Thursday, September 30, 2010

Your Obligatory 1999 Ryder Cup Video

When I was growing up, I started to save important newspaper clippings about big sporting events. It was just a weird little thing I did, mainly because I liked going back and reading stuff and mainly because I was stupid enough to think some newspaper clipping about Tiger Woods winning the 1997 Masters would someday be worth something.

At one point I saved some Sports Illustrated mags of great importance. The ones I still have at my Texas home? Tiger winning the '97 Masters, Tiger winning the '99 PGA Championship and that famous Ryder Cup when Justin Leonard made the putt heard 'round the world.

That Ryder Cup will most likely never be topped. It had everything you could ask for in team competition. A captain making a promise, ugly shirts, a villan and a hero (Leonard) and controversy galore. Watching this video STILL gives me chills, and I hope one day, when I'm old as dirt and sitting with my kiddo who has the golf bug like I did, we can watch these matches and he can ask me questions about it.

This is the Ryder Cup. This is history.

Why People Freaking Out About Rory Wanting to Play Tiger is Ridiculous

The booming story this week at the Ryder Cup was young Rory McIlroy "calling out" Tiger Woods at the Ryder Cup, basically saying he'd love to play the top golfer in the world if the cards fell the right way.

McIlroy, just 21-years-old, said, "I would love to face (Tiger). Unless his game rapidly improves ... I think anyone in the European team would fancy their chances against him."

After Tiger got wind of the comments, he responded to the idea of a McIlroy-Woods pairing, "Me too." And there you have it.

People were chatting all sorts of stuff about this "challenge" by McIlroy, but it shouldn't surprise anyone. Since Tiger Woods arrived on the map in 1996 (and well before that as THE amateur golfer to beat since he was in diapers), people have wanted to face him, because (tired cliche alert) to be the best you have to beat the best.

Rory is the next in line to be what Tiger started. A young guy that can win and has won on multiple tours, McIlroy has the type of game that almost seems too good. He hits it long and straight, is an incredible iron player and still seems to have youthful nerves over putts. Paired with Phil Mickelson earlier this year in the final round at the Quail Hollow Championship, Rory shot a 62 to take the title by four shots. Again ... to be the best you have to beat the best.

Lefty was asked about the Rory-Tiger situation, and laughed it off.

"That's the feel that any player has. Any player wants to play the best (and) Tiger is ranked No. 1 in the world. That's the type of charisma that Rory McIlroy has. He's just like any other top player that wants to take on the best. That's not any type of controversy or saga.

They get along great, are you kidding me? Rory is one of the nicest guys you can imagine. He's one of the classiest guys out on Tour ask Tiger gets along with just about everybody, usually because he beats them and he's nice to them when he beats them. Whether it's in a PGA Tour event or what have you. (Laughter). Rory is as classy a guy as there is. I've been paired with him a bunch and I really enjoy playing with him. The whole European Team is built with a lot of classy character."

If Colin and Mr. Pavin have any understanding of how important it is to the fans to do something like pair these two together on Sunday, they will. A McIlroy-Woods pairing will be incredible for golf, because it will give us the ability to see the new blood go up against the old blood. In Canada at the Presidents Cup, Mike Weir wanted Tiger and got him. Hopefully that's the case here, and hopefully that showdown is as epic as it seems like it would be.

Getty Images

Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Wha ... Is That Sergio Garcia Music?!?!

Yep, that's the man right there, at the Ryder Cup as a vice captain. If the Euros take home the trophy, he might be remembered as the person that pushed them over the edge. If they don't, I'm sure there will be somebody out there to blame.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Tiger Woods Will Be Great This Week

Stop shaking your head. Stop it! I don't care what you say right now, because I know one thing and one thing only.

Tiger Woods is going to kick some ass this week at the Ryder Cup. He is. He is due for so many reasons it's unbelievable.

He is due because he's never done much at this event. He is due because his match play records sans this event is incredible. He is due because he's going to be paired with a man in Steve Stricker that seems to be the only true compliment to his game that Tiger has ever played with. He's due because he's too good of a golfer to go an entire year with a solid showing at an event. He's due because no matter what we think of his character, he's Tiger freaking Woods.

Tiger is going to play well because he holds a chip on his shoulder that he hasn't been able to shake all season. He is mad at the media and his golf game and, who knows, maybe his ex-wife. He is as competitive a human as there is on this Earth, and we all know what happens when he gets the fire in match play (Confused? Just ask Stephen Ames).

