Saturday, September 1, 2012

Luke Donald Not a Fan of The TPC Boston Redesign (And Course Designer)



Luke Donald is one of the best golfers in the world. He's won a lot of the big events, seems to enjoy his life and his Twitter is one of the few fantastic ones on tour.

And because of that, he occasionally says something he didn't want. Like on Saturday, after a bad bounce on the final hole forced him to make bogey on the par-5 18th that was redesigned before this year.

Donald complained after about it, but it was the mis-direct message that had people laughing.

"Gil Hanse is a cock," Donald tweeted before immediately deleting it.

I wasn't sure I could love Donald more, but this might do it.

h/t @devincgreen

Saturday, June 30, 2012

Site news.


As you have probably noticed, this page has become a ghost town. There are a number of factors for me taking some time away from DTCC, but it isn't that fair to people that enjoy it (I know you're out there!), and I've been batting some ideas around for what to do with this page that would be different from my current gig over at CBS Sports.

To be fair, it was never that much fun writing the same story over AOL/Yahoo/CBS that I did here. I had to come up with different, random ideas that were sometimes fun, sometimes stale, and occasionally informative. I also made sure the last year to focus on newsy stories over here that the company that I advertise with, Yardbarker, would throw on the front page and gain me some traffic.

But alas, the honest truth is I'm simply burnt out with double duty golf blogging. I've been doing this job for more than five years, and it as much fun as it is to write dumb things about Tiger Woods, it sometimes gets old when you have to tag-team the lede.

So, per a request from a reader, I'm changing Dogs That Chase Cars. This site isn't going to be golf news anymore. It's going to be Shane news. No, this will not be a Facebook news feed ("Just ate Sushi .. delish!"), but it will be a golf blog about my golfing. For some odd reason, I was gifted with a pretty damn good golf game, and while I know how to golf my ball around, I sometimes lack in the motivation, and confidence, needed to really push myself to new level. Hopefully being able to put what I'm doing with my game on paper, per se, will help me work and become better.

But first, a few Q and As that I'm assuming you're wondering.

Q. Will this be one of those websites where you chronicle your works at becoming a pro golfer?

A. Umm, hell no. I've been down that road, and realized long ago that I had a better chance of owning Michael Jackson's Thriller jacket than I do at a green jacket. I won't play in a PGA Tour event in my life, and at 28, I'm okay with that. 

Q. So if it isn't' that, what are you going to be talking about?

A. Well, my game. What I did that day. What my thoughts where. How I was dealing with nerves when I had a birdie putt to win $50, $100 or $400. What the range was like and how I'm working on different things to improve this or that. If I'm hitting it all over the place off the tee, what the hell can I do to make that stop? And I'm going to go back to working with an instructor to improve my golf game. My goal is to find someone that will be okay with me posting pictures, and tips, that he has about my game. I need to find an instructor as excited about me becoming a better golfer as I am. Sadly, that is hard to find, but it isn't impossible.

Q. Why would I read this?

A. Honestly, I don't know. Would you? I think golfers like to hear about other golfer's goods and bars, and that is what this will be. There will be sad stories about my game falling apart when I needed it the most, and times when I close birdie-birdie to post a nifty 67. There will be times I want to  quit the game, and times I wish the sun was out 24 hours. It's the game we all love, and why you came here in the first place (well, except you, mom, you had to), and I want to give you a look into my golfing adventures as I hope you do with mine.

Q. How are we going to do that?

A. Well, that's the fun part. You have a good golf story? Share it with me. Email it to me (email is under my profile over there on the right), and I'll post it. No, I probably won't post them all, but if it's good, it'll go up. This is a forum of sorts, and I want everyone to enjoy it.

So, yes, that is it. Any questions, don't hesitate to ask. 

The projects starts July 13. 

Thursday, June 28, 2012

The British Open or Open Championship ... A Plea

So, right around this time every year (Every. Year.) readers and followers and golf fans from across the pond (And some in the US) start the incessant plea for the rights to name the third, and oldest, major championship.

The true name of the British Open, as we call it over on this side of the pond, is the Open Championship. I completely agree. It IS the Open Championship.

The thing is, we in the media world have to write for a mass of people that might not know that. They may think we're talking about the U.S. Open or the British or the Canadian or, hell, the Phoenix Open. While it is the proper name, it's a little confusing (the same reason Europeans call the PGA Championship the US PGA Championship).

But, it's confusing ... so we call it the British Open. That just makes more sense over here so that we don't have to explain what the hell we're talking about (Breaking news: a lot of Americans aren't exactly world travelers).

Now, THAT SAID, during the week of the British, I will happily call it the Open Championship.

Honestly, links golf is my favorite golf in the world. I've lived in Scotland, caddied at the Old Course, spent hours on those golf courses hitting fun golf shots that do all sorts of different things a yard here or there. I've knocked back scotch at Cruden Bay, a Tennents at the Whey Pat, and dragged my dad across the pond to check out as many of those beauties as I could.

But logically, it just makes more sense this way. So, agree? Agree.

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Video: Guy Runs on the Green and Interrupts U.S. Open Trophy Ceremony




No real words here, just a guy running out and getting tackled by Mike Davis. Pricele

Saturday, June 16, 2012

The Most Fun Game of the Week - Is Tiger Woods Playing Good This Week, or Bad?

You probably have watched some of the U.S. Open. It's been great TV. But do you know if Tiger Woods has played good golf, or bad golf? Let the pictures guide you, and then guess at the end. Good luck! (All photos courtesy of the great people at Getty Images)














And just for fun, my favorite Rory McIlroy picture from a tough week. 


Getty Images

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

I Do Not Care if Tiger Woods Ever Does Another Press Conference Again

In a few hours Tiger Woods will, for the second time this year, bypass a pre-tournament press conference to tool around on the Internet and interact with friends. His first, rightfully nicknamed the hostage video, was Tiger reading, rather blandly, questions from fans while sitting on what appeared to be a set from Ikea.

On Tuesday, the interaction will take on another face as Tiger and Google+ have teamed up to give us some sort of social interaction that is live to all the golf fans across the world. And by doing this, he isn't going to show up and chat with the media before the Memorial, a tournament he's won four times.

And I do not care. One bit. I don't blame Tiger for skipping the press conference just like I don't blame media members for being upset that the most popular figure in the game won't sit around and act like he's answering questions.

Tiger Woods hasn't answered a question in years. He sits in front of cameras with that blank stare on his face and talks of his golf game and his swing and how close he is to being great again, but nothing is every groundbreaking. He isn't speaking of his personal life or his business or his future plans. He doesn't really talk about other players or his ever-changing golf swing or the fact that he doesn't win that much anymore.

And I know that Tiger's approach to press conferences could one day change the whole landscape to this in the golf world. Think about it; if you're Rory McIlroy, and you see that Tiger is never going to do another pre-tournament press conference, why would you? Sure, some people actually enjoy talking to the media (I'll wait for you to get back into your chair), but if I was a pro golfer and the most famous guy in our sport was bypassing an obligation for another means of chatting with the public, it wouldn't take me long to follow suit (think of this as golf's version of the Louis C.K. experiment).

