Ron Whitten, Senior Editor, Architecture, at “Golf Digest” has written on the passing of ASGCA Past President Jay Morrish. A past ASGCA Donald Ross Award recipient, Whitten recalled an early meeting with Morrish and the 30+-year friendship that followed.

Whitten writes: “I started writing about golf architecture for magazines in 1983, the same year Morrish left Jack Nicklaus’s three-man design firm and headed out on his own.  He was living in Tulsa at the time, and he took me around Tulsa Country Club, which he would soon remodel, and Tom Fazio’s brand new Golf Club of Oklahoma, which Jay assessed with remarkable insight, pointing out structural challenges and solutions, potential maintenance issues and novel design features. I foolishly thought every architect was going to be as generous with his time.

“By the time we met in 1983, Jay had given up golf.  He’d once been avid about it, while earning a nursery management degree at Colorado State, and played left-handed. But quit because of back problems. ‘You don’t have to be the world’s best player to be a good architect,’ he said. ‘You just have to understand what the golf ball’s going to do.’
“Morrish served as the rock-steady president of the American Society of Golf Course Architects in the tumultuous year following 9/11.  He was impressively eloquent and well read, as evidenced by an essay he wrote in 2003 comparing the golf design process to the manner in which Edgar Allen Poe composed a poem.”
The entire “Golf Digest” article can be found here.