ABOUT FACE: Less than one week after news broke that the LPGA would be requiring all of its players to speak English, commisioner Carolyn Bivens back-peddled saying that those in non-compliance would not be suspended, as originally stated.
This is actually worse than the original mandate. Bivens had to know the kind of backlash she would receive relating to the original policy. If you're going to make such a statement, you should be prepared to stand behind it. She didn't. Backing down just further goes to diminish her effectiveness as a leader of this tour.
THE 2030 MASTERS CHAMPION?: Tiger Woods announced Tuesday that he and wife Elin are expecting their second child in late winter. Woods, whose daughter Sam was born on Monday after the 2007 U.S. Open, did not go into specifics on the due date.
With Tiger likely sidelined over the remainder of Elin’s pregnancy, Woods won’t be pressed too hard on the gender of the child. Wonder if he has another daughter if he’ll want to have children until he produces a son? Wonder what his wife, a former swimsuit model, would think about that?
VIVA VILLEGAS: Camilo Villegas grabbed his first career PGA TOUR victory with a wire-to-wire, two-stroke win at the BMW Championship. The 26-year-old Colombian, in his third year on Tour, collected $1.26 million for his efforts, as well as moved into second on the FedExCup standings.
Villegas, a former Florida Gator, has been knocking on the door for a few months now, starting with holding the 36-hole lead at the Open Championship, and culminating with this past week's success. Villegas always seems to play his best in the playoffs, the question is now can he build on his breakthrough?
SUSPENSE OVER: With Villegas' victory, Vijay Singh only needs to show up for the TOUR Championship in three weeks to win the FedExCup, and its hefty $10 million bonus. Villegas could even win the final event and have Singh finish in last, and the Big Fijian would still have a 101-point lead.
Back to the drawing for Mr. Finchem, as the adjusted FedExCup format was supposed to produce suspense. Knowing who the champion before the final leg is the antithesis of drama. But we have little doubt that the folks at the PGA TOUR are already drawing up ways to fix the problem. That being said, with the Tour off this week and the Ryder Cup coming up, you can bet your bottom dollar that even though he could shoot a 100 each round and still win, Singh will still spend hours, and hours, and hours and – well, you get the point – on the range.
THANKS FOR NOTHING: When approached by NBC Sports after his round Sunday for a few comments regarding his all-but clinching of the FedExCup, the surly Singh brushed them off as well as a group of waiting media.
You'll hear a lot about how Singh is misunderstood. That he has a great sense of humor. That he can be generous. He may be those things, but most of the negative perception cast towards Singh is through his own doing – and is much deserved. There are plenty of reasons to pull for him, and plenty of reasons to root against him.
A BORESOME FOURSOME: U.S. Ryder Cup captain Paul Azinger finalized his team Tuesday in New York by selecting Steve Stricker, Hunter Mahan, J.B. Holmes and Chad Campbell as his wildcards.
Unfortunately for Azinger, he didn’t have much to choose from, as no player proved to be a must have after the PGA. We’re not exactly sure what Azinger saw in these four picks, but we know it wasn’t experience (three rookies among the four picks) and it certainly wasn’t personality. Take Boo Weekley off this team and you might have the dullest Ryder Cup squad in history.
A CLAP FOR THUNDER: Tommy Bolt, the 1958 U.S. Open championship, died Aug. 29 at the age of 92. The passing was revealed last week. Bolt won 15 PGA TOUR events, competed in two Ryder Cups (1955, ’57) and was inducted, in 2002, into the World Golf Hall of Fame.
As great a player as Bolt was, he will be remembered much more for his temperament. Bolt had a bevy of nicknames based on his demeanor on the golf course: Terrible, Tempestuous, Thunder. Ben Hogan once said, “If we could’ve screwed another head on his shoulders, Tommy Bolt could have been the greatest who ever played.” But, as his wife Mary Lou Bolt said, “He was the best man I ever knew.”
IN CASE YOU MISSED IT: News broke this past week that Tadd Fujikawa's father was indicted by an O'ahu grand jury on two counts of first-degree methamphetamine trafficking and, if convicted, could face up to 40 years in prison … Brendon Todd cruised to a six-shot victory to win the Utah Championship, but the big story was produced by Peter Tomasulo, Chris Stroud, Brian Stuard and Jonathan Fricke - each of whom had holes-in-one in Thursday's opening round … Ten Duramed Futures Tour players earned 2009 LPGA membership by finishing in the top 10 on the season money list.
Victor Bakke, Derrick Fujikawa’s lawyer, said his client’s biggest concern is the “shadow that this might cast on his son and his son’s career.” Agreed...You have to go back to the 1989 U.S. Open to find the last time there were four holes-in-one in a single day. In '89 the aces all happened on the same hole. Pretty incredible stuff … Of those 10, Vicky Hurst led the money list and is expected to have an impact on the LPGA in 2009. Also among that group, coming in at No. 10, was Big Break IX winner Kim Welch.
Contributions from writers and editors on the Golf Channel Digital team.
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