I think that this is the breakout for Tiger; his chance to go kick ass at an event before he fades away in the offseason. We will see him again in Australia, and possibly in some silly season stuff, but this is Tiger's last chance at showing us that his 34th year on this planet wasn't a complete waste.

He's Tiger, and if there is ever a place to doubt him, it's when he gets to stalk greens and actually play someone, not something. This is man-on-man (avoid obvious Villegas body-issue joke), and Tiger is still the best at making people feel uncomfortable in his group.

I think he has a big week. Maybe I'm crazy, but I believe.

Getty Images

Monday, September 27, 2010

Tiger Woods Is Still Dorky

A billion dollars can buy a lot of stuff, but it can't make you cool. That's the battle Tiger Woods has everyday. He has his cool moments (winning the Masters by a million in 1997, rocking cool Nike stuff), but for the most part, Tiger is just a grown-up Stanford kid.

This photo says it all. Dressed in the Ryder Cup issued Blazer, Tiger stepped off the plane in Wales and, well, looked pretty Tiger-y.

It's going to be a fun week here at DTCC. I hope you keep swinging by.


Ryder Cup Odds

The Ryder Cup kicks off on Friday, and my good buds at have put together a list of all the things you can bet on at the event.

Honestly, how insane do you have to be to bet on any of this stuff? Who will make the last putt?!! Who is the best captain's pick?!!? Why not have a "Which girl will Tiger show up with" bet? I like Lady Gaga at 125/1.

(Oh, and for s&gs, I put my favorite bets in bold, but again, if you bet on this stuff, you hate money.)

Odds To Win The 2010 Ryder Cup
Europe 4/7
USA 7/4
Tie 10/1

Correct Score - The 2010 Ryder Cup
Europe 22 – 6 175/1
Europe 21.5 - 6.5 150/1
Europe 21 – 7 125/1
Europe 20.5 - 7.5 100/1
Europe 20 – 8 80/1
Europe 19.5 - 8.5 50/1
Europe 19 – 9 33/1
Europe 18.5 - 9.5 28/1
Europe 18 – 10 22/1
Europe 17.5 - 10.5 20/1
Europe 17 – 11 18/1
Europe 16.5 - 11.5 14/1
Europe 16 – 12 12/1
Europe 15.5 - 12.5 10/1
Europe 15 – 13 10/1
Europe 14-5 - 13.5 8/1
Tie 14-14 10/1
USA 22 – 6 200/1
USA 21.5 - 6.5 175/1
USA 21 – 7 175/1
USA 20.5 - 7.5 150/1
USA 20 – 8 100/1
USA 19.5 - 8.5 100/1
USA 19 – 9 80/1
USA 18.5 - 9.5 50/1
USA 18 – 10 40/1
USA 17.5 - 10.5 33/1
USA 17 – 11 25/1
USA 16.5 - 11.5 16/1
USA 16 – 12 14/1
USA 15.5 - 12.5 12/1
USA 15 – 13 11/1
USA 14.5 - 13.5 10/1

Who Will Hole The Winning Putt At The 2010 Ryder Cup?
Ian Poulter 10/1
Zach Johnson 12/1
Stewart Cink 12/1
Lee Westwood 12/1
Martin Kaymer 14/1
Padraig Harrington 14/1
Tiger Woods 14/1
Phil Mickelson 14/1
Jim Furyk 16/1
Steve Stricker 16/1
Edoardo Molinari 16/1
Luke Donald 16/1
Ross Fisher 16/1
Dustin Johnson 18/1
Matt Kuchar 18/1
Hunter Mahan 18/1
Rory McIlroy 18/1
Francesco Molinari 20/1
Graeme McDowell 20/1
Miguel Angel Jimenez 20/1
Rickie Fowler 22/1
Bubba Watson 22/1
Jeff Overton 25/1
Peter Hanson 25/1

Top Overall Points Scorer at the 2010 Ryder Cup
Tiger Woods 9/1
Rory McIlroy 10/1
Steve Stricker 11/1
Lee Westwood 12/1
Phil Mickelson 12/1
Martin Kaymer 12/1
Jim Furyk 16/1
Luke Donald 18/1
Ian Poulter 18/1
Graeme McDowell 18/1
Matt Kuchar 20/1
Hunter Mahan 20/1
Padraig Harrington 20/1
Dustin Johnson 20/1
Francesco Molinari 25/1
Edoardo Molinari 25/1
Ross Fisher 25/1
Stewart Cink 28/1
Rickie Fowler 28/1
Zach Johnson 28/1
Miguel Angel Jimenez 33/1
Bubba Watson 40/1
Peter Hanson 50/1
Jeff Overton 50/1

