Wie Would Benefit From New Caddie

By Brian HewittSeptember 24, 2003, 4:00 pm
Every time I think of Michelle Wie I am reminded of the conversation I had with a very senior official at the USGA. We were exchanging thoughts about the firestorm of controversy that followed the 13-year-old Wies unintentional dust-up with LPGA pro Danielle Ammaccapane at the Womens Open in July.
Ammaccapane was unhappy with what she thought was a lack of knowledge of golf course etiquette on Wies part. Nor was Ammaccapane happy with the on-course behavior of B.J. Wie, Michelles father and caddie.
To be sure, there were two sides to the story. But the incident gave pause.
I think, said the USGA official, juniors and parents who aspire to be Tiger-like should take a page from Earl Woods. Earl never got within 100 yards of Tiger while he was playing. Theres plenty to be said for a kid learning to figure things out for himself or herself, including how to play the game. And if the kid doesnt like the counsel that the parent/caddie is providing, I dont see how he or she can fire dad or mom. Awkward all around.
Bringing that back to the Nationwide Tours Albertsons Boise Open, there were no reported incidents between Wies father and any other players in the field. But it was clear that his daughter was starved for local knowledge on a course that begged players to keep their drivers in the bag and insisted that they plan run-up shots to many of the firmer open greens.
B.J. Wie is not sophisticated enough to know these things. In jock parlance, he didnt play the game.
Picture Mozarts father showing up at his sons recital with a kazoo to help provide the proper pitch for his child prodigy. This is not to say B. J. Wie doesnt love his daughter nor to suggest he doesnt know her game.
Its to opine that a local caddie with local knowledge would have been more beneficial to Michelles Wies chances to do better than the 78-76 she fired that missed the cut by 12 shots.
Putting takes a lot of experience, the father said. Its hard to find that kind of green in Hawaii.
Heres a flash Mr. Wie: As your daughter makes her predicted ascent to the top of the ladder of womens golf (maybe even as early as 17) she will play many courses that dont resemble Hawaii in the foggiest.
Having said that, it is my hope that Wie and her father continue to dream what right now is the almost impossible dream: To play in the Masters.
I would love to see that one day. As a father of a daughter, I dont think girls shouldnt aspire to reach golfs highest levels if their games merit it.
Truth be told, what Im really wondering is this: Are there any 13-year-old boys right now who can hit the ball farther than Michelle Wie?
Michelle Wie is not a freak. That adjective is a pejorative. What she is is a wonder of nature. It will be fun to watch her golf development continue every stop of the way.
Lets get her a good caddie.
Email your thoughts to Brian Hewitt
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Watch: Moore does impressions of Tiger, Poults, Bubba

By Grill Room TeamJuly 16, 2018, 10:36 pm
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Johnson begins Open week as 12/1 betting favorite

By Will GrayJuly 16, 2018, 5:15 pm

Dustin Johnson heads into The Open as the top-ranked player in the world, and he's also an understandable betting favorite as he looks to win a second career major.

Johnson has not played since the U.S. Open, where he led by four shots at the halfway point and eventually finished third. He has three top-10 finishes in nine Open appearances, notably a T-2 finish at Royal St. George's in 2011.

Johnson opened as a 12/1 favorite when the Westgate Las Vegas Superbook first published odds for Carnoustie after the U.S. Open, and he remains at that number with the first round just three days away.

Here's a look at the latest odds on some of the other top contenders, according to the Westgate:

12/1: Dustin Johnson

16/1: Rory McIlroy, Rickie Fowler, Justin Rose

20/1: Jordan Spieth, Justin Thomas, Tommy Fleetwood, Brooks Koepka, Jon Rahm

25/1: Jason Day, Henrik Stenson, Tiger Woods

30/1: Sergio Garcia, Francesco Molinari, Paul Casey, Alex Noren, Patrick Reed

40/1: Hideki Matsuyama, Marc Leishman, Branden Grace, Tyrrell Hatton

50/1: Phil Mickelson, Ian Poulter, Matthew Fitzpatrick

60/1: Russell Knox, Louis Oosthuizen, Matt Kuchar, Bryson DeChambeau, Zach Johnson, Tony Finau, Bubba Watson

80/1: Lee Westwood, Adam Scott, Patrick Cantlay, Rafael Cabrera-Bello, Thomas Pieters, Xander Schauffele

100/1: Shane Lowry, Webb Simpson, Brandt Snedeker, Ryan Fox, Thorbjorn Olesen

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Woods needs top-10 at Open to qualify for WGC

By Will GrayJuly 16, 2018, 4:34 pm

If Tiger Woods is going to qualify for the final WGC-Bridgestone Invitational at Firestone Country Club, he'll need to do something he hasn't done in five years this week at The Open.

Woods has won eight times at Firestone, including his most recent PGA Tour victory in 2013, and has openly stated that he would like to qualify for the no-cut event in Akron before it shifts to Memphis next year. But in order to do so, Woods will need to move into the top 50 in the Official World Golf Ranking after this week's event at Carnoustie.

Woods is currently ranked No. 71 in the world, down two spots from last week, and based on projections it means that he'll need to finish no worse than a tie for eighth to have a chance of cracking the top 50. Woods' last top-10 finish at a major came at the 2013 Open at Muirfield, where he tied for sixth.

Updated Official World Golf Ranking

There are actually two OWGR cutoffs for the Bridgestone, July 23 and July 30. That means that Woods could theoretically still add a start at next week's RBC Canadian Open to chase a spot in the top 50, but he has said on multiple occasions that this week will be his last start of the month. The WGC-Bridgestone Invitational will be played Aug. 2-5.

There wasn't much movement in the world rankings last week, with the top 10 staying the same heading into the season's third major. Dustin Johnson remains world No. 1, followed by Justin Thomas, Justin Rose, Brooks Koepka and Jon Rahm. Defending Open champ Jordan Spieth is ranked sixth, with Rickie Fowler, Rory McIlroy, Jason Day and Tommy Fleetwood rounding out the top 10.

Despite taking the week off, Sweden's Alex Noren moved up three spots from No. 14 to No. 11, passing Patrick Reed, Bubba Watson and Paul Casey.

John Deere Classic champ Michael Kim went from No. 473 to No. 215 in the latest rankings, while South African Brandon Stone jumped from 371st to 110th with his win at the Scottish Open.

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Spieth takes familiar break ahead of Open defense

By Rex HoggardJuly 16, 2018, 3:50 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – As his title chances seemed to be slipping away during the final round of last year’s Open Championship, Jordan Spieth’s caddie took a moment to remind him who he was.

Following a bogey at No. 13, Michael Greller referenced a recent vacation he’d taken to Mexico where he’d spent time with Michael Phelps and Michael Jordan and why he deserved to be among that group of singular athletes.

Spieth, who won last year’s Open, decided to continue the tradition, spending time in Cabo again before this week’s championship.

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship

“I kind of went through the same schedule,” Spieth said on Monday at Carnoustie. “It was nice to have a little vacation.”

Spieth hasn’t played since the Travelers Championship; instead he attended the Special Olympics USA Games earlier this month in Seattle with his sister. It was Spieth’s first time back to the Pacific Northwest since he won the 2015 U.S. Open.

“I went out to Chambers Bay with [Greller],” Spieth said. “We kind of walked down the 18th hole. It was cool reliving those memories.”

But most of all Spieth said he needed a break after a particularly tough season.

“I had the itch to get back to it after a couple weeks of not really working,” he said. “It was nice to kind of have that itch to get back.”