QA HOF Sergios Happy Place

By Kelly TilghmanAugust 3, 2007, 4:00 pm
Editor's Note: Each month, GOLF CHANNEL's Kelly Tilghman will be answering reader and viewer questions. Kelly is the first female in golf television history to be a lead play-by-play commentator. Email Kelly with your questions for next month's Q&A
Do you think that golfers should be voted into the Hall of Fame after they retire like in other U.S. sports? ' Kris
Hi, Kris.
I guess theres a small part of me that wishes golfers would be voted in at the end of their careers but I dont have a problem with the way we do it now. Once youve earned your right, why wait? The PGA TOUR does have a minimum age requirement of 40 so, essentially at that point, a player is beginning to wind down his career (unless hes named Vijay or Jack Nicklaus). As a member of the media, I find it compelling that a player like Se Ri Pak can qualify for it in her 20s. That speaks volumes to the level of accomplishment at such a young age. I think it helps to put todays talent into perspective.
Dear Kelly, do you get to play golf with your dad? I play golf with my daughter who just entered college and as the say, Its Priceless. Thanks. ' Ronald from Texas
I wish I could say that my dad and I play a lot of golf together but we dont. He was quite the golfer before he got me involved in the game but a nagging shoulder injury kept him from teeing it up in his later years. It was frustrating for me to see his beautiful swing and know that he couldnt put it to use. I am proud to say that he accompanied me on the golf course throughout the majority of my junior and amateur career so he was there for me in a different way. Hes always been very supportive of me and golf provided a bond for us. I am happy that you get to share so many great experiences with your little girl and its obvious to me that you appreciate it. No one can take that away!
Do you think that outsiders (as in people watching on TV or a reporter) should be allowed to phone in a rules violation on a player or a caddie, or should it be up to the people involved in the tournament? ' Colin from Victoria, Canada
Hi Colin.
I dont like the fact that viewers can affect the outcome of a professional event. In my opinion they are spectators, not participants, but I do understand why they allow it in golf. Its a unique sport in that anyone can police the game. The entire concept is designed to protect the field and the Rules of Golf and I respect that. The downside is that not all players are treated to the same amount of camera time so some are more prone to be policed than others. This is a great debate. We have it around our newsroom every time an incident surfaces. Thanks for the question.
I live about 10 minutes from Firestone CC outside of Akron and I know one of the favorite places to eat on tour is the Diamond Grill. What are the five best places on tour to eat? ' Rich
Rich, I cant wait to go to the Diamond Grill now that youve mentioned it. Ill be in Akron for the Bridgestone Invitational this week. Some of the best places for fine dining on TOUR are New Orleans (Commanders Palace), Chicago (Mortons Steak House) and Memphis (Rendezvous- awesome dry ribs). Maui also has a great Sushi place called Sansei right next to the Village Course at Kapalua. There are a lot of others but if you want the real dish then you should ask Lance Barrow of CBS Sports. Hes been producing their telecasts for years and he is the aficionado of fine dining on TOUR. He always tells me where to go.
Kelly, what was your take on Sergios British Open press conference? Im sure youve talked to him before, is he really that immature? ' Katherine from California
Hi Katherine.
I wasnt surprised at some of the things Sergio said in his press conference at the British but I was surprised that he was still saying them at this point in his career. It must be hard, though, when you just saw a major slip through your fingers and within seconds you have a microphone shoved in front of your face with edgy reporters asking you to explain yourself. Sergio has grown up before our very eyes since slamming onto the scene in 1999 but he proved at Carnoustie that theres still more growth to be achieved as far as the emotional aspect is concerned. He will win a major. In fact, hell win a few, but I dont believe theyll come until he achieves peace on the inside. Sergio can be so charming and he is so good for the game. When he does find his happy place, hell take his game to new heights.
Email Kelly with your questions for next month's Q&A
Getty Images

Ortiz takes Tour clubhouse lead in Bahamas

By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 16, 2018, 2:19 am

Former Tour Player of the Year Carlos Ortiz shot a bogey-free, 4-under-par 68 Monday to take the clubhouse lead in The Bahamas Great Exuma Classic at Sandals Emerald Bay.

Four other players - Lee McCoy, Brandon Matthews, Sung Jae Im and Mark Anderson - were still on the course and tied with Ortiz at 6-under 210 when third-round play was suspended by darkness at 5:32 p.m. local time. It is scheduled to resume at 7:15 a.m. Tuesday.

Ortiz, a 26-year-old from Guadalajara, Mexico, is in search of his fourth Tour victory. In 2014, the former University of North Texas standout earned a three-win promotion on his way to being voted Tour Player of the Year.

McCoy, a 23-year-old from Dunedin, Fla., is looking to become the first player to earn medalist honors at Q-School and then win the opening event of the season.

Getty Images

Randall's Rant: Can we please have some rivalries?

By Randall MellJanuary 16, 2018, 12:00 am

Memo to the golf gods:

If you haven’t finalized the fates of today’s stars for the new year, could we get you to deliver what the game has lacked for so long?

Can we get a real, honest-to-goodness rivalry?

It’s been more than two decades since the sport has been witness to one.

