Blog Entry

Legendary scribe Jenkins inducted to Hall of Fame

Posted on: December 14, 2011 2:59 pm
Edited on: December 14, 2011 3:10 pm

ORLANDO, Fla. – Even at age 82, Dan Jenkins is still delivering the one-liners.

The multi-media sportswriting icon on Wednesday was announced as the newest inductee into the World Golf Hall of Fame Class of 2012, where he will be enshrined alongside Phil Mickelson and Hollis Stacy.

Jenkins, a former newspaperman from Fort Worth, Tex., who has authored bestselling sports books, wrote for magazines and has even become a Twitter practitioner, in May will become the sixth writer to be inducted. He will be enshrined in the lifetime achievement category.

He has attended or covered 211 major championships and counting, starting as a boy, a mark that likely will never be broken.

“I don’t know who’s in second place but they’re a long way back on the track,” he cracked.

Jenkins cut his teeth in golf by tracking the prospects of two local guys named Ben Hogan and Byron Nelson, who learned the game as caddies at the same area golf club. He’s still following them, in a fashion. 

“I’m happy to be the third guy from Fort Worth [inducted],” he laughed.

Jenkins is something of a cult figure at tournaments, where he often stands outside the media center, smoking a cigarette and holding court with younger writers who haven’t heard his treasure trove of stories and homilies. Elements of his writing style can be found in the work of Rick Reilly and many other well-known sports scribes.

Not that Jenkins is anywhere near finished.

“I’ll be around for as long as they’ll have me,” he said. “I’ll be carried out with a typewriter … I am so happy I chose this profession.”

Jenkins’ oft-copied writing style is breezy, occasionally a bit ribald, and even snarky at times. In the past couple of years, he has needled Tiger Woods pretty relentlessly.

“I don’t think I ever wrote a line that I didn’t believe,” he said.

Here’s a compilation of some of his best work at Gold Digest:

Jenkins has seen more golf shots, good and bad, than any other ink-stained wretch and listed his three most memorable events as the 1960 U.S. Open, which featured the trio of Arnold Palmer, Ben Hogan and Jack Nicklaus – the current, past and future kings of the game; Hogan’s closing 67 at the 1951 U.S. Open at Oakland Hills and Nicklaus’ sixth and final Masters victory at age 46.

It’s a different game now, of course. He used to sit around for hours and shoot the breeze with the likes of Jimmy Demaret, Lee Trevino, Sam Snead and Dave Marr.

“All of those guys were a sportswriter’s dream,” he said. “They needed us as much as we needed them.”

Jenkins was asked where he cultivated his sense of humor and love for sports.

“If you grow up in Texas and don’t like sports,” he said, “they drown you.”

Apparently so. His daughter, Sally, is an award0winning columnist for the Washington Post.


Since: Mar 7, 2008
Posted on: December 29, 2011 11:13 pm

Legendary scribe Jenkins inducted to Hall of Fame


Since: Dec 27, 2011
Posted on: December 27, 2011 4:43 pm

Legendary scribe Jenkins inducted to Hall of Fame

Dan Jenkins is the greatest.  Well deserved.  If you can find it read "The Goat Hill Gang"  You will not stop laughing....

Since: Dec 24, 2011
Posted on: December 24, 2011 1:15 pm
This comment has been removed.

Post Deleted by Administrator

Since: Jun 5, 2011
Posted on: December 19, 2011 10:47 am

Jenkins is a slam dunk...

Dan Jenkins is the best golf writer of all time.  Period.  His novels on golf, football, and the newspaper business are some of the best ever written in what I would call the "popular" catagory.  They aren't classic literature, but the are all classic.  He combines a treasure trove of knowledge with a cynical Texas sense of humor.  If Jenkins wrote a novel every year, I would buy every one of them.  Dan Jenkins really should have been in the Hall of Fame years ago.  
If you want a great read of a book that, sadly, is already a "closeout" or "dollar store" book, try The Franchise Babe.  It is almost scary how much a major part of the storyline predicted, in a de facto sense, that the Evian Masters would be named the fifth major.  As much as Jenkins knows about golf, sport, and backroom bargaining, it can't be an accident.   
Congratulations to Dan Jenkins.  He is richly deserving of the honor.


Since: Sep 19, 2011
Posted on: December 17, 2011 3:17 pm

Legendary scribe Jenkins inducted to Hall of Fame

Great article, Steve.  Thanks for bringing attention to Mister Jenkins.  I love reading his tweets during the Majors.  Dan Jenkins is the reason you are only my second favorite golf writer.

Now, maybe you or someone else can help me out: Years ago, I read the (in)famous column where Mister Jenkins spoke of a good recession being all golf needed to regain a bit of its class.  When I read this, I kind of had to agree with him -- even though I was one of the less-affluent golfers he was needling.  Can anyone help me locate this article, either by way of an online link, or by telling me in which issue of Golf Digest it appeared?

Thanks again.  I look forward to regularly reading your work in 2012.

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