Montana's Longest Drive

“The Geriatric Coach and I” at Fairmont Hot Springs Golf Course

“WHAT’S THE COURSE RECORD? AND WHERE DO I RENT CLUBS?” is just scratching the surface of the one-liners that Coach Bob Green has in his repertoire. The self-described geriatric football coach who was once dubbed “the Best Quote in College Football” had me doubled over laughing throughout our round at Fairmont Hot Springs Golf Course.

Coach Green, who recently re-retired from Montana Tech was more than ready to go for a round of golf at Fairmont on Monday morning when I met up with him. Dressed in an Oredigger golf shirt and hat, khaki shorts, and his rolled white socks, Coach Green was chomping at the bit to play a warmup round with me before his schedule 12:20 money game with his regular group of pals.

“THEY WON’T KNOW WHAT HIT EM’ I TELL YOU WHAT! I’LL BE DIALED IN AND READY TO TAKE SOME BUCKS OFF THOSE MEN AFTER THIS!” Green proclaimed. “THEN I’LL BE ABLE TO TAKE PAM GREEN OUT FOR A NICE MEAL, WHICHEVER DRIVE-THRU SHE WANTS!”

Bob Green is one of those people in the world who has never needed an energy drink. At 70 years old, the Marine Corp Veteran is always chomping at the bit, getting the most out of every day, and telling jokes whenever he can. Spend five minutes with the man and you can see why so many former Orediggers were willing to run through brick walls for the guy. He’s infectious, he’s fun, and he’s not a bad golfer for a “geriatric”.

Fairmont is Coach Green’s home course and one he plays quite well. The most famous hole at Fairmont is the “Mile High, Mile Long” par 5 5th hole that stands exactly one mile above sea level and plays at a staggering 649-yards into a steady breeze coming out of the west. As long a hole as you might come across, this true three-shot par 5 features a crowned green as a reward for making your way down this long and impressive par 5.

For Coach Green, his favorite hole on the course has to be the par 3 12th hole that plays an uphill 214-yards. Coach aced this hole this spring and wasn’t too proud to say he hit driver when he did it because of the harsh wind sweeping across the course that day. A wall of trees behind the sloping green can protect it from this harsh wind, but a tee shot needs to find the right spot on this green to prevent a long and turning putt.

As we cruised our way around the course running on Bob Green time, I struggled at times to keep up with the old football coach in his cart. By the time the finishing stretch of holes had arrived Coach was anxiously waiting to go win some dough in his money game.

The last hole at Fairmont is as challenging a hole as there is on the course. A dogleg left par 4 that plays 387-yards over water, it demands an exact tee shot about 240-yards in length to find the landing area just short of the pond at the bottom of the hill. With out-of-bounds right and a high wall of cottonwoods left this tee shot is the most challenging on the course. A crowned green in the shadows of some more cottonwoods awaits the players who can successfully navigate this difficult golf hole.

After the round, Coach Green raced off to go play with his regular crew who was assembled on the 1st tee. The go-go-go nature of Bob Green is as infectious as it is genuine. I’m confident that man has never had a bad day in his life.

Some days are just better than most. I know that because my day golfing with Coach Bob Green was as good as they get.

I just hope the “geriatric” football coach won enough money to let Pam Green get fries with that.

Thanks to Coach Green and the staff at Fairmont for a wonderful day of golf.

 

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