With world No. 1 Dustin Johnson and former world No. 1 Rory McIlroy at the Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship this week, an early-season showdown would percolate hope that this year might be all about rivalries.

It seems as if the stars are finally aligned to make up for our long drought of rivalries, of the recurring clashes you have so sparingly granted through the game’s history.

We’re blessed in a new era of plenty, with so many young stars blossoming, and with Tiger Woods offering hope he may be poised for a comeback. With Johnson, McIlroy, Jordan Spieth, Jason Day, Justin Thomas, Jon Rahm, Hideki Matsuyama, Brooks Koepka and Rickie Fowler among today’s dynamic cast, the possibility these titans will time their runs together on the back nine of Sundays in majors excites.

We haven’t seen a real rivalry since Greg Norman and Nick Faldo sparred in the late '80s and early '90s.

Woods vs. Phil Mickelson didn’t really count. While Lefty will be remembered for carving out a Hall of Fame career in the Tiger era, with 33 victories, 16 of them with Tiger in the field, five of them major championships, we get that Tiger had no rival, not in the most historic sense.

CareerBuilder Challenge: Articles, photos and videos

Phil never reached No. 1, was never named PGA Tour Player of the Year, never won a money title and never dueled with Woods on Sunday on the back nine of a major with the title on the line.  Still, it doesn’t diminish his standing as the best player not named Tiger Woods over the last 20 years. It’s a feat so noteworthy it makes him one of the game’s all-time greats.

We’ve been waiting for an honest-to-goodness rivalry since Faldo and Norman took turns ruling at world No. 1 and dueling in big events, including the back nine of multiple majors. 

In the '70s, we had Nicklaus-Watson. In the '60s, it was Nicklaus-Palmer. In the '40s and '50s, it was Hogan, Snead and Nelson in a triumvirate mix, and in the '20s and '30s we had Hagen and Sarazen.

While dominance is the magic ingredient that can break a sport out of its niche, a dynamic rivalry is the next best elixir.

Dustin Johnson looks capable of dominating today’s game, but there’s so much proven major championship talent on his heels. It’s hard to imagine him consistently fending off all these challengers, but it’s the fending that would captivate us.

Johnson vs. McIlroy would be a fireworks show. So would Johnson vs. Thomas, or Thomas vs. Day or McIlroy vs. Rahm or Fowler vs. Koepka ... or any of those combinations.

Spieth is a wild card that intrigues.

While he’s not a short hitter, he isn’t the power player these other guys are, but his iron game, short game, putter and moxie combine to make him the most compelling challenger of all. His resolve, resilience and resourcefulness in the final round of his British Open victory at Royal Birkdale make him the most interesting amalgam of skill since Lee Trevino.

Woods vs. any of them? Well, if we get that, we promise never to ask for anything more.

So, if that cosmic calendar up there isn’t filled, how about it? How about a year of rivalries to remember?

Getty Images

McIlroy: 2018 may be my busiest season ever

By Will GrayJanuary 15, 2018, 6:28 pm

With his return to competition just days away, Rory McIlroy believes that the 2018 season may be the most action packed of his pro career.

The 28-year-old has not teed it up since the Alfred Dunhill Links Championship in early October, a hiatus he will end at this week's Abu Dhabi HSBC Championship. It will be the start of a busy spring for the Ulsterman, who will also play next week in Dubai before a run of six PGA Tour events leading up to the Masters.

Speaking to the U.K.'s Telegraph, McIlroy confirmed that he will also make a return trip to the British Masters in October and plans to remain busy over the next 12 months.

"I might play more times this year than any before. I played 28 times in 2008 and I'm on track to beat that," McIlroy said. "I could get to 30 (events), depending on where I'm placed in the Race to Dubai. But I'll see."

McIlroy's ambitious plan comes in the wake of a frustrating 2017 campaign, when he injured his ribs in his first start and twice missed chunks of time in an effort to recover. He failed to win a worldwide event and finished the year ranked outside the top 10, both of which had not happened since 2008.

But having had more than three months to get his body and swing in shape, McIlroy is optimistic heading into the first of what he hopes will be eight starts in the 12 weeks before he drives down Magnolia Lane.

"I've worked hard on my short game and I'm probably feeling better with the putter than I ever have," McIlroy said. "I've had a lot of time to concentrate on everything and it all feels very good and a long way down the road."

Getty Images

What's in the Bag: Sony Open winner Kizzire

By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 15, 2018, 6:05 pm

Patton Kizzire earned his second PGA Tour victory by winning a six-hole playoff at the Sony Open in Hawaii. Take a look inside his bag.

Driver: Titleist 917D3 (10.5 degrees), with Fujikura Atmos Black 6 X shaft

Fairway Wood: Titleist 917F2 (16.5 degrees), with Aldila Tour Blue 95 TX shaft

Hybrid: Titleist 913H (19 degrees), with UST Mamiya AXIV Core 100 Hybrid shaft

Irons: Titleist 718 T-MB (4), 718 CB (5-6), 718 MB (7-9), with True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 shafts

Wedges: Titleist SM7 prototype (47, 52, 56, 60 degrees), with True Temper Dynamic Gold X100 shafts

Putter: Scotty Cameron GoLo Tour prototype

Ball: Titleist Pro V1x