Just the FAQs Everything You Need to Know About Casey Martin and the Supreme Court
When: Wednesday, Jan. 17 at 10 a.m. EST. (Decision in spring or early summer.)
Where: Supreme Court building, One First Street NE, Washington D.C.
Who: For the PGA Tour, appellate lawyer H. Bartow Farr III, 56, a former law clerk for Chief Justice William Rehnquist, now a partner in the Washington firm of Farr & Taranto. For Casey Martin, New York City appellate specialist Roy Reardon, 71, of the firm of Simpson Thacher & Bartlett.
How: Each lawyer will have 30 minutes to address the nine Justices of the Supreme Court (Chief Justice William Rehnquist and Justices John Paul Stevens, Sandra Day O'Connor, Ruth Bader Ginsburg, Antonin Scalia, Anthony Kennedy, Steven Breyer, David Souter, and Clarence Thomas). The time limits are strictly enforced. Justices may interrupt with questions, and often do. There are no witnesses.
TV coverage: On Jan. 17, Adam Barr live from Washington at about 11:30 a.m. EST. Golf Central with Adam Barr at 7:30 p.m. EST. Viewers Forum with Adam Barr live at 9 p.m. EST. No cameras are allowed in the courtroom.
Why: In 1997, professional golfer Casey Martin, who suffers from a rare circulatory disorder that makes it impossible to walk the golf course, sued the PGA Tour for the right to use a golf cart in the PGA Tour Qualifying Tournament. He convinced a federal court in Eugene, Oregon to grant a temporary injunction requiring the Tour to comply.
In February 1998, the same court held a trial on the issue of whether the temporary injunction should become permanent. Six days of proceedings included testimony from Arnold Palmer, Jack Nicklaus, Ken Venturi, former U.S. Golf Association president Judy Bell and Martin himself. A dramatic videotape of Martin's afflicted leg upset many in the courtroom. The court decided for Martin.
The PGA Tour appealed to the Court of Appeals for the Ninth Circuit, the federal appeals region in which Eugene is found. That court affirmed the trial court; Martin prevailed again.
The PGA Tour, which had intimated that it would not take the case further, changed its plan in light of the decision in Olinger v. USGA, in which an Indiana golf pro sued the USGA for the right to use a cart in U.S. Open qualifying - and lost. The case was reviewed in a different circuit, and the result stood.
This emboldened the Tour to take the matter to the Supreme Court, which it did on July 5, 2000. On Sept. 26, the Court decided to take the appeal. (In most cases, it is up to the Supreme Court whether it will hear a case.) The Court's acceptance, which requires the consent of at least four Justices, means that at least that many Justices have concerns about the result in the courts below.
What it all means: The Supreme Court may well decide that the Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA), on which Martin relied in court, was not designed to protect competitors in sporting events.
If that happens, it's likely that the Tour will decide to withstand the public relations hit involved in taking Martin's cart away. Some have speculated that even if the Tour won, it would make a one-time exception for Martin, whom it has been careful to call a fine young man at every opportunity. But just as often, the Tour has stressed the importance of uniformity of competitive rules.
No one denies that Martin is disabled. Also, there is no dispute that Martin is an independent contractor, so he is not covered by Title I, the portion of the ADA that protects disabled employees from discrimination.
The central issue will be whether golf courses used for Tour events are what the Title III of the ADA calls 'places of public accommodation.' In such places, clients and customers seeking services can't be discriminated against on the basis of a disability. Among the places listed in the Act as public accommodations are golf courses and places of exhibition and entertainment.
The Tour will argue that Congress never intended to include the area inside the ropes in the definition of a public accommodation. Just as the audience of a theater is not invited backstage, so the spectators of a golf tournament are not generally invited inside the ropes where the tournament is played, the Tour reasons. Therefore, the ADA would not apply.
The Tour will also argue that the ADA applies only to 'clients and customers' of public accommodations, not workers or performers there.
The Tour will also argue that even if a golf tournament is a public accommodation, allowing Martin to use a cart would 'fundamentally alter' the nature of the of the Tour's primary activity, which is putting on golf tournaments at the highest level of competition. Under the ADA, owners of public accommodations need not make allowances for the disabled if doing so would fundamentally alter the nature of the primary activities done there, even though they admittedly have a public accommodation. That's Congress's way of balancing the interests of the Act with the possible hardships on facility owners.
