Players Say Thanks to Military
The purpose: Saying thanks to sailors and marines.
The Naval Media Center was at Quail Hollow on Tuesday rounding up players for the commercials. The PSAs will be broadcast on the American Forces Network and on the Direct-To-Sailor TV Network over the next two years.
Colin Montgomerie announced last week that he and his wife, Eimear, have separated 'with a view to divorce.'
'This has been a desperately difficult decision for us both and is a painful time for the family,' the Montgomeries said in a statement. They have been married 14 years and have three children.
Montgomerie has always been tabloid fodder in Britain. Fueling this frenzy is actor Hugh Grant ('Four Weddings and a Funeral'), a frequent golf partner with Montgomerie in pro-celebrity tournaments. Grant was said to have given Mrs. Montgomerie support during the marital strain.
Those close to both sides say the friendship is purely platonic.
Montgomerie pulled out of an Asian tour event last week to meet with his wife, but said he would keep his schedule. He is playing this week in the British Masters.
'As anyone would, I have to carry on with my job,' said Montgomerie, who is 45th in the world ranking and on the bubble to qualify for the U.S. Open and British Open.
CHINESE MAKING INROADS
The largest country is starting to make small inroads in professional golf.
Zhang Lian-Wei became the first player from China to play in the Masters last month, when he shot 77-72 and missed the cut by one shot.
Last weekend, Hong Mei Yang became the first Chinese player to win a tournament in the United States by capturing the IOS Futures Golf Classic in El Paso, Texas, the developmental circuit for the LPGA Tour.
Hong Mei, Chun Wang and Li Chun Zhang were chosen to train in America two years ago. All three qualified for the Futures Tour last year, while Yang missed the 54-hole cut at the LPGA Tour qualifying tournament.
'They will become like Yao Ming in basketball and they will have a very big impact in China for women's golf,' said James Chen, who coaches them at Oak Valley Golf Academy in Beaumont, Calif. 'These three are the pioneers.'
The recent success can't hurt golf's bid to become an Olympic sport.
USGA executive director David Fay, who represents the World Amateur Golf Council in Olympic negotiations, said it is not too late for golf to be included at the 2008 Olympics in Beijing.
A key date is July 2005, when the IOC meets in Singapore to review the Olympic program. It has been said that golf cannot be added unless other sports are dropped.
Fay said adding a new sport to the program usually requires seven years.
'But they have a provision where they had can make changes whenever,' he said. 'The key to me is if they get a sense from the Beijing organizers that they want golf. That would go a long way.'
The news of two Iowa State golfers injured in a car accident Sunday hit home to officials at the John Deere Classic.
The PGA Tour event gave a sponsor's exemption last year to sophomore Tyler Swanson. He opened with rounds of 71-71 to make the cut, and wound up in 64th place at 3-over 291.
Tournament spokesman Barry Cronin said Swanson had written a letter asking for another exemption, and the John Deere Classic was leaning toward giving him one.
Swanson and freshman Curtis Foster were on Interstate 80 when the accident occurred. The latest word from Iowa State is that Swanson was in a coma with a head injury. Foster was in fair condition.
Reality TV has come to golf.
Eight amateurs have been selected to two teams that will start on opposite ends of the country and play 18 of the PGA Tour's most famous holes in 12 states over nine days. Each team travels in a motor home, and they don't know where they're going until the end of each day.
Then, they are given their next course assignment and have to race the clock to get there and play the hole. The lowest cumulative team score will get the winning team an all-expenses trip to the Pebble Beach National Pro-Am.
'Reality television has become such a part of our culture and golf is a sport played by 37 million Americans, so it made sense to join the two,' said Stu Nicol, vice president and executive producer of PGA Tour Productions. 'It's a golf road trip we'd all love to take.'
The show is called 'PGA Tour 18 - Golf's Ultimate Road Trip.' CBS Sports golf analyst David Feherty is the host, and the three one-hour shows will be broadcast Saturday, May 22 and June 6.
The U.S. Amateur likely won't have defending champion Nick Flanagan and runner-up Casey Wittenberg returning this year. Flanagan said he will turn pro after the British Open, and all signs point toward Wittenberg, who tied for 14th at the Masters, turning pro after the U.S. Open. Several agents have contacted PGA Tour events seeking sponsor exemptions on behalf of Wittenberg. ... The PGA Tour is broadening its marketing machine by setting up an office in New York this summer and hiring the William Morris Agency to get its players more involved in the entertainment business. ... Kenny Perry, a seven-time winner on the PGA Tour, was inducted last week into the Kentucky Hall of Fame.
STAT OF THE WEEK
Phil Mickelson has 16 consecutive rounds at par or better, his longest streak in one season since the end of the 2002.
'I played better when I was 17.' - Aree Song, the 54-hole leader at the Chick-Fil-A Charity Championship who closed with a 78 the day after she turned 18.
Copyright 2003 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
Woods favored to miss Farmers Insurance Open cut
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
Monahan buoyed by Tour's sponsor agreements
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.”
Day WDs from Farmers pro-am because of sore back
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.
Farmers inks 7-year extension through 2026
SAN DIEGO – Farmers Insurance has signed a seven-year extension to serve as the title sponsor for the PGA Tour event at Torrey Pines, it was announced Tuesday. The deal will run through 2026.
“Farmers Insurance has been incredibly supportive of the tournament and the Century Club’s charitable initiatives since first committing to become the title sponsor in 2010,” PGA Tour commissioner Jay Monahan said.
“We are extremely grateful for the strong support of Farmers and its active role as title sponsor, and we are excited by the commitment Farmers has made to continue sponsorship of the Farmers Insurance Open for an additional seven years.
In partnership with Farmers, the Century Club – the tournament’s host organization – has contributed more than $20 million to deserving organizations benefiting at-risk youth since 2010.