January 19, 2007
Volume VI, Issue 2
Its good to be a beer-guzzling, long-hitting, overweight fan favorite
John Daly finished 193rd on the 2006 PGA Tour money list, well outside the top 125 and fully exempt status. So how come Daly is in the midst of a stretch of six-straight tournaments on the PGA Tour that began at the Sony Open? Sponsor exemptions. Despite all of his woes, Daly remains one of the top draws. As a past champion, he can accept unlimited exemptions. Daly is expected to receive invites to at least 25 tournaments this year. He is getting so many invitations that he will ultimately have to turn some down. Here’s hoping the two-time major champion takes advantage of these opportunities and earns enough money to retain his card.
American made, dependable, non-pretentious, he was a perfect Ford
The late President Ford was a great ambassador for golf. The 38th president was one of 14 who played golf and, other than President Kennedy, probably the most proficient. Perhaps only President Eisenhower was a more avid golfer. In 1975, Ford played in the Jackie Gleason Inverrary Classic near Fort Lauderdale, Fla., the first time a sitting president played in a pro-am. Ford played with tournament host Gleason, Bob Hope and Jack Nicklaus. Hope often kidded Ford, once showing up to a golf tournament wearing a hard hat. But you have to love the fact that Ford was on a golf course just a day after leaving office. No doubt it’s the first thing he’s doing in the great beyond.
Hey, golf writers got this one right
Tiger Woods is getting another award, but this one has nothing to do with his prowess on the course. He will be honored with the Golf Writers Association of America’s Charlie Bartlett Award, given to a professional golfer for his/her unselfish contributions to the betterment of society. The Tiger Woods Foundation has dispersed more than $30-million in grants since its inception more than 10 years ago. Woods will be honored at the GWAA Annual Awards Dinner, April 4, in Augusta, Ga. – where he will also receive the GWAA’s Male Player of the Year award for the eighth time in 10 years. The next day, Woods will begin pursuit of his third straight major championship and 13th overall.
A rookie mistake
Will MacKenzie quit golf as a teenager so he could sleep in his van and pursue things such as surfing, snowboarding, kayaking and mountain climbing for several years. Eventually, the golf bug returned, and MacKenzie, 32, won the Reno-Tahoe Open last year to qualify for the season-opening Mercedes-Benz Championship. While being interviewed by the Golf Channel, however, MacKenzie made a “rookie mistake.’’ Asked if he was sleeping at the Ritz-Carlton or his van, MacKenzie said he was at the Ritz – and then gave his room number.
Uh-oh. Messages piled up and the phone never stopped ringing. ”I want to thank everyone who called me from wherever,’’ he said. “I really appreciate that. . . I got a lot of calls and a lot of support, but I had to turn my phone off because I didn’t want to get woken up at night.’’.
Let’s hope he doesn’t have his PIN number written on his ATM card.
$1 Million here, $1 million there, pretty soon were talking real money
It comes as no surprise that Tiger Woods leads Golf Digest’s list of the 50 top golf earners for 2006. The magazine compiled players and added up all of their earnings, on the course and off. Woods increased his haul by $99-million. That’s for a single season. About $11-million of that came in on-course prize money. The other $88-million was in endorsements, appearance fees, etc.
Rules and more rules...
How many clubs are you allowed in your bag?
Click here to learn the answer. B.
- A maximum of 13
- Ask Ian Woosnam’s caddy
- A maximum of 14
A player’s ball lands in a particularly nasty position, and he “accidentally” kicks the ball when his friends are not looking. Of course, all accidental kicks miraculously improve a ball's position, but that’s a story for a different time. Back to the point. What should happen?
Click here to learn the answer.
- Nothing should happen, it was an accident.
- The player should be thrashed and banned for life.
- The player should suffer a one-stroke penalty.
- The player should suffer a two-stroke penalty.
Time to start beating the girls and hitting the books...
Michelle Wie is an unbelievable talent who could one day challenge Annika Sorenstam’s records on the LPGA Tour if she chooses to put her mind to it. But this competing against the guys stuff has to stop. It was a novelty at first and attracted plenty of attention. But after another lousy performance at the Sony Open where she got a sponsor’s exemption and failed to advance to the weekend for the fourth straight year, Wie, just 17, needs to put this experiment on hold. She is starting to damage her reputation by continuing to pursue a goal that appears far from reach. Wie, whose lone significant victory of any kind came in 2004 at the U.S. Women’s Amateur Public Links, made great strides on the LPGA last year and was in contention at three of the four majors. She has also been accepted to Stanford University (guess the $20-million in endorsements will cover her tuition.) She’s got a lot on her plate. Improving to beat the women and concentrating on school ought to be enough.
No time to stop and smell the roses...
Vijay Singh was inducted into the World Golf Hall of Fame last October, and nobody would have blamed him if he never won another tournament. He was on the verge of turning 44, he had won 29 times and three major championships on the PGA Tour – all since his 30th birthday – and his place among the game’s greats was secure. But Singh was not satisfied. He never is. Instead of enjoying the off-season, he went back to work after winning just one time in a 2006 campaign that he felt was disappointing. Sandwiching workouts around five-hour, 400-ball practice sessions, Singh came out firing during the first week of the new year and won the first tournament, the Mercedes-Benz Championship, wire to wire. Singh, who had dropped to seventh in the world rankings, moved back up to fifth. And he served notice that he will not be enjoying any leisurely walks in the park. There is still work to be done.
Dough boy back in shape...
It appears that Vijay wasn’t the only one who decided they needed to shift gears and step it up for the 2007 season. Reportedly Phil Mickelson lost 20 -25 pounds in the off-season. Weight training helped him add muscle mass. Let’s hope that he regains the confidence he had last season before his double bogey on the 72nd hole at the U.S. Open.