Some Laundry and a KISS for Micheel

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AKRON, Ohio (AP) -- In the two days since winning the PGA Championship, Shaun Micheel hasn't had much time to reflect on the magnitude of being a major champion.
 
He was too busy doing laundry.
 
Then he had to pay some bills.
 
About the only perk he got from his newfound fame was going to a Kiss concert in Columbus on his way to the NEC Invitational.
 
'Kiss is my favorite rock group of all time,' Micheel said. 'I know every one of their songs. If they'd only let me get up on stage and sing, that would be pretty interesting.'
 
Micheel is friends with Paco Zimmer, the road manager for Kiss, and he spoke Monday with lead singer Paul Stanley.
 
'They invited me to come out on tour with them for a while. I don't know if the wife is going to let me do that or not,' said Micheel, whose wife is expecting their first child.
 
It didn't take long for someone in the audience to recognize him.
 
'Some guy standing next to me between songs said, 'You look just like that guy that won the PGA Championship, Shaun Micheel.' And I said, 'That's because I am,'' he said. 'I had an artist badge that had my name on it, so he was giving me high-fives and telling me about my shot on 18.'
 
Even more surprising was the greeting he got in his Memphis, Tenn., neighborhood.
 
Micheel plays 30 tournaments a year, so he's not home much, and he doesn't know most of the people who live around him.
 
'When I drove up into my subdivision, all these people had signs up -- 'PGA champion,' 'Congratulations Stephanie and Steve,' all sorts of things,' he said. 'I look forward to having a big neighborhood party.'
 
He better get used to the notoriety, plus a lot of other things that come with being a major championship winner.
 
Take scheduling.
 
No one ever cared if Micheel, who had never finished in the top 100 on the PGA Tour money list, decided to play in a tournament.
 
Micheel used to worry that he would forget to commit to a tournament, so he enters just about every one and decides later whether to play.
 
'I understand the tour and the tournaments don't always like you to do that, especially being in the position where I am now,' he said. 'If you give them an advance commitment, they're going to run your picture.'
 
He's not sure if he's going to play in the World Match Play Championship in England, which offers a $1.6 million prize to the winner. He also is eligible for the PGA Grand Slam of Golf in Hawaii on Dec. 5-6, although the baby is due a week earlier.
 
What happens if she still hasn't given birth?
 
'Obviously, the birth of your first child comes around once in a lifetime,' he said. 'If the baby is a week or so late, maybe they would induce. Maybe you can request that. I know I will be requesting that.'
 
CHANGES TO THE MONSTER
 
The 16th hole at Firestone is known as 'The Monster,' a 625-yard par 5 with a pond in front of the green. It already was one of the longest holes on the PGA Tour.
 
This year, it got a little longer.
 
An extra tee has stretched the Monster to 667 yards, which might make it difficult, if not impossible, for even the long hitters to reach it in two.
 
Tiger Woods thinks tournament officials made a mistake.
 
'I don't like it,' he said. 'It was an exciting hole, because if you hit your best drive, you might have a chance. That's taken out of the equation now.'
 
That doesn't take the pressure off hitting a good tee shot, though.
 
'If you drive the ball poorly, you're going to be laying up right where you were on your previous tee shot in the past,' he said.
 
MUIRFIELD CONCERNS
 
Firestone South appears to be as immaculate as ever. That's not the case at the other Ohio stop on the PGA Tour -- Muirfield Village, where the Memorial Tournament is played every May.
 
Tournament host Jack Nicklaus said the greens are in miserable shape, not a good sign with cold weather approaching.
 
'The rain has been very heavy, and that golf course doesn't drain nearly as well as it should,' Nicklaus said Wednesday.
 
He said the fairways had 1 1/2' of thatch grass, another problem. Asked for the cause, Nicklaus said, 'I'm not an agronomist.'
 
Still, he said he doesn't expect it to be a problem next May, and said the greens should be able to recover through a regular maintenance program.
 
FOOTBALL IN SOUTH AFRICA
 
The U.S. team for the Presidents Cup held its first meeting Wednesday, and one potential was brought to the table.
 
What about television?
 
'We got a request today that there were two important football games on, and do we have a satellite dish,' assistant captain Jeff Sluman said. 'We'll get that done.'
 
The request apparently came from Chris DiMarco, a Florida graduate.
 
The Presidents Cup is Nov. 20-23, and Florida plays Florida State that Saturday.
 
The other big game is Ohio State-Michigan, which is of interest to Jim Furyk and captain Jack Nicklaus.
 
Meantime, Tiger Woods finally announced his intentions to play.
 
Reporters have been asking him the last couple of months.
 
'I'm going,' Woods said. Then smiling, he added, 'Happy now?'
 
Related Links:
  • Full Coverage - WGC-NEC Invitational
     
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