The Round Mound of Bogeys

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 14, 2008, 4:00 pm
Editor's Note: In Backspin, the editorial staff takes a look back on the biggest stories from the past week in golf -- with a spin.
THE ROUND MOUND OF BOGEYS: Rick Rhoden rallied to birdie the last two holes to win his seventh American Century Celebrity Golf Championship on the shores of Lake Tahoe. But that was just part of the story.
Backspin This all-celebrity tournament has never been about winning and losing for the participants, just that the players beat Charles Barkley, who is infamous for his - for lack of a better word - atrocious swing. As Dallas Mavericks star and 2008 U.S. Olympian Jason Kidd said, 'As long as I'm ahead of Charles, I'm in good shape.' We are all in good shape when it comes to comparing our swings to Sir Charles. God bless him, he's still out there being a good sport.

CHA-CHING: According to Forbes Magazine, Tiger Woods is on pace to becoming the world's first billion dollar athlete by 2010. In last year alone, Woods earned $115 million, while his biggest endorser Nike reported over $600 million in sales.
Backspin We all knew Tiger was rich, but this is staggering. Before Nike signed Tiger in 1996, they didn't even have a golf line of shoes and clothing, and in only 10 years since they are pulling in half a billion dollars. Now, if he could only talk to Steve Austin, astronaut, about his knee. Because $6 million seems like a bargain these days, especially for the world's richest athlete.

NOTHING RUNS LIKE A DEERE: Kenny Perry won the John Deere Classic in a playoff on Sunday for his third win of the season. It was a victory that vaulted him to just behind Tiger Woods in both the FedExCup standings and on the money list.
Backspin And now here comes the now all-to-familiar awkward moment: Kenny Perry, the hottest player on the planet and a real good choice to be the odds on favorite to win the Open Championship is...playing next week at the U.S. Bank Championship in Milwaukee. Perry's decision making on this matter will no doubt be debated forever - and rightfully so. But what's not to be debated is Perry's resolve over the last month or so and his lights out play.

PLANE AND SIMPLE: The John Deere Classic offered players set to compete across the pond this week at the Open Championship a chartered 100-seat 767 jet airplane. This is part of an ongoing effort to draw a stronger field to the due the fact that it is scheduled just a week prior the year's third major.
BackspinAround 22 players were scheduled to take the John Deere Classic up on their offer to give them a lift, nearly triple the amount who played in both events just one year ago. With the rising cost in gas, this has turned into quite the deal: all passengers can fly for a bargain 'donation' of just $1,000. The only player who didn't like this deal? Kenny Perry, because it ruined his, 'I couldn't find an available flight' excuse. We like to kid Kenny.

PINK PANTHER: Paula Creamer shot an opening-round 60 on Thursday and then held on for her third win of the season at the Jamie Farr Owens Corning Classic.
Backspin Talk about the greatest karma for a sponsor: Creamer - already famously known in and out of golf circles as the 'Pink Panther' - won an event that is sponsored by Owens Corning, who lo and behold, have the cartoon character of the Pink Panther as their... spokesman, er, mascot, er, whatever. Nice job Paula, we're sure there will be a little something extra in the mail this week. And somewhere, Annika Sorenstam was surely happy knowing she still is the one and only Ms. 59.

LOCH AND KEY: Northern Ireland's Graeme McDowell won the Scottish Open Sunday with three clutch birdies in a row coming home on the back nine for a 3-under 68 en route to his second victory this year. Phil Mickelson, who played this week as part of his tune up for the Open Championship, finished 11 shots off the pace in a tie for 38th.
Backspin Mickelson's struggles aren't a surprise, as he rarely performs well in Europe. The reason why is anyone's guess. As for McDowell, keep an eye on him next week at Birkdale. He will try to keep the Irish mojo, sort of, going at the Open Championship and he didn't get to No. 2 on the European's Order of Merit list by accident.

