Tigers Teacher Peppered by Youthful Questions
'Every single person asked a question about Tiger Woods,' Haney said this week.
Haney, who helped groove Woods' swing the past 3 1/2 years, took over last month as the academy's director of instruction, hopeful he can bring some of what he's taught Tiger to a new generation of ball strikers.
When academy officials wondered if Haney, 52, wanted to squeeze in teaching 160 or so juniors while refining Woods' swing, running a Dallas golf instruction business and heading up the ESPN Golf Schools, Haney made one request: He wanted to dive in full time.
'If I'm going to do this, I want to be involved a meaningful amount of time with the kids,' Haney said. 'I'm not interested in just putting my name on something.'
Haney has already purchased a house here and figures his plan to spend at least two days a month at the academy will grow over time.
'I like teaching kids,' Haney said.
Academy students and teachers were thrilled that Woods' swing coach will work with them. 'I get goose bumps talking about it,' said Matt Fields, the academy's assistant director.
Haney has a long connection with Woods. He taught Woods' junior golf friends, the Kuehne kids -- LPGA player Kelli, 1998 U.S. Amateur champ Hank, and 1994 U.S. Am runner-up Trip. Haney was SMU's golf coach while Woods played at Stanford and perhaps most importantly, Haney taught Woods' pal and two-time major champion, Mark O'Meara.
'Mark was obviously the one that really made my career go,' Haney said. 'I probably wouldn't have had the opportunity to help Tiger' if not for O'Meara.
Haney doesn't expect his time with Woods to conflict with his new duties.
The revamped PGA TOUR schedule and FedExCup competition ends with the TOUR Championship in mid-September, about the start of the academy's school year. And Haney's association with ESPN schools ends after this year.
A good working schedule with Woods should also leave Haney ample time for the juniors, some of whom pay as much as $47,000 a year to live, go to school and train at the academy's facility on Hilton Head Island.
Haney worked with students Monday and Tuesday before joining Woods for a week of British Open prep work.
'Tiger's like the best player and he (Haney) can still get him to improve,' said 17-year-old Jenny Feng from China, at the academy the past four months. 'He'll really make us improve, too.'
Haney plans to review each student's form every month. One of Haney's gifts, he says, is sizing up someone's game after watching one swing. A video center at his Dallas facility will make podcasts and Web-based instruction available to the juniors 'even when I'm not with them.'
Haney takes over for Gary Gilchrist, who left to spend more time working with his pro students, including recent LPGA Championship winner Suzann Pettersen.
Academy founder Ray Travaglione said he's faced many difficult decisions since starting the venture 12 years ago. 'This was not one of them,' he said, chuckling.
Haney's not sure he'll find the next Tiger on the academy's practice green, but he's certain he can improve students' prospects -- on and off the course.
'The thing I always talk about is golf is the best vehicle there is for young people to learn life skills,' Haney said.
Haney hasn't stopped learning, either. During a recent visit, Haney's game impressed Woods.
'Wow, where'd you get that?' Haney recalled the world's No. 1 player asking.
'I'm not blind,' Haney says, 'I'm watching what you're doing.'
Woods has long shown a willingness to accept instruction, something Haney expects to see out of his new students.
Woods 'doesn't care about what he's done. He doesn't care about where he's been. He doesn't care about how good he is. He only cares about, 'What do I need to do today to be better than I was yesterday,'' Haney said.
'That's his whole philosophy,' Haney continued. 'When you think about it, that's every kid at our academy.'
Copyright 2007 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
What's in the Bag: Tour Championship winner Woods
Tiger Woods won his 80th career title on Sunday at the Tour Championship. Take a look inside his bag.
Driver: TaylorMade M3 (9.5 degrees)
Fairway Woods: TaylorMade M3 (13 degrees), M1 2017 (19 degrees)
Irons: TaylorMade TW Phase 1 prototype (3-PW)
Wedges: TaylorMade Milled Grind (56, 60 degrees)
Putter: Scotty Cameron Newport 2 GSS
Ball: Bridgestone Tour B XS
McCarthy tops Bae in Web.com Tour Finals 25
The Web.com Tour handed out 25 PGA Tour cards for the 2018-19 season based on how players fared in the Finals series. Here are the final standings after Sunday's Web.com Tour Championship.
