Haas Named Bob Jones Award Winner for 2005

By Usga News ServicesOctober 3, 2005, 4:00 pm
USGAFAR HILLS, N.J. -- Jay Haas, a nine-time winner on the PGA Tour and a member of three USA Ryder Cup teams, has been selected as the recipient of the 2006 United States Golf Association Bob Jones Award.
Presented annually since 1955, the USGAs highest honor is given in recognition of distinguished sportsmanship in golf. The award seeks to recognize a person who emulates Jones spirit, his personal qualities and his attitude toward the game and its players. The award will be presented Feb. 4 at the Associations Annual Meeting in Atlanta, Ga.
Haas, 52, who continues to play successfully on both the PGA and Champions Tours, was a member of the victorious 1975 USA Walker Cup squad. He has since played in the Ryder Cup in 1983, 1995 and 2004 as well as the Presidents Cup in 1994 and 2003.
Known for his consistency, Haas placed in the top 125 in career earnings from his first year as a professional in 1976 until 1999. In addition, he has 141 top-10 finishes in his professional career. At age 47 in 2001, he regained his Tour card by finishing 92nd in earnings. He was tied for the third-round lead at the 2004 Players Championship at age 50 and also finished in the top 10 at the U.S. Open (T9), Players Championship (T6) and the Tour Championship (T7).
In 2005, he defeated No.1 seed Vijay Singh in the second round at the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championships before losing to Chris DiMarco in the third round.
He has played in more than 30 USGA championships, including 26 U.S. Opens. His best Open finishes have been at Shinnecock Hills Golf Club, where he tied for fourth in 1995 and shared the first-round lead with a 66 in 2004. In those 26 appearances, he has recorded three top-5 finishes and five top-10s.
Haas finished second in his first Champions Tour outing at the Senior PGA Championship and posted a T3 at the 2004 U.S. Senior Open in his third start.
He won nine events on the PGA Tour, first at the Andy Williams-San Diego Open in 1978 and lastly in 1993 at the H.E.B. Texas Open. With career earnings of nearly $14 million, Haas best two years on Tour were 2003 ($2.5 million) and 2004 ($2 million)
A native of St. Louis, Haas was introduced to golf by his uncle, 1968 Masters champion Bob Goalby. He won his first trophy, the National Pee Wee Championship in Orlando, Fla., at age 7.
A 1975 graduate of Wake Forest University, he won the NCAA Championship that year and also received the Fred Haskins Award as the nations best player. A two-time All-American, Haas played college golf with Curtis Strange and Scott Hoch.
Golf extends throughout the Haas family as Jays brother Jerry is the golf coach at Wake Forest University and his second son, Bill, was an All-American at Wake Forest and a member of the 2003 USA Walker Cup squad. Bill now plays on the Nationwide Tour. Brother-in-law Dillard Pruitt played on the PGA Tour and is now a Tour Rules official.
Haas and son, Bill, are the only father and son duo to compete in the U.S. Open together twice (2003 and 2004). Both made the cut in 2004.
He and wife, Janice, have five children and live in Greenville, S.C.
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What's in the bag: CareerBuilder winner Rahm

By Golf Channel DigitalJanuary 22, 2018, 10:37 pm

Jon Rahm defeated Andrew Landry in a playoff to earn his second PGA Tour title at the CareerBuilder Challenge. Here's what's in his bag:

Driver: TaylorMade M4 (9.5 degrees), with Aldila Tour Green 75 TX shaft

Fairway wood: TaylorMade M3 (19 degrees), with Aldila Tour Green 75 TX shaft

Irons: TaylorMade P790 (3), P750 (4-PW), with Project X 6.5 shafts

Wedges: TaylorMade Milled Grind (52, 56 degrees), Milled Grind Hi-Toe (60 degrees), with Project X 6.5 shafts

Putter: TaylorMade Spider Tour Red

Ball: TaylorMade TP5x

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Strange irked by Rahm-Landry friendly playoff

By Jason CrookJanuary 22, 2018, 9:45 pm

Curtis Strange knows a thing or two about winning golf tournaments, and based on his reaction to the CareerBuilder Challenge playoff on Sunday, it’s safe to say he did things a little differently while picking up 17 PGA Tour victories in his Hall-of-Fame career.

While Jon Rahm and Andrew Landry were “battling” through four extra holes, Strange, 62, tweeted his issues with the duo’s constant chit-chat and friendly banter down the stretch at La Quinta Country Club, where Rahm eventually came out on top.

