We Have A New Undisputed Champion...

...in our second annual fifth-of-four majors watch. Ken Carpenter of The Golf Gazette has blown by the field to claim the  trophy given only to a golf writer so desperate for column material that he declares The Players Championship a major.

At a special ceremony (time and location TBD), Carpenter will receive the bronze statuette featuring a tweed-cap wearing male reading PGA Tour Partners while seated on the toilet of a media center Port-O-Potty.

Pundits, have you ever seen such a clear cut winner?

Since no one else will step up, I guess I’ll just have to say it.

The Players is a major championship.

There. How hard was that?

Who’s to say what is or isn’t a major? By whose authority does a golf tournament earn that distinction? No one’s authority. There is no czar of golf. Old Tom Morris did not pass down some engraved tablets to Francis Ouimet spelling out the requirements for a major.

So, let’s stop all the veiled questions and nonsensical arguments.

The Players is a major championship.

 And this is before he found out Kenny G would be serenading the champion Sunday night!

 More award winning writing:

In defense of the tournament that offers the biggest purse, the richest winner’s share, and the deepest field in golf, here are nine more reasons why …
The Players is a major championship.
1) There are no amateurs or club pros in The Players. In all of the other so-called major tournaments, a significant portion of the field has no chance to make the cut, let alone win the tournament. The Club Pro champion hasn’t made the cut at the PGA Championship since 1983. The U.S. Amateur champion has made the cut in eight of the past 20 Masters, and eight of the past 19 U.S. Opens. (Quick – Can you name the reigning U.S. Am champ? Answer below.)

2) The Players has a 156-man field. The Masters, which is not much more than a big member-guest outing with good TV coverage, routinely has fewer than 100 real competitors, not counting the amateurs and septuagenarians who clutter up the proceedings.

3) Many major champions have also won The Players. There have been 33 victories distributed among 27 different men at The Players, and 19 of them have also won at least one of the other four majors. So adjust Jack Nicklaus’ major total to 21, Tiger Woods’ to 13 and let’s go play.

And add 1 to Jodie Mudd's total!

4) The Players is played in Florida. Florida has more golf courses than any other state. Florida is home to the PGA Tour, the LPGA Tour, the Duramed Futures Tour, the PGA of America, the World Golf Village, the World Golf Hall of Fame and The First Tee program. The best golf state deserves a major championship, and since the U.S. Open and PGA Championship are played in midsummer – as if Tulsa, Okla., is any cooler than Orlando in August -- and the British Open will go to Dubai or China before it ever comes here, The Players is the choice.

I've always believed that the home of the Duramed Futures Tour offices makes The Players major-worthy! Finally someone listens.

5) The Players has the history and the tradition. Deane Beman’s brainchild has spanned the generations – Sam Snead (born 1912), Julius Boros (1920), Arnold Palmer (1929), Billy Casper (1931), Gary Player (1935) and Tom Watson (1949) played in it. Boros and son Guy played in it, Jack Nicklaus and son Gary played in it, Al Geiberger and son Brent played in it, Dave Stockton and Dave Jr. played in it. This year marks the 34th renewal of The Players, and anything contested in four different decades qualifies as traditional.

And I've always said, if both Dave Sr. and Dave Jr. have played in your event, it's a major!

6) The most famous hole in golf often decides The Players. Love it or hate it, No. 17 on the Stadium Course is the single most recognizable hole in the game. Mention “the island green,” and every golf fan instantly knows what you’re talking about. It’s also offers best spectator viewing area, where the average fans sit in front of the skyboxes. Now, name the signature hole at Oakmont Country Club, host of this year’s U.S. Open? In this year’s PGA, which of the 18 will be the most dramatic hole at Southern Hills Country Club? Not even the members can say for sure.

7) The PGA Tour deserves at least one major. Why should the United States Golf Association, the Royal & Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews (Scotland), the PGA of America and Augusta National Golf Club have dibs on the majors when they stage just one event a year? The PGA Tour is the entity that has changed the game, and the Tour is made up of its players. The Players is a major championship, for the players.

8) International stars build their schedules around The Players.

Eh...not so sure about that one Ken.

Especially now that the tournament dates have been changed, the world’s top golfers can plan their preparation for The Masters in April, The Players in May, the U.S. Open in June, the British Open in July and the PGA in August. Beautiful synergy.

9) The golf course is great. Once decried as “tricked up,” and even ridiculed for its spectator-friendly design, the Stadium Course has evolved into an outstanding track that the players love. Some of Pete “Diabolical” Dye’s hard-edged design has softened over the years, but the course remains a very solid test of shotmaking, from the first tee to the 18th green.

Do you need more reasons why The Players is a major championship? There’s the front nine, you come up with the back nine.

Oh, let's not.