I watched the 1999 U.S. Open a couple of weeks ago, and saw a much happier Tiger Woods strolling the fairways. He wasn't going to win that tournament, but he smiled at fans and looked like he generally was enjoying himself out on the golf course and was interested in the competition. It struck me as odd because that is so far from what Tiger looks like now when he's playing golf. He might still enjoy being in the moment and all that jazz, but when he plays bad golf he really looks like he hates what he's doing. I can relate to that. Playing bad golf sucks, simple as that, but it was fun to see a smiling Tiger Woods back in those days trying to get a leg up on history with a second major championship.

Tiger now would like to play the game and that's it. If he wants to interact with his fans instead of the media, I'm totally fine with that. If he doesn't want to talk to anyone at all, it won't hurt my feelings. This game of golf has always been an independent contractor-type situation, and Tiger can do whatever he wants whenever he wants and as long as he shows up and attempts to play solid golf at events, I'll be totally fine with that.

Nobody in this business is ever going to have a relationship with Woods now. He might as well try to get in better with his core group and not so much with the scribes that love to bash him.

Golf has and always will be Tiger's world. This is just another step in that direction.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Our Own Cool/Not Cool Golf List

Golf Digest recently rolled out a list of the ten cool and not cool things on a golf course. The article nailed a couple of them (yes, it is uncool to wear red on Sundays like Tiger Woods, but it is also uncool for Tiger to do it), confused with a couple (why the heck is an eraser on a pencil uncool? You think golfers are good at math?!), but generally did what is asked of an article to start a discussion.

So here is our list of cool, uncool things to do on the golf course.

Cool / Not Cool

Cool: Bringing a music player and jamming to music in your cart
Not Cool: Getting mad that someone is enjoying some music and asking them to turn it off (News Alert: it isn't the reason you're sucking).

Cool: Buying drinks from the cart girls/halfway house
Not Cool: Sneaking beers in your bag to the course, you cheap bastard

Cool: Kids in flat-brimmed caps
Not Cool: Anyone over the age of 30 in flat-brimmed caps (via @shosheak)

Cool: Matching your belt with your outfit
Not Cool: Same belt you wear to work is also your only golf option

Cool: Having a coin in your pocket before you get to the first tee
Not Cool: Sticking a tee in the ground for the first nine holes because you "keep forgetting to get a mark"

Cool: Understanding and comprehending how far your hit the golf ball
Not Cool: Waiting for the green to clear when it is literally impossible for you to get there even if you hit the shot of your life and a dust devil picked your ball up mid-air and blew it towards the green

Cool: Offering to buy your playing partners, even if they're total strangers, the first round
Not Cool: Getting a free round and then shying away when the cart girl pulls up

Cool: Desert rules
Not Cool: Re-tee, re-tee, re-tee, re-tee, re-tee, re-tee

Cool: A confident smile after a good shot
Not Cool: "Even a blind squirrel finds a nut every now and again."

Actually ... Not Cool: Any golf cliche you have ever heard or have ever said or have ever thought. Everyone hates them. Everyone.

Cool: Saying hi to a left-hander
Not Cool: "Hey, you're hitting from the wrong side of the ball!"

Cool: Waiting until your playing partner is standing over his putt to tell him it's good.
Not Cool: Asking, or begging, for a putt to be given.

Cool: Water slapping a playing partner on a hot day (walk up and throw a small cup of cool water in their face without them knowing it)
Not Cool: Undoing the bag strap on the cart so their clubs fall off when they drive.

Cool: The Club Twirl
Not Cool: The Putter Raise

Cool: A nice, light golf bag
Not Cool: Using a staff bag if you are in fact not on staff with anyone

Cool: Playing fast
Not Cool: Slow play

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Giants Plan Rory McIlroy Bobble Head Day, Misspell Own City's Name


Well, that's unfortunate. The San Francisco Giants are having a bobble head day during U.S. Open week honoring Rory McIlroy, the defending champion of this nation's championship. This year's tourney is out in the Bay Area at the beautiful Olympic Club, and so Rory bobble head day is set for that Tuesday, June 12.

Sadly, the Giants went with the Irish spelling of their own city, typing San Francsisco instead of the traditional San Francisco that most usually go with.

Hey, don't feel bad, guys, you got the part of the bobble head brochure correct that means the most - "pregame Irish entertainment," which I'm assuming just means "pregame drinking."

Thursday, May 17, 2012

Mini Tour Players Posts 16-under 55, Makes Me Throw All My Clubs Away


There are moments when professional golfers do something that the home viewer might think, "I could have done that!" This is not one of those times.

A 26-year-old Australian named Rhein Gibson shot a 16-under 55 last week at River Oaks Golf Club in Oklahoma, and yes, you read that number correctly, and yes, I'll give you a minute to pick your jaw up from the ground.

Gibson actually started on the back nine, playing No. 10 first, and after a par on the first hole, played the next eight holes 10-under, with two eagles and six birdies. He turned at 10-under, made six birdies over his final seven holes, and posted a score that is said to have tied the lowest ever in the history of the game.

The scorecard above, via Reddit, gives us full proof that Gibson actually did it, but wow, 55 is absolutely incredible. Most of the time, 16-under wins four-man scrambles, so to think one man could do something like that is insane.

One of his playing partners, Ryan Munson, wrote a full account of the round, and it's quite good, but that is one heck of round of golf.

Nothing like saying after you putt out on the 18th, "I only made four pars ... but no bogeys."

h/t Eye on Golf

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Prankster Zings Famous Irish Golf Course With Hope of a Rory Visit


There are few golf courses in the world as beautiful as Ballybunion, the pinnacle of Irish golf set off the western side of the island, and there are few golfers as famous as Rory McIlroy, the young Northern Irishman with a major under his belt and potential as long as his soaring drives.

So what would happen if the two planned a get together? That was the plan in late April, or so the Ballybunion course thought. A prankster called the golf course posing as a manager to Rory and Mark O'Meara, letting the course know that the two would be swinging by the famous links on a Saturday before a big rugby match.

Ballybunion went all "the queen is coming over for tea" on the course, only to find out they'd be duped.

From the Irish Independent ...

Well used to VIP visitors, Ballybunion saw nothing amiss and swept into action with their preparations. Extra catering arrangements were made, caddies took precise measurements to ensure their yardages were spot on, and the Old Course was in pristine condition for Rory and his entourage. 


 Except they never showed - much to the disappointment of up to 100 young fans, club members and local media who had gathered from 7.30am. Most waited patiently until 11.30 when it became clear that McIlroy was a non-runner.

Maybe it's just the Irish mentality to be lackadaisical in double checking these sorts of things, but if I called out to Whistling Straits telling them Bubba Watson was going to swing by for a quick 18, I feel like they'd check with a manager or something to confirm.

