your fantasy golf team doing? Is it looking like they’ll all make the cut? Check back with Golf Links Saturday morning and get  ready for the weekend.