Time is now for change to Hall of Fame criteria

By Gary WilliamsDecember 20, 2012, 3:11 pm

'No he shouldn't, yes he should.'

'The guy never won one stinking Freeport-McMoran/McDermott/Compaq/USFG/HP/Zurich Classic of New Orleans for crying out loud.'

'Yeah, but he was a horse on those Ryder Cup teams and has all those merit badges or whatever they call them.'

For the past two days you have heard some incarnation of those refrains from golf geeks around the world on the news of the inclusion of Colin Montgomerie in the 2013 class of the World Golf Hall of Fame. It is equal parts the sometimes myopic viewpoint of the American golf fan, the MAJOR hole in Monty's resume, zero wins on the best tour in the world, and, oh by the way, Monty himself. Only Monty could divide the golf world without striking a shot. Yet I believe he has struck a chord that could change the Hall of Fame criteria forever ... to no criteria.

Sobel: Monty Hall of Fame worthy even without a major

I'm not going to go all Mac O'Grady on you with some abstract theories but I think it is time for the Hall to examine the idea of eliminating baseline achievement for enshrinement and count on only two components to the voting process. 

First, under no circumstance should anyone walk through those doors for induction without 60 percent of the votes on the ballot. Currently, if no one receives 65 percent anyone over 50 percent gets in and that simply isn't Hall worthy. This isn't election to the 5th District in North Dakota. 

Second, and most important, the voters should be required to show total transparency. This is a privilege that should not be taken lightly and under a system without baseline criteria you must be required to explain your position. If the Hall gives you the vote, you must be trusted to make sound decisions. If not, re-examine who is doing the voting. For those who will scream that no criteria will create total chaos I would point to every other hall of fame (except the LPGA's). Outside of removal from the game for a certain number of years there are no benchmarks that players must hit for eligibility. Many things about golf are not analogous to other sports but in this case it most certainly is and leave it up to the voters to know, or at least feel, when it's time for a player to take his place in St. Augustine.

It's simple people, it's called BOLD TYPE. Any sports fan looks at certain achievements in other sports and knows what a bullet point is for a Hall of Fame resume. The time is now for the Hall to overhaul a system that confuses some, annoys others, and most importantly makes you wonder if they're doing it right. The game is played with tremendous value outside of majors placed on World Golf Championships, playoffs, FedEx Cup titles, Race to Dubai wins, Ryder Cup records and an international schedule that allows the best in the world to play when and where they want virtually every week of the year. Why have an international ballot? They're all international players now; let the voters decide each year who has the bold type to warrant consideration and possible enshrinement. 

The Tour loves selling the show of the Hall of Fame induction ceremonies to kick off Players week. Guess what, this isn't the ESPYs. Golf has more history than baseball, football, and basketball and if you don't have a large class or any class, I'll sign up for a night of hearing Dan Jenkins, Peter Alliss and Lee Trevino stories. And shame on the voting body if they can't identify at least one member each year out of the lifetime achievement category. May I submit A.W. Tillinghast for the class of 2014 right now. 

Debate is healthy; it allows writers who sadly are losing jobs at an alarming rate to do what they do best, opine. This is not math, it is golf. Majors change and define careers and they always will but how long, how many and how old are just that ... OLD. Let the voters exercise their minds and souls and let them determine their own criteria. Leave it to Monty to create another stink.

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Salas (62) leads LPGA's Indy Women in Tech

By Associated PressAugust 17, 2018, 12:50 am

INDIANAPOLIS - Lizette Salas matched the Brickyard Crossing record with a 10-under 62 on Thursday in the Indy Women in Tech Championship, making birdie on the final three holes for a two-stroke lead over fast-starting Angel Yin and Japan's Nasa Hataoka.

Yin birdied eight of the first nine holes in her morning round for a front-nine 8-under 28 - one short of the LPGA Tour's nine-hole record. It matched the third-lowest nine-hole score in relation to par in tour history.

Full-field scores from Indy Women in Tech Championship

Salas eagled the par-5 second in the afternoon and added three straight birdies on Nos. 4-6. She birdied Nos. 12 and 14 before reeling off three more in a row to close, waiting out a late 77-minute suspension for an approaching storm.

Salas matched the course record set by Mike McCullough in the PGA Tour Champions' 1999 Comfort Classic.

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Sordet opens with 62 to grab lead at Nordea Masters

By Associated PressAugust 16, 2018, 11:23 pm

GOTHENBURG, Sweden - Clement Sordet opened with four straight birdies to shoot 8-under 62 and take the first-round lead of the Nordea Masters on Thursday.

Sordet says ''I wasn't really focusing on the score, I was just enjoying it.''

The Frenchman, who shot his lowest European Tour round, has a two-stroke lead over Scott Jamieson of Scotland and Lee Slattery of England.

Hunter Stewart is the highest-placed American after a 5-under 65 left him on a four-way tie for fourth with Christofer Blomstrand, Tapio Pulkkanen and Richard Green.

Defending champion Renato Paratore's hopes of becoming the first player to successfully retain the title look in doubt after the Italian shot 9-over 79 at Hills Golf Club.

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Peterson confirms plans to play Web.com Finals

By Will GrayAugust 16, 2018, 9:17 pm

After flirting with retirement for much of the summer, John Peterson confirmed that he will give it one more shot in the upcoming Web.com Tour Finals.

Peterson, 29, had planned to walk away from the game and begin a career in real estate in his native Texas if he failed to secure PGA Tour status before his medical extension expired. His T-13 finish last month at The Greenbrier appeared to be enough to net the former NCAA champ at least conditional status, but a closer look at the numbers revealed he missed out by 0.58 points in his last available start.

Full-field scores from Wyndham Championship

Wyndham Championship: Articles, photos and videos

But Peterson was buoyed by the support he received from his peers at The Greenbrier, and when he got into the Barbasol Championship as a late alternate he decided to make the trip to the tournament. He tied for 21st that week in Kentucky, clinching enough non-member FedExCup points to grant him a spot in the four-event Finals.

Last month Peterson hinted that he would consider playing in the Finals, where 25 PGA Tour cards for the 2018-19 season will be up for grabs, and Thursday he confirmed in an Instagram post that he will give his pro career "one last push."

The Finals kick off next week in Ohio with the Nationwide Children's Hospital Championship and will conclude Sept. 20-23 with the Web.com Tour Championship. Peterson will be looking to rekindle his results from 2013, when he finished T-5 or better at each of the four Finals events while earning fully-exempt status as the top money earner.

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Lyle honored with sand sculpture at Wyndham

By Golf Channel DigitalAugust 16, 2018, 9:00 pm

Jarrod Lyle passed away last week at the age of 36 after losing his third battle with cancer.

And after a PGA Championship filled with tributes to the Australian, the Wyndham Championship found its own way to keep his legacy alive at the North Carolina Tour stop.

Next to the Wyndham Championship and PGA Tour logos carved into the sand on site at Sedgefield Country Club is Lyle's name and the "Leuk the Duck" mascot. The duck has become synonymous with Challenge, an organization that supports kids with cancer.

Fellow Aussie Stuart Appleby posted the display on social media:

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(Pic update) Brighter is better

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Lyle was also remembered in a more traditional manner on the first tee, where his bag and trademark yellow bucket hat were prominently displayed.