Former PGA Championship winner Jason Dufner remains one of the most popular players in professional golf. Maybe it’s the “Dufnering” meme — which has somehow stood the test of time — or his syrupy-smooth swing. It could be both. Whatever the case may be, I had the opportunity to go through Dufner’s bag and inspect his gear prior to the Genesis Invitational at Riviera. Here are the eight most interesting things I found.
1. Remembering an Auburn favorite
Back in 2014, former Auburn University tight end Philip Lutzenkirchen died in a car crash on June 29 at the age of 23. The tragic loss shook the Auburn community and led Dufner, a fellow alum, to honor Lutzenkirchen with an orange and blue “43” patch on the front panel of his golf bag at the Open Championship. The patch has been part of his golf bag ever since, even when he made the jump to Cobra at the end of 2019 and started using a stand bag.
2. Tee it high and let it fly
Cobra’s King F9 driver is designed for two different golfers. The two weight ports in the sole of Dufner’s driver give him the ability to knock off spin and lower launch or bump up the forgiveness and height with a couple twists of a wrench. Launch and spin characteristics are determined by the location of a 14-gram weight that’s currently positioned in the back of the sole.
What does that mean for Dufner? He’s currently looking for a higher launch with a touch more spin and forgiveness at the moment. It’s a weight configuration most of us could benefit from.
3. Going graphite
With cavity-back and utility long irons on the rise in the professional ranks, it should come as no surprise that Dufner is getting in on the action with a Cobra King Utility. What makes his so interesting is the fact that it has an adjustable hosel — something that isn’t all that common on utility irons — and a graphite shaft. The MyFly loft sleeve is set to 22.5 degrees (4-iron loft). As for the LA Golf prototype graphite shaft, it’s actually heavier than Dufner’s Project X PXi iron shafts (126 grams) but still delivers a high launch angle with a softer tip section.
4. Custom job
When you own a PGA Tour card, you get whatever you want. In Dufner’s case, it’s custom Cobra King Forged CB irons with black paint fill throughout instead of the orange paint fill found on the retail version. It’s a subtle change that gives the heads a clean look.
5. Gentle reminder
See the red line going down the side of Dufner’s Golf Pride Z-Grip Align grips? It serves a technical purpose. For years, tour players had a “reminder” added — a raised internal ridge that runs along the length of the grip — to promote consistent hand placement. A built-in Align version was released in 2017 that essentially does the same thing with a micro-diamond texture. Dufner is part of a growing group on tour of players who prefers the Align version to the internal raised reminder.
6. King of math and gymnastics?!
Dufner’s 52-degree Cobra King MIM wedge has an interesting stamp job. It says he’s the “King of Math and Gymnastics,” which is interesting because fellow Cobra staffer, Bryson DeChambeau, is known as “The Scientist” and recently told GOLF.com’s Dylan Dethier that he wants to “become like a gymnast.” Either Dufner is having some fun with Bryson or there’s a side of him that we’ve never seen. Can you picture Duf going for a perfect score on the pommel horse? I didn’t think so.
7. Grind time
There was once a 60 stamped on the toe of Dufner’s Cobra King MIM lob wedge. But now it’s gone. Cobra Tour rep Ben Schomic added a 60 back to the sole so Dufner knows what he’s using. The relocation of the loft number is due to some serious grinding on the back portion of the sole that allows the face to sit wide open on mega flop shots. This is something Dufner can benefit from. As for the average golfer, it’s probably something you don’t need to worry about. Keep working on getting up-and-down on a regular basis, friends.
8. Classic Scotty
Known to change putters on occasion, Dufner had a classic Scotty Cameron Newport 2 Tour Pro Platinum putter in his hands at Riviera. The original red cherry dot looks glorious. So, too, does the chatter on the head from regular use. This is arguably one of my favorite putters on Tour. Here’s hoping Dufner keeps this one in the regular rotation.