Twitter: GeoffShac
  • The 1997 Masters: My Story
    The 1997 Masters: My Story
    by Tiger Woods
  • The First Major: The Inside Story of the 2016 Ryder Cup
    The First Major: The Inside Story of the 2016 Ryder Cup
    by John Feinstein
  • Tommy's Honor: The Story of Old Tom Morris and Young Tom Morris, Golf's Founding Father and Son
    Tommy's Honor: The Story of Old Tom Morris and Young Tom Morris, Golf's Founding Father and Son
    by Kevin Cook
  • Playing Through: Modern Golf's Most Iconic Players and Moments
    Playing Through: Modern Golf's Most Iconic Players and Moments
    by Jim Moriarty
  • His Ownself: A Semi-Memoir (Anchor Sports)
    His Ownself: A Semi-Memoir (Anchor Sports)
    by Dan Jenkins
  • The Captain Myth: The Ryder Cup and Sport's Great Leadership Delusion
    The Captain Myth: The Ryder Cup and Sport's Great Leadership Delusion
    by Richard Gillis
  • The Ryder Cup: Golf's Grandest Event – A Complete History
    The Ryder Cup: Golf's Grandest Event – A Complete History
    by Martin Davis
  • Harvey Penick: The Life and Wisdom of the Man Who Wrote the Book on Golf
    Harvey Penick: The Life and Wisdom of the Man Who Wrote the Book on Golf
    by Kevin Robbins
  • Grounds for Golf: The History and Fundamentals of Golf Course Design
    Grounds for Golf: The History and Fundamentals of Golf Course Design
    by Geoff Shackelford
  • The Art of Golf Design
    The Art of Golf Design
    by Michael Miller, Geoff Shackelford
  • The Future of Golf: How Golf Lost Its Way and How to Get It Back
    The Future of Golf: How Golf Lost Its Way and How to Get It Back
    by Geoff Shackelford
  • Lines of Charm: Brilliant and Irreverent Quotes, Notes, and Anecdotes from Golf's Golden Age Architects
    Lines of Charm: Brilliant and Irreverent Quotes, Notes, and Anecdotes from Golf's Golden Age Architects
    Sports Media Group
  • Alister MacKenzie's Cypress Point Club
    Alister MacKenzie's Cypress Point Club
    by Geoff Shackelford
  • The Golden Age of Golf Design
    The Golden Age of Golf Design
    by Geoff Shackelford
  • Masters of the Links: Essays on the Art of Golf and Course Design
    Masters of the Links: Essays on the Art of Golf and Course Design
    Sleeping Bear Press
  • The Good Doctor Returns: A Novel
    The Good Doctor Returns: A Novel
    by Geoff Shackelford
  • The Captain: George C. Thomas Jr. and His Golf Architecture
    The Captain: George C. Thomas Jr. and His Golf Architecture
    by Geoff Shackelford

It is not the love of something easy which has drawn men like a magnet for hundreds of years to this royal and ancient pastime; on the contrary, it is the maddening difficulty of it.
ROBERT HUNTER

 

  

Friday
Nov202009

Allenby On PGA Tour Players: "It's just everything is handed to them on a silver plate."

Mike Walker at golf.com passes along some of Robert Allenby's comments from Dubai about why there aren't more American PGA Tour players like Jason Duffner playing abroad:

"You know, Americans play for so much money, and when you've got a purse where $1 million, a million plus, is first prize, not to say that they are spoiled, but it's a little bit that way. It's like, well, why would I want to travel, when I can make a million bucks instead of going to Europe and only making $500,000 or $600,000?"

"The reason why I want to travel and play elsewhere is because I want my game to get better, and always, even at the age of 38, I want to get better. And the only way you can get better is to play different golf courses. If you're playing the same golf course every week, every year that you come back to, it just gets a little boring. For me, that's what I've found. I've got a little bit bored playing in America. I'll still play there full time, but I'm still going to try to play more tournaments in Europe at the same time and combine the two together."

"But I just think, you know, they have got it a little bit too easy. It's just everything is handed to them on a silver plate. And not to be rude or anything like that, because I'm very respectful for the amount of money that we do play for in America. We are very lucky and very fortunate. But I think the money that we play for in America, that's the reason why you don't see a lot of Americans or a lot more international players coming over and playing in Europe. They are in a comfort zone, and I think that's pretty much what it is."

