Bill Haas Golf Swing Did Not Win FedEx Cup

by Herman Williams

Bill Haas 2011 Tour Championship Winner & FedEx Cup Champion.

Puzzled by that headline? I mean the guy did just win the Tour Championship and FedEx Cup, right?

Before I get into that and the video, you probably know I watched Webb Simpson grow up during my tenure as a golf professional at Carolina Country Club in Raleigh, and I was certainly rooting for him all the way through the FedEx Cup and Tour Championship.

But alas it was not to be for him this year. I’m sure he will see many more chances and will have  a great President’s Cup when the American team heads over to Australia in November. I’m proud to see what he has accomplished and even more proud of the way he conducts himself. He’s a class act all the way.

Bill Haas is too and has Carolina roots with ties to Wake Forest, just like Webb. So now for my explanation.

Bill Haas certainly has a great golf swing. I’m not diminishing that fact at all. In fact I did a video analysis of his swing for you to check out below. But his swing and ball striking are not what ultimately won that tournament.

What won that tournament and a cool 11.4 million bucks combined was a tremendous mental toughness and a great short game under pressure.

In fact, while he waited for Hunter Mahan to finish regulation play and start the playoff, Bill had the luxury of practicing on the practice tee the exact iron shot he would face on the first par-3 playoff hole. Yet he still missed the green in the bleachers when it was time to hit the shot. He ultimately saved himself by pitching it close with no green to work with and then made a clutch putt.

You probably know the story, but on the next hole he drives it right in a bunker, hits the approach in the water and then blasts it out of the water to 2 feet for another “ho hum” par keeping the $10 million on the table for yet another hole where he patiently closed the deal.

Could you have kept your head in the game after those shots, or would you have packed it in at the first sign of adversity? And after the adversity and the mental toughness required to keep going, would you have the short game skills to cover for the inevitable mistakes that are going to happen in the long game?

The point here is don’t spend all your time working on your full swing and trying to hit the perfect golf shot. At the highest level of the sport, it still doesn’t work.

Now I’m not saying stop taking lessons and quit working on your swing, but I am saying give the other elements of your game equal, if not more focus.

Do you need to consider fitness, mental discipline, how you practice, long game, or short game?

Since we talked about it in this article, if you have ignored your short game while spending all your time perfecting your swing, maybe you should think about making your next lesson series devoted to the short game. Our 4-lesson/4-week special is still only $199 and is perfect to focus on the 4 short-game skills of putting, chipping, pitching and sand play. I’m here to help if you need it. Thanks.


Bill Haas Video Golf Swing Analysis

{ 5 comments… read them below or add one }


Do you have any videos were a half swing is used. Got myself in positions today were I could not use a full swing and was having trouble deciding if I use the same technique or do I kept my club face opening in half swing and stay open through impact then rotate club head through ball?


Herman Williams

No videos focused on half swing. My “beginner golf lesson” video covers it somewhat, but it may seem over-simplified.

Hands do not need to turn over thru impact. Backswing has very little wrist hinge. Just make a wide, shallow sweeping motion.



Wish Herman would do a video on chipping and putting.


Rob Russell

Great analysis. Cant wait for Tommy “Two Gloves” and Charles Barkley !!

100% agree with Ernie’s comment regarding short game. Good chips and pitches can save a pile of strokes, and the more you miss greens, the more valuable they become if you want to score well. My lob wedge is my magic wand!


Ernie Brame

Herman is dead on about short game prcatice. If you are a typical 14-18 handicap golfer, you will not lower your score on the full blast practice tee, you will have to go the short game route to get it. Pitch, chip, lob, blast, putt. Master those five shots, and I don’t care how errant you are off the tee, you will be a single digit handicap golfer. I spend five hours of short game practice for every hour I put in on the range.


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