Top US Points Scorer At The 2010 Ryder Cup
Tiger Woods 5/1
Steve Stricker 11/2
Phil Mickelson 13/2
Jim Furyk 8/1
Hunter Mahan 10/1
Matt Kuchar 10/1
Dustin Johnson 11/1
Stewart Cink 12/1
Rickie Fowler 14/1
Zach Johnson 14/1
Bubba Watson 28/1
Jeff Overton 28/1

Top European Points Scorer At The 2010 Ryder Cup
Rory McIlroy 9/2
Lee Westwood 6/1
Graeme McDowell 7/1
Martin Kaymer 6/1
Ian Poulter 8/1
Luke Donald 9/1
Padraig Harrington 9/1
Ross Fisher 12/1
Edoardo Molinari 12/1
Francesco Molinari 12/1
Miguel Angel Jimenez 16/1
Peter Hanson 25/1

Who Will Do The Best Of The Us Wildcards @ The 2010 Ryder Cup
Tiger Woods 4/5
Stewart Cink 7/2
Zach Johnson 4/1
Rickie Fowler 6/1

Who Will Do The Best Of The Wildcards @ The 2010 Ryder Cup?
Tiger Woods 7/4
Padraig Harrington 5/1
Luke Donald 5/1
Stewart Cink 11/2
Edoardo Molinari 13/2
Zach Johnson 13/2
Rickie Fowler 12/1

The 2010 Ryder Cup Day One Leader
Europe 8/11
USA 13/8
Tie 11/2

Will There Be A Hole In One At The 2010 Ryder Cup?
Yes 7/2
No 1/6

Tiger Woods or Phil Mickelson To Hit USA's Opening Tee Shot At The 2010 Ryder Cup - Celtic Manor Resort, 1st - 3rd October 2010

Yes 3/1

No 2/9

Tiger Woods & Phil Mickelson To Play Any Match Together At The 2010 Ryder Cup - Celtic Manor Resort, 1st - 3rd October 2010

Yes 11/2

No 1/10

How many points will Tiger Woods accumulate in the 2010 Ryder Cup?
0 5/1
0.5 20/1
1 5/1
1.5 9/1
2 11/2
2.5 6/1
3 7/1
3.5 9/1
4 14/1
4.5 28/1
5 16/1

Who will Tiger Woods play in the Sunday singles at The 2010 Ryder Cup?
Graeme McDowell 9/1
Padraig Harrington 9/1
Edoardo Molinari 9/1
Francesco Molinari 9/1
Ian Poulter 9/1
Lee Westwood 9/1
Martin Kaymer 9/1
Luke Donald 10/1
Ross Fisher 10/1
Rory McIlroy 10/1
Miguel Angel Jimenez 11/1
Peter Hanson 12/1

Corey Pavin Bans Twitter During Ryder Cup Week

It is one of those decisions that will make a select group of people upset for a short amount of time. Corey Pavin, in an attempt to keep his team "all Ryder, all the time," has decided to pull the Twittering for this week.

While a lot of the players are on Twitter, this is really pointed at Bubba Watson and Stewart Cink, who seem to be the most interactive golfers on the web. Cink, who dresses up his insight with humor and wit, is the one missing out the most, because I'm sure there would be some funny things this week that he'd be willing to send out, and fans will miss out on all the "thank u" and "your welcome (sic)" messages from Watson. Other than that, it shouldn't be that big of a deal to the players.

So, as fans sitting back in the states, wondering what is really going on, should we be upset?

Nah. I could see why people wouldn't be a big fan of this move, but how many pictures do we really want of Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods going after each other on the ping-pong table? And what if that pic of them player accidentally had the scoreboard in the background with the pairings for Thursday on it? Then, Pavin's plot is foiled.

I'm sure this is more of a move by Pavin to save his own face than it is a move to give the Regular Joes in all of this the shaft. This is the first Ryder Cup with Twitter being such a big deal, and I'm sure stuff like this will happen in the future.

