All-World Friend

By Rex HoggardJune 24, 2009, 4:00 pm
CROMWELL, Conn. ' If a true measure of a man is the company he keeps, Lucas Glover is all-world good people.
 
Just as the 29-year-old with a drawl every bit as deep as a Carolina fishing hole was coming to grips with his new-found Grand Slam glory an extended list of friends were reaching their own epiphanies.
 
What have you done? were the only words Charles Warren could think of when he reached his buddy via cell phone late Monday.
 
Warren and Glover were Clemson teammates, are regular practice round partners and never met a pond that didnt deserve a line and a lure. Asked how nervous he was watching Glover battle for the U.S. Open title Warren flashed 10 finger nails gnawed down to the nub: Two were bleeding, he said of the damage caused by Mondays madness.
 
Lucas Glover
Lucas Glover poses with his wife on top of the Empire State Building.(Getty Images)
Warren, who didnt qualify for the U.S. Open, spent the week fishing and would regularly text Glover pictures of the fish hed caught, jokes, travel plans, anything but golf. In that sense golf is no different than baseball. You never tell a pitcher hes got a no-hitter going in the fourth inning, and you dont talk titles on Saturday ' Sunday or Monday for that matter ' at a major championship.
 
Its what friends do. Theyre there for you when things are bad, like late last year when Glover was done with the game and needed a break, and when the going is good, like Wednesday at TPC River Highlands when Glover was doling out more hugs than Dr. Phil.
 
It sunk in a little more on the range when a lot of guys came up to shake hands and say their peace, Glover said. It was wonderful. It was very gratifying.
 
Brandt Snedeker, another close friend, didnt wait until Wednesday, firing Glover a text on Monday that read simply, Youre my hero.
 
Friendships among athletes are strange things. On the field of play they would just as well gut each other with a 3-iron but when the scorecards are signed there is no one else that can sympathize with a struggling player better than another player. Theyve all been there. Theyve all flushed the ball for 18 holes and signed for 75. Theyve all spent eight hours on the practice tee only to block their first tee ball into the right rough.
 
I was way more nervous for him than I would ever be playing in that situation myself, Snedeker said. I was lying in my bed all morning yelling at the TV. I think someone probably called to complain about the noise.
 
Mac Barnhardt, Glovers manager and friend with Crown Sports, figures his man received no less than 300 text messages. Some were funny, most to the point, all were sincere.
 
You think Snedes (Snedeker) will play with you now? Johnson Wagner texted late Monday. Im in tears Im so happy for you.
 
There is joy every time a player wins a major championship, part of the territory. Glovers Bethpage breakthrough, however, went deeper because there is not a kinder more generous person on Tour.
 
Zach Johnson, who played a practice round with Glover last Tuesday and was on the business end of similar love when he won the 2007 Masters, played it cool when he saw Glover Wednesday at River Highlands.
 
How ya been? Anything good happen?' Johnson deadpanned before the two broke into laughter.
 
Its not so much that Glover won a major, hed been on the Grand Slam watch list ever since he won at Disney four years ago, as much as it was which major he decided to take the plunge.
 
Glover is not the most patient person, says so himself. He plays fast and hits it long, a bad combination on a tour full of snails. Truth is, when he called it a year after last falls BMW Championship he was anything but a picture of Zen.
 
I played with him last year in St. Louis (BMW) and, man, he wasnt happy, Wagner recalled. Thats the amazing thing because at that Open it would have been so easy to give up and he just refused to.
 
All of which makes a Bethpage victory all the more intriguing. For five sloppy days of shuttle rides and mud balls and weather warnings Glover wore the face of a man on his way to nowhere in particular. He may have been melting down inside, but the guy who wandered about the Black Course was not the same guy who used to get the first tee time in college events because putting him behind someone was asking for trouble.
 
It just shows how much hes grown up, Warren said. If you pick a major for him to win, between the golf course and the rain and the delays, that would have been the last place youd expect him to win.
 
The general media seems to have the same take on Glover. Google Lucas Glover and long shot and 57,000 matches pop up, the byproduct of Tiger Woods dominance and a shrinking news hole it seems.
 
But those closest to Glover ' or G. Lover, as he joked on the David Letterman show Tuesday ' know better: The guy just doesnt miss many shots. Hes No. 1 in total driving for a reason, Johnson said.
 
How Glover will deal with his new-found fame was also a topic of interest on Wednesday and the consensus from those who are closets to him was that big timing is not in the mans DNA.
 
Hes not going to change, said Johnson, who famously remained Zach Johnson from Cedar Rapids, Iowa, after collecting that green jacket. Wouldnt know how to.
 
And if he did, his friends would let him have it. Its what friends do.
 
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    Suspended Hensby offers details on missed drug test

    By Will GrayDecember 12, 2017, 11:30 pm

    One day after receiving a one-year suspension from the PGA Tour for failing to provide a sample for a drug test, Mark Hensby offered details on the events that led to his missed test in October.

    Hensby, 46, released a statement explaining that the test in question came after the opening round of the Sanderson Farms Championship, where the Aussie opened with a 78. Frustrated about his play, Hensby said he was prepared to give a blood sample but was then informed that the test would be urine, not blood.

    "I had just urinated on the eighth hole, my 17th hole that day, and knew that I was probably unable to complete the urine test for at least a couple more hours," Hensby said. "I told this gentleman that I would complete the test in the morning prior to my early morning tee time. Another gentleman nearby told me that 'they have no authority to require me to stay.' Thus, I left."

    Hensby explained that he subsequently received multiple calls and texts from PGA Tour officials inquiring as to why he left without providing a sample and requesting that he return to the course.

    "I showed poor judgment in not responding," said Hensby, who was subsequently disqualified from the tournament.

    Hensby won the 2004 John Deere Classic, but he has missed six cuts in seven PGA Tour starts over the last two years. He will not be eligible to return to the Tour until Oct. 26, 2018.

    "Again, I made a terrible decision to not stay around that evening to take the urine test," Hensby said. "Obviously in hindsight I should have been more patient, more rational and taken the test. Call me stupid, but don't call me a cheater. I love the game. I love the integrity that it represents, and I would never compromise the values and qualities that the game deserves."

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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


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    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

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    Man of the people


    Article: SERGIO! Garcia finally gets patrons on his side

    Article: Fan finally caddies for Sergio after asking 206 times

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    Article: Connelly, Garcia paired years after photo together


    Ace at 17th at Sawgrass


    Growing family

    Article: Sergio, Angela get married; Kenny G plays reception

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    Departure from TaylorMade


    Article: Masters champ Garcia splits with TaylorMade


    Squashed beef with Paddy

    Article: Harrington: Garcia was a 'sore loser'

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    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