IT'S ALL RELATIVE: Tiger Woods' niece, Cheyenne Woods, announced this week that she will sign with Wake Forrest to play golf. Cheyenne, who was also first introduced to the game by Earl Woods Sr., is one of the top female high school golfers in the country, and a two-time Arizona state high school champion.
Backspin Cheyenne, the 17-year-old daughter of Tiger's half-brother Earl Jr., has hopes of one day playing on the LPGA Tour but wants to enjoy the college experience first. So the $64,000 question is: How much does she have in common with her superstar uncle? Cheyenne is so fascinated with the mental aspect of the game that she plans on majoring in psychology while attending Wake Forest, and we all know Tiger is the strongest player between the ears on TOUR. LGPA Tour players - take notice!

IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: Rick Price won the Nationwide Player's Cup, collecting the lion share of the record $1 million purse; Luke Donald will not play in this week's Open Championship, as the Englishman had to withdraw with a wrist injury; Greg Norman's ex-wife received $103 million in their divorce settlement.
Backspin Price only had to make bogey on the first playoff hole to collect the largest check in Nationwide history of $180,000, not the way tournament organizers planned it; Bad news for Donald, is great news for Jerry Kelly. Kelly, the second alternate, will take Donald's spot at Royal Birkdale; Norman wasn't even in attendance at court, as the two-time major winner was on his honeymoon with new wife Chris Evert. However, the $103 million lost was surely made up for in the sale of Greg Norman wine at the wedding reception. That is, if it was a cash bar.

Related Links:
Full Coverage - Jamie Farr Owens Corning Classic
Full Coverage - John Deere Classic
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  • Newsmaker of the Year: No. 1, Justin Thomas

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 18, 2017, 1:00 pm

    He won a major, captured the FedExCup and was named the PGA Tour’s Player of the Year. It should come as no surprise that Justin Thomas holds the top spot on our Newsmakers list for 2017.

    Thomas entered the year ranked outside the top 20, and few might have pegged him for a transcendent campaign. But he kicked off January with a win in Hawaii, added another before leaving the Aloha State and never looked back.

    Thomas’ seminal moment came in August when he captured the PGA Championship at Quail Hollow for his breakthrough major title. One month after greeting Jordan Spieth behind the final green at Royal Birkdale, this time it was Thomas’ turn to have friends stick around to snap pictures with the trophy that signaled his arrival among golf’s upper echelon.

    Full list of 2017 Newsmakers of the Year

    In addition to racking up the hardware – five in total, including the inaugural CJ Cup at Nine Bridges in his first start of the new wraparound season – Thomas dazzled with style. His runaway win at the Sony Open included an opening-round 59, and his third-round 63 at Erin Hills marked the first time anyone had ever shot 9 under on a U.S. Open venue.

    Thomas’ consistency was rewarded at East Lake, when a runner-up finish at the Tour Championship netted him the season-long title and $10 million prize. It was in the subsequent press conference where he shared the goals list he had written into his cell phone in February, having ticked off nearly every one. It showed a dedicated attention to detail as well the tactical approach with which Thomas had steered his rapid ascent.

    Heading into a new year, he’s now very clearly entrenched as one of the world’s best. And as his career progresses, it’s likely we’ll look back at 2017 as the point where Thomas first transformed great potential into eye-popping results.

    Win No. 1: Title defense at the CIMB Classic

    Article: Thomas (64) rallies to defend CIMB title

    Win Nos. 2 and 3: The Hawaiian double

    Article: Thomas refuses to let disastrous hole derail TOC win

    Article: Worst week ever ends with another title at Sony Open

    Record Round No. 1: 59 at the Sony Open

    Article: Thomas becomes youngest player to shoot 59

    Take a look: Thomas’ scorecard from his amazing 59

    Record Round No. 2: 63 at the U.S. Open

    Article: Thomas sets U.S. Open record with 9-under 63

    Temporary Slide: Open MC makes it three in a row

    Watch: Thomas loses club, makes 9, misses Open cut

    Mr. Major (and win No. 4): PGA champ at Quail Hollow

    Article: Thomas joins the club – the major club

    Win No. 5: Dell Technologies Championship

    Article: Thomas wins the battle of buddies over Spieth

    The $10 Million Man: FedExCup champ

    Biggest Win of All? Player of the Year

    And One to Grow On: Wins at CJ Cup in 2017-18 season

    Article: Thomas caps torrid 12-month run with CJ Cup win

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    Best of: Justin Thomas and Jillian Wisniewski

