NCGA Golf

Winter 2019

Issue link: http://www.ncgagolf.com/i/1077876

Contents of this Issue

Navigation

Page 33 of 95

That's how Nantz arrived at the first tee and introduced himself to the club's head professional, Jim Langley, who became such a dear friend Nantz lists him in his dream foursome. "He put an arm around my shoulder and said, 'You're next up on the tee and oh, by the way, you're playing with Sean Con- nery,' " Nantz recounted during his accept- ance of the Langley Award. Heady stuff being paired with the actor best known for portraying British spy James Bond. Indeed, Nantz is a big enough Bond fan that if you tapped 007 at the front gate to his home, you might have some success, he confides to the audience. After the round, Connery needed a ride back to The Lodge at Pebble Beach and Nantz was more than happy to oblige. But as Connery slid into the back seat of the rental, Nantz failed to notice that Connery's left leg still hung on the pavement. He slammed the door and heard a blood-curdling scream. Nantz had shoved the door right on the tender spot between the ankle and the shin. Blood seeped through Connery's partially- torn trousers. "I had done something Blofeld and Odd Job had failed to do. I had bloodied Bond," Nantz said, pausing to allow the audience to bust a collective gut. "I apolo- gized up and down. I thought I had lost a lunch invitation. We had grilled calamari. I didn't even know what that was at the time, but it sounded interesting. At the end of the day, he said, you must come over and play my club. If you ever find yourself in Costa del Sol, I live in Marbella. You will be my guest at Valderrama. How do I find you? I wondered. I'm in the phone book. Under Connery, Sean, he said. True story. Not embellished even a bit." More laughter ensued as Nantz scored again. We've known him to be a master sto- ryteller for decades, welcoming him into our homes on weekends, holidays and for some of the most memorable moments in sports. A three-time Emmy Award winner and five-time National Sportscaster of the Year, Nantz, 59, joined CBS in 1985. He became the first to call the Super Bowl, the Final Four and the Masters in a single year, a 63-day journey that he will do for the fifth time in 2019. Of course, he'll anchor CBS's coverage of the PGA Tour's annual stop at Pebble Beach (Feb. 7-10) for the 34th consecutive year, and he won't have to travel far. Since 2012, Nantz has become an adopted son of the Monterey Peninsula, living with wife, Courtney, a former IMG executive, and their two children, Finley, who turns 5 in March, and Jameson, 3 in February, within 200 yards of the home where he stayed dur- ing his CBS golf debut. Nantz is known to get around town in a Bentley customized golf cart that previously belonged to his broadcast sidekick, NCGA Hall of Famer Ken Venturi, watch golfers tee off at Pebble Beach from his favorite table at the Gallery Cafe, the same one where Arnold Palmer used to break bread, and even has an omelet named after him at Katy's Place in Carmel-by-the-Sea. (It consists of egg whites, Monterey Jack cheese, greens and diced tomatoes. "Minced jalapeƱos are optional," he says, adding, "It's the most popular breakfast item on the menu.") For 25 years, Nantz dreamed of sharing a ZIP code with golf's most alluring and coveted golf destination in America. "I think I fell out of good standing with a lot of local realtors," he says. "But there was never a doubt in my mind I was going to live here." It's a common theme in Nantz's life. If he sets his mind to a task, he'll figure out a way to achieve it. 32 WINTER 2019 | NCGA.ORG For 17 years, Ken Venturi served as Nantz's mentor, friend and broadcast partner at CBS; Nantz seated at the wheel of his golf cart, which was custom-made for Venturi.

Articles in this issue

Links on this page

Archives of this issue

view archives of NCGA Golf - Winter 2019