Martin will argue through his lawyers that Congress indeed intended the inside-the-ropes area to be a public accommodation, rather than to cut out an entire class of people who could benefit from the ADA. Martin's lawyers will also say that the issue of fundamental alteration - the courts below said riding a cart would not fundamentally alter the Tour's business - was tried completely in the trial court, and that that finding should not be disturbed.
The legal issues are complex, and emotions run high on this issue throughout the world of golf. But at the Supreme Court, intellect is supposed to override emotion and passion. The academic crucible of the law will test the assertions of the lawyers - and to a great extent, determine the future of professional golf.
With eye on Masters, Howell wins Match Play group
AUSTIN, Texas – Charles Howell III appears to have solved his match play mystery, advancing out of pool play for the second consecutive year after failing to play the weekend his first eight trips to the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play.
The timing couldn’t have been better.
At 65th in the Official World Golf Ranking, Howell needs to advance to Sunday’s final four to move into the top 50 in the world and earn an invitation to the Masters, which is always a primary goal for the Augusta, Ga., native.
“Knowing that I need a big week here to get through, obviously, it's massive in match play,” said Howell, who will face Kiradech Aphibarnrat in the first stage of knockout play on Saturday. “Kiradech is an awesome player. I feel like I'm the underdog, and nothing to lose, I like that.”
Howell, who began the week as the 59th-seeded player, was unbeaten in pool play, defeating Phil Mickelson on Day 1 and securing his spot in the weekend with a 2-and-1 victory over Satoshi Kodaira on Friday.
Although Saturday’s matches may have a qualifying feel for Howell, who last played the Masters in 2012, he’s also in the field for next week’s Houston Open and could earn a spot at Augusta National with a victory there.
McIlroy to rest, play Augusta after early exit at Match Play
AUSTIN, Texas – For the second consecutive year, Rory McIlroy failed to advance out of pool play at the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, but there was a silver lining for last week’s champion.
McIlroy, who lost on Friday, 5 and 3, to Brian Harman, said he didn’t have much time to recharge following his victory at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, and having the weekend off will give him a chance to prepare for what promises to be an intense build up to this year’s Masters.
The Northern Irishman will travel to Augusta National on Wednesday for what he said will be a 54- to 72-hole, two-day practice session.
“Me and [caddie Harry Diamond] are going up, two members are hosting us, we're going to have a couple of social runs Wednesday and Thursday,” McIlroy said. “I’ll rest up a little bit, recharge the batteries, get into the gym. Sort of have a good week training and a good practice week. And just get myself ready for Augusta.”
McIlroy is listed among the favorites at the Masters, where he could complete the career Grand Slam if he were to win.
Group standings at WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play
Here are the group standings for pool play at the 2018 WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play Championship in Austin, Texas. The player with the most points in each pool advanced to Saturday's Round of 16 in Austin, Texas. Click here for scoring and click here for the bracket.