And if nothing else, it gives me a chance to post one of my favorite commercials that has come out recently, because I'm assuming the level of disappointment on those little kiddos' faces rivals these expressions.

 

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Tiger Woods Delivers the Pinnacle of Tiger Woods Press Conference Quotes

From Tiger Woods' press conference on Tuesday at the Players Championship ...

"Well, I think it's a process, and I've said this numerous times, is that you keep building. And there's certain times when, yeah, you make great strides forward, and there's other times where you're going to take a stride or two backwards. It's a process."

That was his final quote of the day, btw.

And, obligatory video ...

Monday, May 7, 2012

Peter Alliss' Hall of Fame Speech Seemed Entertaining


I must admit, I don't really get that involved in the whole "World Golf Hall of Fame" thingy. Normally it is people that you already know a ton about, and I always seem to think, "Wait, they weren't already in the Hall of Fame" when I read the list of inductees.

But, boy, I wish I had seen the Peter Alliss speech. The picture above, courtesy of Shackleford's site, had Alliss giving the bird to the crowd, and the reasoning is below.

Alliss: "So it's time to‑‑ I could waffle on for another four or five hours. I just want to say this: I think of it often because I did leave school early. I was quite bright, but I remember my last report which was sent home. 


 We had a headmistress that my modest school was called cross by house school. She was a Mrs.Violet Weymouth, and she was a short Welsh woman. She always had a cigarette dangling out of her mouth and the smoke used to trickle up here, and you could see where the smoke went. There was sort of a brown line up there. But she was‑‑ you didn't mess about with Mrs. Weymouth, I can tell you that. I'm always staggered today where I read that children go to school and beat up the teachers. They wouldn't have done that in my day, I'll tell you. But I remember the last report she sent back to my parents, and it went something like this: 'Peter does have a brain, but he's rather loathe to use it. His only interests appear to be the game of golf and Violet Pretty', a girl I liked. She never knew about Iris Baker, but they were the two that introduced me to some of the ways of the world, for which I'll be eternally grateful. And although we were very young, I wish to God we could do it today.


'I fear for his future' were the last words she wrote on my report. So mom and dad died a long, long time ago, and if there is such a thing as heaven and if people do look down, well, Mom, Dad, here we are. Look at this lot. Look where I've been, look what I've done. Never worked very hard at it. But it's all fallen into place. Lovely family, lovely wife, looks after me, shouts a bit occasional. But they are remarkable. They put up with all my nonsense, and I love them dearly. 


And Mrs.Weymouth, if you're there, (holds up middle finger)."

Well played, Peter.

Other related golf news and articles:
-- Phil Mickelson jabs Tiger Woods during press conference
-- Rory McIlroy hits a golf shot like Happy Gilmore

Thursday, May 3, 2012

OMG, OMG, OMG, TIGER'S SHIRT!


Does anyone else find it incredibly odd that for a guy that dresses so well on the golf course, Tiger Woods always looks like the guy that has Castaway fashion sense*?

The above shirt was from his Tiger Jam thingy and, really, I have no words. It looks like he's wearing a Magic Eye book. Tiger, please, stop shopping in the MGM Grand shop.

* -- Castaway fashion sense is someone that dresses like if they got stranded on an island for five years, was found, and came back to find five year old clothes in his closet that are well outdated

Getty Images

Phil Mickelson is Funny


It has always been a rather rocky relationship between myself and Phil Mickelson. Not personally of course, Phil couldn't pick me out of a lineup of random 20-something white guys, but as a fan. Back in my day, Phil was my guy. He was the lovable loser and also left-handed, which was an obvious pull for a southpaw kiddo hoping to make it in the big leagues.

But for some reason, after he won that first Masters, his appeal dropped. I didn't love him as much. I got sick of his cheesy smile and constant thumbs ups. His positivity ate away at me. But slowly, I've come back to Phil. Sitting in press conferences of his make it easier to like the guy. He's genuinely funny, and seems to actually enjoy the press even if that is just a complete facade he plays to because he knows it's a part of the job.

And he has a little fun with it. Like on Wednesday at his Quail Hollow press conference. Phil walked into the press center to address the media but opened with a rather simple, but incredibly clever, joke.

"Didn't you guys see my video?," Phil said with a smirk.

The joke was obviously pointed at Tiger Woods' hostage video from Sunday where he awkwardly answered questions from fans in front of what looks like the second floor of the Dallas Ikea. The thing seemed strange before the video began, but Tiger sits for 14 minutes and answers questions. It was strange. Phil knows that. He made a joke. Well played.

I like the idea of an underlying Phil and Tiger rivalry. I think it's good for the game and actually good for both players. I think they are friends deep down, but I think both don't really get the other, and both want to beat the other really bad, which is how it should be. This era will be remembered because of those two, and I like that Phil pulled out the rubber snake and flung it towards Tiger's direction.

Related articles:
-- Ten questions that we would have loved Tiger Woods to answer
-- Watch a video of Rory McIlroy hitting balls like Happy Gilmore

Getty Images

Monday, April 30, 2012

Ten Questions I'd Like Tiger Woods to Answer on Monday in His Pre-Recorded Video

As you've probably heard, Tiger Woods is planning to post a pre-recorded video on Monday from questions fans asked him on Twitter and Facebook. All of them will be softball questions, but here are ten I'd really like to hear him answer.

-- If you had to pick one way to destroy a copy of "The Big Miss," what would you go with?

-- If you had to project, how many times in your life have you used the phrase "I'm close," and yes, personal moments should be counted?

-- Phil Mickelson, Vijay Singh, Rich Beem -- f, m, k ... go.

-- When you get really old, will you buy orthopedic shoes or just drag some of your current golf shoes out of the closet and wear them?

-- Be honest with me for a second ... Crest White Strips?

-- How many minutes did it take you to stop laughing when your agent suggested you do a video blog answering questions from fans, and how long until you realized he wasn't kidding?

-- If you had to compare yourself to one professional athlete, past or present, that isn't a golfer, who would it be and why?

-- Do you still own that outfit you wore when you won the U.S. Amateur at Sawgrass and if so, how often do you put that hat on and just sit around in your bathrobe?

-- If I said I could promise you you'd win five more majors, but you had to publicly announce that your new girlfriend was Lindsay Lohan, and date her until the five majors were complete, would you take me up on my offer?

-- When is the last time you had to pay for a round of golf?

Okay, that's it! Give me your best in the comments.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Tiger Woods to Increase His Interaction With Fans in Most Tiger Woods Way Possible


If there is one thing that Tiger Woods and his camp knows, it's how to entertain the masses, and they're really outdone themselves now with the announcement that on Monday, Tiger will post a pre-recorded video on his website answering questions from fans.

Yes, in a move that shows Tiger's golf swing isn't the only thing stuck in 2007, Tiger will take questions from his Twitter and Facebook account from fans and post that video online after his agent, Mark Steinberg, announced they're trying to do more with social media.

Via Bob Harig's story on ESPN ...