Now, just promise me he isn't banning LinkedIn!!

Friday, September 24, 2010

John Daly is Upset About the John Daly

If you've ever had an Arnold Palmer in your life (and I'm not going to explain the ingredients to you because if you visit this site, you best know what is in that delicious concoction), you've probably wondered aloud, "Humm, I wonder how this would taste with a little alcohol in it?"

That is what someone thought years ago when they dropped a little vodka in the Arnie, and after taking a few refreshing sips, figured out a new, incredible afternoon toddy. As the drink became popular, a name needed to be assigned to it, and logic reigned supreme when people started calling it the John Daly (golf name + former alcoholic = perfection).

Now, the next two things I'm about to say might shock you. Daly, taking to Twitter earlier this week, is going after restaurants that are using his name with the drink without permission. The other is that Daly just heard about this drink ON MONDAY!

I have absolutely no idea how that is possible. The Daly has been a signature alcohol drink for years. Nobody has ever gone up to him an asked if he was a fan of the Daly?

Here are Big John's Tweets:

For all my fans out there hittin the bars & events I'm lookin for your help--ANY PRINTED MENUS, BANNERS OR ADS promoting the "John Daly" drink--Can you please bring to my attention with a pic and/or a tweet of the bar location & brand of sweet tea! Thanks for lookin out!

when distributors are putting their Vodka Bottle Label on Point of Sale w/my name & w/out authorization in order to sell it-TradeMark Infrin

Yeah, sure, I can understand why he'd be mad about someone using his name without paying him some cash, but come on, what the hell else are we going to call this drink, the Scott McCarron? It's the John Daly. Always will be. Sorry, Big Guy.

h/t Willlllson

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Ian Poulter Continues to Be a D-Bag

At this year's Waste Management Open, I was planning on doing a story on Pat Perez and his assembly line of automobiles he owns. The reason Phoenix is the perfect place to highlight such a story is because Perez lives in the area, and tends to drive a new car to the course everyday. They range from Hummer to Ferrari to 1978 Pontiac, and I was trying to find something to write about that wasn't, "Phil is fat!!!"

When I talked to Perez, he mentioned that Ian Poulter was staying with him that week. I approached Poulter to ask him a few fun questions about the cars, and to put it lightly, got zero response. He looked me up and down and asked who I worked for, and when I told him Yahoo!, he looked like I'd answered "Dinosaur Magazine Weekly." I notched his attitude to a tough day, even if he'd shot something really low, and didn't think much of it.

But as his Twitter battles continue, it's apparent that Ian is just a dick, which is fine, because most athletes are. His latest meltdown with his followers came when he took a five minute airplane ride from a commercial shoot to his house. He tweeted about it, and got a lot of responses from people that were concerned about him taking such transportation for such a short ride, mentioning all the problems it caused to our environment and what a bad example he was setting to all the private airplane riders around the world.

His response -- "Tree huggers stop it your (sic) boring me, I guess i should have set off 5 days ago and gone on my push bike."

Ahh, generalizations. People that think it's ridiculous to take an airplane five minutes + people on Twitter complaining about it = tree huggers.

The problem with responses like this is why guys like Poulter will never totally understand Twitter. See, he is all smiles and fist bumps when people are responding positively, but things work both ways, and when people jump on Poulter, you can see just how insecure he really is. Yes, you took an airplane when most of us cannot, and people are going to be up in arms about it. Maybe instead of calling them names, you could talk about why you did it or who provided the airplane.

Or, you could just be smug, and continue to look like the pouty, frosted-tipped guy you are.

Monday, September 20, 2010

The Ryder Cup Outfits Looks Snazzy

Call me old school, but I'm in love with this look the Ryder Cup has gone with for 2010.

Usually the American team looks like a cross between a 40-year-old father of three and Chandler Bing, so it's nice that someone had the idea to toss some cool digs on these fellas.

Is the retro look a move made because there are so many young guys on the team? I think so. Also, the purple sweater? It seems that might have been a nod at Tiger Woods, who tends to rock purple sweaters when he can.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

Miguel Angel Jimenez is Attractive

I mean, do I really need to say anything else with this picture? This is Miguel Angel Jimenez, in all his ponytail glory, sticking his tongue out because, well, I guess he hates romance.

Note to ladies out there: if you husband is trying to get on you, and you're not feeling it, just pull this page up and show it to him. That erection will disappear in a matter of seconds.

