Sutton 2004 Ryder Cup Captain

By Associated PressOctober 22, 2002, 4:00 pm
NEW YORK -- Hal Sutton has agreed to be the Ryder Cup captain for the United States in 2004 after serving as the team's emotional leader as a player.
 
Sutton met with PGA of America executives last week during the Disney World Golf Classic, according to a PGA Tour source who spoke only on condition of anonymity. He decided to accept the job after talking it over with his family, the source said.
 
The PGA of America said the captain will be announced Thursday.
 
The 2004 matches will be played at Oakland Hills Country Club outside Detroit.

Sutton will be in charge of bringing the Ryder Cup back to the United States after the Americans lost to Europe at The Belfry by the largest margin in 17 years. Europe has taken the Ryder Cup home after six of the past nine meetings.
 
U.S. captain Curtis Strange was criticized for putting his best two players -- Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods -- at the bottom of the lineup, although Mickelson wound up losing a critical match to Phillip Price, ranked 119th.
 
Sutton was asked last week at Disney about the criticism that losing Ryder Cup captains always receive, saying that would never keep him from accepting the job.
 
'The neat part about that is you're in a big enough position that everybody not making that decision can sit around and criticize you,' Sutton said. 'If you're afraid to be second-guessed, you better not make any decisions.'
 
Paul McGinley clinched the Ryder Cup for Europe by making a 12-foot birdie on the 17th hole to square his match with Jim Furyk, then tying the final hole for a half-point by making an 8-foot par putt.
 
'We shouldn't lose these things the way we're losing them,' Sutton said last week. 'There's way too much talent over here.'
 
Asked about his prospects of being a Ryder Cup captain, Sutton said at Disney that he would be honored if asked.
 
'Making Ryder Cup teams, whether as a player or a captain, is what you strive to do when you're young or old,' he said.
 
Reached on his cell phone Tuesday, Sutton declined to confirm his selection.
 
He will be 46 at the next Ryder Cup, although he still plans to play a full schedule on the PGA Tour next year. One reason he was thought to be hesitant about the offer was the appearance that he was giving up on his tour career.
 
He has won 14 times in a career of amazing peaks and shocking lows.
 
Sutton was considered golf's next star when he beat Jack Nicklaus in the 1983 PGA Championship at Riviera. He won seven times in his first five years, but then went into a deep slump, winning just one tournament over the next 11 years.
 
His return to top play was just as stunning.
 
He won the 1998 Tour Championship, one of six tournaments he has won since turning 40. Another was The Players Championship in 2000, when he went toe-to-toe with Woods in the final round and beat him by one stroke.
 
Sutton played on four Ryder Cup teams, none more memorable than 1999, when he was the anchor of a U.S. team that rallied to beat Europe at Brookline. Sutton went 3-1-1.
 
He has had nagging back injuries and sleep apnea the last 18 months, but still rallied to win an alternate-shot match with Scott Verplank at The Belfry. Sutton was 1-1, losing to Bernhard Langer in singles.
 
Europe's captain is expected to be chosen by the end of the year. Langer and Ian Woosnam are among the candidates.
 

Newsmaker of the Year: No. 5, Sergio Garcia

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 1:00 pm

This was the year it finally happened for Sergio Garcia.

The one-time teen phenom, known for years as “El Nino,” entered the Masters as he had dozens of majors beforehand – shouldered with the burden of being the best player without a major.

Garcia was 0-for-72 driving down Magnolia Lane in April, but after a thrilling final round and sudden-death victory over Justin Rose, the Spaniard at long last captured his elusive first major title.

The expectation for years was that Garcia might land his white whale on a British links course, or perhaps at a U.S. Open where his elite ball-striking might shine. Instead it was on the storied back nine at Augusta National that he came alive, chasing down Rose thanks in part to a memorable approach on No. 15 that hit the pin and led to an eagle.


Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year


A green jacket was only the start of a transformative year for Garcia, 37, who heaped credit for his win on his then-fiancee, Angela Akins. The two were married in July, and months later the couple announced that they were expecting their first child to arrive just ahead of Garcia’s return to Augusta, where he'll host his first champions’ dinner.

And while players often cling to the notion that a major win won’t intrinsically change them, there was a noticeable difference in Garcia over the summer months. The weight of expectation, conscious or otherwise, seemed to lift almost instantly. Like other recent Masters champs, he took the green jacket on a worldwide tour, with stops at Wimbledon and a soccer match between Real Madrid and Barcelona.

