TDR Podcast Episode 3: SVP of Communications for the PGA TOUR Laura Neal

In Episode 3 of The Daily Rally Podcast presented by Heavy.com, I sat down with SVP of Communications for the PGA TOUR Laura Neal.

If you want to get fired up, listen to this podcast. Laura is the perfect example of someone who has hustled to pave her own path inside the very male dominated world of golf. She started her career at the LPGA, and now she is the PGA TOUR commissioner’s right hand (wo)man when it comes to all things media.

Want to know how a sports league completely changes its marketing and messaging? She’s got your answers. Curious as to how a commissioner builds his personal brand? She’s done that.

Laura and I also got down to business discussing the golf industry’s tendency to be a bit of a good old boys club. She shared the story of a time she was running a media center and a player mistook her for a young girl on the phone and asked if she had a crayon to write down a message he was going to give her. You have to laugh to keep from crying.

The main takeaway is Laura is finding ways to modernize the PGA TOUR’s messaging and brand. She finds value in recognizing their are many different types of fans and voices, and each one should be recognized and served.

I was truly pumped up after this conversation. Nothing makes me want to work harder and grow The Daily Rally like talking to a woman who has worked her way to a top job in the sports industry.

Enjoy the podcast. Get up and Rally!

TDR Podcast Episode 2: The guys of the Touching Base Podcast

In Episode 2 of The Daily Rally Podcast presented by Heavy.com I interviewed the gentlemen of the Touching Base with Post Grad Problems podcast while sipping a mimosa at an outdoor wine tent at the Players Championship. Not bad.

Grandex Inc. owns Total Frat Move and Post Grad Problems, both of which I have read for years. Dillon Cheverere is the VP of Media for Grandex, Will deFries is a senior contributor for Post Grad Problems and Dave Ruff is the legal counsel for Grandex and director of Post Grad Problems. Together, the three of them host the podcast Touching Base. They are still working on their elevator pitch to describe the show, but I can tell you its a funny, light-hearted conversation amongst friends on a variety of topics. Hard not to like.

The guys were all in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. for the first time taking in the Players Championship. It had been an exciting week so far. They had surfed a dece party wave (now you have to listen to find out what that means), played some golf and were preparing to interview Blake Bortles the next day. Generally a very solid first time Jax experience.

We discussed their experiences that week, our takes on golf fashion and what upcoming content they have in the works back at their Austin headquarters. They were delightful guests and a lot of fun.

Before we get into the interview, my friend Meghan joined the podcast to discuss life as a “loud” person, overly zealous golf tournament volunteers and we tried our best to think up solid “Total Frat Moves.” Per usual, very important stuff.

Enjoy the pod! Get up and Rally!

TDR Podcast Episode 1: Angela Garcia

The first episode of the Daily Rally Podcast features a guest who has quite the multifaceted perspective of the sports world. Angela Garcia was a golfer at the University of Texas, reported for Golf Channel and co-hosts a podcast on PGA TOUR Radio. She also happens to married to Sergio Garcia, and the pair recently welcomed their first child.

I sat down with Angela during the week of The Players Championship in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. She was kind enough to welcome me into the home they were renting for the week near the course. Obviously when I walked in, Sergio was on the couch watching Family Feud. There were about four other members of his “team” coming in and out, Angela’s parents were there as well as their dog Bear and baby daughter Azalea. It’s literally a traveling circus.

And here’s the thing: they are doing this every week for the next three months. It’s a pretty remarkable way to live, especially with an infant daughter.

The couple has had their share of highlights the past couple years. Not only did they get married and have a baby, but Sergio won the 2017 Masters. A major victory had been a long time coming for Garcia, who at 38, was arguably the best player without a major victory.

So it’s safe to say the guy checked a lot of boxes in the life goals section recently.

During the interview, Angela told me about growing up in Texas (her dad is former Texas quarterback Marty Akins), playing golf in college, working in broadcast journalism and changing gears once she met Sergio.

My big questions was: how did she know Sergio was the real deal when they met while she was working? The secret: Friends first. True love second.

Before I got into the interview with Angela, I had my friend Meghan join me in what was supposed to be a discussion of current sports news. We quickly decided it was more important to discuss the recent Royal Wedding and really break down our thoughts on the entire affair. Important stuff, guys.

Enjoy the podcast. Get up and Rally!

Introducing The Daily Rally Podcast

A couple years ago, I figured out something very important about how my girlfriends consumed sports news: They didn’t.

