Press Pass PLAYERS Move Golf Fashion

By Golf Channel DigitalMarch 21, 2007, 4:00 pm
Press PassEach week, Golf Channel experts and analysts offer their thoughts and opinions on hot topics in the world of golf with the Press Pass. You can also give your take on our questions. Just click on the link and e-mail your responses to all four questions to us. We'll publish select answers each Friday in our Press Pass: Readers' Forum.
Hot Topic
This week is normally the spot for THE PLAYERS Championship. Do you like having the fifth major between the Masters and the U.S. Open or as a lead-in to the seasons first major?
Brian Hewitt Brian Hewitt - Columnist,
I was never really comfortable with THE PLAYERS Championship being two weeks ahead of the Masters. Too much of the media focus was (necessarily) on the upcoming Masters and the value of THE PLAYERS as a stand alone event was unfairly diminished. Plus, the grasses and the golf course at Sawgrass never seemed to synch up with what the players could expect at Augusta National. THE PLAYERS needed a move on the schedule. Now it has.
Mark Rolfing Mark Rolfing - Analyst, GOLF CHANNEL:
I like the new PLAYERS Championship May date because the Masters was always the topic of discussion at Bay Hill. Now with the new date, THE PLAYERS will become one of the five most important events on the PGA TOUR.
Mercer Baggs Mercer Baggs - Senior Producer,
I'm a fan of the move. The TOUR doesn't really lose anything by having the Doral event, now under the WGC umbrella, in its place. The move should keep things interesting when there is often a lull the two months in between the Masters and U.S. Open.
Hot Topic
Should the PGA TOUR do more to make the WGC events contested on a more global level?
For starters, I find it a tad hypocritical for the 'International' players to complain that too many WGC events are in the U.S. when so many of them own homes in this country. That having been said, it wouldn't upset me to see more WGC events abroad, especially at some of the great old courses in the British Isles.
WGC events need to be contested in countries other than the United States.
Of course it would be nice; but TV, money and player malaise on traveling abroad are reasons it won't be happening for the next four years. The new schedule makes it tough to do as well. The TOUR risks a healthy amout of withdrawals if it moves the Accenture Match Play overseas. The new event at Doral isn't likely to chagne venues since it folded into an existing -- and very popular -- event. Really, the only current tournament that would be feasible to play overseas is the Bridgestone, but that is contested at Firestone, one of the more respected and well-like venues on TOUR. Translation: get used to seeing the same U.S. courses year-in and year-out in the WGC events.
Hot Topic
Vijay Singh won this past week by using a belly putter. Should belly and/or long putters be made illegal?
Hogan said there was golf and there was putting. The two, he maintained, were different games. With that in mind, I have no problem allowing any kind of implement on the greens. Nor do I have a problem with different putting styles.
No, belly and/or long putters should not be made illegal.
I wouldn't mind seeing a ban, at least for professionals. You can say that this is just another form of technology that has made the game a bit easier for players, like titanium or solid core, multi-layered balls, but, with belly/long putters, you have fundementally changed the way the club is used. Drivers, irons, wedges and balls may be more advanced, but they are still used, in essence, just as they were long before we were born. That is not the case with belly/long putters.
Hot Topic
Who are the best and worst dressed golfers, on any tour, today?
As my grandmother used to say, 'There's no accounting for taste.' I think Retief Goosen looks as comfortable, fit and sharp in golf clothes as any male player. Tiger is not far behind. And my wife, who pays much more attention to this sort of thing, agrees. Worst dressed? Asking a sportswriter to answer this question is a bit like asking a sinner to name his least favorite commandmant. I will say that Calc's Sunday outfit at Honda earlier this month wasn't exactly GQ. Not that he cares what I think. On the women's side, I think Natalie Gulbis dresses smartly. I'm not a big fan of Paula Creamer's look, particularly the occasional high socks. Would love to see Marty Hackel's best and worst dressed top 10 on the men's and women's side.
Best: Tiger Woods. Worst: Any golfer that wears a tight shirt.
Tiger is probably the best dressed on the men's side in a classic sense. Adam Scott has his moments. So, too, does Darren Clarke; though, he can go a bit overboard. Ian Poulter's among the worst; he's beyond daring with his fashion, taking it to a purely tacky level. Most of his clothes should be cast aside with every Tabasco shirt ever made. But Sergio Garcia, in his horrendous matching outfits, takes the cake in regards to awful attire. Ironically, the same company who outfits Garcia does so for Paula Creamer. She's the first female player that comes to mind when I think 'best dressed' (love the high socks, too).
Click here to e-mail us your take on all of the above four questions. We'll publish select reader responses on Friday.
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    Kelly beats Monty with two-shot swing on final hole

