Double P Up Bob Hope Down

By Rex HoggardJanuary 23, 2009, 5:00 pm
Bob Hope week is one of the toughest cuts to avoid all year on the PGA Tour. You have to go four rounds, make a ton of birdies and hope for the best to earn a check in the Coachella Valley. Even here at Cut Line we are feeling the pressure.

  • Tiger Woods:
  • The man has avoided political minefields almost as ably as he has sidestepped fairway bunkers and water hazards, but last week he changed course a bit and spoke at the We Are One: The Obama Inaugural Celebration in Washington, D.C.
    Although Woods stayed well clear of any hot-button political issues in his speech, instead honoring the military and the families of those who serve, it was encouraging to see someone who wields so much social influence take part in such a historic event.
    Besides, as best we can figure, Woods will play Tour golf for five more years and collect his 20 or so major keepsakes before starting his own quest for the White House. A little inside-the-beltway stage time in January is good practice.

  • Pat Perez:
  • The Southern Californian once fumed over a headline in a national golf magazine, It said, Why is Pat Perez so angry? Perez seethed. Why am I so angry? Can you believe that?
    Truth is, Perez can be a tad angry, but he can also be very good on the golf course and in the community. The former was proven on Wednesday when he opened the 50th Bob Hope Classic with an 11-under 61 which could have easily been a 59. The latter came to mind last year as we walked Torrey Pines, Perezs childhood track, with the players father, Tony.
    He is so good with the kids. Its amazing to watch him, said Tony Perez, who runs the Pin Pals project which benefits underprivileged kids in San Diego and Operation: Game On for wounded veterans.
    Welcome to the softer side of Double P.

  • Tadd Fujikawa:
  • OK, so he faded on Sunday with an unsightly 73 to bring his total haul as a professional to $29,237. But you have to cheer the Hawaiian teens Sony Open odyssey regardless of finish or financial gain. The wee player with the whale-sized heart played his way through pre-qualifying, Monday qualifying and more pressure and expectations than should ever be cast on a 17-year-old.
    Todd Anderson, Fujikawas Sea Island (Ga.) Resort-based swing coach, said he wanted his pupil to focus on the mini-tours this year to build his confidence and hone his game. Good advice. Lets hope he doesnt follow the lead of that other teen-aged Hawaiian phenom and waste his time chasing sponsor exemptions and more Monday qualifying on Tour. Confidence is a commodity that shouldnt be taken for granted.

  • Flight Time:
  • It was a hook, in all honesty. A roping miss that sailed into the light rough ringing the 15th green at PGA Wests Palmer Course, bounced once and trundled some 50 feet into the cup for an unlikely hole-in-one and an unexpected door prize.
    Retired electronics manufacturer Andy Goldfarbs tee shot at the 15th was one of 88 strokes the 61-year-old took on Day 1 at the Bob Hope, but it was good enough to earn him a $50,000 credit toward flight time on a private Sentient Jet. Of course, $50K doesnt go real far when the going hourly rate on the companys smallest jet is $2,750. And that doesnt include taxes.
    The good news for Goldfarb? Most flights include an in-flight snack and there are no middle seats. The bad news? No word on whether Sentient was going to waive its $100,000 minimum deposit fee for membership.

  • Davis Love III:
  • The 20-time Tour winners name appeared on a ballot to chair this years Player Advisory Council opposite circuit quipster Paul Goydos. This years PAC chair ascends to the Tour Policy Board in 2010. Love, a board veteran, would certainly make a welcome return as a decision maker, but given the current economic situation he may want to take a dive in the chairmans race.
    They asked me to run for the board again and I said, Jeez, I was on the board when everything was good. Why do I want to be on it now? Everybody will be pointing fingers, Love said last month. I took a year off and look what happened.

  • Bob Hope Classic officials:
  • Weve covered the last four desert classics, a brief but telling line that stretches from Chad Campbell in 2005 to D.J. Trahan in 08, and still have not fully grasped the temporary lapse that prompted tournament officials to oust George Lopez as tournament host.
    The pre-Lopez years had the look and feel of a tournament on life support, while the Lopez era was full of life, A list celebs and a bright future. Officials wisely enlisted the services of Arnold Palmer for this years event, but were still flummoxed by Lopezs ouster.
    A well-tread Hope one-liner seems apropos: I was out in the garden all day yesterday. I ironed the lawn, smoothed out the grass, put every blade in its place . . . and I still missed the putt anyway.

