I am sure there is no body of professional games players who so cheerfully know so little of the rules of their game as do professional golfers.
...and each find something named after them!
According to this Gary Van Sickle report quoting SI's anonymous witness "Bob" to Berckman's Place at the Masters, the new $6000 per-ticket "ultimate VIP" option features food areas named after iconic figures in Bobby Jones and Augusta lore.
The facility features three main restaurants -- Calamity Jane’s, Ike’s place and Mackenzie’s. Bob estimates that each room can seat up to 400, plus another hundred or two on their outdoor patios.
Bob, who got his BP badge from a well-connected friend, says he was attending his 12th consecutive Masters, and his favorite part is to walk the course and watch golf.
“I had no intention of staying there more than 10 minutes,” Bob says. “I got there at 8:30 and stayed through lunch. I had to walk through it again on my way out, just to make sure I wasn’t dreaming.”
Each restaurant has a bar area big enough to seat at least 50, Bob estimates. He dived in at Calamity Jane’s oyster bar. Mackenzie’s, in honor of its Scottish namesake and Augusta National course designer Alistair Mackenzie, has 25 types of single-malt Scotch whiskey.
At the suggestion it was a bit much to be putting a 14-year-old on a stage like the Masters, yours truly has been met with shock for not being on board with golf joining the youth obsession that has never served anyone well, particularly athletes.
Thankfully, in this weekend's WSJ column, John Paul Newport looks at Tianlang Guan (playing this week in New Orleans) and quietly suggests that success at 14 is not a guarantee of success.
The road from success at 14 years old to adult stardom is long and disjointed. "Golf is so different from other sports because careers are so long," said Pia Nilsson, who has coached Annika Sorenstam, Suzann Pettersen and Ai Miyazato, among others. "Very often the boys and girls who are good at an early age are not the ones who are good later on."
In sports like gymnastics, diving and ice skating, motivated youngsters with an extensive coaching and support system peak in their teens. Then they're done. But before golf prodigies reach their prime, at the earliest in their 20s and more often in their 30s, a lot of life intervenes.
"Of course, you can learn to get very good at a young age. We see that more and more, especially in Asia, where very young boys and girls are practicing harder and harder," Nilsson said. "But being the best golfer you can possibly be requires long-term thinking and an understanding that we are human beings and we have to grow up."
Jaime Diaz talked to Geoff Ogilvy about his friend's Masters win.
You may recall it was Scott who returned from the airport to Winged Foot when Ogilvy won the 2006 U.S. Open.
That road led to a monumental Sunday in Augusta, and if Ogilvy's projections are right, more majors. But probably none will be as meaningful as last Sunday's.
"This is a big day for Greg [Norman], especially," said Ogilvy. "It's very appropriate that of all the Australians, it was Adam who did it, because he is the closest of all of us to Greg.
Right now, I know Greg is 100 percent joyous."
Kevin Ferrie takes the analysis of the Tiger drop incident at Augusta a bit far in quoting Neil Hampton, GM of Royal Dornoch, who says...
"We are trying to encourage more juniors to play our game and one of the most important things we address is the ethics involved: how to treat your fellow man, and doing so with integrity. We're looking to put great people out into the world through golf, so this is sending the wrong message to the youngsters," he said.
"We are trying to get them to police themselves but now they can look at that and say, 'if Tiger can do it, so can I'.
"He has been given a chance to stay in the tournament by people who have selfish reasons for wanting him to stay in: because it is good for their viewing figures or whatever. However, having realised that he made a mistake, Tiger should have withdrawn from the tournament."
This was my initial reaction, but as we've learned what happened, it's clear the committee made the right move and set a bold precedent in an effort to remedy its mistake. Fred Ridley was not acting out of concern for the tournament so much as for his job as competitions chair (and a possible future club chairmanship).
Considering how badly Ridley missed the opportunity to take the viewer's call seriously enough to call Tiger in for a pre-scorecard signing, the 33-7 remedy was a pretty good save. Yet it's clear as time passes that Ridley's competence will continue to be questioned because of this incident.
Based on your reading of the situation and talking to other golfers, is it fair to say the ire/blame/annoyance at the entire episode has shifted from Tiger to Ridley?
Criticism of Masters Competitions Committee Chair Fred Ridley has come from about the highest place possible to anyone associated with the rules of golf world: Sandy Tatum.
Ron Kroichick talked to the former USGA President about the Masters rules incident.