The player who burst onto the scene as a baby-faced upstart is now a grizzled veteran with nearly two decades of pro golf behind him. While the changes this year occurred both on and off the course, 2017 will always be remembered as the year when Garcia finally, improbably, earned the title of major champion.


Masters victory


Article: Garcia defeats Rose to win Masters playoff

Article: Finally at peace: Garcia makes major breakthrough

Article: Garcia redeems career, creates new narrative


Video: See the putt that made Sergio a major champ


Green jacket tour

Article: Take a look at Sergio's crazy, hectic media tour

Article: Garcia with fiancée, green jacket at Wimbledon

Article: Watch: Garcia kicks off El Clasico in green jacket


Man of the people


Article: SERGIO! Garcia finally gets patrons on his side

Article: Fan finally caddies for Sergio after asking 206 times

Article: Sergio donates money for Texas flood relief


Article: Connelly, Garcia paired years after photo together


Ace at 17th at Sawgrass


Growing family

Article: Sergio, Angela get married; Kenny G plays reception

Article: Garcia, wife expecting first child in March 2018


Departure from TaylorMade


Article: Masters champ Garcia splits with TaylorMade


Squashed beef with Paddy

Article: Harrington: Garcia was a 'sore loser'

Article: Sergio, Padraig had 'great talk,' are 'fine'


Victory at Valderrama


Article: Garcia gets first win since Masters at Valderrama

Getty Images

Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 12:30 pm
Getty Images

Montana parents can't watch kids play high school golf

By Grill Room TeamDecember 11, 2017, 9:47 pm

Well, this is a one new one.

According to a report from KTVQ in Montana, this line in the Montana State High School Association rule book all but forbids spectators from observing high school golf in that state:

“No spectators/fans are allowed on the course except for certain locations as designated by the tournament manager and club professional.”

Part of the issue, according to the report, is that most courses don't bother to designate those "certain locations" leaving parents unable to watch their kids compete.

“If you tell a parent that they can’t watch their kid play in the Thanksgiving Day football game, they would riot,” Chris Kelley, a high school golf parent, told KTVQ.

The report lists illegal outside coaching as one of the rule's chief motivations, but Montana State women's golf coach Brittany Basye doesn't quite buy that.

“I can go to a softball game and I can sit right behind the pitcher. I can make hand signals,” she is quoted in the report. “I can yell out names. I can do the same thing on a softball field that might affect that kid. Football games we can yell as loud as we want when someone is making a pass or a catch.”

The MHSA has argued that unlike other sports that are played in a confined area, the sprawling nature of a golf course would make it difficult to hire enough marshals to keep unruly spectators in check.

Meanwhile, there's a lawyer quoted in the report claiming this is some kind of civil rights issue.

Worth note, Montana is one of only two states that doesn't allow spectators on the course. The other state, Alaska, does not offer high school golf.

PGA Tour suspends Hensby for anti-doping violation

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 11, 2017, 8:02 pm

Mark Hensby has been suspended for one year by the PGA Tour for violating the Tour’s anti-doping policy by failing to provide a sample after notification.

The Tour made the announcement Monday, reporting that Hensby will be eligible to return on Oct. 26, 2018.

The statement reads:

The PGA Tour announced today that Mark Hensby has violated the Tour Anti-Doping Policy for failing to provide a drug testing sample after notification and has been suspended for a period of one year. He will be eligible to return on Oct. 26, 2018.

Hensby, 46, won the John Deere Classic in 2004. He played the Web.com Tour this past year, playing just 14 events. He finished 142nd on the money list. He once ranked among the top 30 in the Official World Golf Ranking but ranks No. 1,623 today.

The Sunshine Tour recently suspended player Etienne Bond for one year for failing a drug test. Players previously suspended by the PGA Tour for violating the anti-doping policy include Scott Stallings and Doug Barron.

The PGA Tour implemented revisions to its anti-doping program with the start of the 2017-18 season. The revisions include blood testing and the supplementation of the Tour’s prohibited list to include all of the substances and methods on the World Anti-Doping Agency prohibited list. As part of this season’s revisions, the Tour announced it would also begin reporting suspensions due to recreational drug use.

The Tour said it would not issue further comment on Hensby's suspension.