Notes Jack Reflects on Losing His Father

By Associated PressMay 30, 2006, 4:00 pm
DUBLIN, Ohio -- Jack Nicklaus recalled walking off the ninth green at Augusta National last year in what was his final appearance in the Masters, turning to his son Jackie and saying, Dont think it hasnt been charming.
 
He nearly got choked up telling that story Tuesday because of what the words meant.
 
Some 35 years earlier, when his father was dying of cancer and was being wheeled into an operating room, Charlie Nicklaus waved at his family and said the same words.
 
Nicklaus spent some 10 minutes talking about the relationship he had with his father, who died in 1970 during his longest drought in the majors in the prime of his career. It was relevant because Tiger Woods is skipping the Memorial for the first time in his career, still coping with the death of his father on May 3.
 
Everybody reacts differently to different things, Nicklaus said. It would be a pure guess on my part what his reaction would be.
 
Nicklaus said he tried to reach Woods, who wasnt taking calls. He talked to Woods wife and left a message that if you want to call me, fine; if you dont, its fine. You know what my thoughts are.
 
Nicklaus had gone 10 majors without winning when his father died Feb. 19, 1970. He said he had been playing sloppy golf, not putting in enough practice or getting the most out of his ability. He said the death of his father caused him to rededicate himself to dominance.
 
He lived for what I did, Nicklaus said. I think that was his greatest thrill and pleasure. And I think I let him down. He would have kicked me in the rear end.
 
Then he paused and smiled as he considered Woods.
 
You cant say he needs to be kicked in the rear end, Nicklaus said.
 
RETURN OF THE KING?
Two weeks after Arnold Palmer withdrew from the Senior PGA Championship, the King submitted his entry for the U.S. Senior Open, to be played July 6-9 at Prairie Dunes in Kansas.
 
It would be his first official event of the year.
 
My golf has certainly not been up to par of late, Palmer, 76, said on his web site. Hopefully, by the time I get to Kansas, my game will be much better.
 
Palmer won the 1981 U.S. Senior Open at Oakland Hills and has played in all 24 championships that followed. His last competitive appearance was in the Champions Skins Game in Hawaii. He last played a Champions Tour event in Houston last October.
 
OPEN EXEMPTIONS
Ryder Cup captain Tom Lehman easily stayed inside the top 50 in the world ranking this week, making him one of 13 players who earned exemptions to the U.S. Open through various criteria.
 
Lehman was No. 47 and among six players who had to rely on their top-50 ranking to get a tee time at Winged Foot, the smallest number in the last six years. The others were Darren Clarke, Rod Pampling, Trevor Immelman, Robert Allenby and Zach Johnson.
 
Paul Casey, Rory Sabbatini and Geoff Ogilvy are exempt through the world ranking and various money lists on their tours.
 
Carl Pettersson slipped out of the top 50 by a fraction of a point and will have to qualify on Monday unless he wins the Memorial. Pettersson won in Tampa Bay last year, and the U.S. Open exempts anyone with two PGA Tour victories through this week.
 
Lee Westwood of England, who had been No. 52, missed the cut at the BMW Championship at Wentworth and slipped to No. 55. He had said he would not go through the U.S. Open qualifier in England because he was playing the Memorial, although his status became unclear when he withdrew from the Memorial.
 
Monday also was a deadline for the British Open, and Brett Wetterich will be making his debut in golfs oldest championship. Wetterich won the Byron Nelson Championship earlier this month and is 17th on the PGA Tour money list. The British Open takes the top three players not otherwise eligible who are among the top 20 on the money list after the St. Jude Classic.
 
NAME CHANGE
Arnold Palmer is taking over his golf course design, changing the name to Arnold Palmer Design Company and moving headquarters in Florida from Ponte Vedra Beach to Orlando.
 
The move will allow Palmer to be more active in his roles as president and chairman of the company that has been around 35 years and has nearly 300 courses either open or being built in 38 states and 23 countries. Among his courses is The K Club in Ireland, which will host the Ryder Cup in September.
 
Another reason for the changes is the illness of Ed Seay, with whom Palmer founded the company in 1971. Seay no longer is fully active, but will stay involved as a personal counselor to Palmer.
 
Since my golf has not been up to the standards I have always set for myself, I have not been playing in tour events this year, Palmer said. So that gives me the time to be more in charge of the company and personally get more involved in the designing. This is something that I have wanted to do for many years. With the company right at my club in Orlando, I can be hands-on much more of the time.
 
DIVOTS
Evian Masters on the LPGA Tour has raised its purse to $3 million because of the favorable exchange rate with the euro. That makes it the second-richest purse in womens golf, behind only the U.S Womens Open at $3.1 million. ... The Canadian PGA has canceled its PGA Championship because two sponsors pulled out. It was co-sanctioned as a Nationwide Tour event the last five years. ... The LPGA tournament in Orlando, Fla., sponsored by Ginn Clubs & Resorts will be held next year April 12-15, the week after the Masters and going up against the Verizon Heritage at Hilton Head, one of the more popular stops on the PGA TOUR. ... It will be easier getting to Pinehurst this summer by air. Delta Air Lines has added nonstop flights between Atlanta and Pinehurst six times a week starting June 22.
 
STAT OF THE WEEK
Jay Haas has made 589 cuts on the PGA TOUR, one short of the record held by Tom Kite. Haas, who has won three straight Champions Tour events, is playing this week at the Memorial.
 
FINAL WORD
We can always find excuses. Were golfers.' Bart Bryant, who has started slowly after knee surgery at the end of last year.
 
