Notes The strange tale of Hall of Fame ballots

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50th Bob Hope Chrylser ClassicLA QUINTA, Calif. ' For those who believe 40 is too young to be considered for the Hall of Fame, consider the plight of David Toms.
 
He was put on the PGA Tour ballot when he turned 40 because of his 12 victories (one of them a major) and 10 years on the PGA Tour. Toms received 1 percent of the vote in 2007, and he didnt receive any votes last year.
 
Because he did not receive at least 5 percent of the vote in consecutive years, he was taken off the ballot this year.
 
I dont even think of the Hall of Fame until a guy turns 50, until hes almost done in golf, Toms said. Thats more fair than throwing someone like me on the ballot just because I meet the criteria.
 
Toms does not have Hall of Fame credentials ' not yet, maybe not ever.
 
With his experience, and feeling healthier than he has in recent years, he believes he is capable of winning at least another major and three more victories. Two majors and 15 wins would be more than I could have hoped for when I started, he said.
 
What if he achieves more? After turning 42, Kenny Perry went on to win eight times.
 
Can they put you back on? Toms said.
 
Yes.
 
Jack Peter, the chief operating officer of the World Golf Hall of Fame, said the board of directors has the authority to place a golfer back on the ballot once removed. Even so, this might be more ammunition for those who believe a player should not be on the ballot until he is closer to the end of his career.
 

 
HOWELLS LOSS: Charles Howell III made a strong charge on the back nine of the Sony Open that ended when he failed to make birdie on the par-5 18th and wound up alone in fourth.
 
And moments after he finished, Howell received word that his maternal grandfather had died.
 
Instead of heading to Palm Springs for the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic, Howell withdrew from the tournament and was headed home to Georgia for the funeral.
 

 
WINTER ELECTION: PGA Tour members are gearing up for their own election, this one absent of mudslinging, stumping or any other form of campaigning. The new 16-man Players Advisory Council has been selected, and now its time to pick a chairman, who next year will graduate to the Tours policy board.
 
The candidates for PAC chairman are Davis Love III, who has previously served on the board, and Paul Goydos.
 
Im running on the platform that anyone whose last name begins with a G gets a lifetime exemption, Goydos said.
 
Goydos isnt sure how he was picked to be a candidate (they are chosen by the four players on the board), but he agreed to have his name on the ballot.
 
Its a quest for knowledge, Goydos said. I think its important to know the inner-workings of the sport I play.
 
The other PAC members this year are Stuart Appleby, Steve Flesch, Harrison Frazar, Ryuji Imada, Jerry Kelly, George McNeill, Joe Ogilvie, Tom Pernice Jr., D.A. Points, Ted Purdy, Brett Quigley, Vijay Singh and Mark Wilson.
 
Along with his reputation for being insightful, Goydos has a dry sense of humor that borders on arid. He was asked if elected as PAC chairman, what he would bring to a board meeting.
 
A Coke, he said.
 

 
LIFE MEMBERS: When Davis Love III won for the 20th time to become a life member of the PGA Tour, he received notoriety for his achievement everywhere but the PGA Tour media guide.
 
In his bio, it lists his exempt status as through 2010 because of his victory at Disney.
 
But theres a reason for that.
 
The tour matches exempt status with its priority ranking system. That starts with U.S. Open and PGA Championship winners (lifetime exemption before 1970, now a five-year exemption), then goes through categories such as winning the other two majors, The Players Championship, the Tour Championship, any PGA Tour event, career money, etc.
 
Life members ' 20 victories and active members for 15 years ' is No. 17 on the priority list.
 
Theres a reason for that, too.
 
According to Andy Pazder, the tours senior vice president of tournament administration, the lifetime tournament exemption is effective only as long as the player maintains a proper scoring average (three strokes above the field average for the tournaments he plays) and competes in at least one PGA Tour event each calendar year.
 
Pazder said the scoring average requirement is what caused Lanny Wadkins and Hale Irwin to be moved out of the Life Member category and into the past champions category.
 
A player can regain lifetime membership if he meets the scoring requirement in a subsequent year.
 

 
DRUG TESTING: Even though he hasnt played since the U.S. Open, Tiger Woods is eligible for drug testing. He said last month the PGA Tour did not come to his house for the test, even though he was expecting a visit.
 
PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem would not say who was tested. Finchem said the tour has random testing, selective testing (when it singles out players to be tested) and regular testing for those who might have a history of substance abuse.
 
If, in fact, Tiger has not been tested ' and Im not in a position to say whether he has or hasnt ' it would mean that he didnt pop up in the random poll, I think before he got hurt, Finchem said. And if he was on the selected list, which he may or may not have been we reserved the right in certain situations to go outside the scope of the tournament and test, and we may or may not have done that. But if he says he wasnt tested, its one of those reasons.
 

 
DIVOTS: Morgan Pressel raised $300,000 toward breast cancer research at her second annual Morgan & Friends charity event earlier this month. The money will go toward treatment through a new cancer drug and to pay for a traveling mammography van. Pressels mother died of breast cancer in 2003...John Daly, who had planned to play the Desert Swing on the European tour, has withdrawn from Abu Dhabi last week and the Qatar Masters this week. His agent said Daly did not feel his game was ready...Rory Sabbatini has a corporate deal with Hasbro, the Rhode Island-based toy company, which explains the Nerf logo on his bag. Considering his charity work with the military, dont be surprised to Sabbatini get involved with another of the companys products ' G.I. Joe.
 

 
STAT OF THE WEEK: Davis Love III now has 166 finishes in the top 10 on the PGA Tour, most among active players and one top 10 ahead of Vijay Singh.
 

 
FINAL WORD: Every club in my bag is my favorite club. ' Paul Azinger, without an equipment deal for the first time since 1995.
 

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