Time for the Little Man

By Michael CollinsOctober 2, 2008, 4:00 pm
Im on stage Tuesday night with Olin Browne, who was one of the assistant captains of the Ryder Cup this year, having a blast telling the pro-am participants about the guys they are going to be playing with on Wednesday, and as theyre laughing at some of the things I am telling them about each player (like Robert Garrigus ex-caddie selling his RENTAL car ' true story!) I am realizing that this is my favorite time of year, especially for caddies.
 
This week a caddie, working for a guy youve probably never heard of like Garrigus, is going to make over $100k. And the next few weeks are going to be the same.
 
Some of the greatest stories out here on Tour arent the ones about Tiger, Phil, Ernie, and Camilo. Theyre about guys like Michael Allen. Heres a guy who been to Q-School so many times hes going to have to grow another foot to keep count.
 
But there he was coming down the stretch of this tournament last year not just trying to win but also trying to earn enough money to keep his job next year. And there was my friend Mike Maroney, carrying his bag, reading putts, in his ear with strong words of confidence, keeping his man striding towards a goal, trying not to focus on said goal.
 
And at the end of the day Sunday, second place alone, a check for $648,000 and no trip back to Q-School. Funny thing was, when I interviewed Michael Allen he said he didnt know what he was going to do now because he was so used to going to the Q. Guess he was going to have to take a nice vacation.
 
Maroney, recently single and a former athlete himself (javelin at the University of Texas), was still on that caddie high we get after a big finish, so sitting down with him as he dragged slowly on a cigarette, watching his eyes go from the size of UFOs back to normal, had me a little jacked up too.
 
Awesome, he kept saying over and over again. Then, We coulda won. (They finished two shots back of Steve Flesch but was the one golfer to shoot under 70 everyday.)
 
I know the feeling bro, it gets worse before it gets better too. But this is still goooooooooood.
 
He just nodded. I love and hate that feeling. You know you had a good week, helped your player lock up his card and got a nice paycheck for yourself, but that night as you lay in bed trying to go to sleep you start going through every shot of the day you help decide.
 
Any bogey that was made during the week gets replayed in your mind as you wonder if you gave the right read, the right club, called the correct wind direction. We grind over stuff like that as much as the players do. Although I think missing the cut by one is much worse for the players than the caddies, or maybe Ive just caddied for guys who miss too many cuts!
 
Being so close to a win and not getting it, sucks. You know how Red Sox fans have a nickname for Brett Boone, well I have a family member who feels the same way about Trevor Immelman. I have no ill will towards the man, in fact I would call him a friend, but he cost me a car by getting up and down from the water on the 18th hole on a Sunday afternoon and keeping my player from a second-place finish.
 
Who will be this years Michael Allen and Mike Maroney? A lot of you shut it down like Mickelson after the Tour Championship, but remember some of the best drama out on Tour happens in the next six weeks and the way my Eagles have broken my heart in two games so far this season(versus Dallas and Chicago), watching my friends coming down the stretch on a Sunday afternoon fighting to keep a job is pretty awesome.
 
Two quick heads up... First Olin Browne. Brother, anytime you want to be my straight man on stage at one of these pro-am parties, please join me. We had never shared the stage before, but worked together like Cheech and Chong (Ill be Cheech) and after the show no one believed we had never done it together before. At one point Olin whispered to me, We should be taping this. I know man, I know.
 
Olin, when youre done playing, we might just have something here.
 
And finally, I personally want to know what all of you would do (if anything) to the FedEx Cup next year. Lets play show me yours and Ill show you mine.
 
Michael Collins has been a stand-up comedian for 15 years and has more than seven years experience as a professional caddie. He currently covers the PGA Tour as a correspondent with XM Satellite Radio and takes his turn on The Turn Mondays on Golf Channel. He also has his own Web site, www.funnycaddy.com
 
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  • Day (68) just one back at Australian Open

    By Nick MentaNovember 24, 2017, 6:40 am

    Jason Day posted a second-round 68 to move himself just one off the lead held by Lucas Herbert through two rounds at the Emirates Australian Open. Here’s where things stand after 36 holes in Sydney.