As a recent college graduate who was on the dance team at the University of Florida, reported on all sports as a student and was beginning my career at the PGA TOUR, I had come to realize I was my friends’ source for sports news. I found that my female friends wanted to know what was happening in sports, felt an allegiance to their teams and found sports fun and interesting, but they weren’t going to turn on SportsCenter or follow a bunch of sports writers on Twitter.

I began wondering why there wasn’t a solid sports news outlet geared toward the female fan. And I’m not talking about some watered-down, pandering trash that’s wrapped in a pink bow and called “sports for women.” I mean, why was there nothing that discussed sports in the same way women actually talk to each other? There are about a billion fashion blogs, lifestyle brands and female-centric sites, but nothing about sports.

And so The Daily Rally was born. To start, I wanted to write a daily (well, by daily, I mean five days a week; come on) email newsletter that you could read in five minutes to catch up on the best viral videos, game results from the night before and stories from off the field. I wanted to make it funny, light, informative and human-interest oriented. I also wanted to make sure that avid sports fans and novices alike could enjoy the content. Women who want to get more into sports and avid female fans both deserve a solid piece of content written with them in mind. And. It. Wasn’t. Going. To. Be. Pink.

The newsletter is basically an aggregation of the stories I naturally bring up to my friends and videos I would send them on Instagram. From there I learned a couple things: 1. It’s not just young professional women who want a quick, humorous, informative way to keep up with sports news. A lot of guys were looking for this in their lives, too. 2. Becoming a morning person was going to be extremely difficult for me.

From there, I started making video content. I wanted to grow The Daily Rally brand to more than the daily morning newsletter, and a podcast had always been in the back of my mind.

The Daily Rally Podcast  will feature guests from all walks of life. Episodes will start with me and a friend discussing current sports news before going into an interview with a different guest. To kick things off, we have released three new episodes! We really wanted to hit the ground running.

Below you can listen to my conversations with Sergio Garcia’s wife Angela Garcia, the guys from Total Frat Move and Post Grad Problems, and SVP of Communications for the PGA TOUR Laura Neal.

Subscribe to the Podcast on iTunes, follow The Daily Rally on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram and YouTube, and sign up for The Daily Rally newsletter. We want to hear your thoughts, so join in the conversation. Happy Listening. Get Up and Rally!

Web.com Tour Finals recap.

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Welcome to Web.com Tour Championship week! Get excited. Need a refresher on the Web.com Tour Finals, money list and what to expect for the Web.com Tour Championship? We got ya covered.

How did we get here? Who is in the field?

So there is this guy called the money list. All season long on the Web.com Tour, players were trying to get into the top 25 of most dolla dolla bills earned. At the end of the regular season, whoever was in that top 25 on the money list automatically was awarded his PGA TOUR card. And yes, those guys are teeing it up in the Finals because golf is fun and why stop when you are clearly on top of your game? The field also includes players who finished 50-75 on the Web.com Tour money list.

 

Guys who played on the PGA TOUR last year are in the field. Why?

PGA TOUR players who finished 126-200 in the FedExCup standings (aka they didn’€™t qualify for the FedExCup Playoffs over on the PGA TOUR) are teeing it up at the Web.Com Tour Finals to try and keep/get their TOUR cards. That means the talent level is prettttty high in the Web.com Tour Championship. You’ll see past TOUR winners like Chesson Hadley, Ben Crane and Hunter Mahan teeing it up in these events. At the end of it all, 25 players will join the 25 who have already earned their cards. There is a ceremony following the final round where PGA TOUR cards are awarded and the guys can say “Mama, I made it.” Cue the champagne.

Who won the first three events?

Nationwide Children’s Hospital Open – Peter Uihlein: So this is a cool story. Uihlein decided to take his talents across the pond and play on the European Tour for the last four years – become a real citizen of the world and broaden his horizons. Now, after winning the Nationwide Children’s Hospital Championship, Uihlein has his TOUR card locked up and will be able to bounce back and forth between playing in Europe and playing in the states. Best of both worlds, if you will.

Albertson’s Boise Open – Chesson Hadley: Chesson knows how to get into the winner’s circle. He picked up his second win of the season in Boise to take the top spot on the Finals money list. Getting the win during the Finals can completely change a guy’s year – if Hadley holds onto his spot atop the money list he will be teeing it up at the PLAYERS Championship in May. Huge.

DAP Championship – Nicholas Lindheim: This guy is a big fan of the DAP Championship. He made it into a playoff here last year but got the job done this time around. See ya on TOUR, Nicholas.

 

Tell me more about the Web.com Tour Championship.