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    Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

    By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 18, 2017, 12:30 pm

    Cabreras win PNC Father/Son Challenge

    By Associated PressDecember 17, 2017, 11:36 pm

    ORLANDO, Fla. - Angel Cabrera and Angel Cabrera Jr. closed with a 12-under 60 for a three-shot victory in their debut at the PNC Father/Son Challenge.

    The Cabreras opened with a 59 at The Ritz-Carlton Golf Club and were challenged briefly by the defending champions, David Duval and Nick Karavites, in the scramble format Sunday. The Argentines went out in 30, and they had a two-shot lead with Cabrera's son came within an inch of chipping in for eagle on the final hole.

    They finished at 25-under 199 for a three-shot victory over Duval and Karavites, and Bernhard Langer and Jason Langer. The Langer team won in 2014.

    Mark O'Meara and Shaun O'Meara tied for fourth at 21 under with Jerry Pate and Wesley Pate.

    Cabrera wasn't even in the field until two-time U.S. Open champion Curtis Strange and his son, Tom Strange, had to withdraw.

    Duval and his stepson went out in 28, but the Cabreras regained control by starting the back nine with back-to-back birdies, and then making birdies on the 13th, 14th and 16th. The final birdie allowed them to tie the tournament scoring record.

    ''This is certain my best week of the year,'' said Cabrera, the 2009 Masters champion and 2007 U.S. Open champion at Oakmont. ''To play alongside all the legends ... as well as playing alongside my son, has been the greatest week of the year.''

    The popular event is for players who have won a major championship or The Players Championship. It is a scramble format both days.

    In some cases, the major champions lean on the power of their sons for the distance. O'Meara said Saturday that his ''little man'' hit it 58 yards by him on the 18th. And on Sunday, Stewart Cink said son Reagan told him after outdriving him on the opening four holes, ''In this tournament I may be your son, but right now I'm your Daddy!''

    Jack Nicklaus played with his grandson, G.T. They closed with a 64 and tied for 15th in the field of 20 teams.

    Rose wins; Aphibarnrat earns Masters bid in Indonesia

    By Will GrayDecember 17, 2017, 1:59 pm

    Justin Rose continued his recent run of dominance in Indonesia, while Kiradech Aphibarnrat snagged a Masters invite with some 72nd-hole dramatics.

    Rose cruised to an eight-shot victory at the Indonesian Masters, carding bookend rounds of 10-under 62 that featured a brief run at a 59 during the final round. The Englishman was the highest-ranked player in the field and he led wire-to-wire, with Thailand's Phachara Khongwatmai finishing second.

    Rose closes out the year as perhaps the hottest player in the world, with top-10 finishes in each of his final 10 worldwide starts. That stretch includes three victories, as Rose also won the WGC-HSBC Champions and Turkish Airlines Open. He hasn't finished outside the top 10 in a tournament since missing the cut at the PGA Championship.

    Meanwhile, it took until the final hole of the final tournament of 2017 for Aphibarnrat to secure a return to the Masters. The Thai entered the week ranked No. 56 in the world, with the top 50 in the year-end world rankings earning invites to Augusta National. Needing an eagle on the 72nd hole, Aphibarnrat got just that to snag solo fifth place.

    It means that he is projected to end the year ranked No. 49, while Japan's Yusaku Miyazato - who started the week ranked No. 58 and finished alone in fourth - is projected to finish No. 50. Aphibarnrat finished T-15 in his Masters debut in 2016, while Miyazato will make his first appearance in the spring.

    The results in Indonesia mean that American Peter Uihlein and South Africa's Dylan Frittelli are projected to barely miss the year-end, top-50 cutoff. Their options for Masters qualification will include winning a full-point PGA Tour event in early 2018 or cracking the top 50 by the final March 25 cutoff.