"We've been thinking about this for a couple of months now," Steinberg said Friday night. "We wanted to have a little bit more direct interaction with fans, and they've been very good to him over the years. We're probably a little bit behind with social media and this is a way to do that."

Ehh, is it really a way of doing that, Mark? Posting a pre-recorded video on the website you own?

In a time when certain professional golfers have appeared on the Bill Simmons' podcast, used Twitter to gain a serious following, and even done a AMA (ask me anything) chat over at Reddit, it seems this move isn't anymore "social media" as the fact that Tiger's Twitter account (obviously not run by him) has done just 12 updates in the month of April.

I commend Tiger and his team for at least trying something new, and any steps is at least progress, but is that entire office so clueless that their idea of moving forward is pre-recording something? Pre-recordings are to the current Internets what a Q and A via Morse Code would have been in the late 1980s.

I will say this ... it might be nice to see Tiger answer questions without staring blankly at media members like he normally does in press conferences. And hey, my coworker Steve Elling might actually get one of his questions for Tiger answered this way. You've got a 1 in 2.11 million shot, buddy!

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Video: Lexi Thompson Wants a Prom Date



Yes, Lexi Thompson is still very young, but that doesn't mean she isn't aging very well in PR years.

The LPGA star went to YouTube to ask a military man between the ages of 18-20 to go to prom with her on May 18. Lexi is still 17, but I like the idea and the initiative.

Tuesday, April 17, 2012

Video: Rory McIlroy goes Happy Gilmore and other pro golfers being awesome



I don't post a lot of trick shot videos, but holy mother of everything, skip to the :54 second mark and just enjoy someone doing something absolutely incredible.

Also, an added bonus; Rory McIlroy and Jason Day going all Happy Gilmore in this spot.

via Golf Monthly

Saturday, April 14, 2012

Jerry Rice, PLEASE STOP!

I have never met Jerry Rice, the former NFL superstar turned hack professional golfer. I don't know him, know his golf game, know his objectives as he approaches these Nationwide Tour events. All I know is that the man must stop doing it. Like, now.

Rice has now played in three Nationwide Tour events. The first was a two-day total of 17-over par, finishing 151 out of 152 golfers in the field. The second ended when Rice inexplicably pulled out a range finder DURING COMPETITION, getting disqualified as any golfer with a balata of sense would know was about to happen.

Now, Rice has withdrawn after an opening round 86 at the TPC Stonebrae Championship and a weather delay that had the former wide receiver open with a 42 on his first nine holes before pulling out early.

There are so many things wrong with this, I don't even know where to start.

He's taking a spot away from an actual professional golfer trying to make a living.

He's not good at golf.

He continues to try to hit the piƱata, not understanding that he will never, ever, ever make contact.

I don't care if Rice is doing this for charity. I don't care if every time he tees it up an orphan finds a home. All I care about is the fact that Jerry Rice continues to disrespect the game of golf and it needs to stop.

Why the hell is the Nationwide Tour giving this guy exemptions? Can someone explain that to me? Is it because it forces guys like me to write about the tournament? is that the exposure you want for a tour event?

Jerry Rice's golf swing isn't bringing people to a golf tournament, much like Tiger Woods' jump-shot wouldn't have basketball fans rushing to a Harlem Globetrotters game. Sports fans, the real, true sports fan, wants to see talented people play the game in a way they can't comprehend.

Rice doesn't do that. He goes out and makes a lot of double-bogeys, not many birdies, and posts a score similar to what you or your dad would post at an event like this on the courses the Nationwide Tour plays.

And the biggest issue? The Nationwide Tour is a much bigger deal this year. Guys with a weak status could really use a boost at this event or that one, because playing well means a lot more in 2012 than it did a year ago.

Rice needs to give up on this dream. He's simply not good enough to make it. It was fun once. It was annoying the second time. Now, it's downright disrespectful.

Friday, April 13, 2012

When Alligators Attack! (Caddie Edition)



I know, I know, most "alligator on golf course" videos are extremely lame, but not when it's a PGA Tour tournament and the caddies are trying to scare one away so that a pro can hit his shot.

That's what happened at Harbour Town on Thursday as Brian Gay was trying to play his shot with an alligator sneaking around near the bank.

Caddies are tough people, but even this was a bit crazy for me, no?

Tuesday, April 10, 2012

Video: Bubba Watson Hits Best Shot Ever at the Masters

I thought I'd get this up while it's still around on YouTube, just because, damn, that's a cool golf shot. Here is Bubba Watson's shot that won him the green jacket. Enjoy it again.

Paul Azinger Not a Huge Fan of Tiger Woods' Attempted 9-Iron Field Goal


On Friday at the Masters, Tiger Woods did not play very well. He played so poorly, actually, that on the 16th hole, his frustration came out in the form of a 9-iron kick that had a lot of fans rolling their eyes and mentioning Tiger's supposed changes that he mentioned two years ago at an infamous press conference.

Tiger is of course human, and every golfer gets frustrated at times (just ask a 56-degree wedge of mine), but critics are critics and they come in the form of Paul Azinger.

The former PGA Championship winner spoke to Mad Dog Radio and had this to say about Tiger's behavior at the Masters last week.

"Tiger's antics this week were an embarrassment to the game, to the membership at Augusta," Zinger said. "I was really disappointed to see him carry on that way. He's not trying to endear himself to anybody. And after he won Bay Hill I thought, ‘here we go again, this is going to be Tiger just kicking butt and taking names.' I don't know. I thought he acted like the south end of a northbound mule."

First things first; that is a hilarious way for Zinger to put it. Yes, Tiger acted childish and all that, but to basically say the dude was an ass at Augusta National? Almost seems too good to be true.

And frankly, Azinger is right. Tiger did act poorly. So much, actually, that he apologized (Well, sort of apologized) on Saturday after his round.

Woods' frustration, in my opinion, came because the guy expected to tear it up and failed to do so. It was more anger at himself than anything else, and for once, he couldn't blame it on the course or the fans or the cameras or the greens. He, simply, played like a dog. Or an ass. Either way works.

Getty Images

Sunday, April 8, 2012

Louis Oosthuizen hits the shot of his life at the Masters ... but still ends up losing



What is it about the Masters that brings out the best in players? Seriously, guys just show up and hit career shots each and every year, and for the most part, most of us never bat an eyelash. You just expect guys to up their game when they come to one of the most special places on earth.

Louis Oosthuizen hit one of those career shots on Sunday at the Masters.

Standing over his second at the par-5 second hole, the South African eyed a green light situation from 260 yards out. Knowing the back right pin was for suckers, Oosthuizen did the smart thing, throwing in a picture-perfect shot that hit a ridge and funneled right to the hole ... and then it dropped in the cup for a double-eagle.

We've seen some incredible shots at the Masters, but this one has to rank right up there as one of the best.