    By Associated PressJanuary 21, 2018, 3:21 am

    KAILUA-KONA, Hawaii – Jerry Kelly made an 18-foot birdie putt on the final hole, Colin Montgomerie missed a 6-footer for par and Kelly turned a one-shot deficit into a victory Saturday in the Mitsubishi Electric Championship, the season opener on the PGA Tour Champions.

    After Kelly drove it well right into lava rocks on the par-4 16th, leading to bogey and giving Montgomerie the lead, Montgomerie made a mistake with his tee shot on the last, finding a fairway bunker. Montgomerie's approach went over the green and after Kelly converted his birdie, the 54-year-old Scot jammed his par putt well past the hole.

    Full-field scores from the Mitsubishi Electric Championship

    It was the third win on the over-50 tour for the 51-year-old Kelly, who finished tied for 14th last week at the PGA Tour's Sony Open in Honolulu. That gave him confidence as he hopped over to the Big Island for his tournament debut at Hualalai. The limited-field event includes winners from last season, past champions of the event, major champions and Hall of Famers.

    Kelly closed with a 6-under 66 for a three-day total of 18-under 198. Montgomerie shot 69. David Toms shot 67 and finished two shots back, and Miguel Angel Jimenez was another stroke behind after a 66.

    Bernhard Langer, defending the first of his seven 2017 titles, closed with a 70 to finish at 10 under.

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    Rahm manages frustration, two back at CareerBuilder

    By Randall MellJanuary 21, 2018, 1:21 am

    Jon Rahm managed the winds and his frustrations Saturday at the CareerBuilder Challenge to give himself a chance to win his fourth worldwide title in the last year.

    Rahm’s 2-under-par 70 on the PGA West Stadium Course left him two shots off the lead going into the final round.

    “I wasn’t really dealing with the wind that much,” Rahm said of his frustrations. “I was dealing with not being as fluid as I was the last two days.”

    Full-field scores from the Career Builder Challenge

    CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos

    The world’s No. 3 ranked player opened with a 62 at La Quinta Country Club on Thursday and followed it up with a 67 on Friday at PGA West. He made six birdies and four bogeys on the Stadium Course on Saturday.

    “The first day, everything was outstanding,” Rahm said. “Yesterday, my driver was a little shaky but my irons shots were perfect. Today, my driver was shaky and my irons shots were shaky. On a course like this, it’s punishing, but luckily on the holes where I found the fairway I was able to make birdies.”

    Rahm is projected to move to No. 2 in the world rankings with a finish of sixth or better on Sunday.

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    Cook leads by one entering final round at CareerBuilder

    By Associated PressJanuary 21, 2018, 12:51 am

    LA QUINTA, Calif. – Austin Cook hit a hybrid into the fairway bunker on the par-4 18th on a breezy Saturday afternoon at La Quinta Country Club, then chunked a wedge and raced a chip 20 feet past the hole.

    Kip Henley, the longtime PGA Tour caddie who guided Cook to a breakthrough victory at Sea Island in November, stepped in to give the 26-year-old former Arkansas star a quick pep talk.

    ''Kip said, 'Let's finish this like we did on the first day at the Nicklaus Course.' We made a big par putt on 18 there and he said, 'Let's just do the same thing. Let's get this line right and if you get the line right it's going in.'''

    It did, giving Cook an 8-under 64 and a one-stroke lead in the CareerBuilder Challenge going into the final round on the Stadium Course at PGA West. Fellow former Razorback Andrew Landry and Martin Piller were tied for second, and Jon Rahm and Scott Piercy were a another stroke back after a tricky day in wind that didn't get close to the predicted gusts of 40 mph.