1. Denny McCarthy: $255,793
2. Sangmoon Bae: $218,156
3. Robert Streb: $187,460
4. Peter Malnati: $157,296
5. Cameron Davis: $126,675
6. Adam Schenk: $125,798
7. Lucas Glover: $125,212
8. Matt Jones: $112,000
9. Hunter Mahan: $107,505
10. Roger Sloan: $84,307
11. Shawn Stefani: $80,579
12. Seth Reeves: $80,360
13. Max Homa: $78,200
14. Roberto Diaz: $70,326
15. Stephan Jaeger: $69,923
16. Curtis Luck: $64,920
17. Nicholas Lindheim: $59,169
18. Dylan Frittelli: $48,600
19. Wes Roach: $48,100
20. Sepp Straka: $47,844
21. Cameron Tringale: $47,760
22. Ben Silverman: $47,700
23. Michael Thompson: $45,466
24. Fabian Gomez: $43,657
25. Jim Knous: $41,931
DJ moves back to No. 1; Woods to 13th in OWGR
Justin Rose did just enough to claim the FedExCup title Sunday at the Tour Championship, but Dustin Johnson's late surge was enough to vault him back into the top spot in the World Ranking.
Johnson shot a final-round 67 to finish in third place, while Rose stumbled with a 3-over 73 for a share of fourth. DJ lipped out a birdie putt on 18 that would have given him a shot at the FedExCup crown, and that allowed Rose to clinch the $10 million prize with a two-putt birdie.
Tiger Woods continued his incredible surge up the World Ranking with his 80th career win at the Tour Championship. Woods moved up from 21st to 13th after a two-shot victory over Billy Horschel. It marked Woods' seventh top-10 finish of the year.
Horschel made the other big move of the week jumping up from 48th to 35th with his second place finish. Outside of a WD in Boston, the 2014 FedExCup champion had another great run in the playoffs finishing T-3 at the Northern Trust, T-3 at the BMW and second at East Lake.
Here's the top 10 after the PGA Tour season finale.
1. Dustin Johnson
2. Justin Rose
3. Brooks Koepka
4. Justin Thomas
5. Francesco Molinari
6. Rory McIlroy
7. Bryson DeChambeau
8. Jon Rahm
9. Rickie Fowler
10. Jordan Spieth
McCarthy wins Web.com Tour Championship by 4
ATLANTIC BEACH, Fla. – Denny McCarthy won the season-ending Web.com Tour Championship on Sunday to earn fully exempt PGA Tour status and a spot in the Players Championship.
McCarthy closed with a 6-under 65 for a four-stroke victory over Lucas Glover at Atlantic Beach Country Club. The 25-year-old former Virginia player earned $180,000 to top the 25 PGA Tour card-earners with $255,793 in the four-event Web.com Tour Finals.
''It's been quite a journey this year,'' McCarthy said. ''The PGA Tour was tough to start out the year. I stuck through it and got my game. I raised my level and have been playing some really good golf. Just feels incredible to finish off these Finals. So much work behind the scenes that nobody really sees.''
McCarthy finished at 23-under 261.
Glover, the 2009 U.S. Open champion, closed with a 69. He made $108,000 to finish seventh with $125,212 in the series for the top 75 players from the Web.com regular-season money list, Nos. 126-200 in the PGA Tour's FedEx Cup standings, and non-members with enough money to have placed in the top 200.
Jim Knous earned the 25th and final card from the four-event money list with $41,931, edging Justin Lower by $500. Knous made a 5-foot par save on the final hole for a 71 that left him tied for 57th. Lower missed an 8-footer for birdie, settling for a 69 and a tie for 21st.
''It was a brutal day emotionally,'' Knous said. ''I wasn't quite sure how much my performance would affect the overall outcome. It kind of just depended on what everybody else did. That's pretty terrifying. So I really just kind of did my best to stay calm and inside I was really freaking out and just super psyched that at the end of the day finished right there on No. 25.''
The top-25 finishers on the Web.com regular-season money list competed against each other for tour priority, with regular-season earnings counting in their totals. Sungjae Im topped the list to earn the No. 1 priority spot of the 50 total cards.