The craziest part of all? Oosthuizen threw his ball into the crowd. One of the most historic shots in tournament history now belongs to a golf fan. It would have been a bigger deal had he won the tournament, but even with his second-place finish, the shot will still go down as one of the greatest we've ever seen. Well done, Louis.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Tiger Woods apologizes for Friday's on-course antics

Here's something you don't see every day -- Tiger Woods apologizing for his language and on-course antics after a round. Hard to believe, I know, but the 14-time major winner made it a point after Saturday's round to tell everyone how sorry he was for his actions.

"I'm frustrated at times and I apologize if I offended anybody by that." Woods said. "But I've hit some bad shots and it's certainly frustrating at times not hitting the ball where you need to hit it."

Woods once again looked frustrated during the third round, hitting blocked drives and never giving himself a chance to build on the two early birdies in the first five holes. He ended the day the way he started it, at 3-over for the tournament following an ever-par 72 round that saw Masters chances end.

After talking up Tiger's chances early in the week, we most likely won't even see a single live shot of his final round ... and that might not be a bad thing. Considering the way he's acted this week, the last thing golf fans want to see is Tiger sulk around the course for another 18 holes.

Follow Jonathan Wall on Twitter during Masters week:@jonathanrwall

Friday, April 6, 2012

This shot pretty much sums up Tiger Woods' second round at the Masters



Did you miss Tiger Woods' second round because you were at work or out on the course? Don't worry, because after watching this clip, you'll be caught up on exactly how Mr. Woods played on Friday.

That would be awful ... with a capital "A". Seriously, it was one of the worst rounds we've seen from him in some time. He completely lost his swing on the back nine and went completely off the tracks on the par-3 16th hole. Following another poor tee shot, Woods drop-kicked his club in anger -- something you normally wouldn't do at Augusta National.

But I guess Tiger gets a pass. He's Tiger Woods, after all, and I doubt anybody's going to chastise him for his actions. He's now 3-over for the week and looks to be a non-factor on the weekend unless he produces a ridiculously low round on Saturday.

Thursday, April 5, 2012

Henrik Stenson comes unraveled at the worst possible time


Henrik Stenson had it going on Thursday at the Masters. With a couple eagles on the front nine and a birdie on the 15th, the Swede found himself 6-under at the Masters with a couple holes to play. For a guy who'd never broken 70 in the tournament, this seemed like a turning point for Stenson.

He was the perfect darkhorse to make a run. Sneaky-good game? Check. Long off the tee? Check? Short game? Check. He seemed perfect. Almost too perfect, in fact.

Maybe that's why it shouldn't come as a surprise that he came unraveled late in his round. After bogeying the 16th, to fall to 5-under, Stenson stepped on the 18th hole after a par on the 17th and came unglued ... almost to the point where you wondered if he was going to storm off the course without signing his scorecard.

After hitting his tee shot under the trees on the left, Stenson asked for a drop from the pine straw but was denied. And that's where thing really went south for him. After nearly topping his second shot, it took Stenson three more swings before his ball found the green.

From there he hit his putt -- which was for six -- to about three feet ... and then proceeded to tie a nice bow on the hole with a final miss for a quadrulple-bogey 8 that saw him go from from potential leader in the clubhouse to posting a 1-under 70 that now has him four shots off the pace.

He now holds the record for worst performance on two separate holes at Augusta National, after he quintuple-bogeyed the par-3 fourth in 2011.

But wait, there's more! All this happened on Stenson's birthday. Talk about the perfect way to kick off the evening festivities.

Phil Mickelson implodes on the 10th hole at Augusta National


If there's we thing you can always count on when it comes to a Phil Mickelson round, it's fireworks. Good or bad, he usually finds some way to get a mention thanks to something he does during his round.

On Thursday, it happened to be his tee shot on the 10th -- a hole made famous by Rory McIlroy last year, who managed to card a triple-bogey that all but ended his chances of winning his first green jacket.

It could end up costing Phil his fourth green jacket. After stepping up to the tee with driver in his hand, Mickelson unleashed towering slice that he knew wasn't good from the start. He slouched, yelled at himself and then told his playing partners he was taking a provisional.

He figured the ball was lost ... and he was right. Despite a search party that spent what seemed like hours in the Georgia pines, Mickelson couldn't find his ball. It was almost comical watching the fans move back brush and kick up pine straw. At one point a couple fans thought they found the ball; but it ended up not being his.

The ball wasn't the only thing missing from Mickelson's game. The triple-bogey he carded on the 10th forced the swashbuckling lefty to go into damage control. He ended up finishing the round at 2-over, but the damage had already been done.

Mickelson noted after his round that he had the fixes in place to rectify his issues off the tee. He better hope that's the case, because if he hits a few more wayward drives like the one of the par-4 10th, there's a good chance he could be heading home for the weekend.

Tuesday, April 3, 2012

Breaking down some of the notable opening-round Masters pairings

Masters week started on Monday, but things became official earlier today when tournament officials released opening-round pairings.

Who do you need to keep an eye on over the next couple of days? The highlighted pairing are the ones that deserve your attention.

7:50/10:57 a.m.: Craig Stadler, Brendan Steele, Tim Clark
8:01/11:09: Jose Maria Olazabal, Robert Garrigus, a-Randal Lewis
8:12/11:19: Larry Mize, Paul Lawrie, Anders Hansen
8:23/11:30: Ross Fisher, Ryan Palmer, Harrison Frazar
8:34/11:41: Ben Crenshaw, Robert Karlsson, a-Bryden Macpherson
8:45/11:52: Adam Scott, Bo Van Pelt, Martin Kaymer - Scott shows up having played only three tournaments this year. Three. It's safe to say he'll be fresh. Martin Kaymer could be contender if he quits over-thinking and plays his own game.
8:56/12:14 p.m.: Steve Stricker, Padraig Harrington, Stewart Cink
9:07/12:25: Aaron Baddeley, Kim Kyung-tae, Lucas Glover
9:18/12:36: Kyle Stanley, Jason Day, Bill Haas - Three of the best young players in the game today. One of them will win a major this year. You can take that to the bank.
9:29/12:47: Trevor Immelman, Rickie Fowler, Justin Rose
9:40/12:58: Tom Watson, Johnson Wagner, a-Hideki Matsuyama
10:02/1:09: Matt Kuchar, Geoff Ogilvy, Yang Yong-eun
10:13/1:20: Gary Woodland, Henrik Stenson, Alvaro Quiros - I hope Henrik Stenson doesn't mind hitting first from the fairway. Woodland is a great pick if he keeps it in the short grass.
10:24/1:31: Charl Schwartzel, Keegan Bradley, a-Kelly Kraft
10:35/1:42: Tiger Woods, Miguel Angel Jimenez, Sang-Moon Bae - The marquee name in this group? San Moon Bae. OK, it's Tiger Woods. But Bae has the game to be a future Masters champ. Jimenez? Well, he has this.

The rest of the pairings come after the jump.

Dog eats man's Masters tickets before he heads to Augusta


At first glance this story appears to be a bad April Fool's joke. There's no way a dog could eat a guy's Masters tickets, right? RIGHT?!?