Getty Images (Thanks!)

Colin Montgomerie Might Be Insane

The Ryder Cup is one of the five biggest events of the year when it rolls around, and everyone that loves golf loves the event. While none of us have ever played or coached the Cup, we know that strategy is involved in picking your lineup.

So much so, it appears, that Colin Montgomerie has basically gone off the deep end and decided to soundproof the European team room so that the Japanese Americans don't try to somehow sneak information away from their sessions of ping pong and Carlsbads.

Per the Daily Mail ...

Colin Montgomerie has had the European Ryder Cup team room at Celtic Manor sound-proofed to prevent any words of wisdom leaking into the American room next door.

With emotions likely to be running high at what is expected to be a closely-fought contest in a fortnight’s time, the Scot is taking no chances that the Americans might hear something they could use to their advantage.

Honestly, what all is going on in these team rooms? The lineups, for better or worse, are already picked at this point (Molinari brothers, McDowell and McIlroy, Donald and Fisher, Harrington and Kaymer), and it isn't like they're drawing up plays in the room to spring on the Americans when they least expect it.

"Okay Ian, on the fourth hole, I'm going to need you to spray that drive far left, while Lee heads over there in a hurry with his caddie. Lee, from there, I'm going to need a pitch back to the fairway, just in front of the Americans while Ian runs an out to the lay-up. From there, a long bomb to the pin to save par as Lee heads in for the alley-oop."

Lest we forget, IT'S GOLF!! Sure, team golf, but still golf, and there isn't a lot more you can do here but toss some people together and hope they can gain your team a point. Soundproofing your room, if anything, should give the Americans a little bit of hope as they head to Wales. If Monty thinks this is the type of stuff he must do to secure a win, maybe the Euros are a little more scared of the Americans than we previously thought.

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Caddie Tales at Devil Ball

I wanted to share it over here as well, but I wrote up a piece about missing the cut this week with Irene Cho. It is my first missed cut so I'm going to blame the steak at Doe's for our bad play on Saturday. Damn you, Doe's!!

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Someone Asked Tiger Woods What The Ratings Would Be Like at the Tour Championship ...

... and this was his reaction.

I Really Hope Johnny Miller Doesn't Sign Things Like This

Ian Poulter posted a picture of a hat that Johnny Miller signed, as some sort of "prank," although it might be the least funny joke ever ("Hit more greens?" Really, Johnny?).

Although it wasn't at all funny, I really needed to talk about how Miller signed this thing. He put "63 Oakmont" at the bottom of it. For the sake of Miller, I hope he was kidding, because if he REALLY signs things like that, he might be a bigger ass than I previously thought.

As most of you know, Miller talks about that 63 any time he can. No matter if he's broadcasting the U.S. Open, or if he is getting change at a gas station that comes out to $1.63, he will mention his score at the tournament. It makes it easy to dislike the guy, and this signature stamps it.

If anyone has ever had anything signed by Miller, please comment that he doesn't do this, for my sake.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Tiger Woods as a Ryder Cupper

I know it's been a week since Corey Pavin announced that Tiger Woods would be a member of the 2010 Ryder Cup team, but I'm still getting a ton of questions about it from people and wanted to just write a few notes of why I see this as a good idea, no matter the critics.

See, here is what the critics are saying.

-- Tiger has a terrible record in the Ryder Cup.
-- Tiger is a terrible teammate and is on an island all by himself.
-- Tiger has had a terrible 2010, and won't ring much to the team in form of success.
-- The Americans won the Ryder Cup in 2008 without Tiger on the team.
-- Tiger sucks!!!

Okay, so I made up the last one, but you get the drift. Sure, Tiger has had a pitiful 2010 by his standards, failing to make it to the Tour Championship and without a win on the PGA Tour for the first time in his career. On top of that, yes, Tiger's record of 10-13-2 is weak compared to the standards he set.

Here are my points against all those things, and they aren't too complicated. First, Tiger had a weak 2010, but he was only one win away from tying Phil Mickelson in 2010 victories. The thing is, nobody had an incredible 2010! Not one single player. Sure, guys like Dustin Johnson and Matt Kuchar have had breakout seasons, but not a single person on the PGA Tour has more than two wins this year. If anything, Tiger's inability to win resides more with the fact that too many good golfers are out there now than with the fact that he is failing to dominate. But sure, I'll give you him having a tough year. That's fine.