(Note: Group winners are highlighted; * equals won in playoff)
|Group 1||Group 2||Group 3||Group 4|
|(1) D. Johnson: 0-2-0||(2) J. Thomas: 3-0-0||(3) J. Rahm: 0-2-1||(4) J. Spieth: 2-0-0|
|(32) K. Kisner: 1-0-1||(21) F. Molinari: 2-1-0||(28) K. Aphibarnrat: 3-0-0||(19) P. Reed: 2-0-0|
|(38) A. Hadwin: 1-0-1
||(48) P. Kizzire: 1-2-0||(43) C. Reavie: 1-1-1||(34) H. Li: 0-2-0|
|(52) B. Wiesberger: 1-1-0
||(60) L. List: 0-3-0||(63) K. Bradley: 0-1-2||(49) C. Schwartzel: 0-2-0|
|Group 5||Group 6||Group 7||Group 8|
|(5) H. Matsuyama: 1-1-0||(6) R. McIlroy: 1-2-0||(7) S. Garcia: 3-0-0||(8) J. Day: 1-1-0|
|(30) P. Cantlay: 1-1-0
||(18) B. Harman: 2-0-1||(20) X. Schauffele: 2-1-0||(25) L. Oosthuizen: 1-1-0|
|(46) C. Smith: 2-0-0||(44) J. Vegas: 0-2-1||(41) D. Frittelli: 1-2-0||(42) J. Dufner: 1-1-0|
|(53) Y. Miyazato: 0-2-0||(51) P. Uihlein: 2-1-0||(62) S. Sharma: 0-3-0||(56) J. Hahn: 1-1-0|
|Group 9||Group 10||Group 11||Group 12|
|(9) T. Fleetwood: 1-1-0||(10) P. Casey: 2-1-0||(11) M. Leishman: 0-2-1||(12) T. Hatton: 2-0-0|
|(26) D. Berger: 0-2-0||(31) M. Fitzpatrick: 1-2-0||(23) B. Grace: 1-1-1||(22) C. Hoffman: 0-2-0|
|(33) K. Chappell: 1-1-0||(45) K. Stanley: 2-1-0||(35) B. Watson: 2-0-1||(36) B. Steele: 1-1-0|
|(58) I. Poulter: 2-0-0||(51) R. Henley: 1-2-0||(64) J. Suri: 1-1-1||(55) A. Levy: 1-1-0|
|Group 13||Group 14||Group 15||Group 16|
|(13) A. Noren: 2-0-0||(14) P. Mickelson: 2-1-0||(15) P. Perez: 0-1-1||(16) M. Kuchar: 1-0-1|
|(29) T. Finau: 2-0-0||(17) R. Cabrera Bello: 1-2-0||(24) G. Woodland: 0-1-1||(27) R. Fisher: 1-1-0|
|(39) T. Pieters: 0-2-0||(40) S. Kodaira: 0-3-0||(37) W. Simpson: 1-0-1||(47) Y. Ikeda: 1-1-0|
|(61) K. Na: 0-2-0||(59) C. Howell III: 3-0-0||(50) S.W. Kim: 1-0-1||(54) Z. Johnson: 0-1-1|
Match-by-match: WGC-Dell Technologies, Day 3
Here is how things played out on Day 3 of the WGC-Dell Technologies Match Play, as 64 players take on Austin Country Club with hopes of advancing out of pool play. Click here for Day 2 match results:
Group 1: Dustin Johnson (1) vs. Kevin Kisner (32)
Group 1: Adam Hadwin (38) vs. Bernd Wiesberger (52)
Group 2: Justin Thomas (2) def. Francesco Molinari (21), 7 and 5: Looking like the man to beat, Thomas put Molinari in an early 3-down hole and kept applying pressure, putting him away with seven birdies in one of the most lopsided results of the week – and in a battle of two unbeatens. Thomas can become world No. 1 with a victory this week.
Group 2: Patton Kizzire (48) def. Luke List (60), 4 and 2: One down through seven holes, Kizzire won four consecutive holes around the turn and coasted to his first win of the week.
Group winner: Justin Thomas
Group 3: Kiradech Aphibarnrat (28) def. Jon Rahm, 4 and 3: Unbeaten through two days, Aphibarnrat put the hammer down on Rahm, last year’s finalist. Barnrat needed only three birdies to secure the group win, while Rahm dropped to 0-2-1 for the week.
Group 3: Chez Reavie (43) vs. Keegan Bradley (63), halved: With the group already decided as they played the closing stretch, Bradley coughed up a late lead for the third consecutive round, halving the match on 18 and finishing the week with a 0-1-2 record that could (and should) have been so much better.
Group winner: Kiradech Aphibarnrat
Group 4: Jordan Spieth (4) vs. Patrick Reed (19)
Group 4: Haotong Li (34) vs. Charl Schwartzel (49)
Group 5: Hideki Matsuyama (5) vs. Patrick Cantlay (30)
Group 5: Cameron Smith (46) vs. Yusaku Miyazato (53)
Group 6: Brian Harman (18) def. Rory McIlroy (6), 5 and 3: Harman took advantage of McIlroy’s missed putts and uncharacteristic mistakes to build a 3-up advantage on the front nine, then cruised to a lopsided victory. At 2-0-1, Harman wins the group, while McIlroy can begin his prep for Augusta.