    Full-field scores from the Career Builder Challenge

    CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos

    ''I know that I wouldn't have wanted to play the Stadium today,'' Cook said. ''I think we got a great draw with the courses that we got to play on the days that we got to play them.''

    Cook played the final six holes on the front nine in 6 under with an eagle and four birdies.

    ''Starting on my fourth hole, I was able to make a birdie and kind of get the ball rolling and it never really stopped rolling,'' Cook said. ''Kip and I were doing really good at seeing the line on the greens.''

    After a bogey on 10, he birdied 11, 12 and 15 and parred the final three to get to 19-under 197.

    ''I think that tonight the nerves, the butterflies, all that will kind of be a little less,'' Cook said. ''I've been in the situation before and I was able to finish the job on Sunday. I think it would be a little different if I didn't play like I did on Sunday at Sea Island.''

    He's making his first start in the event.

    ''I came in from Hawaii on Monday, so I only had two days to prepare for three courses,'' Cook said.

    Landry, the second-round leader, had a 70 at the Stadium. Piller, the husband of LPGA tour player Gerina Piller, shot a 67 at La Quinta. Winless on the PGA Tour, they will join Cook in the final threesome.

    ''Piller's a good guy and we have played a lot together and same with Cookie,'' said Landry, the only player without a bogey after 54 holes. ''Hope the Hogs are going to come out on top.''

    Rahm had a 70 at the Stadium to reach 17 under. The third-ranked Rahm beat up the par 5s again, but had four bogeys – three on par 3s. He has played the 12 par 5s in 13 under with an eagle and 11 birdies.

    ''A little bit of a survival day,'' Rahm said.

    The wind was more of a factor on the more exposed and tighter Stadium Course.

    ''The course is firming up,'' Rahm said. ''I know if we have similar wind to today, if we shoot something under par, you'll be way up there contesting it over the last few holes.''

    Piercy had a 66 at the Stadium.

    ''I controlled my ball really well today,'' he said.

    Adam Hadwin had a 67 at La Quinta a year after shooting a third-round 59 on the course. The Canadian was 16 under along with Grayson Murray and Brandon Harkins. Murray had a 67 on the Nicklaus Course, and Harkins shot 68 at the Stadium.

    Phil Mickelson missed the cut in his first tournament of the year for the second time in his career, shooting a 74 on the Stadium to finish at 4 under – four strokes from a Sunday tee time. The 47-year-old Hall of Famer was playing for the first time since late October. He also missed the cut in the Phoenix Open in his 2009 opener.

    Charlie Reiter, the Palm Desert High School senior playing on the first sponsor exemption the event has given to an amateur, also missed the cut. He had three early straight double bogeys in a 77 on the Stadium that left him 1 over.

    John Daly had an 80 at La Quinta. He opened with a triple bogey and had six bogeys – four in a row to start his second nine - and only one birdie. The 51-year-old Daly opened with a 69 on the Nicklaus layout and had a 71 on Friday at the Stadium.

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    Phil misses CareerBuilder cut for first time in 24 years

    By Randall MellJanuary 21, 2018, 12:48 am

    Phil Mickelson missed the cut Saturday at the CareerBuilder Challenge. It’s a rare occurrence in his Hall of Fame career.

    He has played the event 15 times, going back to when it was known as the Bob Hope Classic. He has won it twice.

    How rare is his missing the cut there?

    The last time he did so, there was no such thing as a DVD, Wi-Fi, iPods, Xbox, DVR capability or YouTube.

    Full-field scores from the Career Builder Challenge

    CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos

    The PGA Tour’s Jon Rahm didn’t exist, either.

    The last time Mickelson missed a cut in this event was 1994, nine months before Rahm was born.

    Mickelson struggled to a 2-over-par 74 in the heavy winds Saturday on the PGA West Stadium Course, missing the 54-hole cut by four shots. He hit just four of 14 fairways, just nine of 18 greens. He took a double bogey at the 15th after requiring two shots to escape the steep-walled bunker on the left side of the green.

    Mickelson won’t have to wait long to try to get back in the hunt. He’s scheduled to play the Farmers Insurance Open next week at Torrey Pines in La Jolla, Calif.