Friday
Nov202009

Lee Westwood: Elite Golfer, Discussion Groupie

Thanks to reader Peter D for Rob Hodgetts' BBC story on Lee Westwood hanging out at the 606 discussion group and creatively proving his identity when fellow groupies didn't believe it was him:

Westwood says he has been on 606 for a while but decided to reveal his true identity last month.

"I've been on here for a couple of years. Just thought I'd go public and give you a bit of an insight to the pro game," he posted.

Chatting directly to the public is nothing new, of course, in these days of micro blogging site Twitter and the like, but to prove his authenticity to the 606 community Westwood has taken interactivity to new levels.

A user calling himself leewestwood1 appeared on the golf pages in October but last week his claim to be the European Tour rankings leader and six-time Ryder Cup player was tested for the first time.

To prove he was real, leewestwood1 promised to wear a red shirt in the first round in China. The English number one was indeed sporting red.

A coincidence? Maybe, as some players often wear the same colour on designated days, but the hunt was in full cry.

"It gets a bit boring in China with jetlag. Thank God for 606 and a Slingbox," wrote leewestwood1 after the round.

"I'll give you the choice of white, purple, turquoise or blue tomorrow."
The posters settled on purple and sure enough, Westwood teed off in purple.

Friday
Nov202009

"The question has to be asked though - who does this dickhead think he is?" 

Tip of the cap to John Strege at GolfDigest.com's Local Knowledge for catching this column by Peter FitzSimons, who I think it can be safely said will not be heading up Australia's efforts to lure Tiger Woods back Down Under.

For though it is little noted, Woods is the most fined professional golfer of the current age, and some of it was on display during the Masters - the most appalling of which was when he duffed his shot on the 15th, and hurled his club so savagely it bounced up and landed in the crowd! Had the likes of John Daly done the same thing, it likely would have made fierce headlines and drawn extremely negative comment from all and sundry. But because it was Woods, the fawning television commentators all but ignored it, as did most of the golf writers. The question has to be asked though - who does this dickhead think he is? And how does he get away with it? Is there not some level of responsibility that goes with being the best in the world, to not behave like a petulant prig?

Who knew the Sydney Morning Herald was a tabloid!

Friday
Nov202009

2009 PGA Tour Statistical Odds and Ends, Driving Distance Included

The PGA Tour's Dave Lancer posts his "odds and ends" from the 2009 ShotLink data base. A few that caught my eye:

Charley Hoffman had the year's longest drive -- 467 yards on the first hole during the third round of the Valero Texas Open.

A total of 47 400-yard drives were recorded this year. Dustin Johnson had the most -- five.

Who carries the ball the farthest off the tee on TOUR? J.B. Holmes at an average of 298.6 yards.

The 47 400+ drives prompted me to look back and see if that was a new record in the ShotLink era (though I'm sure Old Tom hit a few back in the day).

400+ drives:

47 2009
12 2008
26 2007
30 2006
18 2005
32 2004
35 2003
1 2002
1 2001
0 2000
1 1999
5 1998
0 1997
0 1996
0 1995
0 1994
0 1993
0 1992

I also opened Excel and tabulated the final 2009 PGA Tour Driving Distance average. I came up with 287.95, up from 287.3 last year.  Just remember that small up-tick in case we hear that distance numbers have been on a steady decline since spring-like effect was more tightly regulated.

And I suppose it should be stated that the advent of drug testing did not ignite a major decline. Not that anyone thought the spike in distance had anything to do with performance enhancing drugs.

While the averages are down from the peak in 2005 and 2006, the driving distance numbers remain astounding compared to where we were in 2000-2002.

Consider the number of players averaging over 300 yards.

In 2009, 13 players averaged over 300 yards (same number as 2008).

Only 1 player averaged over 300 in 2000, 2001 and 2002.

In 2009, 77 players averaged over 290 yards. The 2008 number was 74 averaging over 290.

To put that in perspective, just 18 players averaged over 290 in 2002.

Friday
Nov202009

Today's U.S. Open Ticket Special...

...gives the impression that a lot of tickets are still available, and at $425 for the week and $110 for the weekend along with no cheap hotels anywhere nearby, I'm guessing the divot tool they're throwing in for the holidays isn't going to lead to server-crashing demand.

 

Thursday
Nov192009

"On a spring day in 1951, Austin mayor Taylor Glass got a call from City Hall that two 'colored boys' were playing golf."

Kudos to USGA.org for commissioning Jim Apfelbaum's loving history of Austin’s Lions Municipal Golf Course and it's recent historic designation, along with the Kite/Crenshaw years and the current fight to save "Muny."