Woah buddy. This is something you do not want to miss. The grand finale to the Web.com Tour Finals is the Web.com Tour Championship this week in Atlantic Beach, Fla. The guys will be teeing it up at the pristine Atlantic Beach Country Club where their future could come down to just a few shots. We will let you know which players to keep an eye on and a full tournament preview as the week goes on. Stay tuned!

For more sports news delivered right to your inbox every morning to keep you entertained, informed and out the door, subscribe to The Daily Rally here!

Pep Rally Vol. 2

I’m thinking it’s time to start giving the TDR sections Off the Bench and Overtime some more love. Every morning I start and end each edition of TDR with the best social posts of the day. They are a crowd favorite among Ralliers, so why not do them a little more justice and give them a bit more context? Let’s break ’em down.

Off the bench

Ok, there is a lot we are working with here. OBJ – Odell Beckham Jr. is making a statement, and that statement is he does’t care about science and what these so-called “experts” have to say about staring directly at the eclipse. He took this here video of himself “staring at the eclipse” without the special glasses and rubbed his eyes and stuff. Lot of pageantry going on.

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That all being said, he is definitely faking it here. Appearances are not what they seem, folks! Looking at the eclipse actually isn’t that painful – or something. I read that in TIME. There are no immediate symptoms or pain bc no one has pain receptors in their retinas. Now that I have done some intense investigative work into whether or not OBJ was actually staring at the eclipse, I’m going to go never talk about eclipses ever again. Come to think of it, I bet Eclipse gum sales are going to be way done because everyone is sick of the word. So …. there.

Overtime

Rally pigeon. Not much to break down here. It really speaks for itself. Straight forward stuff – pigeon got on the field and Rangers manager Jeff Banister took matters (and the actual pigeon) into his own hands and carried it off the field. Number one concern here is just that he washed his hands after. Those things are flying, feathered rats.

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Alrighty, that covers that! Read the rest of today’s TDR here and subscribe to The Daily Rally here. Yas!

Pep Rally – Vol. 1

I’m thinking it’s time to start giving the TDR sections Off the Bench and Overtime some more love. Every morning I start and end each edition of TDR with the best social posts of the day. They are a crowd favorite among Ralliers, so why not do them a little more justice and give them a bit more context? Let’s break ’em down.

 

Off the Bench

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This is a photo of the clock in Atlanta Falcon’s head coach Dan Quinn’s office. And it cracks me up.

Player: “Hey coach, what time is it?”

Quinn: “Now. The time is now, son.”

Player: “No, I get that I just am running late and need to know the actual time.”

Quinn: “You’re never late if you’re living in the moment.”

Player: “I’m done with this conversation.”

This is such a better version of those inspirational quote posters with scenic views of like lakes and birds and stuff. This clock wins every time.

 

Overtime

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So, this one is amazing at face value. Stanley Cup full of hot dogs. Love it. 10/10 will make me laugh every time. But there is a great story here. When Phil Kessel was traded from the Maple Leafs to the Penguins, a Toronto Suns journalist said that Kessel ate a street dog every day. A hot dog every day. Well, it turns out that in fact, no he does not eat a hot dog a day, so this post is actually trolling a guy who trolled him over hot dogs. A reverse troll, if you will. Fantastic stuff.

So that’s how we kicked off and wrapped up today’s edition of TDR! Check out everything else we talked about here and sign up  to get The Daily Rally every weekday morning here.

Never going to get over this adorable Grandma’s love for Tim Tebow

How can you have a bad outlook on the day after seeing that. Read more about this cuteness in today’s TDR.

Sign up for goodness like this every morning here.

A love letter to San Francisco, Web.com and Steph Curry

Fun things happened last week for The Daily Rally.

We got our first sponsor (!!!) and partnered with Esquire to bring you content from Steph Curry’s debut in the field of the Ellie Mae Classic. What a life. Moving up in the world.

Web.com has been a friend of The Daily Rally for a while. So when we got together and said hey, let’s see what we can make happen for this very exciting Steph Curry filled Web.com Tour event, I was like pshh yeah.

So not to get to mushy about things, but when I started The Daily Rally as a side project along with my full-time gig at the PGA TOUR a couple years ago, Web.com always supported me and wanted to know how they could help. This weekend was a huge step for our relationship (basically, they gave me a rose) and it was pretty amazing. And that’s the thing – that’s what Web.com does for their customers. They help out local businesses who need a team and support when it comes to building a website and a digital presence.

I talked to Web.com Tour player Justin Hueber about his thoughts on the company and the event.