  • European Ryder Cup captain selection committee II:
  • Seems we wasted a portion of this space last week lamenting the ongoing and convoluted process. Turns out we didnt even have the right cast of characters.
    Reports surfaced last week that European stalwart Colin Montgomerie rushed into the frontrunners spot to captain the 2010 team in Wales. Monty would liven up the proceedings, but it must be pointed out that the Scot can be affable or aloof, it all depends on his mood.
    Were still confused by the committees indifference to Sandy Lyle, who was described as having, one of the best golf minds in the game, by one longtime associate last week.
    Outspoken basketball analyst Stephen A. Smith has a signature line for this: Dont hate the player, hate the game.
    Email your thoughts to Rex Hoggard

    Battling mono, Kaufman tied for lead at CME

    By Randall MellNovember 19, 2017, 2:05 am

    NAPLES, Fla. – Kim Kaufman’s bout with mononucleosis might leave fellow tour pros wanting to catch the fever, too.

    A couple months after Anna Nordqvist battled her way into contention at the Women’s British Open playing with mono, and then thrived at the Solheim Cup with it, Kaufman is following suit.

    In her first start since being diagnosed, Kaufman posted an 8-under-par 64 Saturday to move into a four-way tie for the lead at the CME Group Tour Championship. It was the low round of the day. She’s bidding to win her first LPGA title.

    “I’ve been resting at home for two weeks,” Kaufman said. “Didn’t do anything.”

    Well, she did slip on a flight of stairs while recuperating, hurting her left wrist. She had it wrapped Saturday but said that’s mostly precautionary. It didn’t bother her during the round.

    CME Group Tour Championship: Articles, photos and videos

    Full-field scores from the CME Group Tour Championship

    “I’m the only person who can take two weeks off and get injured,” Kaufman joked.

    Kaufman, 26, left the Asian swing after playing the Sime Darby Malaysia, returning to her home in South Dakota, to see her doctor there. She is from Clark. She was told bed rest was the best thing for her, but she felt good enough to make the trip to Florida for the season-ending event.

    “We had some really cold days,” Kaufman said. “We had some snow. I was done with it. I was coming down here.”

    How does she feel?

    “I feel great,” she said. “I’m a little bit shaky, which isn’t great out there, but it’s great to be here doing something. I was going a little bit stir crazy [at home], just kind of fighting through it.”

    Kaufman made eight birdies in her bogey-free round.

    New-look Wie eyes CME Group Tour Championship title

    By Randall MellNovember 19, 2017, 1:32 am

    NAPLES, Fla. – Michelle Wie is sporting a new look that even has fellow players doing double takes.

    Bored during her six-week recovery from an emergency appendectomy late this summer, Wie decided to cut and die her hair.

    She went for golden locks, and a shorter style.

    “I kind of went crazy after being in bed that long,” Wie said. “I just told my mom to grab the kitchen scissors and just cut all my hair off.”

    Wie will get to sport her new look on a big stage Sunday after playing herself into a four-way tie for the lead at the CME Group Tour Championship. With a 6-under-par 66, she is in contention to win her fifth LPGA title, her first since winning the U.S. Women’s Open three years ago.

    CME Group Tour Championship: Articles, photos and videos

    Full-field scores from the CME Group Tour Championship

    Wie, 28, fought her way back this year after two of the most disappointing years of her career. Her rebound, however, was derailed in late August, when she withdrew from the final round of the Canadian Pacific Women’s Open to undergo an emergency appendectomy. She was out for six weeks.

    Before the surgery, Wie enjoyed getting back into contention regularly, with six finishes of T-4 or better this season. She returned to the tour on the Asian swing in October.

    Fellow tour pros were surprised when she came back with the new look.

    “Definitely, walk by people and they didn’t recognize me,” Wie said.

    Wie is looking to continue to build on her resurgence.

    “I gained a lot of confidence this year,” she said. “I had a really tough year last year, the last couple years. Just really feeling like my old self. Really feeling comfortable out there and having fun, and that's when I play my best.”

    You Oughta Know: LPGA's Sunday scenarios

    By Randall MellNovember 19, 2017, 1:17 am

    NAPLES, Fla. – The CME Group Tour Championship is loaded with pressure-packed subplots Sunday at Tiburon Golf Club.

    Here’s what You Oughta Know about the prizes at stake:

    Race to the CME Globe

    Lexi Thompson and Sung Hyun Park are 1-2 in CME Globe points. They are best positioned Sunday to take home the $1 million jackpot in the season-long competition.

    Thompson and Park are tied for fifth in the tournament, one shot off the lead. If either of them wins, she will take home the jackpot.

    The way it’s unfolding Thompson is a good bet to take home the jackpot by merely finishing ahead of Park, unless they both stumble badly on Sunday.

