Chew on This

By Rex HoggardMay 15, 2009, 4:00 pm
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Dont be fooled, La Cantera may dwell in the shadow of an amusement park but for those on the wrong side of the cut it is not the happiest place on earth. In honor of the last tournament turn at La Cantera, Cut Line takes a rollercoaster ride through the game.
 
Made Cut
 
  • John Daly: Regardless of your tilt towards the Austin Powers-inspired wardrobe and 43-year-olds with bleached highlights, the big mans first two rehab starts on the European circuit are nothing short of captivating.
     
    And for all the cynics perched in Turn 2 awaiting the fiery pile up know this about the slimmed-down Daly, the world quickly became much less accommodating toward his off-course shenanigans and personal, as well as professional, extinction can be a powerful motivator.
     
    Exhibit A is JDs current swing through the Euro Tour. There was a time six-figure appearance fees were hardly enough to get him on a plane to the Continent. Hes touring Europe on his own dime these days. The reclamation project may still be a fashion mess but hes doing just fine on the golf course.
     
  • Anthony Kim: His game may be a few dimples off, the likely byproduct of assorted injuries and an off-season that was anything but off, but his presence in the field this week at the Valero Texas Open defies the selfish stereotype of the modern professional athlete.
     
    In 2006 Texas officials granted AK a sponsor exemption into what was then a fall afterthought and his tie for second place turned out to be a glimpse of things to come. Kim returned to the event in 07 after a stellar rookie season, but he had to miss last year because of scheduling issues.
     
    After 07 you felt like hed met his obligation, said Tony Piazzi, the CEO and president of the organization that runs the Texas Open. Then he turns around and comes to this years event. Thats cool.
     
    Texas, where Kim is the only top-20 player in the field, is AKs third consecutive start and the beginning of a run that will add up to seven events in eight weeks through the U.S. Open. All of which makes his San Antonio stop-over very cool, indeed.
     

     
    Missed Cut ' Did not finish (MDF)
     
  • David Feherty: If the CBS Sports funnyman is guilty of anything its not bringing the heat. His comment in a Dallas magazine last week wasnt even among the top 100 funniest things hes ever written and, truth be told, probably not among the top five most offensive.
     
    Sensitivities aside, Feherty is paid to entertain and does funny better than anyone else in the business. If he takes things a bit too far at times hes earned some freebies. Besides, of all the people wed want muzzled in golf, the Northern Irishman wouldnt even be in our top 100.
     
  • Henrik Stenson: The Swede was impressive on Sunday at TPC Sawgrass, but the chatter that followed didnt pass the bandwagon sniff test. He may be a big-game hunter ' with victories now at uber-field events in Dubai, the Match Play and The Players ' but were not penciling him into our fantasy lineup for the big brawl next month at Bethpage just yet.
     
    Phil Mickelson proved last year that you cant win a U.S. Open without a driver in your bag and, with all due respect to that nuclear 3-wood, Stenson ' by his own admission ' does not have a driver in his bag.
     
  • Drug testing: OK, the revelation that Paul Goydos ' the former high school teacher who, well, still looks like a high school teacher ' was the first player tested for performance-enhancing drugs at a major championship makes about as much sense as 600 yard par 5s and travelling handicaps.
     
    But in dizzying order the sports world has been rocked by more drug scandals in recent days that make Goydos turn at the testing counter at least understandable.
     
    While no one should be surprised that Dodgers slugger Manny Ramirez tested positive for a banned substance, further soiling a sport that should simply change its logo to a fully-loaded syringe, but word last week that NASCARs Jeremy Mayfield had tested positive put the Tours testing initiative in perspective.
     
    Before Mayfields gaffe, it was hard to imagine NASCAR drivers testing positive for anything more harmful than Copenhagen snuff and Bud Light. Maybe drug-testing on Tour isnt a bad idea after all.
     

     
    Missed Cut
     
  • 'Made cut-did not finish': While we have little interest in rekindling the made cut-did not finish debate from last year, we were flummoxed to see the secondary axe take a few prisoners last week at The Players.
     
    If the Tour is serious about dubbing The Players the fifth major, it needs to exempt the event from the 78-player rule. None of the other majors employ a secondary cut and the events new spot in May gives officials plenty of time to get 80, 85 players around the golf course.
     
    The secondary cut impacts the competitive integrity of the event and Aaron Baddeleys Sunday surge proved why the Tour should revisit the rule. The Aussie finished Saturdays round at 2 over, one shot on the right side of the 54-hole cut, charged out early Sunday with a 6-under 66 and finished tied for ninth.
     
    It is a bad rule at the Buick Invitational, but it is a ridiculous rule at The Players Championship, said one manager who, admittedly, had multiple players miss the secondary cut.
     
  • Rory McIlroy: Were going to write off the Northern Irish phenoms comments regarding the Ryder Cup to youthful indiscretion and move on. It is the only way to explain McIlroys take on the transatlantic slugfest: The Ryder Cup is a great spectacle but an exhibition at the end of the day and it should be there to be enjoyed. In the big scheme of things it's not that important to me.
     
    Even 2010 European skipper Colin Montgomerie ' who can be easily hushed by a three-putt at the last but hardly ever by a metaphorical three-jack outside the ropes ' was left speechless by the lads take. The Ryder Cup is most definitely not an exhibition. Having played in it, having experienced the emotion and the stress of it, I can assure you of that, Monty said.
     
    David Duval and Hunter Mahan had similar takes on the biennial exhibition, until they felt the weekend heat at Brookline and Valhalla, respectively. Ask Mark Calcavecchia about the exhibition, that in 1991 left him emotionally drained and crying on a South Carolina beach. Trust us young Rory, youll never see that at a Skins Game.
     

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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.