Beem Needs Strong Week to Play On

By Associated PressAugust 30, 2007, 4:00 pm
DeutscheBank Logo 2007NORTON, Mass. -- Golf's new FedExCup might not seem like a true playoff to Tiger Woods. Rich Beem and Brett Quigley know exactly what's at stake, though.
 
Play well, or go home.
 
Beem and Quigley need to finish no worse than second in this weekend's Deutsche Bank Championship at the TPC of Boston or they are out of the PGA TOUR's new playoff. Only the top 70 on the points list (and ties) will play in Chicago next week.
 
'Anywhere between first and second, I'll be all right, but other than that ...,' Beem said Wednesday. 'That's just the nature of how this works, you know? It's kind of exciting. Hopefully the fans are kind of feeling that same way.'
 
The PGA TOUR Playoffs award players points based on their performance over the summer, then gradually cuts the field to 30 over three events leading up to the TOUR Championship. But it also allows some of the top players from the 'regular season' -- Woods, most notably -- to advance without even playing.
 
And some are questioning whether 'playoff' is the right term.
 
'I don't understand it, to be very honest with you,' said Jack Nicklaus, who was at the course on Wednesday for a Presidents Cup meeting. 'I think that the whole objective was to get the guys to play, and the first week Tiger skips. So I didn't understand that at all.'
 
Nicklaus said he likes the idea of a playoff that would encourage everyone to play at the end of the season. But he wishes it were simpler, so players and fans could follow along during the round.
 
'To get the public interested, they've got to understand what's going on,' Nicklaus said. 'Very simple: when you play a football game and you're in the playoffs, you're a wildcard team and you're playing the division leader, you win, you go on. You lose, you go home. We don't exactly have that here. So I think they'll tweak it someplace.'
 
Until then, the system has Beem No. 113 on the list with 87,063 points; Quigley is 115th with 87,000, 17,950 points behind Stricker and 3,525 behind 70th place Steve Flesch. First place at the Deutsche Bank this weekend gets 9,000 points, with second getting 5,400 and third taking 3,400.
 
Anyone below Justin Leonard -- 85th on the points list -- needs a top 10 finish to make it to the BMW Championship outside of Chicago.
 
Despite the tall order, Quigley said he was liberated by the knowledge that he has to finish in the top two to advance.
 
'It's good knowing now, because I think last week a lot of us didn't really have a clue what the points were going to be during each event,' Quigley said. 'And now that we've kind of got a handle on it, I think I know I've got to play great this week.'
 
On the other hand, the players near the top of the list can skip the tournament entirely and still move on to the next round.
 
That's what Woods did at The Barclays in New York, choosing to relinquish the lead he earned over the summer to rest up after winning two weeks in a row. He fell from first in the standings to fourth, with last week's winner Steve Stricker taking over the top spot.
 
Woods could be back in the lead by Monday night, as long as Stricker doesn't finish second.
 
'He's now got to come from behind, which he probably won't have a problem doing,' Stricker said. 'But it just adds more excitement to the playoff system. And I think it brings more attention to our game, like I said, during the time of year that we were just kind of -- the majors were done and golf was kind of on the back burner was football is starting and all that kind of stuff. I really see it as a positive.
 
'You know, I'm happy as heck to be a part of it and to be in the position I'm at.'
 
Related Links:
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    What's in the bag: CareerBuilder winner Rahm

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 22, 2018, 10:37 pm

    Jon Rahm defeated Andrew Landry in a playoff to earn his second PGA Tour title at the CareerBuilder Challenge. Here's what's in his bag:

    Driver: TaylorMade M4 (9.5 degrees), with Aldila Tour Green 75 TX shaft

    Fairway wood: TaylorMade M3 (19 degrees), with Aldila Tour Green 75 TX shaft

    Irons: TaylorMade P790 (3), P750 (4-PW), with Project X 6.5 shafts

    Wedges: TaylorMade Milled Grind (52, 56 degrees), Milled Grind Hi-Toe (60 degrees), with Project X 6.5 shafts

    Putter: TaylorMade Spider Tour Red

    Ball: TaylorMade TP5x

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    Strange irked by Rahm-Landry friendly playoff

    By Jason CrookJanuary 22, 2018, 9:45 pm

    Curtis Strange knows a thing or two about winning golf tournaments, and based on his reaction to the CareerBuilder Challenge playoff on Sunday, it’s safe to say he did things a little differently while picking up 17 PGA Tour victories in his Hall-of-Fame career.

    While Jon Rahm and Andrew Landry were “battling” through four extra holes, Strange, 62, tweeted his issues with the duo’s constant chit-chat and friendly banter down the stretch at La Quinta Country Club, where Rahm eventually came out on top.