Lost in all this, as Tatum noted: Did Woods not understand the rule? He could have moved farther back if his original shot had gone straight into the pond at No. 15 - but it hit the flagstick and caromed left into the water. That was the line where the ball last crossed the hazard.
Woods later said he wasn't "really thinking," but he deftly talked around the question of whether he knew exactly what the rules allowed.
As for the television analysts who called for Woods to withdraw before Saturday's third round, Tatum cut him some slack and returned to his original point.
"In that context, it's asking too much of him," Tatum said, "because the ruling body blew it."
New Zealand's 3 News tracked down looper Steve Williams at the airport and talked to him about all things Masters, those who think caddies are mere luggage toters (nostrils expand!), and in the most enjoyable portion at minute 12, Tiger's penalty. (Thanks to reader Chris for this.)
Williams stammers and struggles with the situation, prefacing his comments and even giving the likely explanation for Tiger's mistake (confusing the hazard lines on 15), before also matter-of-factly stating that despite the lack of intent to circumvent the rules, there should have been a disqualification.
In his latest blog post, PGA of America President Ted Bishop writes that watching Adam Scott win "was probably as painful as swallowing a handful of nails for USGA and R&A officials."
The increasingly confrontational tone between Bishop's PGA and Peter Dawson's R&A is just one of the many topics covered in my Golf World feature from Augusta, posted on GolfDigest.com.
The centerpiece topic, of course, is the Woods ruling and the handling by Fred Ridley as yet another recent black eye for casual observers of the Rules.
Mr. Style Marty Hackel's mostly positive reviews of Masters fashion.
But he thankfully calls out the over-scripting misfire by the usually marketing-masterful folks at adidas.
Team adidas, or is this the Carlsbad high school golf team? The adidas three amigos? I could go on for days describing the perfectly-uniformed adidas team.
A glib Adam Scott this morning on CBS This Morning with Charlie Rose and Gayle King.
Lots of fresh stuff, and bad news for the ladies as Gayle confronts him about his looks and he finds it all "embarrassing" before saying he's "not single at all." Women, her name is Marie. Hate away!
We've soaked up the good vibes of Adam Scott's win and will continue to enjoy the dramatics that closed out the 2013 Masters.
Scott's win means all four majors have now been won by an anchorer and four of the last six majors have been won by anchorers. Hank Gola made the point that this was "pure coincidence," no different than a string of lefthanders winning. I'm not sure I buy that one.
Garry Smits lays out the status of the proposed ban after Billy Payne took a pass on an Augusta National stance. He also points out the pesky numbers which suggest Scott still isn't that great of a putter, despite what we saw Sunday.
The raw numbers say his long putter didn’t matter. Scott was 39th in putting among the field, averaging 1.67 putts per green in regulation, the major putting stat used at Augusta National. That put him in the bottom half of the players who made the cut.
So I know this isn't the cleanest question or tightest answer option, but here goes:
Tiger Woods was penalized two strokes for violating Rule 26-1a and/or 20-7c yet avoided disqualification under Rule 6-6d or 33-7/4.5, instead he was absolved under an obscure, maybe unprecedented use of 33-7.
I understand the confusion over Tiger's penalty and non-WD. I misunderstood it initially because the first reports, by Tom Rinaldi (ESPN) and Steve Sands (Golf Channel) mentioned 33-7 and the recent rule change involving HD video, which was the 33-7/4.5 Decision not invoked in this case.
I tried clarifying it in Golf World Daily, have written about the episode in this week's Golf World, posted this Barry Rhodes item on the matter, but for now, just read John Morrissett's Facebook post on the Erin Hills website if you still aren't sure why Tiger avoided disqualification.
The key graphs:
While this seems like a complicated set of facts, the ruling becomes straightforward when it is boiled down to its basic elements: On Friday the Committee made an incorrect ruling (of no penalty), and on Saturday the Committee corrected that incorrect ruling. The key is that, before Tiger returned his score card on Friday, the Committee had reviewed the incident on 15 and made the ruling of no breach. (Even though the Committee did not tell Tiger of this ruling, it was still a ruling.) On reflection, the Committee realized it made an incorrect ruling and corrected that ruling on Saturday (with ample authority and precedent to do so).
If the Committee had not become aware of the incident and had not made a ruling before Tiger returned his score card on Friday, then it would have been a straightforward disqualification. It is interesting to note, therefore, that the timely telephone call actually prevented Tiger from being disqualified.