Wie 1-Up For Now

By Kraig KannSeptember 23, 2005, 4:00 pm
I've often wondered what Michelle Wie would be doing right now if perhaps Jack Nicklaus and Steffi Graf were her parents and thus helping her in choosing her path in life.
And thats what it is, isnt it? Its a path in life, not just golf.
Michelle Wie
Will Michelle Wie be gaining or losing by turning professional?
By now youve read the reports or heard the reports of Michelle Wies impending leap into the ranks of professional golf ' as a professional.
Wie turning pro before her 16th birthday, Oct. 11th, now seems a lock. And with the jump will come millions. Some are estimating a first-year cash haul of about $10 million. Good for her.
Some of you have written, saying that her parents, specifically dad B.J., whos been the most visible, are pushing her too hard, too fast.
She hasnt won anything, youve said.
Theyre promoting their own financial interests, youve maintained.
Nicklaus and Graf are two of the greatest champions in any sport. Each has won major titles, each has played with class and honor and dignity. Would they be telling their 15-year-old daughter - who couldnt even drive to meet with her agent-to-be William Morris - to sign away her life so soon?
Would they be telling their child to lose the innocence and gain the incredible? Would they tell her to go get after it or let it come to you?
Who knows what theyd say?
Im a father of three under the age of 9, including two daughters. For my money ' and Im not hauling in $10 million this year ' theres nothing wrong with Michelle calling it a career as an amateur and going pro.
Ive met B.J. Wie on a few occasions. Weve had the Wies to our set on the 'Sprint Post Game.' Ive interviewed Michelle on a handful of occasions. I see them as a very grounded family. And I see no reason in telling them to hold back the inevitable.
I said theres nothing wrong with Michelle turning professional at 15 or 16, depending on the official date.
For my money, I wouldnt be advising my daughter to do the same thing. To me, theres too much to miss.
By all accounts, Wie plans to bank the money and still go to college at Stanford while playing a schedule to her liking using special exemptions at her disposal.
But college, from what I recall, is meant to be a full-time thing. Full focus on the books, full focus on the experience of being a college student and an adult-in-the-making. For me, college was far too great an experience to give up so quickly.
Id tell my daughter that no amount of money can make up for a four-year lesson in learning.
Is there a chance that she could lose her game in four years? Sure. Is there a chance shed lose her appeal among the masses? Sure. Is this the best chance to capitalize on $10 million? Perhaps.
Matt Kuchar spent four years at Georgia Tech and probably lost out on a big payday with endorsers running toward that megawatt smile and U.S. Amateur game. But remember, Kuchar graduated and eventually made it on the PGA Tour ' and won a tournament.
The Honda Classic was there for Kuchar to win at 18 and it was still there to win as a fresh-faced PGA Tour pro in 2002.
Its tough to turn down the money for the unknown. I understand why some cant do it. And I cant and wont fault Wie for doing the same. Her choice, her life.
Paula Creamer didnt go to college. She barely wore the high-school graduation gown before turning golf on its ears at the Solheim Cup. Nobodys criticizing or questioning her.
Can you go back to college later to get the degree? Sure. But I just cant see it being the same as a 30-year-old as it is as an 18-year-old.
What would Nicklaus and Graf say?
Right now, Womens Public Links aside, Michelle Wie hasnt amassed a resume full of victories. However, shes soon to amass a bank account most of us could only dream of.
The bank account and endorsement deals with Nike and others have guaranteed her something only Tiger Woods can really relate to.
Her financial future is set. In that regard, Wie is 1-up on everyone else. But when the tournament career is over, and the golf isnt the most important thing, does she feel 1-down?
Her choice to make. Her life to live. I firmly believe there is no wrong answer, but there is a right to wonder about what youd do if you had an impact.
Email your thoughts to Kraig Kann
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Day's wife shares emotional story of miscarriage

By Golf Channel DigitalDecember 12, 2017, 4:12 pm

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.

“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

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

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Newsmakers of the Year: Top 10 in 2017

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