Jeff Shain looks at the low scoring at the playoff venues, and based on Woody Austin's remarks, this must be stopped because there was just way too much cheering, excitement and a fun viewing to be had! It MUST be stopped!
The notion that playoff tests are supposed to be stiffer is taking a beating during the PGA Tour's version. The average score at all four FedEx Cup events has come in below par.
Despite tougher conditions Sunday, East Lake GC ranks as the tour's second-easiest venue in 2007 at 1.68 strokes below par. Part of that stems from greens recently babied out of intensive care.
That wasn't a factor at the first three events, all of which ranked among the upper third of the PGA Tour's easiest layouts. Last week's BMW Championship was third, The Barclays 11th and the Deutsche Bank Championship 14th.
''If this is going to be our playoffs,'' Woody Austin said, ``I'd get three better venues that are a little bit tougher that might wean out some [players].''If you are going to be Mr. Quotable Woody, let's crack open a dictionary before we use those big words like wean. And despite all of those birdies, somehow the playoffs managed to produce the best player ever as a winner.
Speaking of Woody, I thought it was peculiar no one (at least that I can find) wrote about his hiccup during Saturday's third round. They're bickering about it over on the NBCSports.com message board, and the clip is even up on YouTube.
Steve Hummer took on the same subject and delivers good news: order will be restored next year.
"It's OK to have a tournament where they don't beat us up every day," Phil Mickelson said.Now this was encouraging:
Behind the scenes, though, there did not seem too much concern over how the ridiculous scoring reflected on the tournament and the golf course.
"It's fun to watch, actually. We heard roars that were very similar to about two hours east of here [Augusta National], with all the birdies," tournament director Todd Rhinehart said. "From that perspective I think it's been great for our fans and our hospitality clients and sponsors to witness great golf and a lot of birdies."
But for the egos of Tom Cousins and the members? Apparently not so hot...
And what might the winning score be in 2009, he was asked. "More like 7 or 8 under," Rhinehart said with a smile.
Now, no one wants to see balls plop down like that, but it's a boring course to watch when they are lighting it up. It's even more tedious when everyone is making a series of forgettable pars.
This beauty from Woody Austin spotted on Steve Eubanks' blog:
Behold the Tao of Woody: After shooting back-to-back rounds of 65 and working his way into the final twosome on Saturday with Tiger Woods, golf's resident philosopher, Woody Austin said of the world's best player, "When he's playing well he's not hard to beat, but he's hard to catch."