There is also a gallery of course images.
 

Thursday
Nov192009

"In other words, outsourcing is great thing. In fact, it’s worked so well in our downtrodden economy over the past 10 years that the hunch here is it will have a similar effect for the LPGA."

Love the passion in Bill Huffman's take on the LPGA leaving Phoenix. Seems Bill reads the USA Today and was not too taken with Commissioner Mike Whan dropping the "G" word in a story authored by Steve DiMeglio. No, not Tim Finchem's growth mantra, but the other "G" word due to become Finchem's new favorite after his Asian trip.

Huffman, after laying out the situation in Phoenix, writes:

Whan, who has about as much experience running a professional golf tour as Bivens – or zilch -- said it’s not all bad despite how it looks. Of course, he made no reference to the fact there will be no LPGA tournament in Arizona for the first time since 1980, nor did he point out that Florida, Colorado, Georgia, Hawaii and Washington, D.C. also were erased in the blink of an eye. Instead the rookie commish emphasized what he deemed as positive news for what is basically a negative situation in women’s golf.

“There is definitely room for more domestic events,’’ Whan declared in stating the obvious to USA Today. “It is fair for people to be concerned about that.

“But I would say that I think people in general are struggling with the globalization of the LPGA tour. One of the big things I’m going to try and do is help people to not only get over that trouble but to embrace the globalization of the tour.’’

In other words, outsourcing is great thing. In fact, it’s worked so well in our downtrodden economy over the past 10 years that the hunch here is it will have a similar effect for the LPGA.

It gets better...go read it.

Wednesday
Nov182009

"Five months later, there are questions as to, Why Doug Barron? Why was he tested at his only tour appearance of the year?"

Yesterday I noted Doug Barron's media mini-crusade and the ramifications for the PGA Tour in not responding. The talk continued today with a new piece filed by Tim Rosaforte, who addresses the miraculous coincidence that Barron, in a dispute with the tour over his condition, just happened to be tested the one week he got into a PGA Tour event.

Barron admits he did not tell the tour's testers in Memphis that he had taken a shot of testosterone two weeks before the tournament, but he says he did admit to being on Beta Blockers. "When I went in I didn't think it was a witch hunt. I thought I was being proactive," he said.

The St. Jude was his only PGA Tour event of the season, and he missed the cut. Five months later, there are questions as to, Why Doug Barron? Why was he tested at his only tour appearance of the year? But there are no simple answers. Meanwhile, Leslie wonders, "If one of the tour's top players tested positive, would they have zero tolerance for that?"

Rich Young, an attorney for the tour in the Barron case, said the tour wouldn't discriminate. "Once you get a positive test for a Beta Blocker or testosterone, you've got to go forward with it regardless of who it is," Young said. A tour spokesperson added that Barron was randomly selected for testing in Memphis.

This might be more believable if there was a transparent system tied to the drug testing. But as we know, positive tests for illegal stuff like marijuana remain private (you know, because it's not performance enhancing according to the tour).

Steve Elling touched on this earlier in the week:

Plenty of rumors have circulated this year about positive tests -- Barron's attorney offered no names or first-hand knowledge to support his claim -- but if the case continues in court, the tour could be asked to give an account. Earlier this season at the one-year anniversary of testing, tour commissioner Tim Finchem said that while no positive tests for steroids had turned up, he did not deny that players had tested positive for recreational drugs.

The tour has repeatedly declined to name those players and Finchem, in a jarring conflict of interest that has been decried several times, has complete latitude to dispense punishment for recreational-drug use as he sees fit. In other words, he can do next to nothing and nobody but the offending player would know the nature of the sanction. The tour has never announced fines for disciplinary actions, another frequent point of criticism.

Ironically the tour's credibility may be taking a from its own website coverage. They reported Barron's loss in court in a detail-rich 70-word story (that's almost Tweetable!), but the November archive page does not include a news report about his suit or request to play second stage of Q-school, prompting the AP's Doug Ferguson to Tweet:

And as I noted in not neutralizing this with some honest PGATour.com coverage or pushback to Barron's claims, questions like this from Rosaforte are going to keep Barron's story alive and well:

But now with Barron left out on an island, fending for himself, another familiar issue has been raised: Do tour players need a union? Some wonder if, at the end of this battle, the PGA Tour may wish it hadn't suspended Barron. They wonder if the Doug Barron case might not develop into a public relations debacle to rival the Casey Martin case.

And as with Martin, the tour may have underestimated the player in question. This is no John Daly.

