Tales Of Hoffman

By Brian HewittJanuary 22, 2007, 5:00 pm
There were more story lines swirling around in those stinging California desert winds Sunday than there are one-liners stored in the comedic speed dial of George Lopez brain.
 
Which brings us for a moment, indirectly, to Yogi Berra, one of the amateur celebrities at the Bob Hope Chrysler Classic.
 
Here is my vote for the funniest remark ever uttered by Berra, the master of the inadvertent utterance:
 
Years ago, Berra found himself going through the reception line on a warm day at the Governors mansion in New York. He was wearing a lime-green leisure suit.
 
Why, Yogi, cooed Mrs. Cuomo, the Governors wife, you look so cool.
 
Thanks, Mrs. Cuomo, Berra answered shyly. You dont look so hot yourself.
 
Meanwhile, back at the golf tournament ...
 
Charley Hoffmans chances didnt look so hot in the fifth and final round Sunday at Classic Club where the winds were gusting to 40 mph and the scores were soaring faster than the Argentine inflation rate.
 
When it blows 40 its a whole different kettle of fish, said Justin Rose, the Saturday night co-leader who wound up tied for third. It becomes survival, really, more than anything. The wind was playing us today.
 
Hoffman survived by making birdie on the 89th hole with a deuce after watching playing competitor Jeff Quinney eagle it with an ace. Then Hoffman eagled the 90th hole. Then he made birdie again on the first hole of the playoff to beat John Rollins to win his first PGA TOUR event.
 
It feels like we played about 36 today, said a spent Rollins.
 
It was brutal out there, added Hoffman, who nevertheless, jumped from No. 197 in the Official World Golf Ranking to No. 92.
 
Lucas Glover, the other Saturday night co-leader, skied to 80 and a T13. Phil Mickelson, playing in his first tournament since last falls Ryder Cup, blew to a 78 and a share of 45th. Joe Ogilvies 68 was the best round of the day and hustled him from T60 to a T18 finish.
 
Until yesterday, Hoffman was more well-known for his flowing locks that are a cross between Craig T. Nelson, Spicoli from Fast Times at Ridgemont High and Cousin It from the TV sitcom The Addams Family.
 
But now all that work on the range Hoffman has done with teacher Shaun Callahan at Butch Harmons golf school in Las Vegas has finally paid off in a big way.
 
Memo to Charley Hoffman: Dont cut your hair until you lose your exempt status. Tigers got his stare. Phils got his phlop. Dalys got his Jerry Springer lifestyle. Youve got the longest, blondest hair in mens golf and enough new money now ($900,000) to hire your own personal coiffeur.
 
To tell you the truth, Hoffman said, I thought Justin was going to run away with it. In the end, wet tee balls on the 11th hole Saturday and Sunday were too much for Rose to overcome.
 
Hoffman said he also was embarrassed in the playoff when he said nice shot while Rollins tee ball was in the air only to watch the wind blow it into a bunker. Rollins didnt feel so hot himself.
 
Now, the 30-year-old Hoffman has his ticket punched on the PGA TOUR for the rest of 2007 and all of 2008 and 2009. This week he returns, a PGA TOUR winner, to the San Diego area where he grew up. He will tee it up at the Buick Invitational. The story line there at Torrey Pines will be Tiger Woods quest to win his seventh straight TOUR event in his first appearance of the year.
 
Roses final-round 76 took the bloom off an otherwise terrific week of scoring and fun at this Bob Hope Chrysler Classic hosted by Lopez. Rose wound up 130th in final-round scoring last year on TOUR. And it is an area he must improve.
 
Quinney, the 2000 U.S. Amateur champion, won more than $300,000 on the Nationwide Tour last year without a victory. His T4 with Heath Slocum finally has him headed in the direction many people thought he was going five years ago. His hole-in-one club at No. 17 was a 4-iron from 178 yards.
 
But in the end, it was Hoffmans day. Yogi Berra once said, when asked about a restaurant: Nobody goes there anymore. Its too crowded.
 
Charley Hoffmans bank account just got a little more crowded. And nobody can go there but him.
 