Now, for him being a bad Ryder Cupper. First, you must understand, there isn't a single person on the American team that has played in more than one Ryder Cup with a winning record. From 2002 to 2006, The Americans got out scored 52.5 to 31.5 by the Europeans, so of course Americans players during that stretch are going to have a tough record. It's math more than anything.

You don't leave Tiger Woods at home during these matches if you can help it. He is the best match play player to ever play the game, and like I've said a hundred times, he will destroy one of these matches before his career ends. More than anything else, Tiger is one of the most competitive athletes to ever play ANY game, so at one point he will just let that lead him to a nasty 5-0-0 record and it'll be the story of the Ryder Cup for years to come.

On top of that, people still don't want to play against Tiger. No matter what anyone says, Woods is still an intimidating figure on the golf course, and having him paired with the likes of Steve Stricker or Bubba Watson is going to make the two Europeans a little nervous. That has to account for something at match play.

So, yes, I understand the knocks on Tiger on this team, but unless there is someone that BLOWS away him as a captain's pick, you snag Woods and run away with it. He's the best golfer in the world despite a poor season, and it'll come back one day. Who's to say that it won't be in Wales?

Getty Images

Sergio Garcia Continues to Make it Easy to Hate Sergio Garcia

After the PGA Championship, Sergio Garcia decided to take some time away from golf because he wasn't playing well and said he needed to find a way to love the game again (My suggestions: lubricating those Wynn grips).

A few weeks later, Colin Montgomerie picked Sergio as his fourth vice-captain (Ed. Note - They really need four vice captains? High school teachers have to deal with more students than these vice captains have to deal with professional golfers.).

Now, we see what Sergio is really interested in. He's going to play professional soccer!!!

No, not really, but come on dude, soccer? I know you're from Spain, blah blah blah, but don't do stuff to make Americans hate you even more. We have enough hatred stored up from you from Bethpage and Carnoustie to last a lifetime. Maybe spend your time petting cats or something.

Saturday, September 11, 2010

The New Michelle Wie Kia Commercial is Cute

If you haven't seen it yet, here is the new Michelle Wie Kia commercial. Basically it is everything that Michelle is ... charming, funny and absolutely and totally random. I love the car, I love the old people and I love what happens when she hits the drive.

Check it out, and hell, go buy a Kia or two.

Friday, September 10, 2010

Caddies Tales: 'Let's Just Go For It'

On Friday at the P&G NW Arkansas Championship (say that five times fast), I was standing on the 18th tee with Irene Cho, my friend and boss as she has started to mandate, jokingly of course. Irene had hit the ball magnificently all day after a rough start to the round that had us scrambling for pars left and right on the first three holes.

She had just hit the pin on the par-3 17th with a 4-iron on the fly, the second time in five holes that she hit a 4-iron within inches of the cup, a feat that I'm sure you can appreciate no matter your skill level (Hell, I remember years ago Golf Digest running a cover story with the question, "Are You Good Enough to Carry a 4-Iron" plastered on the front page).

She had rolled the lip with her birdie putt to stay at even par for the day, and wasn't exactly frustrated, but you could tell she was absolutely honed in on making a closing birdie on the par-5 18th.

She ripped a drive on the final hole, and started storming down the fairway engulfed in determination. She looked over at me and said, "We're going for this green," and kept walking. I liked her attitude. We'd come too far on Friday not to get in red figures before it was time to sign the scorecards.

As we approached her best drive of the day, we noticed a marker a dozen or so yards behind her ball. It read "250" and we knew that it was going to be a stretch to get the ball on the putting surface. The two players in our group hit their lay-up shots, short of the lake that sat about 40 yards short of the green. She asked me a simple question that got my newfound caddie blood a-flowin' - "What do you think?"

I replied as bluntly as I could. "Fuck it, let's go for it."

We sat discussing what exactly to do for a few minutes as the players in the group ahead exited the green. The boom mike guy from "The Golf Channel" hurried up to us to hear our conversation, something I'm sure he hadn't got all day because it seemed nearly everyone else was taking the safe approach. Irene had a twinkle in her eye. I had the same thing. We were going for it. No turning back now.

Irene hit a great three-wood up the right side, just short of the green but in a nice spot to get it up and down. She accomplished the task, and we walked away with a 1-under 70 for the day.