Wrong. In one of the most bizarre stories I've seen in a long, long time, Russ Berkman of Seattle, Wash., came home from a trip to the store to find his dog, Sierra, had devoured all four of his Masters practice round tickets.

Berkman, who won the tickets in the Masters lottery, had already booked tee times and rooms in Myrtle Beach, S.C, the days leading up, and then planned to head to Augusta with his buddies to check out Wednesday's practice round and the Par-3 Contest.

But his dog had other plans, leaving only the strings from the tickets as evidence when he got home. According to sports radio station KJR in Seattle -- listen to the station's interview with Berkman -- things got serious when he realized that without the tickets, he'd have to call off the trip.

So he did what any golf fan would do: He poured Hydrogen peroxide -- it's safe for animals to ingest -- into his dog's mouth and waited for the remains of the tickets to come back up. They did. Along with a bunch of other things.

But wait, there's more! Berkman not only went through the puke to find the pieces of the tickets, he also took the time to piece the tickets (or what was left of them) together, in one final attempt to keep the trip alive.

As you can see from the photos, the puke-stained tickets look pretty worthless. But they were good enough to get Berkman a new set. After taking the photos, he called Augusta National, told them his story -- seriously, I would kill to hear that audio -- and officials decided to reissue the tickets.

I guess even Augusta National has a sense of humor. The good news for Berkman is he and his buddies will be at the Masters tomorrow for Wednesday's practice round. And after everything he went through, you have to believe the time spent at the course will be that much sweeter.

Follow Jonathan Wall on Twitter during Masters week: @jonathanrwall

Other popular content on Dogs That Chase Cars:

Monday, April 2, 2012

Video: Martin Kaymer skips one off the water at the Masters for a hole-in-one



Martin Kaymer has never had the best of luck when it comes to the Masters. Despite being the top player in the world at one point, the guy just can't seem to get past all the twists and turns at Augusta National (he even went so far as to alter how he shaped the ball prior to last year's tournament).

But maybe his luck is changing. During Monday's practice round, Kaymer hit one of the most incredible shots you're ever going to see, skipping his shot off the water, onto the 16th green ... and into the hole.

That's what you call a career shot, folks. And the fact that it happened at the Masters? Well, that just makes it even more special.

Who knows, maybe it's the kind of shot that allows Kaymer to wipe away all the bad memories and make a run this year. Even if it doesn't, he still has a memory that will certainly stick with him for the rest of his life.

Sunday, April 1, 2012

IT'S MASTERS WEEK, BABY!!!!

Okay, screw it, I know it's not TECHNICALLY Monday yet, but I'm in Augusta, Georgia for the Masters and I'm pumped. One small, easy connection through Minnesota and a three hour drive in the rain later, and hey, I'm here! Driving through downtown Augusta, you can feel the hype, and I'm absolutely stoked to get out on the grounds in the AM. Also, I've already decided "golf fan/writer getting to see Augusta National" is the sports equivalent of shotgunning four Red Bulls in a row. I hope I can sleep.

And, as always, here is the Masters theme song to get you going Monday morning. Enjoy!

Where Brian Davis Does That, And Site News


No, I'm not sure what Brian Davis is doing there, but I smell a MasterCard commercial coming from it.

Anyway, as I type this, I am comfortably cruising to Augusta National Golf Club, the mecca of golf. It will be my first experience with the Masters, and to say I'm pumped would do just about everyone a disservice.

I will be writing (And Tweeting) all week over at CBS' Eye on Golf blog, so make sure to swing by and check it out. The one hiccup in this whole experience is I basically have to go dark on this page for the week, because the Masters people really only like you writing under the company you came with (understandable, if you ask me).

So, Mr. Jonathan Wall is going to help out for the week, giving you Masters updates and videos and funny stuff. Follow him on Twitter when you have a minute and enjoy the week.

Getty Images

WFAN Reporters Actually Make Me Feel Sorry for Hank Haney



If you visit this site regularly, you know my feelings on the Hank Haney book about Tiger Woods. Haney taking personal information shared between him and Tiger and printing it to the masses is definitely not my cup of tea, and more than anything, seems to me to be a big bruise to man code.

But somehow (!), two radio reporters actually made me feel sorry for Hank.

WFAN's Craig Carton went off on Haney earlier this week in a telephone interview, calling the former Tiger instructor the "scum of the earth" before Haney finally hung up. The above YouTube clip is basically the meat and potatoes of the interview, but if you really want to listen to the whole thing, the audio is below.

Best way to get over feeling sorry for Haney? Go read the guy's Twitter page. I didn't know it was possible to continually pat yourself on your back via 140 characters, but the man sure does it. I think "The Big Miss" is Hank Haney's favorite book he's ever read.

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Bubba Watson + Justin Bieber = BFFF


It probably wasn't the type of best friendship that you would have guessed two or three years ago, but Justin Bieber and Bubba Watson are besties. How good of friends?

Bieber told "Access Hollywood" that the two talk daily.

"Bubba Watson's one of my good friends. I talk to him almost every day,” Bieber said. “He's a good guy."

Now I'm not one of those people that can tell you who you can and can't be friends with (unless I'm dating you ... Stop talking to Jimmy, Tanya!), but Bubba is 33 and the Biebs is 18. I'm 28 and couldn't carry a four second conversation with someone 18 if I was getting paid to do it (same can't be said for Rob Grankowski), but hey, Never Say Never!

(Also, my mom did that photoshop ... I hope you enjoy it)

Three Porn Stars Are Coming Out With a Tell-All Sex Video About Tiger Woods

I thought about coming up with a clever headline about the upcoming video titled, "3 Mistresses: Notorious Tales of the World’s Greatest Golfer," like, "For First Time Ever, Porn Stars Speak and It Doesn't Look Scripted," or "Tiger Tapped Them, They're Tapping the Microphone," but I figured this is worth exactly what is being sold.

On April, Vivid will come out with release a "tell-all" about Tiger's sexcapades with former mistresses Devon James, Holly Sampson and Joslyn James.

Here are the details, according to the New York Post.

In the movie, the women are together for an in-depth Q&A session about Woods, which includes explicit discussions about his sexual tastes and on-screen demonstrations of what the golf legend is like in the sack. 


 “Any time three women get together to talk about the same guy, the results are going to be more than interesting,” said the film’s director, B. Skow.

I will say, anytime I can watching something by a guy named B. Skow, I'm in.

Honestly, it just doesn't seem easy being Tiger Woods anymore. The guy screwed up his marriage and he apologized and life goes on, but there are a lot of avenues to make money off it, and it appears Hank Haney isn't the only one grabbing some coin.

The pornstars tell all next week! Should be interesting.

Other Tiger-related posts:
-- The New York Post's celebratory cover for Tiger seemed inappropriate
-- Did Tiger's Bay Hill win really change anything?
-- What are some other books to read besides Hank Haney's "The Big Miss"? 

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

A Few Golf Books Besides 'The Big Miss' You Should Buy Today

Hank Haney's The Big Miss hits gossip magazine book shelves on Tuesday, and while a lot of golfers will be buying it, I figured it's worth mentioning some other golf books more worthy of your hard-earned bucks.

