Parker Dudley - Korn Ferry Tour and Ocean Course

What is your full name?
Parker Dudley
Where are you from?
Mebane, NC
When did you first start playing golf?
I first started playing golf with my dad around the age of 5, and started swinging the club in the back yard around 3.
Which course on TOUR did you like working at the most and why?
My Favorite course that I have worked at so far has been Hillcrest CC in Boise, ID.  Last year I was on the bag for David Kocher and we shot 59 in the final round of The Albertson’s Boise Open.  What an incredible feeling to be a part of the 3rd sub 60 round of that year.  Unfortunately we didn’t get any hardware but we did crack the SportsCenter top 10.  
What are the conditions like on the Korn Ferry TOUR? 
The conditions vary from week to week. It feels like most weeks we bring the rain.  Last year I can’t remember a week where we didn’t have a delay or weather roll in that we had to deal with during the round.  I make sure the umbrella always stays in the bag. I never want to be caught without it.  Some of the other caddies see me with it and ask if it is going to rain? I simply reply with, “It’s part of the bag.”
How do you and David deal with the wind in tournaments?
Wind is tricky.  The biggest thing that I need to know for David is the direction. As long as I know where the wind is coming from, that is all he needs.  It is a guessing game of how much it hurts or helps. It also depends on ball flight, spin rate, how well it was struck. I feel lucky that I don't have to be precise with how much the wind is hurting. David is pretty good at pulling the right club. Of course, I have some influence but he will make the final decision.
Has caddying improved your own golf game? Or possibly hurt?
I feel that I have become a better golfer since I started working for David. Putting has been the main thing as he has a great feel around and on the green.  I have learned that speed is his main focus while putting. I was always looking to make putts so sometimes I wouldn't focus on speed and thus have the dreaded 4 foot comebacker. David very rarely knocks it more than 2 feet by and leaves a lot of putts short. I asked why and he simply said “If I leave it short by a foot I walk up and tap it in and I have less stress throughout the whole round.”  It made so much sense to me when he said that. I have realized that from outside 20 feet even the pros don't make a lot of them but they always 2 putt.
When you're looping at the Ocean Course, what are some typical things that players do that drive you nuts?
My one pet peeve is players who aren't ready to pull the trigger when it is their turn. What I mean by this is have your glove on, club in hand and be taking some practice swings while the other guys in your group are playing.  You aren’t bothering anyone from 20 yards away.
What are some typical things that players do that you love?
When a player is ready to hit, and they don't have to be told it's their turn to play.
Are there any indicators that a golfer will be a good player or bad player before you tee off? 
How they stand with a club is a big one. Their grip also is a huge indicator for me as to how well they are going to play. Also if a guy never takes his glove off once he gets to the course it is most likely going to be a long day.
Are there any indicators that this will be a good loop or a tough loop?
Sometimes but not always.  Range vibes are good but don’t always produce once the loop is over.  I never want to get my hopes up before a loop. It always ends in disappointment.
Do you have any one-liners you like to use on the course? 
"It’s left of Pelosi" is always a good one.  Then the opposite "it’s right of Rush." RIP.
What’s the weirdest thing you’ve found in a player's bag?
I would say this is weird - One time I counted the gloves this guy had in and on his bag. He had 57. 57 gloves. I have a picture to confirm.
How do you help your players play better? How do you help them have a good time?
I tend to lend advice if a player wants it. Never too much information where the player starts playing golf swing instead of golf though.
Do you like to focus completely on golf or more on the social aspect of caddying? (What’s your favorite way of caddying)
I like to blend the two. We are out there generally for about 5 hours so if it's all golf it makes for a long day for myself and the player.  So I love telling stories and getting to know the player outside of his golf game.
Overall, what is your favorite part about looping?
It is all about the connections that are made on the golf course for me.  I love meeting new people and looping, we never know who we are going to spend 5 hours with.
Do you have a favorite caddie story?
I think my favorite is I had a single paired with a couple and a friend of the couple. I carried for the girl and she could play a little.  I forget who the other caddy was, but the day started off fine. On the front nine everyone was having a good time, drinking like normal, then all the sudden at the turn the girl's boyfriend was hammered and acting out. Just really acting strange. So we get on through the backside coming up to 18 green. The guy is well past drunk by now he gets down on one knee and asks the girl to marry him on the green. The single that was paired with them said “If i was that girl i would have said no after how hammered he was and how he was acting all day.” Could have been magical. I like the effort, but man it was a tough scene with how glossy eyed the guy was.
Have you gained/learned anything from caddying?
I think I have learned Acceptance since I started caddying.  Can we accept a bad shot, and move forward? Sometimes bad things happen, and how we respond is the most important thing. Not everything is going to go our way, and accepting that and being able to let go of the no longer controllable is crucial.  Once we hit a golf shot we are no longer in control of that ball; it is at the mercy of the elements.  So to think it should do exactly what you intended it to do is kind of crazy.  We might think we know what it should do, but we are only making an educated guess.  Since I started to understand this concept, I have become a better caddie and golfer.
What are some of the responsibilities of a professional Looper?
Some of the daily responsibilities as a professional looper are making sure the bag is stocked with fresh snacks that the player brings.  Make sure fresh sleeves of balls are put in and old balls taken out of the bag.  The grips need to be scrubbed before each round.  I usually do this while on the side of the putting green and David is still getting stretched out by the Physio staff.  Pre tourney rounds, I walk the course to look at the course and scout the line off tee boxes. I walk around the greens and pace off to certain ridges or tiers of the greens.  Make sure the sprinkler heads are properly marked and match up with the yardage books we are given each week.  
What is Life on the road like? Who do you stay with? How do you get from City to City?
Life on this road is hard.  We are all out here to make it to the next level (PGA TOUR).  We aren't making the big bucks on this tour (Korn Ferry). But this is where we have to prove ourselves in order to have a chance at the next level.  Without working for someone on the Korn ferry I would never have a realistic chance of Caddying on the PGA Tour.  Luckily life on the road is made a little easier with the friends I have met in the 3 years I have been on the Korn Ferry Tour.  We generally like to stay in AirBnB’s so we can get 4 caddies to a house.  This makes things cheaper, and a little more fun to sit around a living room, tell jokes, and pick on each other. I feel like I have really gained some Brothers over the past few years. Getting from tourney to tourney varies. Sometimes I drive, sometimes I fly and have to rent a car.  The most cost effective is driving but the roadtrips aren't short. Most drives are over 8 hours between Courses.

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