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    Perez skips Torrey, 'upset' with Ryder Cup standings

    By Will GrayJanuary 24, 2018, 2:19 am

    Pat Perez is unhappy about his standing on the U.S. Ryder Cup points list, and his situation won't improve this week.

    Perez won the CIMB Classic during the fall portion of this season, and he followed that with a T-5 finish at the inaugural CJ Cup. But he didn't receive any Ryder Cup points for either result because of a rule enacted by the American task force prior to the 2014 Ryder Cup which only awards points during the calendar year of the biennial matches as well as select events like majors and WGCs during the prior year.

    As a result, Perez is currently 17th in the American points race - behind players like Patrick Reed, Zach Johnson, Bill Haas and James Hahn, none of whom have won a tournament since the 2016 Ryder Cup - as he looks to make a U.S. squad for the first time at age 42.

    "That kind of upset me a little bit, the fact that I'm (17) on the list, but I should probably be (No.) 3 or 4," Perez told Golf Digest. "So it kind of put a bitter taste in my mouth. The fact that you win on the PGA Tour and you beat some good players, yet you don't get any points because of what our committee has decided to do."

    Perez won't be earning any points this week because he has opted to tee it up at the European Tour's Omega Dubai Desert Classic. The decision comes after Perez finished T-21 last week at the Singapore Open, and it means that the veteran is missing the Farmers Insurance Open in his former hometown of San Diego for the first time since 2001.

    Perez went to high school a few minutes from Torrey Pines, and he defeated a field that included Tiger Woods to win the junior world title on the South Course in 1993. His father, Tony, has been a longtime starter on the tournament's opening hole, and Perez was a runner-up in 2014 and tied for fourth last year.

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    Woods favored to miss Farmers Insurance Open cut

    By Will GrayJanuary 24, 2018, 1:54 am

    If the Las Vegas bookmakers are to be believed, folks in the San Diego area hoping to see Tiger Woods this week might want to head to Torrey Pines early.

    Woods is making his first competitive start of the year this week at the Farmers Insurance Open, and it will be his first official start on the PGA Tour since last year's event. He missed nearly all of 2017 because of a back injury before returning with a T-9 finish last month at the Hero World Challenge.

    But the South Course at Torrey Pines is a far different test than Albany, and the Westgate Las Vegas SuperBook lists Woods as a -180 favorite to miss the 36-hole cut. It means bettors must wager $180 to win $100, while his +150 odds to make the cut mean a bettor can win $150 with a $100 wager.

    Woods is listed at 25/1 to win. He won the tournament for the seventh time in 2013, but in three appearances since he has missed the 36-hole cut, missed the 54-hole cut and withdrawn after 12 holes.

    Here's a look at the various Woods-related prop bets available at the Westgate:

    Will Woods make the 36-hole cut? Yes +150, No -180

    Lowest single-round score (both courses par 72): Over/Under 70

    Highest single-round score: Over/Under 74.5

    Will Woods finish inside the top 10? Yes +350, No -450

    Will Woods finish inside the top 20? Yes +170, No -200

    Will Woods withdraw during the tournament? Yes +650, No -1000

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    Monahan buoyed by Tour's sponsor agreements

    By Rex HoggardJanuary 24, 2018, 12:27 am

    SAN DIEGO – Farmers Insurance announced on Tuesday at Torrey Pines a seven-year extension of the company’s sponsorship of the Southern California PGA Tour event. This comes on the heels of Sony extending its sponsorship of the year’s first full-field event in Hawaii through 2022.

    Although these might seem to be relatively predictable moves, considering the drastic makeover of the Tour schedule that will begin with the 2018-19 season, it is a telling sign of the confidence corporations have in professional golf.

    “It’s a compliment to our players and the value that the sponsors are achieving,” Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said.

    Monahan said that before 2014 there were no 10-year title sponsorship agreements in place. Now there are seven events sponsored for 10-years, and another five tournaments that have agreements in place of at least seven years.

    “What it means is, it gives organizations like the Century Club [which hosts this week’s Farmers Insurance Open], when you have that level of stability on a long-term basis that allows you to invest in your product, to grow interest and to grow the impact of it,” Monahan said. “You experienced what this was like in 2010 or seen other tournaments that you don’t know what the future is.S o to go out and sell and inspire a community and you can’t state that we have a long-term agreement it’s more difficult.”

    Events like this year’s Houston Open, Colonial in Fort Worth, Texas, and The National all currently don’t have title sponsors – although officials at Colonial are confident they can piece together a sponsorship package. But even that is encouraging to Monahan considering the uncertainty surrounding next season’s schedule, which will include the PGA Championship moving to May and The Players to March as well as a pre-Labor Day finish to the season.

    “When you look back historically to any given year [the number of events needing sponsors] is lower than the typical average,” Monahan said. “As we start looking to a new schedule next year, you get excited about a great schedule with a great group of partners.”

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    Day WDs from Farmers pro-am because of sore back

    By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 24, 2018, 12:07 am

    SAN DIEGO – Jason Day has withdrawn from the Wednesday pro-am at the Farmers Insurance Open, citing a sore back.

    Day, the 2015 champion, played a practice round with Tiger Woods and Bryson DeChambeau on Tuesday at Torrey Pines, and he is still expected to play in the tournament.

    Day was replaced in the pro-am by Whee Kim. 

    Making his first start since the Australian Open in November, Day is scheduled to tee off at 1:30 p.m. ET Thursday alongside Jon Rahm and Brandt Snedeker.