Barron is resolute in taking this to the next legal level. Though he was denied the temporary restraining order, he and his legal team have taken enough positive signs from the ruling to believe they have a case. While he says tour commissioner Tim Finchem "couldn't have picked me out of a one-man lineup," he is decidedly more big picture than he is bitter.

Wednesday
Nov182009

LPGA Schedule Clippings

Beth Ann Baldry files an upbeat take on the schedule release but unfortunately endorses this groaner from the new Commish:

“It’s exciting to be back in a business meeting where it’s OK to bring a wedge,” said Whan, whose background includes executive tenures at TaylorMade Golf and Wilson Golf. (All good brainstorming at the Golfweek office occurs while swinging a club. We get it.)

Ron Sirak isn't so wild about what he sees and offers a five point plan for rejuvenating the LPGA Tour that includes finding a business partner like the PGA Tour and getting back the ADT Championship.

Speaking of that event, Baldry reported that the mention of its unique format apparently caused a deer-in-headlights look from acting commish Marty Evans, Steve Elling reminds us that it's not the just economy, but a series of Commissioner Bivens moves that killed things like the ADT.

Brendan Prunty in the New Jersey Star Ledger explains the demise of the Sybase Classic, and it's a shame since it sounded like a potentially great event at Essex County:

After a successful three-year run at Upper Montclair Country Club in Clifton, Octagon decided not to renew its contract with the club, choosing to go elsewhere for 2010. For the past three months, the company and the LPGA have been negotiating with Essex County Country Club in West Orange to be the new host site for the Sybase Classic.

Essex County C.C. and Octagon were on the verge of signing a two-year deal to host the event in 2010 and 2011, when talks broke down. Late Tuesday, Octagon's team informed Essex County's board of governors that the event would not be able to take place because of sponsorship issues.

"We had the contract terms, for the most part, ironed out within the last week or so," Essex County's president Dennis Petrocelli told The Star-Ledger Tuesday night. "I think over the last few days, they realized they may not be able to pull (together) the sponsorships in order to have the commitment."

Wednesday
Nov182009

“This is a watershed.”

Tod Leonard talks to the folks in San Diego about the inability to land a sponsor for the old Buick event, even though it's an almost guaranteed great rating and field. Apparently the inability to find sponsorship money has the tour's attention.

“I've seen it in the last 90 days. The PGA Tour is completely aware the world has changed,” said Tom Wornham, the chairman of the Century Club, who along with tournament director Tom Wilson has been entrusted with finding a new sponsor.

“This is a watershed.”

And now, the words every tour player dreads.

Over the next two years, the tour has around a dozen events that need to re-up with sponsors. If one of its premier events in San Diego is having so much trouble, what does that mean for everyone else?

It means the model will have to change. In a setup unique to major American sports, the golfers are their own bosses, and they're going to have to decide to take a pay cut, because the only way deals are going to get done is if the sponsors are paying less.

Wait Tod, the commissioner is talking growth. At least in September he was: "The increases have been slight, but we wanted to continue to grow. And our plan is to continue to grow. And that means purses and charity dollars."

Wednesday
Nov182009

Bethpage Losing Its Two Best Talking Points

The likeable and uber-talented Craig Currier is leaving this year's U.S. Open site and as Brad Klein reports, Rees Jones is renovating the much-talked about 15th green.

So what are we going to talk about when the U.S. Open returns in 2022? Oh right, the weather. I can't wait.

Wednesday
Nov182009

Greg Norman Says The Player He Talked To Really, Really Liked The Earth

The Race to Dubai ends on the "Earth" Course at Unfinished Dunes, Beach And Outta Money Club, where Greg Norman designed the first course (the subsequent Fire and Rain courses, or whatever they were to be called, are on hold).

Alistair Tait reports that Norman says he's getting a lot of positive feedback from players, even if he'd only spoken to one. And that same player thought Liberty National could host a major.

Course designer Greg Norman said he’d had good feedback from players on the 7,675-yard, par-72 layout. Turned out Padraig Harrington was the only player he’d spoken to. Had he talked to others, he might have had some evasive answers from players too polite to tell the truth.

“Awful.”

“Not worthy of the season ending event.”

“Boring.”

These are among the comments I’ve received from just a perfunctory walk along the driving range. All off the record, of course, since under Euro Tour rules players aren’t allowed to criticize courses.