So here is a list of a few books to check out if you haven't yet:

-- "The Swinger" by Alan Shipnuck and Michael Bamberger
-- "Paper Tiger" by Tom Coyne
-- "Four Days in July" by Jim Huber
-- "A Course Called Ireland" by Tom Coyne
-- "Golf Is Not a Perfect Game" by Bob Rotella
-- "Final Rounds" by James Dodson
-- "A Good Walk Spoiled" by John Feinstein

Monday, March 26, 2012

Well New York Post, That Seemed Appropriate


Tiger Woods won his first PGA Tour event in over two years on Sunday, taking home the Arnold Palmer Invitational at Bay Hill for the seventh time. It was a great feat, one that deserves much applause from all around the sports world, and the New York Post did just that.

Well, except the complete opposite of that. The above cover celebrated Tiger Woods' victory about as much as those Jose Canseco motivational posters celebrate the intelligence of Jose Canseco.

Not the greatest way to say congrats, I must say.

Oh Give Me a Break, Hank Haney


I promised myself I wouldn't write anything else about this upcoming Hank Haney book where he basically breaks every man code imaginable in his push to make as much dirty money as possible (and I must say, after seeing his luggage in this picture here, I've started to realize just the kind of guy Haney is in the first place). 

But the above tweet just rattled me. Seriously? You're going to sit back and fire compliments towards a guy you are basically tearing apart in hopes of making more scratch?

This is really one of the biggest problems with the current generation of celebrities. They want to take stands while never really hurting anyone's feelings. They want to be liked by all. They're scared to ruffle any feathers because that's another fan they might lose, another dollar they might not see.

Haney wrote a book that tells all about Tiger's inner-workings. He is going to release it and make a million bucks, I'm sure. People are going to read it because, frankly, people read everything about Tiger Woods. But don't go do something like this, and then sit back and fire him compliments.

As a great man once said, there ain't no such thing as halfway crooks.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Tiger Woods Wins Bay Hill So Is Everything Back to Normal Now?


There is something we all need to understand about Tiger Woods' dramatic (And yes, incredibly impressive) win on Sunday at Bay Hill; it doesn't really change anything. 

Yes, it's an enormous relief for just about anyone that follows or loves the game of golf. It's great for people like myself because 92 percent of golf fans are really just Tiger fans who care if and when he tees it up and that's it. He is an incredible talent that changed the golf world once, and people hope can possibly do it again. 

But Tiger winning for the seventh time at Bay Hill isn't a recipe for what he used to do to PGA Tour events. No, it's simply just a great golfer winning a tournament that he played the best at. That's it. 

The reason I'm pointing this out is because you'll hear over the next 14 days about "what this means" in the golf world. "What does that win by Tiger really mean?" "Is he back?" "Is this a new career of dominance?" 

And the fact of the matter is, yes, he is "back" in a sense. He played four impressive rounds of golf. He had one of those Tiger rounds that looked good but could have been better and was still one of the low rounds of the week (on Friday). He hit some shots when he needed to him them, and played safe when he didn't need anything more than a par. He extended his lead by an old, reliable theory he used to live by; let everyone else fall apart. 

But this week doesn't mean Tiger is somehow better than, say, Justin Rose. Or Bubba Watson. Or Luke Donald. Tiger is simply adding himself to that huge list of  guys that could or couldn't win each week out. 

You still saw some shots that were a little too loose to go on a five-win run or something. If anyone had stepped up over the weekend, Tiger might have felt a little more pressure than he did. But lucky for him, and us, nobody did, and Tiger was able to play solid, conservative golf and walk away with his 72nd win. 

But the talent pool is too big now for anyone in the game to go out and win six or seven times, even Tiger. If he plays like he did this week at Augusta National in two weeks is it a sure thing that he'd win? Absolutely not. There are a list of players that could compete with him even with the game he had at Bay Hill.

The thing is, Tiger is now a part of that group of guys that have emerged since he's disappeared. He could win the Masters, but he could just as easily finish out of the top-30. I'd lean more towards him competing than not, but if he starts missing the ball left again it could be a struggle all week. 

I just hope that everyone can appreciate the win by Tiger simply as that; a win, and a great one, but nothing more. It wasn't another major. It isn't really going to recreate his legacy in the big scheme of things. It was simply a week we needed, and he needed, to get back to a winning philosophy. 

Getty Images

Saturday, March 24, 2012

Tiger, That's Not How You Do It



So Tiger Woods is a very good golfer. And very good golfers normally hit very good golf shots.

But sometimes, they do things like the video above. It ain't pretty. It ain't good. And it makes us all feel a little better about our golf games.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Tiger Woods Tied for the Lead After 36 Holes at Bay Hill



It’s easy to get ahead of ourselves on the golf course. You make a few early birdies and you’re thinking about posting your career low score. The nerves settle in. Every swing is a bit tighter than the one before. It never leads to anything good. 

So it isn’t any surprise to see us all get that same feeling with the way Tiger Woods has golfed his ball through 36 holes at Bay Hill. “What if he can finally do it,” most golf fans are hoping as they see Tiger stalk the Arnold Palmer Invitational as a front-runner that looks as comfortable with his golf game as we’ve seen in more than two years. 

Woods sits at 10-under after a second round 65, co-leading a golf tournament he has won six times in his career. It is the perfect site for his comeback win because it was the same place he had his other comeback win, back in 2009 after coming back from a knee surgery that kept Tiger away from golf from what seemed like an eternity. 

But this wait has seemed longer. We’ve seen Tiger struggle like we never imagined and we’ve seen him play like we didn’t think he could and it was all so unreal and uncomfortable. Sure, he’s contended here and there and we all hoped it would be the week, but there was always something off that never let him close. 

This week has looked different. He opened with a 3-under 69 without really doing anything that special. He hit some loose shots and had a couple of three-putts but it was still a solid opening round. Previously, that round would have been 72 or 73, but the putter woke up from what seemed like a 24 month hibernation to save Tiger’s round.

And Friday, it was on. Tiger hit the ball as good as he has hit it in since the ’09 BMW Championship, a tournament he blitzed by eight shots. He looked confident over his putts, and even the ones that missed looked like good rolls. Even his loose swings were missed in the right spot, like his second shot into the par-5 16th hole, that never cut but was hit far enough to avoid finding the water hazard. 

Through 36 holes, Tiger has made just a single bogey. At one point, Tiger had hit 18 straight greens-in-regulation, something he hadn’t been able to accomplish in five years. 

The hope is that he can hold on. That Tiger can finally finish a 72-hole tournament without that stumble round that keeps coming up. In Dubai earlier this year it was a Sunday 72 that kept him from the winner’s circle. At Pebble Beach, it also happened to be Sunday. At the Honda Classic Tiger roared back with a final round 62 but it was a slow start that kept him just behind Rory McIlroy.

