Nearly 10 years have passed since Tiger Woods' father, Earl, passed away. With the anniversary of the death approaching, ESPN.com published a wide-ranging report discussing some of the details and specifics of Woods' life since he lost his father, including his very public personal scandal.
Here are a few of the highlights of the piece, which can be read in full here:
- Woods has confided in friend and Golf Channel analyst Notah Begay about his competitive future after a pair of recent back surgeries. According to Begay, Woods "knows" that his next on-course comeback will likely be his last.
- Woods was reportedly awkward around women, once asking basketball star Michael Jordan and baseball star Derek Jeter, "What do you do to talk to girls?"
- Woods spent ample time with Navy SEALs as a way to reconnect with the past of his father, who was a Green Beret. Those experiences included multiple trips to military camps for training and combat simulations.
- Several SEALs with which Woods interacted found him to be "weird," highlighted by a scene where Woods was at a group lunch with 5-6 SEALs and failed to pick up the tab before one of the soldiers requested separate checks.
- Woods became engrossed with SEAL training, and would often replicate popular training exercises when he had free time or couldn't sleep.
- Woods might have joined the Navy if he had broken Jack Nicklaus' major record: "If he had had a hot two years and broken the record, he would have hung up his clubs and enlisted," an anonymous friend said. "No doubt."
- Woods' oft-injured left knee received repeated trauma during his time with the SEALs, which may have contributed to the ruptured ACL injury that he suffered during the summer of 2007.
- Jordan speaks frequently with his friend, but is concerned that Woods has become "obsessed" with his public image in the fallout from his 2009 scandal. "It looms. It's in his mind. It's a ship he can't right and he's never going to."
- Jordan is also quoted as saying, "The thing is, I love him so much that I can’t tell him 'You're not gonna be great again.'"
- Woods, now 40, appears to be most happy these days when with his children and is "utterly devoted" to daughter Sam, 8, and son Charlie, 7.