Group 6: Jhonattan Vegas (44) vs. Peter Uihlein (57) def. Jhonattan Vegas (44), 4 and 3: Even though Uihlein won the first two holes on his way to routing Vegas, it wasn’t enough for the former U.S. Amateur champion to advance. He finished the week 2-1.
Group winner: Brian Harman
Group 7: Sergio Garcia (7) def. Xander Schauffele (20), 3 and 1: Two down with seven to play in this battle of unbeatens, Garcia birdied the 12th and 13th holes to square the match, then pulled ahead with a pair of birdies on 15 and 16 and a conceded birdie on 17, after Schauffele tugged his tee shot into the hazard.
Group 7: Dylan Frittelli (41) def. Shubhankar Sharma (62), 1 up: In a match with nothing at stake but a little extra cash and some world-ranking points, Frittelli shot 4 under and held off Sharma throughout to earn his first point of the week.
Group winner: Sergio Garcia
Group 8: Jason Day (8) vs. Louis Oosthuizen (25)
Group 8: Jason Dufner (42) vs. James Hahn (56)
Group 9: Tommy Fleetwood (9) vs. Daniel Berger (26)
Group 9: Kevin Chappell (33) vs. Ian Poulter (58)
Group 10: Matthew Fitzpatrick (31) def. Paul Casey (10), 3 and 2: After looking unstoppable over the first two days of pool play, Casey never led against his fellow Englishman, going 3 down after five holes. It was Fitzpatrick’s first point of the week, and Casey lost on the second hole of a sudden-death playoff.
Group 10: Kyle Stanley (45) def. Russell Henley (51), 1 up: Stanley flipped an early 2-down deficit and rolled in a 10-footer birdie putt on the final hole to beat Henley and earn a full point to force the sudden-death playoff with Casey. On the second playoff hole, Stanley poured in a 5-footer for birdie to advance.
Group winner: Kyle Stanley
Group 11: Marc Leishman (11) vs. Branden Grace (23), halved: Already eliminated, Leishman kept Grace from reaching the pool-play playoff by never trailing in the match. Though the South African holed a 25-footer on 17 to extend it, both players halved the 18th hole with birdies, including a 6-footer from Leishman, to earn a half-point.
Group 11: Bubba Watson (35) vs. Julian Suri (64), halved: Needing just a half-point to advance, but two down with two to go, Bubba stuffed his tee shot on 17, then hit his driver pin-high on the home hole. After Suri couldn’t get up-and-down for birdie, Watson sank his 8-footer for the halve. It's the second consecutive year in which Watson has won his group.
Group winner: Bubba Watson
Group 12: Charley Hoffman (22) def. Tyrrell Hatton (12), 3 and 2: After playing poorly for the first two days, Hoffman finally found his form against the previously unbeaten Hatton, making five birdies en route to a stress-free victory.
Group 12: Brendan Steele (36) vs. Alexander Levy (55)
Group 13: Alex Noren (13) vs. Tony Finau (29)
Group 13: Thomas Pieters (39) vs. Kevin Na (61)
Group 14: Phil Mickelson (14) def. Rafa Cabrera Bello (17), 1 up: Mickelson needed help to advance, but he took care of Cabrera Bello, making birdie on the last two holes to edge the Spaniard. The group was already decided, however, with Howell closing out his match while the other group played the 18th hole.
Group 14: Charles Howell III (59) def. Satoshi Kodaira (40), 2 and 1: Needing just a halve to advance, Howell won the 14th and 16th holes with par to gain a 2-up advantage and complete a perfect week in pool play. It’s the second year in a row that Howell has won his group.
Group winner: Charles Howell III
Group 15: Gary Woodland (24) def. Pat Perez, 1 up: Though the group was already decided, Woodland surrendered a 2-up lead but made a birdie when it mattered most, on the final green, to secure his first full point of the week.
Group 15: Si Woo Kim (50) def. Webb Simpson (37), 2 up: Kim led 4 up after seven holes, but he played only 2 under the rest of the way and, fortunately for him, ran out of holes. He won the group with 2 ½ points.
Group winner: Si Woo Kim
Group 16: Matt Kuchar (16) vs. Ross Fisher (27)
Group 16: Yuta Ikeda (47) vs. Zach Johnson (54)