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In a new podcast about our love-hate relationship with golf, Brooks Koepka reveals the time he almost walked away

September 30, 2021

To love golf, most players know, is to occasionally hate it. When you invest so much time, energy and passion into something that still results in maddening inconsistency, the temptation is often to deposit your clubs at the bottom of the nearest water hazard.

Therein lies the premise of our new podcast, Henni & Hally Can’t Quit Golf. The new show, hosted by Henni Koyack and Hally Leadbetter, is presented from the perspective of two women who have enjoyed playing the game at an elite level—but also have endured ample heartache from golf.

The dynamic is hardly unique to the show’s hosts, however. For instance, consider Brooks Koepka, who alongside fiancée Jena Sims, joined Koyack and Leadbetter as a guest for Episode 1. The four-time major champion and recent Ryder Cup hero has reached the height of the sport—but almost didn’t get there after nearly walking away from the game altogether in college.

“Yeah, there have been times,” Koepka says. “I didn’t know if I wanted to keep doing it and keep playing. Then reality kicks in, and it’s like, how am I going to help my family or do anything because we weren’t in a good financial situation when I was younger.”

Koepka relayed how the feeling extended into pro golf, like the time he wanted to quit before the final round of a European Challenge Tour event—an event he ended up winning. And though Koepka has certainly continued to experience frustration as a PGA Tour megastar, he actually says being frequently injured the past few years has helped rekindle his love of the sport.

“I think the different stages of the injuries, those have been really good because they’ve forced me to take time away because every time I come back I’m like, ‘I can't wait to come back,’” Koepka says. “I think sometimes if I wasn’t hurt I might look at it differently.”

Koepka’s candor about his career is only one highlight of the episode. There is also unique insight into his and Sims’ relationship, including the elaborate plans behind their engagement, and why they try to limit the golf conversation away from the course.

“I never lead with it,” Sims says. “If he wants to talk about it I will let him bring it up and we will talk about it then he gets it out of his system and then we talk about anyting else.”

“Most of the time I don’t bring it home with me, which I think is important,” Koepka adds. “Everybody has bad days at work and you just have to deal with it.”

You can listen to the first episode of Henni and Hally Can’t Quit Golf below, or subscribe wherever you get podcasts.