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December 20, 2002
Volume I, Issue 16
Fringe Clippings
Bet we're talking lots of money
Associated PressJacksonville, Florida — Morris Communications received bad news this week. A judge ruled Tuesday against the media company after it had sued the PGA Tour for the right to sell the tour's real-time scoring to other media outlets. The company, which owns The Florida Times-Union and The Augusta (Ga.) Chronicle, said it would appeal the 34-page summary judgment.
Not just a "mainstream" sports problem any more
Associated PressMinneapolis, Minnesota — School officials at the University of Minnesota are investigating allegations that members of the men's golf team may have received fringe benefits which violate NCAA rules, including free travel, rounds of golf and equipment. A former student golfer of the University sent a letter to the college Athletic Director informing him of the violations. The University of Minnesota golf team are the reigning NCAA Champions.
Can't spell it without "Els"
Associated PressFairhaven, Massachussets — Titleist announced December 18th it had signed Ernie Els to a five-year endorsement agreement. Els will sport a Titleist glove, play the company's clubs, wear FootJoy shoes and carry a Titleist bag. He will continue to play the Titleist golf ball. Els had six victories worldwide last year.
Darn, and I was counting on being #34
Associated PressNew York, New York — In a change designed to reward nine good months more than six good days, the PGA Tour is taking away five cards from Q-school and giving those spots to the Nationwide Tour. Previously, only the top 15 from the developmental tour money list earned their exempt cards on the PGA Tour. That will increase to the top 20 for the 2003 season. Only the top 30 and ties — instead of the top 35 — will advance from Q-school.
Paralysis by Analysis
Well folks, you get a break this week. No analysis which might lead to — well you know...

The Greatest Golf Movie Ever Made?

There is a hotly contested debate each holiday season, mostly because there is no golf worth watching on the networks. Since you are reading this in a golf-oriented publication (and the title says so) you have probably discerned that the topic is "What is the Best Golf Movie Ever Made?" While it may seem like a simple — and completely meaningless — task, we have spent countless hours reviewing, rewinding and popping the corn to come up with the three best golf movies ever made.

#3. Happy Gilmore — Now that you have picked yourself up off the floor, I will explain to you why such a non-traditional film gets the nod. Adam Sandler gave us a look at what can happen to our fine game if it were to fall into the hands of the masses. (Insert Phoenix Open jokes here.) He also used the absurd to demonstrate how stuffy we, the golfing community, can seem to the "non-plusfour" populace. Most importantly, Happy Gilmore was funnier than Bill Cosby giving Eddie Murphy a lecture on profanity.

#2. Tin Cup — "I'm not going under the trees, and I'm not going around the trees. I'm going over the trees with a little draw." — Roy McAvoy. We all know someone in our lives who is filled with the potential of a Roy McAvoy that never seems to put it together. Tin Cup gives us a reason to laugh at it and better understand what it is that makes guys like this tick. Come to think of it, a cold beer and Rene Russo would probably make most male golfers tick. Kevin Costner ladies?

#1. Caddy Shack — Did you really have to read this far to know which movie would be number one? Ty Webb, Judge Smails, Karl and the gang gave us nothing short of a Cinderella Story. Although the film meanders through a hamster dance story line, the amount of classic lines and characters is what makes this movie number one. Have any of us not taken the opportunity to play in a downpour declaring, "I don't think the heavy stuff is gonna come down for quite a while?" Not to mention this was the last known example of Chevy Chase being funny.

We know that you all have your own opinions about movies and which is the best, so send them to me at editor@offthefringe.com or better yet start posting your favorites in the Fringe Forum at www.OffTheFringe.com.
Reading the Line
Getting a bit more than they asked for
The Heineken Classic which is played in Royal Melbourne, Australia, is considering rescinding the invitation given to John Daly because of his outburst during the Australian PGA Championship. Daly, as many of you now know, infamously stormed off the course after throwing his putter into a lake at the 18th and did not sign his score-card. Everyone's favorite long-baller was subsequently fined for the incident and has gone about his merry way since. What makes this matter confusing is that the Australian PGA Tour actually promoted Daly as the "Wild Thing." They got what they wanted and more television coverage then they ever expected. Why would they not want him to play? Traditionalists will argue that he disrespected the game and the tournament. That's John Daly! It's what he does. Is anyone surprised? Not to mention his mother had passed away earlier that week, and he maintained his commitment to play despite his mourning. In retrospect perhaps he should not have played, but at least he tried to fulfill his obligation. Let him play!
... and a bike and a pony and a ...
... swing that wins tournaments again. Old man Kringle and I go way back and he recently read me the fine points of a letter received from a D. Duval. 80th on the money list, David? I don't blame you for resorting to desperate measures at this point.
And to all a good ...
Well, faithful, it's been a long year for our beloved game, has it not? I won't bore you with a recap that you can find anywhere you like. I just want to take this opportunity to extend some wishes and acknowledgments.

Thank you to:
  • Off the Fringe readers; you are our bedrock
  • Annika Sorenstam for showing the world what dedication can accomplish
  • Tiger Woods for giving us a glimpse at a Grand Slam chase
  • Bethpage for hosting a U.S. Open where we can all truly play some day
  • Mark O.Meara for coming out of nowhere to win the Skins Game
  • Elin Nordegren for — who cares! We just want to thank her.

Best wishes to:
  • Phil Mickelson; may he finally break the major voodoo curse
  • Charles Howell III, a genuinely nice guy
  • Suzy Whaley in her bid to make the cut at the GHO
  • Tim Finchem, a gentlemen of the game who finds himself in quite a quandary
Furthermore ...
I speak very directly about issues affecting the game. Although not everyone agrees with me, you certainly can say that you know where I stand. And now you all can have the opportunity to let everyone know your position. Visit the Off the Fringe web site at www.OffTheFringe.com and speak your mind in your Fringe Forum.

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