“Even though golf is an individual sport and we are out there by ourselves, we still rely on our team outside of the ropes,” Hueber said. “Our families, friends, caddies, agents, and coaches are our teammates and are behind us the whole way as we try to reach the highest level. Without the support from my team it would be almost impossible to achieve my goals. Web.com does that same thing for its customers.”

Ya heard it here.

Ok enough waxing poetic about how much I love Web.com and would recommend them to any small business looking for a little help in the digital department.

Onto a look back at my week in San Fran

So, I followed Steph Curry during his second round at the Ellie Mae Classic last Friday. I have so many thoughts and gathered some thoughts from other Web.com Tour players in the field. Let’s do this.

First of all, I have been #blessed to go to a lot of golf tournaments the past few years. I have attended the Players Championship every year since I was five, and I traveled to 14 tournaments on the PGA TOUR last year. Hello frequent flier miles.

This tournament felt like a top-tier TOUR event and it was because a community, a league, players and the media rallied around Steph Curry being in the field. He could have shot a million and the week would have been a success. Even better – he shot eight over to miss the cut in a very respectable way.

He interacted with fans, his wife interacted with fans, he took the tournament seriously but was still the chillest guy and seemed to have a lot of fun. I was blown away at the crowd and also the hills because hello, those were some very steep hills at TPC Stonebrae.

I think I expected to walk away feeling like “Oh, ok that was cool. But he could have just played in the Pro-Am and that would have been fine.” Instead I walked away feeling like this should be a new formula for events. Granted, I understand that not every famous athlete has Steph’s demeanor (Steph – we’re on a first-name basis) nor do they have his talent on the course, but the amount of people not only at the tournament but around San Francisco who knew about this event because he was in it was huge.

I also found that players felt the same way, and not just players who are ranked inside the top 25 on the money list and have their cards locked up, but ones who are looking for starts or need to keep focused through the end of the season to get inside the 25. My boy Hueber and a couple of his buddies attended a San Francisco Giants game with me to keep the content creation going and I asked them their thoughts.

“I think it was a fantastic job by the tournament sponsor and Web.com to get Steph to play the event,” Hueber said. “The buzz it generated for the event was a huge boost to Web.com and us players. It was cool to see a few thousand people out there even on Monday and Tuesday. It would be neat to get a guy like that most weeks just to get some more people talking about our events.”

He told me that it added a little extra something to everyone’s day knowing how much people cared that Steph was there. If a guy being included in the field elevates players’ enthusiasm to be out there as well as generates a lot of buzz, we have a pretty good situation on our hands.

So, those are my thoughts on behalf of The Daily Rally. Golf is quite near and dear to my heart *single tear* and to see people who never would have come to a golf tournament in general out there supporting a Web.com Tour event was the best.

Thanks guys. Get up and Rally.

Sign up to get more daily sports news in your inbox each morning! You’ll laugh, you probably won’t cry, you’ll be informed.

Steph! Whatchu doin’ in a Web.com Tour event?

So. Steph Curry is good at golf.

This we know. He tees it up in pro-ams and such all the time, so he took it a step further. Steph was for real for real in the field of the Ellie Mae Classic this week on a sponsor’s invite. In case you don’t live in the dark throws of the golf twitter universe (which … good for you. It’s a weird place.) some people were like huh? What? He obviously isn’t going to make the cut WHY would he be here.

Right. So why is he here?

Because it’s fun! The tournament usually invites someone in the community to tee it up with the big boys, and Steph Curry was their choice. Makes sense. And bonus – he held his own on Thursday and Friday posting a pair of 4-over 74s.  An incredibly good performance for a guy who, despite being a good amateur golfer, is not used to playing in tournament conditions. I guess all those NBA Finals appearances gave him nerves of steel or something. It was our pleasure to take over the @Esqiure Instagram Story on Friday to follow along. Checkout @TheDailyRally to relive the excitement that was Steph Curry on the Web.com Tour.

Quick refresher: What is the Web.com Tour?

The Web.com Tour is the PGA TOUR’s second best tour. Think AAA in the minor leagues. Really good and trying to get their shot at the big time. Guys try to earn enough money out here so they can earn their PGA TOUR card aka status to tee it up on the big stage. There are some great golfers out here that will be big deals soon enough. Famous Web.com Tour alum include Brandt Snedeker, Keegan Bradley and Zach Johnson. And now Steph Curry.

Huge thanks to Web.com for being part of The Daily Rally team. For more scintillating sports analysis sign up for The Daily Rally! We give you the quick rundown of what you need to know in sports news each morning in your inbox. #GetUpAndRally