James Corrigan in the Independent writes about the lovely sixth hole:

Even if it is possible to blank out the windowless and roofless, then the stench from the pond on the sixth hole is unavoidable. Augusta National famously uses blue dye to enhance their water features; Jumeirah should have resorted to Blue Toilet Block. There is also a quilt-work patch of fairway on the seventh which will have to be Ground Under Repair should any ball fall that short.

Derek Lawrenson writing for the Daily Mail:

But walk round this inordinately long course, and you can’t tear your eyes from the fact that hardly a single piece of property lining the fairways has been finished. Work on the clubhouse stopped in May, and it remains an empty shell. No wealthy Brits will be proudly showing off their new vacation home this week. No champagne will be flowing on any balconies here, as the players move into view.

And...

As one ex-pro, surveying the view, dryly put it: ‘Magnolia Lane it ain’t.’

Wednesday
Nov182009

Tiger Won The Australian Masters With New Grooves

Not to make the other Australian Masters contestants feel bad, but you lost to Tiger Woods playing with inferior equipment.

Steve Elling confirms, saying that Tiger's wedges featured next year's conforming grooves. That makes two Nike wins over the weekend with less spin-grooves. The other Nike winner--Michelle Wie--hasn't made the move yet.

Wednesday
Nov182009

LPGA Schedule Released

23 24 events, just 13 in the U.S. and only two during a key stretch in April-May-June.  And Los Angeles doesn't get the stop it was promised.

Golfweek has the list.

Tuesday
Nov172009

Book Review: The Sports Illustrated Golf Book

For the next few weeks I'm going to review one of the many attractive books released in time for Christmas.

Obviously, I get a small cut when you buy these books through the Amazon link and some of you rightfully guessed that I use those royalties to furnish my yacht and my beach house in the Virgin Islands (but NOT the Malibu chateu, where I'm keeping it free of all consumer electronics in my quest to find inner peace through transcendental meditation along with a diet of seeds and spring water).

No, the real motivation here is to bring some attention to several new golf books. The golf magazines have relegated book reviews to thumbnail comments once or twice a year, and as someone who has put a few books together, it's disappointing not to see a more thorough inspection of these efforts.

The first tome I'll highlight was published by one of those very magazines and to be brutally honest, I dreaded its arrival even though I was provided a review copy by the good folks at Brener-Zwikel.

Due to some of the pre-release coverage--namely an absurd attempt to rank the top 20 golfers of all time for the purpose of an online and in-print publicity push--the Sports Illustrated's The Golf Book looked like another over-branded, over-packaged, under-nourished attempt to sucker unsuspecting wives and daughters into buying dad a book he'll inevitably donate to the Salvation Army.

Boy was I wrong.

Once you get past the pre-packaged cover and the unfortunate Sports Illustrated logo-strewn end sheets, the title page features an image of Bobby Jones' last ball used in winning the Grand Slam. That, combined with the next ten-or-so mind-blowing images let you know this is going to be a stunning collection of golf photography, legendary correspondence and SI-style sidebars.

Working with Designer Steven Hoffman, Editor Kevin Cook and Senior Editor Jim Gorant compiled an eccentric collection of images and musings from a variety of sources. While they could easily have crafted a rich collection strictly from the SI archives, the team scoured the USGA and World Golf Hall of Fame collections for many rarely-seen images and offbeat memorabilia (photographed lovingly by David N. Berkwitz). With an obvious attention to detail and an apparent quest to create something way beyond the typical golf coffee table book, a reader can't go more than a page or two through The Golf Book without letting out a "wow" or "look at that shot!"

Interspersed with the imagery are select and edited writings from the masters of the profession and some of their legendary accounts (Wind, Darwin, Jenkins, Murray, Rice) along with a few quirky choices (Steve Wulf on Mac O'Grady). Only a Michael Bamberger selection on Donald Trump doesn't belong, particularly when links golf gets short shrift and Bamberger has written so beautifully on the subject.

Though the book is broken down into eras, the editors cleverly juxtaposed matching photos of epic reactions from different eras. In the case of a shot showing Nelson, Mangrum and Demaret scoreboard-watching at the Masters, there's a comparison shot of Anthony Kim finishing off a win at Quail Hollow and framed by one of today's full color PGA Tour scoreboards. The comparison offers a perfect summation of startling changes in the game.

The only hiccup is the aforementioned top-20 golfer ranking, or as it's called in the book, "The Immortals Invitational." It's a gimmicky gatefold of player images and their ranking along with a panel listing that immediately dates the book and adds nothing except for the only possible listing of Carolyn Bivens' name in a golf book of substance.