    Ariya Jutanugarn is also one shot off the lead. She must win to take home the jackpot, but she would also need Thompson to finish ninth or worse and Park to finish eighth or worse and nobody else among the top 12 in points to make a bold Sunday charge.

    Stacy Lewis is one shot off the lead with a longshot chance at the jackpot. She must win the tournament while Thompson finishes 26th or worse, Park finishes 12th or worse and nobody else among the top 12 in points makes a bold Sunday charge.

    So Yeon Ryu and Shanshan Feng are among others who still have a shot at the $1 million prize, but they have fallen back in the pack and need bold Sunday charges to take home the jackpot.

    Rolex Player of the Year

    The Rolex Player of the Year Award remains a four-player race.

    Ryu (162), Feng (159), Park (157) and Thompson (147) all have a chance to win the award.

    Park and Thompson are best positioned to make Sunday moves to overtake Ryu.

    Park needs to finish sixth or better to win the award outright; Thompson needs to win the tournament to win the award.

    It’s simple math.

    The top 10 in the tournament will be awarded points.

    1st - 30 points

    2nd – 12 points

    3rd – 9 points

    4th – 7 points

    5th – 6 points

    6th – 5 points

    7rd – 4 points

    8th – 3 points

    9th – 2 points

    10th – 1 point

    Vare Trophy

    Thompson took a 69.147 scoring average to Naples. Park needs to finish nine shots ahead of Thompson to have a shot at the trophy.

    Money-winning title

    Park leads the tour in money winnings with $2,262,472. Ryu is the only player who can pass her Sunday, and Ryu must win the tournament to do so. Ryu is tied for 32nd, five shots off the lead. If Ryu wins the tournament, she also needs Park to finish worse than solo second.

    Rolex world No. 1 ranking

    World No. 1 Feng, No. 2 Park and No. 3 Ryu are separated by just three hundredths of a point.

    Because they are so close, the scenarios for overtaking Feng are head spinning.

    At No. 4, Thompson is a full average ranking point behind Feng, but she could become the sixth different player this season to move to No. 1. Thompson, however, has to win Sunday to have a chance to do so, and then it will depend on what Feng, Park and Ryu do. Again, the scenarios are complex.

    Cook leads RSM Classic by three at Sea Island

    By Associated PressNovember 19, 2017, 12:28 am

    ST. SIMONS ISLAND, Ga. - PGA Tour rookie Austin Cook shot a 4-under 66 on Saturday to increase his lead to three strokes in the RSM Classic.

    Cook, a shot ahead after a second-round 62, had five birdies and a bogey - his first of the week - to reach 18-under 194 with a round left at Sea Island Golf Club's Seaside Course.

    ''Putting is key right now,'' Cook said. ''Been able to make a lot of clutch putts for the pars to save no bogeys. Hitting the ball pretty much where we're looking and giving ourselves good opportunities on every hole.''

    Former University of Georgia player Chris Kirk was second after a 64.

    ''I'm really comfortable here,'' Kirk said. ''I love Sea Island. I lived here for 6 1/2 years, so I played the golf course a lot, SEC Championships and come down here for the RSM Classic. My family and I, we come down here a few other times a year as well.''

    Brian Gay was another stroke back at 14 under after a 69.

    ''I love the course,'' Gay said. ''We keep getting different wind directions so it's keeping us on our toes. Supposed to be another completely different wind direction tomorrow, so we're getting a new course every day.''

    RSM Classic: Articles, photos and videos

    Full-field scores from the RSM Classic

    J.J. Spaun had a 62 to get to 13 under.

    ''I just kind of played stress-free golf out there and kept the golf ball in front of me,'' Spaun said. ''I had a lot of looks and scrambled pretty well, even though it was only a handful of times, but pretty overall pleased with how I played today.''

    Cook has made the weekend cuts in all four of his starts this season. The 26-year-old former Arkansas player earned his PGA Tour card through the Tour.

    ''I think with an extra year on the Web this past year, I really grew mentally and with my game, just kind of more confidence,'' Cook said. ''I was able to put myself in contention on the more this year than I have in the past. I think I've just, you know, learned from experiences on the Web to help me grow out here.''

    He planned to keep it simple Saturday night.

    ''I've got my parents here and my in-laws are both here as well as my wife,'' Cook said. ''Go home and just have a good home-cooked meal and just kind of enjoy the time and embrace the moment.''

    Kirk won the last of his four PGA Tour titles in 2015 at Colonial.

    ''It's nice to be back in contention again,'' Kirk said. ''It's been a little while for me. But I felt great out there today, I felt really comfortable, and so hopefully it will be the same way tomorrow and I'll keep my foot on the pedal and stay aggressive, try to make some birdies.''