HomeGolfThis rising Tour pro still uses a Nike putter from grade school

This rising Tour pro still uses a Nike putter from grade school

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Suh’s Nike Method Core putter dates back to his time playing junior golf.

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Justin Suh has succeeded at every level since of golf. A highly touted junior golfer coming out of San Jose, Calif., the 26-year-old earned Pac-12 Player of the Year honors in 2018 and spent six months as the No. 1 ranked amateur during his time at the University of Southern California.

Shortly after turning pro, he made the jump from PGA Tour Latinoamérica to the Korn Ferry Tour, quickly finding his stride and finishing the season ranked No. 1 in the season-long points race to earn full PGA Tour status.

While the scenery and competition have changed, Suh’s Cobra equipment has remained constant. During last week’s WM Phoenix Open, GOLF.com chatted with Suh about recent changes to his Cobra gear, carrying two 3-irons, the Nike putter he’s used since grade school and more.

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You made the jump from Cobra LTDx to Darkspeed instead of trying Aerojet along the way. I’m going to assume LTDx checked a ton of boxes, so what made you finally switch it up?

Justin Suh: The LTDx was kind of that unicorn driver because I’ve had it in the bag for a while. But the Darkspeed, as far as looks go, wasn’t much different. It’s almost better because it’s got a cleaner face. And the traditional look is always what I like.


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So when I first saw it and set it down, it was kinda like that “aha” moment where I was, like, “Oh, finally.” Like, there’s something out there that looks like this. Where it’s clean and symmetrical, and I like having a driver, when you set down, it doesn’t move. It sets in place. It kinda aims for you. And that’s what I was excited about initially.

So you’re saying cosmetics are important when it comes to the driver search?

Suh: It’s very important because, for me, visuals are everything in my golf swing. For me to see that crown with a clean black face, it’s pretty spot on. I couldn’t ask for a better face to look at when I set it down.

I noticed two 3-irons in the bag. Do you carry both at the same time?                   

Suh: Yes, those are set in the bag. I’ve done that for quite a while. One’s actually a 2-iron. So the graphite shaft is a 3-iron where I can get a little more height off the ground. Like, on a par 5 if I need it. But the 2-iron is kind of what I mostly hit off the tee. With a steel shaft I feel like I can swing really hard at it and it still is stable. I’m not looking for too much height with that 2-iron. I’ve never been a hybrid guy. Hybrids are really hard for me to hit. Too much spin.

justin suh cobra
Suh was the No. 1 ranked amateur before turning pro in 2019.

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I was told you’re trying to get into a 5-wood for the first time in forever. What’s that process been like?

Suh: Yeah, yeah. The 5-wood is (laughs) something. I’m trying to work out a little bit for specific courses. Throughout the year I’m always gonna have that 2-iron in the bag. The 5-wood could be an option when there are a lot of par 5’s that require that number. For me it’s really awkward to see something that goes 240 where I’m used to being flat, come out in a completely different window. I think it’s just something I have to get used to — practicing and seeing it in some at-home course sessions.

What is it about fairway woods and hybrids that hasn’t suited your eye in the past?

Suh: The hybrids, if I catch on a toe they kinda turn over a little too much. And if I miss it off-center they just spin a little on the heel or low on the face, they’ll spin too much. Whereas a 2-iron I know it’ll get to a number the way I hit it. So I can feel pretty confident in hitting numbers with that.

What’s your reasoning behind going with a 52- and 58-degree in the scoring clubs? The six-degree gap is fairly unique.

Suh: I just always have that in the bag so that’s just kind of what I grew up with. And I’ve practiced enough of those numbers between, like, that 85 to 130 range where I have feels and swings that can hit increments of five. So, like, 90, 95, 100 and 105. I’m just really comfortable with hitting those numbers.

Have you really been using your Nike Method putter since grade school?

Suh: Yeah, it’s been in since eighth grade or right around there. I remember I broke my putter before that — a Midnight Nike Method at a junior event. I went to the shop and it was, like, $50 bucks, sale. I just grabbed it, rolled a couple of putts on a practice green, shot 66 the next day and it stayed in the bag ever since.

How important is it to have guys like Cobra Tour reps Ben Schomin and James Posey in your corner?

Suh: It’s immense because I don’t know too much about products and stuff. So when we do testing it’s almost like I’m just being fed this equipment that they are confident will work for me. So for me to rely on them to know what I want, it’s my job to communicate what shape I want to see.

justin suh cobra
Suh leaned heavily on Cobra Tour reps Ben Schomin and James Posey to help find the best Darkspeed driver setup.

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And then it’s their job to kinda fit the equipment for me. There’s a lot of trust in that, in that little interaction because I don’t know what I’m doing (laughs). I need them to know what they’re doing.

Do you rely more on launch monitor numbers or what you’re seeing and feeling during testing?

Suh: I’ll probably go more feel of what I see first and then see if the numbers match up. With a driver just kinda look at the spin rate and launch angle. And then if it’s doing what I want it to do as far as kinda the ball shape — I like a little push cut — so if it’s doing that then it’s kind of the few things I need to know for it to be in the bag.

Want to overhaul your bag for 2024? Find a fitting location near you at GOLF’s affiliate company True Spec Golf.

JWall

Jonathan Wall

Golf.com Editor

Jonathan Wall is GOLF Magazine and GOLF.com’s Managing Editor for Equipment. Prior to joining the staff at the end of 2018, he spent 6 years covering equipment for the PGA Tour. He can be reached at jonathan.wall@golf.com.

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