    Leaderboard: Herbert (-9), Day (-8), Cameron Davis (-7), Anthony Quayle (-6), Matt Jones (-4), Cameron Smith (-4), Nick Cullen (-4), Richard Green (-4)

    What it means: Day is in search of his first worldwide victory of 2017. The former world No. 1 last visited the winner’s circle in May 2016, when he won The Players at TPC Sawgrass. A win this week would close out a difficult year for the Aussie who struggled with his game while also helping his mother in her battle with cancer. Day’s last victory on his native soil came in 2013, when he partnered with Adam Scott to win the World Cup of Golf for Australia at Royal Melbourne.


    Full-field scores from the Emirates Australian Open


    Round of the day: Herbert followed an opening 67 with a round of 66 to vault himself into the lead at The Australian Golf Club. He made six birdies, including four on his second nine, against a lone bogey to take the outright lead. The 22-year-old, who held the lead at this event last year and captured low-amateur honors in 2014, is coming off a runner-up finish at the NSW Open Championship, which boosted him from 714th to 429th in the Official World Golf Ranking. His 5-under score was matched by Dale Brandt-Richards and Josh Cabban.

    Best of the rest: Matt Jones, who won this event over Jordan Spieth and Adam Scott two years ago, turned in 4-under 67. Jones is best known to American audiences for his playoff victory at the 2014 Shell Houston Open and for holding the 36-hole lead at the 2015 PGA Championship at Whistling Straits, which was eventually won by Day. Jones will start the weekend five shots off the lead, at 4 under par.

    Biggest disappointment: Spieth has a lot of work to do this weekend if he expects to be in the title picture for the fourth year in a row. Rounds of 70-71 have him eight shots behind the lead held by Herbert. Spieth made a birdie and a bogey on each side Friday to turn in level par. The reigning champion golfer of the year has finished first, second and first at this event over the last three years.

    Storyline to watch this weekend: The Australian Open is the first event of the 2018 Open Qualifying Series. The leading three players who finish in the top 10 and who are not otherwise exempt will receive invites into next summer’s Open Championship at Carnoustie.

    Ogilvy urges distance rollback of ball

    By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 8:49 pm

    Add Geoff Ogilvy to the chorus of voices calling for a distance rollback of the golf ball.

    In an interview before the start of the Emirates Australian Open, Ogilvy said a "time-out" is needed for governing bodies to deal with the issue.

    "It's complete nonsense," he said, according to an Australian website. "In my career, it’s gone from 300 yards was a massive hit to you’re a shorter hitter on tour now, legitimately short. It’s changed the way we play great golf courses and that is the crime. It isn’t that the ball goes 400, that’s neither here nor there. It’s the fact the ball going 400 doesn’t makes Augusta work properly, it functions completely wrong.’’


    Full-field scores from the Emirates Australian Open


    Ogilvy used an example from American baseball to help get his point across to an Australian audience.

    “Major League Baseball in America, they use wooden bats, and everywhere else in baseball they use aluminium bats,’’ he said. “And when the major leaguers use aluminium bats they don’t even have to touch it and it completely destroys their stadiums. It’s just comedy.

    “That’s kind of what’s happened to us at least with the drivers of these big hitters; We’ve completely outgrown the stadiums. So do you rebuild every stadium in the world? That’s expensive. Or make the ball go shorter? It seems relatively simple from that perspective.’’

    Ogilvy, an Australian who won the 2006 U.S. Open, said he believes there will be a rollback, but admitted it would be a "challenge" for manufacturers to produce a ball that flies shorter for pros but does not lose distance when struck by recreational players.

    The golf world celebrates Thanksgiving

    By Golf Channel DigitalNovember 23, 2017, 6:01 pm

    Here's a look, through social media, at how the golf world celebrates Thanksgiving.

    Lexi Thompson:

    Baking time!!

    A post shared by Lexi Thompson (@lexi) on

    David Feherty:

    Jack Nicklaus:

    GC Tiger Tracker:

    Steve Stricker:

    Golf Channel:

    Frank Nobilo:

    Ian Poulter:

    Tyrone Van Aswegen:

    Happy Thanksgiving: Biggest turkeys of 2017

    By Grill Room TeamNovember 23, 2017, 3:00 pm

    Thanksgiving brings us golf's biggest turkeys of the year. Donald Trump, Grayson Murray and a certain (now-former) tournament director headline the list. Click here or on the image below to check out all the turkeys.