    The two-time U.S. Open champ then engaged with some followers to explain his point a little more in depth.

    So, yeah ... don't think he's changing his perspective on this topic anytime soon ever.

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    Randall's Rant: The Euros won't just roll over

    By Randall MellJanuary 22, 2018, 9:36 pm

    The Ryder Cup may not be the King Kong of golf events yet, but you can hear the biennial international team event thumping its chest a full eight months out.

    As anticipation for this year’s big events goes, there is more buzz about Europe’s bid to hold off a rejuvenated American effort in Paris in September than there is about the Masters coming up in April.

    Thank Europe’s phenomenal success last weekend for that.

    And Rory McIlroy’s impassioned remarks in Abu Dhabi.

    And the provocative bulletin board material a certain Sports Illustrated writer provided the Europeans a couple months ago, with a stinging assault on the Euro chances that read like an obituary.

    McIlroy was asked in a news conference before his 2018 debut last week what he was most excited about this year.

    The Ryder Cup topped his list.

    Though McIlroy will be trying to complete the career Grand Slam at Augusta National come April, he talked more about the Ryder Cup than he did any of the game’s major championships.

    When asked a follow-up about the American team’s resurgence after a task-force overhaul and the injection of young, new star power, McIlroy nearly started breaking down the matchup. He talked about the young Americans and how good they are.

    “Yeah, the Americans have been, obviously, very buoyant about their chances and whatever, but it’s never as easy as that. ... The Ryder Cup’s always close,” McIlroy said. “I think we’ll have a great team, and it definitely won’t be as easy as they think it’s going to be.”



    McIlroy may have been talking about Alan Shipnuck’s bold prediction after the American Presidents Cup rout last fall.

    Or similar assertions from TV analysts.

    “The Ryder Cup is dead – you just don’t know it yet,” Shipnuck wrote. “One of the greatest events in sport is on the verge of irrelevancy. The young, talented, hungry golfers from the United States, benefitting from the cohesive leadership of the Task Force era, are going to roll to victory in 2018 in Paris.”

    European Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn won’t find words that will motivate the Euros more than that as he watches his prospective players jockey to make the team.

    And, boy, did they jockey last weekend.

    The Euros dominated across the planet, not that they did it with the Ryder Cup as some rallying cry, because they didn’t. But it was a heck of an encouraging start to the year for Bjorn to witness.

    Spain’s Jon Rahm won the CareerBuilder Challenge on the PGA Tour, England’s Tommy Fleetwood started the week at Abu Dhabi paired with American and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson and won the European Tour event, and Spain’s Sergio Garcia won the Singapore Open in a rout on the Asian Tour.

    And McIlroy looked close to being in midseason form, tying for third in his first start in three months.

    Yes, it’s only January, and the Ryder Cup is still a long way off, with so much still to unfold, but you got an early sense from McIlroy how much defending European turf will mean to him and the Euros in Paris in September.

    The Masters is great theater, the U.S. Open a rigorous test, The Open and the PGA Championship historically important, too, but the Ryder Cup touches a nerve none of those do.

    The Ryder Cup stokes more fervor, provokes more passion and incites more vitriol than any other event in golf.

    More bulletin board material, too.

    Yeah, it’s a long way off, but you can already hear the Ryder Cup’s King Kong like footsteps in its distant approach. Watching how the American and European teams come together will be an ongoing drama through spring and summer.

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    Quail Hollow officials promise players easier conditions

    By Rex HoggardJanuary 22, 2018, 9:14 pm

    Quail Hollow Club - a staple on the PGA Tour since 2003 - debuted as a longer, tougher version of itself at last year’s PGA Championship, receiving mixed reviews from players.

    The course played to a lengthened 7,600 yards at last year’s PGA and a 73.46 stroke average, the toughest course in relation to par on Tour in 2017. As a result, it left some players less than excited to return to the Charlotte, N.C.-area layout later this spring for the Wells Fargo Championship.

    It’s that lack of enthusiasm that led officials at Quail Hollow to send a video to players saying, essentially, that the course players have lauded for years will be back in May.

    The video, which includes Quail Hollow president Johnny Harris and runs nearly five minutes, begins with an explanation of how the first hole, which played as a 524-yard par 4 at the PGA, will play much shorter at the Wells Fargo Championship.

    “I had a number of my friends who were playing in the tournament tell me that tee was better suited as a lemonade stand,” Harris joked of the new tee box on the fourth hole. “I doubt we’ll ever see that tee used again in competition.”

    Harris also explained that the greens, which became too fast for some, will be “softer” for this year’s Wells Fargo Championship.