Email your thoughts to Brian Hewitt
 
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    Lincicome grouped with two rookies in Barbasol

    By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 17, 2018, 9:54 pm

    Brittany Lincicome will tee it up with a pair of rookies when she makes her first start in a PGA Tour event Thursday at the Barbasol Championship at Keene Trace Golf Club in Nicholasville, Ky.

    Lincicome, an eight-time LPGA winner, is scheduled to go off the 10th tee at 9:59 a.m. ET in the first round with Sam Ryder, 28, and Conrad Shindler, 29. They’re off the first tee Friday at 2:59 p.m. ET

    Lincicome will become just the sixth woman to play in a PGA Tour event, joining Babe Zaharias, Shirley Spork, Annika Sorenstam, Suzy Whaley and Michelle Wie.

    “The first three or four holes, I’ll be a nervous wreck, for sure,” Linicome said.

     

     

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    Lincicome thrilled by reception from male pros

    By Randall MellJuly 17, 2018, 8:31 pm

    Brittany Lincicome wondered how PGA Tour pros would greet her when she arrived to play the Barbasol Championship this week.

    She wondered if there would be resentment.

    She also wondered how fans at Keene Trace Golf Club in Nicholasville, Ky., would receive her, and if a social media mob would take up pitchforks.

    “I can’t stop smiling,” Lincicome said Tuesday after her first practice round upon arriving. “Everyone has been coming up to me and wishing me luck. That means a lot.”

    PGA Tour pro Martin Piller, husband of LPGA pro Gerina Piller, welcomed her immediately.

    Other pros sought her out on the practice putting green.

    She said she was also welcomed joining pros at a table in player dining.

    Fans have been stopping her for autographs.

    “It has been an awesome reception,” said Dewald Gouws, her husband, a former long-drive competitor. “I think it’s put her much more at ease, seeing the reception she is getting. There’s a lot of mutual respect.”

    Lincicome, 32, wasn’t sure if she would be playing a practice round alone Tuesday morning, but when she made her way to the first tee, Domenico Geminiani was there, just about to go off.

    He waved Lincicome over.

    “He said, `Hey, Brittany, do you want to join me?’” Gouws said. “Come to find out, Dom’s a pretty cool guy.”

    Geminiani made it into the field as a Monday qualifier.

    “The two of us were both trying to figure things out together,” Lincicome said.

    Keene Trace will play to 7,328 yards on the scorecard. That’s more than 800 yards longer than Highland Meadows, where Lincicome finished second at the LPGA’s Marathon Classic last weekend. Keene Trace was playing even longer than its listed yardage Tuesday, with recent rains softening it.

    Nicknamed “Bam Bam,” Lincicome is one of the longest hitters in the women’s game. Her 269.5 yard average drive is 10th in the LPGA ranks. It would likely be dead last on the PGA Tour, where Brian Stuard (278.2) is the last player on the stats list at No. 201.

    “I think if I keep it in the fairway, I’ll be all right,” Lincicome said.

    Lincicome is an eight-time LPGA winner, with two major championships among those titles. She is just the sixth woman to compete in a PGA Tour event, the first in a decade, since Michelle Wie played the Reno-Tahoe Open, the last of her eight starts against the men.

    Lincicome will join Babe Zaharias, Shirley Spork, Annika Sorenstam, Suzy Whaley and Wie in the elite ranks.

    Zaharias, by the way, is the only woman to make a 36-hole cut in PGA Tour history, making it at the 1945 L.A. Open before missing a 54-hole cut on the weekend.

    What are Lincicome’s expectations?

    She would love to make the cut, but . . .

    “Just going to roll with it and see what happens,” she said. “This is once in a lifetime, probably a one-and-done opportunity. I’m just going to enjoy it.”

    Lincicome grew up playing for the boys’ golf team at Seminole High on the west coast of Florida. She won a couple city championships.

    “I always thought it would be cool to compete against the guys on the PGA Tour,” Lincicome said. “I tend to play more with the guys than women at home. I never would have gone out and told my agent, `Let’s go try to play in a PGA Tour event,’ but when Tom Murray called with this opportunity, I was really blown away and excited by it. I never in a million years thought I would have this opportunity.”

