Callaway Hires Nike Golf Ball Expert Rock Ishii

November 4, 2016

Callaway has hired Hideyuki “Rock” Ishii, the expert behind the Nike golf balls played by Tiger Woods and Rory McIlroy. Ishii’s new role will be Senior Director of Advanced Golf Ball Research.

Ishii spent 20 years with Nike before the company announced earlier this year its plans to exit the golf ball and equipment industry.

During his tenure with Nike, Ishii worked to develop custom specification balls for both McIlroy and Woods, including the ball that Woods played during his 2000 U.S. Open win at Pebble Beach.

“Adding Rock to our already exceptional ball team will strengthen our ability to investigate new construction methods and improve our evaluation of golf ball performance, leading to better products for golfers at every level,” Dr. Alan Hocknell, Callaway’s Senior Vice President of R&D, told GolfWRX.

(MORE: The History of Nike Golf)

Callaway has stepped up its roster of equipment gurus in the past few months, recently acquiring putter company Toulon Design, which previously worked with TaylorMade.