A friend of mine told me a few weeks back that he has got to the point where he enjoys caddying for his brother more than he enjoys playing. I thought it was crazy, because playing golf is one of my favorite things in the world.

I'll be honest - on Friday at Pinnacle Country Club, I started to understand what he meant. It's a different type of pressure when you aren't the one trying to hit the shots, but it's a different sense of happiness when your player does it. As good as Irene hits it, trusting in her to pull a certain shot off isn't so much a risk as it is a treat. I get to sit back and watch a great player hit great shots, up close and personal. I get to interact with her, chat it up with her, and occasionally just tell her, "Fuck it, let's do this."

To me, that's pretty cool. Oh, and on 18 tomorrow? I guarantee we have that same conversation.

Jonathan Ferry, Getty Images

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Kikkor Golf and the Washington Huskies Explain Anger Management

If you don't know what Kikkor Golf is, you should probably take a second to check it out, because it's going to make Ben Hogan start tossing clubs at the owner. That is, it's a skateboard looking golf shoe that is starting to get pretty darn popular.

The owner, James Lepp, and Washington Golf Coach Matt Thurmond announced that at the Kikkor Golf Husky Invitational, there will be a club throwing competition.

Oh, and then they showed off their skills. Pretty great video, and reminds me of a story of this crazy, crazy dude that used to be on my high school golf team. The guy had a ton of skill but calling him a head-case is almost an insult to headcases around the world. One afternoon on the 11th tee at my home course, he tossed his driver into one of those tall pine trees that make up East Texas. He freaked, and ended up driving up to his house, bringing 14 clubs back that he wasn't currently, losing, and got about 11 of them stuck up in the same tree without dislodging the original club.

For about a year or two later, whenever a big storm blew through my hometown, you were bound to drive down to the 11th tee and find a random club on the ground, blown out by the storm.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Tiger Woods Reacts to His Ryder Cup Pick

I gotta be honest, I'm pretty surprised Tiger Woods let a photographer around to catch his reaction being picked by Corey Pavin.

The American Ryder Cup Team if Finalized

Corey Pavin made his Ryder Cup Captain's Picks this Tuesday morning, and now the American team is set. Here is a list of the entire team, with records and commentary on how they're playing.

Phil Mickelson, Career Ryder Record (W-L-H): 10-14-6: He ranks at the top in points for the American team, but has been shaky at best the last month. A 78 in the final round of the Bridgestone, a missed cut at the Barclays and a final round 76 on Sunday at the Deutsche Bank are three of the biggest problems for Phil the last four weeks. Hopefully he can build on the success he had at the end of the year last year, when Mickelson was playing as good a golf as anyone on the planet.

Hunter Mahan, 2-0-3: His win at the Bridgestone was his second of the season, and had people excited about Mahan making another Ryder Cup, but the last three weeks he has failed to break the top-30. Still, having a young guy with this much talent on the team is good for Pavin to mix around with some of the veterans.

Bubba Watson, Rookie: A breakthrough year for the long-hitting Lefty, who had a chance to win at the Bob Hope to start his season, and eventually took him his first title at the Travelers Championship. Bubba's loss in the PGA Championship playoff boosted him up the points list, and his amount of confidence on the golf course will be good for the team. Don't be surprised if Bubba and Tiger end up paired together.

Jim Furyk, 8-13-3: A rather mediocre record for Furyk, who always seems to be the steady type of team player, but Furyk played well in 2008 and is always nice to see wearing the red, white and blue.

Steve Stricker, 0-2-1: Throw out those stats if you watched any of the Presidents Cup last year, when Stricker complimented Tiger Woods quite nicely. He's the type of guy that will be great for a team with so much raw talent in this event, even if he himself has only played in one Ryder Cup.

Dustin Johnson, Rookie: He hits it long, makes a ton of putts and seems to be in the mix at every big tournament. Not a bad resume if you think about it. Johnson's attitude is perfect for this format, as he never seems to let things bother him on the golf course. If Johnson and Watson are paired together, the European team might have to tee off from the white tees.

Jeff Overton, Rookie: Maybe the biggest question mark on either team in Wales, Overton is the first US player in the history of the Ryder Cup to make the team (via points) without a PGA Tour win. It wouldn't surprise me to see him sit the first day of play for some of the other veterans.

