Golf World Takes A Closer Look at Bivens

gw20060616_cover.jpgEven with Se Ri Pak's shot for the ages, Golf World chooses to go with the Carolyn Bivens debacle as its cover story. Ron Sirak pens the tough piece on LPGA Commish Carolyn Bivens and the recent resignations of top officials.

First, more warmth and fuzziness from that proud Duke lacrosse mother and LPGA Board member who chose Bivens, Rae Evans:

"Is this going to impact the day-to-day functioning of the LPGA in a substantial way? No," Evans said. "I think the resignations say more about the three individuals than [they do] about the LPGA or the commissioner."

But Sirak also reports on the growing speculation that it's Mr. Bivens who is the real piece of work:

And, in the most curious concern about the new commissioner, many players, caddies and media members feel the constant presence of her husband, retired auto executive Bill Bivens, is a form of intimidation and that he serves as the commissioner's eyes and ears to see who is talking to whom and about what.

"Every time I see him I feel like I want to run a marathon in the other direction," said one major champion with more than a decade on tour, "and it seems like I always see him." Another multiple tournament winner said: "We all know why he hangs out with us. It's to keep an eye on us."

Ultimately, Sirak says this goes back to the Barb Trammel firing after last year's Office Depot event at Trump National:

"The pebble that started the boulder rolling down the hill was the Trammell situation," said one former LPGA official. "The knee-jerk way in which that was done foreshadowed a management style."

Trammell, an enormously popular and respected official who worked closely with local tournaments on course setup and event administration, was fired after she refused to let a Hall of Fame player who had failed to enter a tournament play in the event anyway, according to multiple sources. Trammell was told, sources say, that she needed to show special consideration to certain players and was let go when she refused. Trammell declined to be interviewed, citing the terms of her separation agreement.