And The Golf Book is a publication of substance, a treasure that will age gracefully and bring joy to any lucky recipient.

The Lowdown

Value: The book is a mere $29.95, a shade under $20 on Amazon. It would be a great value at twice the price. Really.

Writing: Edited essays from SI and other publications from the best of the profession along with plenty of fun sidebar-style material.

Design and Printing: Top-notch. Quality paper, sturdy binding and lively design give the impression of a Taschen-style coffee table publication.

Grade: A-

Tuesday
Nov172009

“We can’t just show up and say, ‘We’re here.'"

Tim Finchem's penciling in South America and China for future Presidents Cup venues, reports Doug Ferguson.

PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem said the tour has agreed to look into the possibility of staging the Presidents Cup in China in 2019, which he said might be enough time for China to set a goal of having a player capable of competing in the matches, or worthy enough to be a captain’s pick.

They've agreed to look into it? What, the guards at the airport wouldn't stamp their passport until they said yes to a possible Presidents Cup because they were still reveling in the excitement of the '09 matches?\

Finchem is intrigued by the idea that the Presidents Cup head to South America in 2015, one year before golf returns to the Olympic program in Brazil. Golf is only guaranteed the 2016 and 2020 Olympics before another vote of confirmation. It is important that golf put on a good show in Rio.

“We can’t just show up and say, ‘We’re here,’ ” Finchem said.

Tuesday
Nov172009

"Just what sort of transition awaits tour players remains a matter of opinion."

Last week Michael Phelps went retro in advance of a technology rollback, and as Steve Elling explains, Stephen Ames did the same at the Children's Miracle Network event at Disney. Only Ames won:

[Davis] Love said he doubted the switch would be noticeable and then Stephen Ames basically proved him right. The Canadian star birdied five of the last seven holes at Disney World on Sunday and won, and all of his Nike irons conform to 2010 rules. Ames said he had some flier lies, as expected with the grooves change, but he handled matters well. "We got a couple, and the way the ball was reacting on the greens and everything, it was perfect," he said. Steve Ames is a conformist? There's a sentence I never thought I would read, much less write.

Tuesday
Nov172009

"This just gives the PGA Tour even more power"

Doug Barron is making the rounds and telling his story, and I have to say he's raising more questions about the entire episode. In this story by Cameron Morfit, it's hard to disagree with this:

"This just gives the PGA Tour even more power," Barron said. "I just can't believe that an organization questions the ethics of my doctors, and won't let them treat me in a way so I can live a healthy life."

It would be nice to hear the Tour's side of the story and why the leadership that opposed testing suddenly enjoyed playing doctor. They may have a very legitimate case against Barron, but the longer they don't refute Barron and the more he talks, the worse they start to look.

Tuesday
Nov172009

"What makes Tiger the greatest winner in all of sports is how hot he burns on the inside, and it his ferocious competitiveness that produces such riveting theater."

Two interesting takes on Tiger's club-tossing appeared today, starting with Alan Shipnuck in his SI Mail Bag:

Obviously Tiger screwed up, but he didn't mean to tomahawk his club into the gallery, it just slipped out of his hand during a more conventional bit of pique. I think most of us would like to see Woods stop dropping f-bombs and slamming clubs – it's unbecoming and a little tacky. But you can't have it both ways. What makes Tiger the greatest winner in all of sports is how hot he burns on the inside, and it his ferocious competitiveness that produces such riveting theater. He's got his flaws, but Woods is a class act and we're all lucky to have him in our sport. (Imagine if Allen Iverson was the world's top golfer.) So I can live with Tiger's occasional lapses...

And Steve Elling in this week's Up and Down reminds us of Jonathan Kaye's wonderful antics and suggest that the PGA Tour VP's are probably sitting around trying to figure out how to deal with this.

This is the second time since September that Woods has gone volcanic with his driver. And yes, while the sanctimonious PGA Tour would not remotely offer any comment on Woods' actions in Oz on Saturday, an official did confirm that Woods is subject to penalties because he is a U.S. tour player, regardless of whether he was playing in a sanctioned PGA Tour event or not. Clearly, he's a repeat offender. Heck, he's a recidivist. The club throwing has got to stop. The penalty ought to be a six-figure fine, if not some time on the bench, and if the tour wants to correct his behavior, it ought to be publicly announced. But as far as any of us will ever know, they won't do a thing.

Tuesday
Nov172009

LPGA In 2010: 23

That's how many tournaments are on the schedule, reports Beth Ann Baldry, who got an early look before Wednesday's announcement.