    Tom Murray, the president of Perio, the parent company of Barbasol and Pure Silk, invited Lincicome to accept one of the tournament’s sponsor exemptions. Lincicome represents Pure Silk.

    Lincicome said her desire to play a PGA Tour event is all about satisfying her curiosity, wanting to know how she would stack up at this level. She also wants to see if the experience can help take her to the next level in the women’s game.

    As a girl growing up, she played Little League with the boys, instead of softball with the girls. She said playing the boys in golf at Seminole High helped her get where she is today.

    “The guys were better, and it pushed me to want to be better,” Lincicome said. “I think playing with the guys [on the PGA Tour], I will learn something to take to LPGA events, and it will help my game, for sure.”

    Lincicome has been pleased that her fellow LPGA pros are so supportive. LPGA winner Kris Tamulis is flying into Kentucky as moral support. Other LPGA pros may also be coming in to support her.

    The warm fan reception Lincicome is already getting at Keene Trace matters, too.

    “She’s already picked up some new fans this week, and hopefully she will pick up some more,” Gouws said. “I don’t think she’s putting too much expectation on herself. I think she really does just want to have fun.”

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    Stunner: Inbee Park steps aside for Int. Crown

    By Randall MellJuly 17, 2018, 4:00 pm

    There was a big surprise this week when the LPGA announced the finalized lineups for the UL International Crown.

    Rolex world No. 1 Inbee Park won’t be teeing it up for the host South Koreans Oct. 4-7 in Incheon.

    She has withdrawn, saying she wanted another Korean to be able to experience the thrill of representing her country.

    It’s a stunner given the importance the LPGA has placed on taking the UL International Crown to South Korea and its golf-crazy allegiance to the women’s game in the Crown’s first staging outside the United States.

    Two-time major champion In Gee Chun will replace Park.

    "It was my pleasure and honor to participate in the first UL International Crown in 2014 and at the 2016 Olympics, and I cannot describe in one word how amazing the atmosphere was to compete as a representative of my country,” Park said. “There are so many gifted and talented players in Korea, and I thought it would be great if one of the other players was given the chance to experience the 2018 UL International Crown.”

    Chun, another immensely popular player in South Korea, was the third alternate, so to speak, with the world rankings used to field teams. Hye Jin Choi and Jin Young Ko were higher ranked than Chun but passed because of commitments made to competing in a Korean LPGA major that week. The other South Koreans who previously qualified are So Yeon Ryu, Sung Hyun Park and I.K. Kim.

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    Na: I can admit, 'I went through the yips'

    By Rex HoggardJuly 17, 2018, 3:35 pm

    CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Following his victory two weeks ago at A Military Tribute at the Greenbrier, Kevin Na said his second triumph on the PGA Tour was the most rewarding of his career.

    Although he declined to go into details as to why the victory was so gratifying at The Greenbrier, as he completed his practice round on Tuesday at the Open Championship, Na shed some light on how difficult the last few years have been.

    “I went through the yips. The whole world saw that. I told people, 'I can’t take the club back,'” Na said on Tuesday at Carnoustie. “People talked about it, 'He’s a slow player. Look at his routine.' I was admitting to the yips. I didn’t use the word ‘yip’ at the time. Nobody wants to use that word, but I’m over it now so I can use it. The whole world saw it.”


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    Na, who made headlines for his struggles to begin his backswing when he found himself in the lead at the 2012 Players Championship, said he asked other players who had gone through similar bouts with the game’s most dreaded ailment how they were able to get through it.

    “It took time,” he said. “I forced myself a lot. I tried breathing. I tried a trigger. Some guys will have a forward press or the kick of the right knee. That was hard and the crap I got for it was not easy.”

    The payoff, however, has steadily arrived this season. Na said he’d been confident with his game this season following a runner-up showing at the Genesis Open and a fourth-place finish at the Fort Worth Invitational, and he felt he was close to a breakthrough. But being able to finish a tournament like he did at The Greenbrier, where he won by five strokes, was particularly rewarding.

    “All good now,” he smiled. “I knew I was good enough to win again, but until you do it sometimes you question yourself. It’s just the honest truth.”