The two-time U.S. Open champ then engaged with some followers to explain his point a little more in depth.

So, yeah ... don't think he's changing his perspective on this topic anytime soon ever.

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Randall's Rant: The Euros won't just roll over

By Randall MellJanuary 22, 2018, 9:36 pm

The Ryder Cup may not be the King Kong of golf events yet, but you can hear the biennial international team event thumping its chest a full eight months out.

As anticipation for this year’s big events goes, there is more buzz about Europe’s bid to hold off a rejuvenated American effort in Paris in September than there is about the Masters coming up in April.

Thank Europe’s phenomenal success last weekend for that.

And Rory McIlroy’s impassioned remarks in Abu Dhabi.

And the provocative bulletin board material a certain Sports Illustrated writer provided the Europeans a couple months ago, with a stinging assault on the Euro chances that read like an obituary.

McIlroy was asked in a news conference before his 2018 debut last week what he was most excited about this year.

The Ryder Cup topped his list.

Though McIlroy will be trying to complete the career Grand Slam at Augusta National come April, he talked more about the Ryder Cup than he did any of the game’s major championships.

When asked a follow-up about the American team’s resurgence after a task-force overhaul and the injection of young, new star power, McIlroy nearly started breaking down the matchup. He talked about the young Americans and how good they are.

“Yeah, the Americans have been, obviously, very buoyant about their chances and whatever, but it’s never as easy as that. ... The Ryder Cup’s always close,” McIlroy said. “I think we’ll have a great team, and it definitely won’t be as easy as they think it’s going to be.”

McIlroy may have been talking about Alan Shipnuck’s bold prediction after the American Presidents Cup rout last fall.

Or similar assertions from TV analysts.

“The Ryder Cup is dead – you just don’t know it yet,” Shipnuck wrote. “One of the greatest events in sport is on the verge of irrelevancy. The young, talented, hungry golfers from the United States, benefitting from the cohesive leadership of the Task Force era, are going to roll to victory in 2018 in Paris.”

European Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn won’t find words that will motivate the Euros more than that as he watches his prospective players jockey to make the team.

And, boy, did they jockey last weekend.

The Euros dominated across the planet, not that they did it with the Ryder Cup as some rallying cry, because they didn’t. But it was a heck of an encouraging start to the year for Bjorn to witness.

Spain’s Jon Rahm won the CareerBuilder Challenge on the PGA Tour, England’s Tommy Fleetwood started the week at Abu Dhabi paired with American and world No. 1 Dustin Johnson and won the European Tour event, and Spain’s Sergio Garcia won the Singapore Open in a rout on the Asian Tour.

And McIlroy looked close to being in midseason form, tying for third in his first start in three months.

Yes, it’s only January, and the Ryder Cup is still a long way off, with so much still to unfold, but you got an early sense from McIlroy how much defending European turf will mean to him and the Euros in Paris in September.

The Masters is great theater, the U.S. Open a rigorous test, The Open and the PGA Championship historically important, too, but the Ryder Cup touches a nerve none of those do.

The Ryder Cup stokes more fervor, provokes more passion and incites more vitriol than any other event in golf.

More bulletin board material, too.

Yeah, it’s a long way off, but you can already hear the Ryder Cup’s King Kong like footsteps in its distant approach. Watching how the American and European teams come together will be an ongoing drama through spring and summer.

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Quail Hollow officials promise players easier conditions

By Rex HoggardJanuary 22, 2018, 9:14 pm

Quail Hollow Club - a staple on the PGA Tour since 2003 - debuted as a longer, tougher version of itself at last year’s PGA Championship, receiving mixed reviews from players.

The course played to a lengthened 7,600 yards at last year’s PGA and a 73.46 stroke average, the toughest course in relation to par on Tour in 2017. As a result, it left some players less than excited to return to the Charlotte, N.C.-area layout later this spring for the Wells Fargo Championship.

It’s that lack of enthusiasm that led officials at Quail Hollow to send a video to players saying, essentially, that the course players have lauded for years will be back in May.

The video, which includes Quail Hollow president Johnny Harris and runs nearly five minutes, begins with an explanation of how the first hole, which played as a 524-yard par 4 at the PGA, will play much shorter at the Wells Fargo Championship.

“I had a number of my friends who were playing in the tournament tell me that tee was better suited as a lemonade stand,” Harris joked of the new tee box on the fourth hole. “I doubt we’ll ever see that tee used again in competition.”

Harris also explained that the greens, which became too fast for some, will be “softer” for this year’s Wells Fargo Championship.