If Anybody Had Asked Me

By Brian HewittSeptember 29, 2004, 4:00 pm
If anybody had asked me, Id have told them that:
  • Its time we compare apples to apples on this money list thing. That is to say: In 2000 Tiger Woods won approximately 5.6 percent of the available official prize money on the PGA Tour. For Vijay Singh to eclipse that percentage this year, he would have to win approximately $14.5 million. So far in 2004 Singh has won less than $10 million.
  • That having been said, Singh has been in the zone a long time. Three straight wins. Five wins in his last six starts. Eight victories this year. Fifteen top 10s in 26 starts in 2004. The fact that he never seems to have a sore back is a tribute to his mechanics.
  • The early favorite to win the next scheduled major championship'the 2005 Masters'is Vijay Singh.
  • Jim Furyk has dropped out of the top 10 in the Official World Golf Rankings. That wont last long.
  • If Phil Mickelson hadnt made that putt on the 72nd hole at Augusta in April, the din from his critics would now be deafening.
  • Dont be surprised if the career of Lee Westwood winds up being defined by his Ryder Cup heroics the same way Colin Montgomeries is right now.
  • The LPGAs Christina Kim is about to become a star. The LPGAs Cristie Kerr is about to become a superstar.
  • Skins Game Id like to see: Annika, Vijay, Tiger and Phil. Might not be a whole lot of banter, though.
  • Skins Game that would be the most fun to see: Peter Jacobsen, Darren Clarke, John Daly and Victor Schwamkrug, the ultra-long Nationwide player.
  • Larry Nelson would be a lot tougher as a U.S. Ryder Cup captain in 2006 than most people might imagine. And, he would be effective.
  • Younger players who will one day become Ryder Cup captains: Clarke, Westwood, Sergio Garcia, David Toms, Furyk and Davis Love III.
  • Players who will become Ryder Cup captains sooner than that: Paul Azinger and Montgomerie.
  • The chatter (in the old days the word was grapevine') is very loud right now. And it says Tiger Woods will be married soon. It says here matrimony will be a good thing for his golf game.
  • Five years ago Gary Player stood outside the clubhouse at Augusta National and predicted one day players would be driving the first hole there. We all thought he was crazy. The day somebody DOES drive the first hole there will be the last year before the Lords of the Masters mandate some kind of restrictions on the golf ball. It will be like trying to stuff the genie back into the bottle.
  • The United States should not be favored to capture another Presidents or Ryder Cup until it wins one of them.
  • Player of the Year in all of golf: Annika or Vijay?
  • The best two consecutive holes of golf played by a professional this year (second best is not even close) were the ones turned in by Karen Stupples on the first two holes of the final round of the Womens British. Stupples opened with an eagle and followed with a double eagle. She was five-under on her round standing on the third tee.
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    Weather extends Barbasol to Monday finish

    By Associated PressJuly 23, 2018, 12:25 am

    NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - A thunderstorm has suspended the fourth round of the PGA Tour's Barbasol Championship until Monday morning.

    Sunday's third stoppage of play at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came with the four leaders - Hunter Mahan, Robert Streb, Tom Lovelady and Troy Merritt at 18 under par - and four other contenders waiting to begin the round.

    The tournament will resume at 7:30 a.m. on Monday. Lightning caused one delay, and play was stopped earlier in the afternoon to clear water that accumulated on the course following a morning of steady and sometimes-heavy rain.

    Inclement weather has plagued the tournament throughout the weekend. The second round was completed Saturday morning after being suspended by thunderstorms late Friday afternoon.

    The resumption will mark the PGA Tour's second Monday finish this season. Jason Day won the Farmers Insurance Open in January after darkness delayed the sixth playoff hole, and he needed just 13 minutes to claim the victory.

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    Watch: Spectator films as Woods' shot hits him

    By Will GrayJuly 23, 2018, 12:07 am

    It was a collision watched by millions of fans on television, and one that came at a pivotal juncture as Tiger Woods sought to win The Open. It also gave Colin Hauck the story of a lifetime.

    Hauck was among dozens of fans situated along the left side of the 11th hole during the final round at Carnoustie as the pairing of Woods and Francesco Molinari hit their approach shots. After 10 holes of nearly flawless golf, Woods missed the fairway off the tee and then pulled his iron well left of the target.

    The ball made square contact with Hauck, who hours later tweeted a video showing the entire sequence - even as he continued to record after Woods' shot sent him tumbling to the ground:

    The bounce initially appeared fortuitous for Woods, as his ball bounded away from thicker rough and back toward the green. But an ambitious flop shot came up short, and he eventually made a double bogey to go from leading by a shot to trailing by one. He ultimately shot an even-par 71, tying for sixth two shots behind Molinari.

    For his efforts as a human shield, Hauck received a signed glove and a handshake from Woods - not to mention a firsthand video account that will be sure to spark plenty of conversations in the coming years.

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    Molinari retirement plan: coffee, books and Twitter

    By Will GrayJuly 22, 2018, 9:35 pm

    After breaking through for his first career major, Francesco Molinari now has a five-year exemption on the PGA Tour, a 10-year exemption in Europe and has solidified his standing as one of the best players in the world.

    But not too long ago, the 35-year-old Italian was apparently thinking about life after golf.

    Shortly after Molinari rolled in a final birdie putt to close out a two-shot victory at The Open, fellow Tour player Wesley Bryan tweeted a picture of a note that he wrote after the two played together during the third round of the WGC-HSBC Champions in China in October. In it, Bryan shared Molinari's plans to retire as early as 2020 to hang out at cafes and "become a Twitter troll":

    Molinari is active on the social media platform, with more than 5,600 tweets sent out to nearly 150,000 followers since joining in 2010. But after lifting the claret jug at Carnoustie, it appears one of the few downsides of Molinari's victory is that the golf world won't get to see the veteran turn into a caffeinated, well-read troll anytime soon.

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    Molinari had previously avoided Carnoustie on purpose

    By Rex HoggardJuly 22, 2018, 9:17 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Sometimes a course just fits a player’s eye. They can’t really describe why, but more often than not it leads to solid finishes.

    Francesco Molinari’s relationship with Carnoustie isn’t like that.

    The Italian played his first major at Carnoustie, widely considered the toughest of all The Open venues, in 2007, and his first impression hasn’t really changed.

    “There was nothing comforting about it,” he said on Sunday following a final-round 69 that lifted him to a two-stroke victory.

    Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

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    In fact, following that first exposure to the Angus coast brute, Molinari has tried to avoid Carnoustie, largely skipping the Dunhill Links Championship, one of the European Tour’s marquee events, throughout his career.

    “To be completely honest, it's one of the reasons why I didn't play the Dunhill Links in the last few years, because I got beaten up around here a few times in the past,” he said. “I didn't particularly enjoy that feeling. It's a really tough course. You can try and play smart golf, but some shots, you just have to hit it straight. There's no way around it. You can't really hide.”

    Molinari’s relative dislike for the layout makes his performance this week even more impressive considering he played his last 37 holes bogey-free.

    “To play the weekend bogey-free, it's unthinkable, to be honest. So very proud of today,” he said.