RUSH: During the break I went in to see Dawn and Brian and they said, ‘When does your golf show start?’ And I said Tuesday night. Reminds me, I did an interview yesterday afternoon after the program with the golf reporter for USA Today, and I think he said it’s gonna run Tuesday. The Haney Project, which stars Hank Haney and me, premieres Tuesday at nine o’clock on The Golf Channel. It’s eight weeks, each show is a half hour, I think from nine to 9:30. And he was asking me some really good questions about this show, my attitude going into it and so forth, why did I want to do it, what was my objective in doing this show and what did I think of it. I couldn’t talk about the development of the show because that gives it all away, but folks, it’s reality TV. I mean, there must be a hundred hours that’s been shot. But it has been a blast.
I went through a whole lot of changing emotions when this thing started ’cause I had not seen the previous two installments of The Haney Project. The first one was with Charles Barkley. Of course the objective here is for Haney, who used to be Tiger’s coach, and he’s a god in the golf world. Everywhere I’ve been with this guy all over the world shooting this show, he’s a god. I had not seen his first episode with Charles Barkley. I had not seen the second Haney Project installment with Ray Romano. I had heard about them. The objective is for a professional golf coach to take a rank amateur and try to turn them into much better golfers to improve their game. Now I had not seen any of the other episodes and I had not met Hank Haney. I just assumed that what was gonna happen here was get some golf instruction and mix that together with elements to make a good television show, and, voila.
Now, all of that happens, but I met somebody who is as committed to what he does as I am to what I do. And I don’t run into that very much. I gotta be very honest with you. And it was fascinating for me. In everything I do I’m the most committed to it. Like in radio, you’re not gonna find anybody more committed to what I do than I am. And so I never in my entire life run into anybody as committed in any avenue of golf — (unintelligible) I’ve not spent time with him practicing and all that, but he is singularly focused on teaching people the right way to play the game, debunked I can’t tell you how many myths. One of the problems with amateurs is that every other amateur who can’t play the game tries to tell you how to play the game. And you end up with so many erroneous things, swing thought errors, somebody will tell you what works for them, you try it, it might work once, but you end up with 15,000 swing thoughts in your head, and you have paralysis and so forth.
So it took Haney awhile to figure out what he was dealing with. He had to drain my brain of everything I knew about golf, everything I thought about it, and basically 13 years, that’s how long I’ve been playing, 13 years of everything I’ve been doing physically and throw it out, although he didn’t say that’s what we’re gonna do, it just ended up happening. I’ll tell you this much. I don’t know how they’ve cut it. Even though I have final approval rights I’ve not seen the final versions. It’s all okay. Don’t misunderstand. The first two, full-fledged episodes we’re over in Hawaii, we’re Team Vodka going on, having a great time. By episode three, boot camp. Go down to his ranch in Texas, that’s what I was talking about yesterday, six hours with one club, no break. The unionized Golf Channel camera crew took two breaks. I didn’t get a drop of water. I mean this is like training camp for high school football in August. This was in September. This is after we had a couple episodes shot. This shoulda been done first, but the way the schedules worked out it actually makes it more interesting this way.
There’s one episode, I’m about to flip my — I get so mad in one of these episodes, but I bottle it up. Because I’m hell-bent, I am not gonna lose my composure on camera no matter how badly they’re trying to goad me into doing it, so I just retreat into myself and keep plugging away at it. And the whole thing turned out to be a life lesson — and there’s still two episodes to shoot — the whole thing turned out to be a life lesson, tremendous learning experience, because it would have been — and I say this with all candor, I don’t want anybody misunderstand — it would have been easy for Hank Haney to size me up and figure out, ‘All right, look, I’ve got this guy Limbaugh, he’s this and that, let’s just go easy here. I don’t want to be insulting.’ He could have gone the celebrity route and all that and he totally threw that out. I was a buck private. It didn’t matter. He was singularly focused on analyzing everything about my game that was wrong and fixing it.
This guy sent long e-mails to me, video analysis from sessions with him, with commentary, stuff that had to take him hours to put together. And obviously he did it ’cause he is just obsessed with being the greatest teacher he can be and taking people that really don’t know what they’re doing and try to make something out of ’em, which was me. And at the same time, being true to his own purpose, which is to be a great instructor. There were a couple episodes were there weren’t any laughs. They may edit some in from previous shows to make it look like it, but there were a couple of shoots there weren’t any, it was dead serious. It took me awhile, I finally had to say, ‘Okay, we’re not just doing a fun television show here. This is dead serious.’ I haven’t watched it all. I’ve seen some of what they’ve sent me. And the libs, folks, are gonna be shocked. They’re gonna be stunned. There’s a secret reason I did this. I don’t want to give away the secret reason, it won’t be a secret, but a number of reasons I did this, and they’ve all panned out to be good. They’ve all panned out to work out the exact way I intended them to, so it’s been a fun and worthwhile — (interruption) well, H.R., I can’t answer that question. If I start answering questions like that then I kinda give away the progress of the show.
He just asked me, ‘Is the game better?’ Look, my game, yeah, it is. That’s another upper, it has worked. It’s the first time lessons have worked with me ever, the only times lessons have worked with me. (interruption) Well, I’ve heard it didn’t work with Barkley, but I haven’t seen any of those, but it did work with me. It’s the first time I’ve ever spent such time with an instructor. I’m not trying to impugn other instructors I’ve worked with, you know, spend an hour with them here, two hours there. This has been a hundred hours and there’s still 50 to go for two more episodes, maybe not that many, but, no, it’s worked. First time it’s worked. There’s one thing, it’s gonna be in episode four or five, and I would love to be able to tell you right now, but I just… okay, I will. I’ll just give you a little tease.
I show up and Tom Farrell, Philadelphia, big Eagles fan, probably upset that I’ve picked the Eagles to lose on Sunday, I meet him over in the Bahamas beginning the shoot and I look at him and I point my finger, and I said, ‘When we get off this boat we’re going to the range. We’re not going to cocktail parties, screw the cocktail parties, we’re going to the range, and have I got a surprise for you guys.’ That’s all I’m gonna tell you. So I put myself on the line there. I’ll have to see how that worked out. Anyway, it’s been fun, and as I say it starts Tuesday night at nine, it’s eight episodes of a half hour each, and the interview with USA Today, which was pleasant. You’ll agree, Dawn, it was very pleasant. So everything about this has been a fun exercise.
RUSH: I did not expect The Haney Project to be as singularly focused on making my golf game better. I don’t know why, but I thought it was more of a lighthearted, ‘Here’s some lessons. We’re gonna do a fun TV show.’ This was boot camp.
‘We’re gonna improve your game.’
Yeah, it took me a couple of episodes to adjust to it.