Tour Driver Tests Tiger Love
Starting this summer, he'll know for sure.
The PGA Tour plans to experiment with a portable device at the 100th Western Open that will measure the trampoline effect in drivers and determine whether they are fit for play.
'It will be interesting to see what the findings are,' Toms said. 'When an equipment rep comes up to you and says, 'Man, this is really close,' what does that mean? That it's over the limit? A lot of guys have picked up a lot of distance. We'll see.'
The USGA and Royal & Ancient have proposed the portable test, which would take effect at the start of next year.
Unlike the current test, which must be administered at the USGA Research and Test Center and requires the club to be taken apart, the portable test will require only a low-speed strike to the club face by a small weight on a pendulum.
PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem mentioned the experiment during a players' meeting last week during The Players Championship . None of the players seemed to mind.
'It's important for all of us to be on the same playing field,' Tiger Woods said. 'That's why we should test drivers on the first tee, to make sure everyone is legit.'
The trampoline effect is based primarily on the thin face of drivers. While manufacturers send their new drivers to the USGA for approval, there are no guarantees that every club -- especially those close to the limit -- meet the standard.
'I've had players come up to me and say, 'Do you think some of the stuff we're getting is too hot?'' Davis Love III said. 'They (equipment reps) will hand them to us with a number on them and say, 'This one is close.' And when I hit one that's close, I can't control it.
'There's definitely some that are right on the edge, or over it,' he said. 'It will be nice for a guy to know. I'll be the first one to get in line.'
SPRING EXAMS: Tiger Woods' father says the biggest challenge facing his son's bid for a record third straight Masters might be the weather -- not what it does to the golf course, but how it affects his allergies.
'The weather will affect him differently than the other guys because Tiger is allergic to everything on the golf course,' Earl Woods said. 'He has taken allergy shots as a kid and he has developed a resistance to everything. But when he gets to Georgia in the spring, that pollen gets to him.'
Woods has managed to get by, though. He is 35 under in his last 10 rounds at Augusta, all of which have been under par.
'We have air purifiers that we put in his house, and in his room, so he can sleep properly and so his allergies won't overcome him,' Woods said. 'He does not like to play with medicine in his body.'
TENNIS, ANYONE?: It took awhile, but Mike Cunning showed he made the right decision by giving up tennis for golf. He won his first title in seven years Sunday at the Indian Open in New Delhi on the Asian PGA Tour.
As a teenager, Cunning once toured Europe with a United States junior tennis team.
'I had no wheels, no speed,' the 44-year-old Cunning said. 'So, I traded the tennis rack for a set of golf clubs.'
Among the players he faced in junior tennis was John McEnroe.
'The matches didn't last long,' Cunning said.
SPECIAL PRESENTATION: Davis Love III was not in the mood for a raucous celebration after his first victory of the season.
Love usually stays -- and plays -- at the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am with Jim Griggs, who lives on the Monterey Peninsula and is former chairman of the PGA Tour Golf Course Properties board that oversees the Tournament Players Club network.
Griggs didn't play in the pro-am this year, and Love told him before leaving the house Sunday morning that 'I'm going to get you something good today.'
He won at Pebble Beach, then returned home with the trophy only to discover that Griggs had been taken to the hospital with a mild stroke.
'We ended up taking it to the hospital and leaving it for him there,' Love said. 'He was in good shape, good spirits.'
FAVORITE MAJOR: Tell Davis Love III he can win only one more major championship and he is torn between the Masters and the Open.
Not the U.S. Open -- the British Open.
'There's just something about lifting the claret jug and all the history,' he said.
Despite his emotions for the British Open, it is the only major where Love has never seriously contended. His best finish was a tie for seventh at Carnoustie, and he had to shoot a final round in the 60s to get his three top 10s in the Open.
DIVOTS: Padraig Harrington moved up to No. 8 in the Official World Golf Ranking and ahead of Sergio Garcia , the first time the Irishman has been Europe's highest-ranked player. ... Scotty Cameron putters have been used by the winner in all 12 PGA Tour events this year. ... Annika Srenstam brought Nike Golf plenty of exposure by wearing its shiny red slip-ons in the final round of last year's Kraft Nabisco Championship. She announced on the eve of this year's major that she has signed a shoe deal with Callaway Golf, her longtime sponsor.
STAT OF THE WEEK: David Toms has missed the 36-hole cut in his last four PGA Tour events.
FINAL WORD: 'Arnold will be there when he's got wheels on his coffin. They'll be pushing him down the fairway with a little putter coming out.' -- Nick Faldo, on Palmer playing in the Masters at 73 for the 49th time.
Day's wife shares emotional story of miscarriage
Jason Day’s wife revealed on social media that the couple had a miscarriage last month.
Ellie Day, who announced her pregnancy on Nov. 4, posted an emotional note on Instagram that she lost the baby on Thanksgiving.
Swipe to see what’s up in my world. It’s long-winded.... short version, we lost the baby. Had to share this since we had shared the news already. I know you’re all so supportive and kind. I just couldn’t face it before. Now let’s get back to our regularly scheduled programming. #ihavealotoffeelings #andphotostocatchupon
“I found out the baby had no heartbeat anymore. I was devastated,” she wrote. “I snuck out the back door of my doctor, a hot, sobbing, mascara-covered mess. Two and a half weeks went by witih me battling my heart and brain about what was happening in my body, wondering why this wouldn’t just be over.”
The Days, who have two children, Dash and Lucy, decided to go public to help others who have suffered similar heartbreak.
“I hope you know you aren’t alone and I hope you feel God wrap his arms around you when you feel the depths of sorrow and loss,” she wrote.
Newsmaker of the Year: No. 5, Sergio Garcia
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.
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.
Green jacket tour
Man of the people
Ace at 17th at Sawgrass
Departure from TaylorMade
Squashed beef with Paddy
Victory at Valderrama
Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017
GolfChannel.com is counting down the top 10 Newsmakers of the Year as voted on by Golf Channel’s writers, editors, reporters and producers. Check out the list below, including future release dates:
No. 4: Dec. 13
No. 3: Dec. 14
No. 2: Dec. 15
No. 1: Dec. 18
Montana parents can't watch kids play high school golf
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.