Matt Kuchar, Rookie: Since May 30, Kuchar has finished out of the top-25 exactly once in nine tournaments, winning one title and finishing in the top-10 in four others. Needless to say, Pavin is probably licking his chops at the prospect of pairing his steady play with some of the longer, more aggressive guys on the team.

Captain's Picks

Stewart Cink, 4-7-4: Cink's personality helps this team a lot. He seems to get along with everyone (including both Phil and Tiger), and brings another major champion to Wales. He hasn't won this season, but has been consistent enough, not missing a cut since early May.

Zach Johnson, 1-2-1: The former Masters champion has had a sneaky good season this year, with a win at the Colonial and four made cuts at the majors, including a third place finish at the PGA. Also, it gets me excited for how many jokes I'm going to make about pharmaceutical products if Pavin pairs Johnson & Johnson together at any point. Honestly, shouldn't they just get sponsored by that company and call it a day?

Tiger Woods, 10-13-2: So I've argued this point for so long, I'm beginning to think I'm wrong, but Tiger Woods is the best match play player of all time, so he is bound to have a really solid Ryder Cup one of these years, right? Nobody wins six straight Amateur championships and not just tear up this tournament ONE time in his career. Maybe I'm wrong, but I'm sticking by this. Oh, and he's won some majors as well.

Rickie Fowler, Rookie: Love love love love love love love this pick. I seriously want to send Pavin a mini-muffin basket or something. Sure, Fowler makes it two players that have never won a PGA Tour tournament, but the guy is going to be great for this team.

Okay, your thoughts on the picks?

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Should We Really Be Proud of Zach Nash?

If you mill around the Internets, you probably have seen the story of Zach Nash, the 14-year-old from Wisconsin that disqualified himself after winning a junior tournament and eventually noticing he had 15 clubs in his bag.

Here are a couple of quotes around the Internet about Nash's decision to disqualify himself because he broke the 14-club rule:

From AP: "But rules are rules, and the 14-year-old from southern Wisconsin made a decision that might surprise some people: He disqualified himself and surrendered his medal."

From Milwaukee-Wisconsin Journal Sentinel: "It's hard not to root for Nash once you know about his recent act of sportsmanship, one that goes to the very heart of golf and speaks to the game's inherent values."

Okay, before I dive into my point here, I just wanted to say that yes, of course we should be happy the kid decided to turn himself in for breaking one of the most basic rules of golf. My point is, why do we always have to praise people for doing this? Golf is one of the few sports where you have to turn yourself in if you do something wrong, so if he didn't do this, he'd be a cheater.

Sure, he's only 14, but this is the point where the kids need to learn the rules, and the consequences if they don't. If young Zach had decided he was fine without admitting his fault, it would have been the first step in a long line of "Nothing to see here" experiences in his competitive life.

I just don't get why these types of stories always makes it to the front of the golf page. Sure, it's a feel good story because it makes us all realize that not all kids are shitheads that would cheat to get everything they wanted, but it is basically just a story about a kid doing exactly what he should have done in a situation. No, it isn't easy to call something on yourself, but it is what you have to do, and he did it.

Wake me up when a 14-year-old saves a grandmother from an alligator chasing her down the fairway. Oh, and get off my lawn!!

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Vegas Makes Me Laugh

On Friday (not Thursday), the Deutsche Bank Championship kicks off at TPC Boston. It's an event that will host the second leg of the FedEx Cup, with some of the best golfers in the world participating.

So, who do you think the favorite is in Las Vegas? Is it Matt Kuchar, the winner of last week and a top-10 machine this season? Could it be Steve Stricker, a two-time champion in 2010 who might just put some room between him and the rest of the PGA Tour for Player of the Year with a third win this week? What about Phil Mickelson, the Masters winner this year that has been chasing that title of world number one for most of the latter part of this year?

Nope, it's the guy that hasn't won a PGA Tour event in a year. Yep, Tiger Woods!!!

Tiger is a 7-to-1 favorite at the Deutsche Bank, an event Woods won back in 2006 and finished t-11 last season, his only finish out of the top-two in his last eight PGA Tour events in '09.

I know Vegas does these things because people will see his name, see the odds ("Dude, if Tiger wins I can turn this $100 into $700!!!") and make the idiotic bet, because Vegas is smarter than we are, but if you are seriously putting money on this guy to win when he can't seem to string four good rounds together to save his life, you really don't like money.

But, alas, he will win eventually, so if he does, maybe I'll be the one eating my words, eh?

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