The hope is still there. Tiger is eventually going to win another PGA Tour tournament, and it just seems he is closer and closer to doing that. When the week started, the big story was if Tiger’s Achilles was healthy enough for him to compete. After 36 holes, it appears the only thing that could get in his way is his brain. 

Getty Images

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Rick Smith Wins Today


I'm not sure if you've noticed that I'm not a huge fan of that book Hank Haney is writing, but I'm not. I think it is complete bullshit and think anything like this, between a teacher and a player, is going against every man code, friend code, and professional code imaginable (honestly, who the hell was Hank Haney before Tiger Woods?).

So it is nice to see other instructors agreeing. Rick Smith, who used to coach Phil Mickelson, was asked about the Haney tell-all about Tiger, and said this startling but absolutely awesome quote.

Via ESPN ...

"I would rather be broke and not have a penny to my name before I violate the code of player-teacher confidentiality," Smith said. "In 27 years out here, I've never done that. I'm personally upset with Hank because he's broken and violated our code of ethics. If you have the opportunity and you're privileged to conversations, you will not and should not share anything from them with anyone. I don't care who it is. "For all the guys who have committed their lives to teaching, this should be very upsetting and I know that I'm not the only one that feels this way. What Hank did is against the rules."

I think that's what the people call a checkmate, Mr. Haney. Lay your king down and enjoy those blood checks. Actually, I'm positive you will.

Getty Images

Money Talks, and the PGA Tour Is Listening

"If it ain't broke, don't fix it."

That simplistic, seven word phrase is something I've always lived by. My dad told me that years ago when I was taking my first job selling hot chocolate and popcorn to patrons of my small town's Christmas light festival that was much bigger in a 12-year-old boys eyes when he'd barely been past Dallas, Texas.

When things work, go with them.

The problem is, the saying doesn't apply to money. Money changes everything.

Welcome to the PGA Tour, 2013.

Or should I say, the PGA Tour, 2013-14? As of Tuesday, golf has now become a 12-month experience even more than it was before. Tim Finchem announced in Florida that the PGA Tour will never look the same starting next season, with Q-School all but eliminated and the tour schedule reassembled more than Heidi Montag's nose.

The details, via Steve Elling's great post about everything, are as follows ...

Qualifying School, a well-traveled avenue to the tour since the 1960s, has been restructured, although neutered might be an equally effective term. Moreover, future seasons, beginning next fall, will abandon the calendar and morph into a wraparound schedule starting with 2013-14.

It's easy to rip apart change, and I understand that, but everything that is happening just reeks of greenbacks.

Why is all this happening? Simple. Nationwide's sponsorship of the PGA Tour's minor leagues is up this year, and the tour needs someone to drop some bucks and they must give that sponsor more incentive. Being the opening act to a Killers concert is an incredible accomplishment. Being the lead act at a Bat Mitzvah? Not so much.

If the Nationwide Tour, or whatever it will be called in a year, is going to be more relevant, they had to make the stakes higher. Sure, the top 25 players were always given PGA Tour cards, but they wanted to make it more meaningful to players, fans and the brand. Now, with the changes, good players will be playing their hearts out there to make it to the tour with hopes of million dollar checks and lobster buffets. That wasn't the case as much before the announcement.

And Q-School, something that has been around since the 1960s and at one point had two different stages a season, is all but dead. Guys like J.B. Holmes, Rickie Folwer and Kevin Streelman would have never had the type of chance they do now without Q-School, and that is just to name a few of the lesser guys (Streelman my favorite example because in 2007 he was playing in the same money game I was involved in for mini tour practice rounds, had a few good weeks at Q-School, and now stars in commercials with Tom Lehman).

Maybe I'm just nostalgic about something that separated golf from any other sport. Q-School was special. It gave any good player the illusion that they could make the big stage, win the U.S. Open, smell the grass of Augusta. It kept that adolescent dream alive in any of us that have ever had a round of 66 or 67 on a sunny day with friends, and it was a stepping stone in a game that always seems to have something new to step over.

The schedule change seems extreme, but again, money talks, and it's telling us now to make the FedEx Cup a bigger deal and this is the best way to go about it.

For now, it is simply time to mourn the changes in a game that has always seemed a little too pure for this generation. First it was the ball, then it was the clubhead, then the grooves, and now the bottom line.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Another Example of Why Tiger Woods Doesn't Get It


People tend to call me a Tiger Woods hater, but it isn't true. I enjoy the guy being in tournaments. I think he's (obviously) good for the game. And I have rooted as hard as anyone for a comeback, simply because his success means success for everyone in the golf world (other players, writers, club-manufacturers, Alex Miceli).

But there are times when you just shake your head at the guy because you can tell he simply doesn't get the game. No, I'm not talking about golf, I'm talking about the game. The game that is life. How you interact with people. How life works. It's like when you're at a restaurant and overhear a guy berating his waitress because the potatoes weren't cooked to his specifications. There is one way to go about that (ask politely for an exchange) and then there is the guy that yells at someone that didn't even do anything wrong.

And the point I'm talking about is the above picture at the Tavistock Cup. Tiger Woods, playing for Team Albany, sporting his own Nike Golf hat.

I know there might be some sort of sponsors obligation to Nike for him to rock the hat in all competitions besides the Ryder and Presidents Cup, but everyone else on the course this Monday (besides Ernie Els, who also had his usual SAP had on) put on the team hats and enjoyed them. Big names with big sponsor money like Adam Scott, Justin Rose and Bubba Watson. It's an act out courtesy. If you're in an event for someone or something, you put on what they're asking. It's a simple gesture and something that shouldn't be too difficult.

For Tiger, things are his way. He's too big to wear the Masters badge all week at Augusta. He does the interviews he wants to do and on his clock, damn the rest of the media, and he does things like the hat deal at the Tavistock.

The problem is, complaining about it, like I'm doing here, is nearly pointless. The guy isn't going to change and it seems this is how he is programed. Some people get it, others don't, and Tiger is definitely the latter.

But hell, at least he's golfing again.

Getty Images

Friday, March 16, 2012

The Most John Daly Picture Ever


Yep, that's it. Thanks, Getty Images.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Tiger Woods and Shaquille O'Neal Post Strangest Video Game Ad Ever


There are a lot of questions that come up in the above advertisement for the new Tiger Woods EA Sports game.

Why is Shaq in it? And why is Shaq playing golf lefty (from all accounts I can find, Shaq is a right-handed golfer)? Why did the stunt-double for Tiger Woods look absolutely nothing like Tiger Woods (at least give the guy a bald spot)? Why would this make me want to golf?

But alas, it is Tiger and Shaq, and they're doing some karate and if nothing else, it's miles better than that infamous Gillette commercial with Derek Jeter, Roger Federer and Tiger acting like what you and I would do if we wanted to make fun of "Grease."

Here Are a Lot of Pictures of Tiger Woods Wincing Over the Years

Tiger Woods has been injured in the past, and thankful, we have pictures of this. Dating back to 2002, here are a lot of pictures of Tiger in pain after certain golf shots. (All Getty Images besides the last, which is AP)