Tigers Timeline Greatest in Golf History

By George WhiteApril 16, 2002, 4:00 pm
So Tiger rolls along, mowing down the majors like a man shooting at ducks in a carnival. He doesnt win them all, but it is a no-brainer now you would have to be an undue risk-taker not to pick him in the biggies.
 
On occasion, he surprises and doesnt get there. But if its tight and hes involved, forget it. Number 1, hes going to win. And No. 2, the rest of the field is going to see his name up there and self-disintegrate trying to do the things necessary to get to the finish line first. If necessary, he outduels them (see Bob May in the 99 PGA). Other times, he just gets to the top and watches the field fade, one by one, as they scurry around in a futile effort to bump him off (see the 2002 Masters).
 
Its interesting to see how Woods career parallels that of two of the greatest, Bobby Jones and Jack Nicklaus. Comparisons like these are difficult since they are about players from different eras with different equipment on different golf courses. And each era has different challenges as well Jones was a lifelong amateur who didnt have a pro tour to conquer Nicklaus married early and raised a rather large family, so golf wasnt a constant priority Woods has to cope with 7,200-yard monsters and non-stop golf without much of a letup. But it is interesting to see some benchmarks at various stages of their lives.
 
Jones career is a little harder to track and compare, since he played solely in the 1920s and one final year in 1930. He retired at age 28 and settled down to establish Augusta National and the Masters. The PGA Tour wasnt a reality when he played - most of the top golf was played at big amateur events. Therefore, the U.S. Amateur and British Amateur were majors. He wasnt a PGA of America member, so he didnt play in the PGA. At that time, though, the PGA wasnt considered a major.
 
Its an amazing coincidence that the numbers on all three are almost identical. Tiger and Jones won their first majors at age 21, Nicklaus won his first in his first full year at age 22. Nicklaus, in fact, made the U.S. Open his first professional win. Woods won the Masters in his first full year on tour in 1997.

By the time he was 22, Jones won his second major. Tiger and Nicklaus won their second by the time they were 23. Nicklaus also won his third at the age of 23, the same as Jones.
 
Tiger didnt win his third until he was 24, but that year, he won three majors. So Nos. 4 and 5 followed before he turned 25. Jones also won Nos. 4 and 5 at a similar age, before the 25th birthday.
 
Jones won Nos. 6 and 7 at age 25. Woods won No. 6 at age 25. Nicklaus didnt win any at age 25, but at age 26, he won his fifth and sixth. At age 26, Jones won his eighth major. Tiger, now 26 himself, just won his seventh major. But he has the rest of the year ' and three remaining majors ' before the end of his 26th year.
 
Jones played less than 10 times a year, so a comparison of overall victories isnt fair. But consider Nicklaus and Woods ' at this early stage of his career and judging only by number of wins, Woods is the superior by a good margin.
 
Nicklaus won for the 10th time in his third year, at age 23. Woods won for the 10th time in his third year, at age 23. But Nicklaus 20th win didnt come until his sixth year, while Woods had won 20 by his fourth full year. Woods started late in 1996 and played eight events that fall before his first full season in 1997.
 
Thirty wins? Nicklaus won No. 30 in 1970, in his ninth season. Woods won No. 30 at Bay Hill this year, his sixth full season.
 
Nicklaus didnt hit his stride until the ages of 32 and 33, when he won seven times each for a total of 14 wins. Tiger has already surpassed that victory total twice, in 1999 at the age of 23 when he won eight times, then again in 2000 at the age of 24 when he won nine times.
 
Suddenly, Nicklaus official record of 70 wins doesnt seem nearly as impossible. Woods already has won 31 times and he isnt even halfway through his 26th year. Actually, Nicklaus won 73 times by todays records ' his three British Opens didnt count as PGA Tour wins, though Tigers do.
 
Jacks 70 (or 73) wins is second in career victories to Sam Sneads 81 (82 counting Sneads one British Open victory). Anybody want to bet that Tiger doesnt eclipse 81 ' or 82 - by the time he is through?
 
That is 50 more victories for Woods. Whew ' what a bunch of Ws! But its almost certain to fall if Woods remains healthy. He wont get to play in tournaments like the West Virginia Closed Pro, the Inverness Four-Ball, the Goodall Round Robin, or the Miami Four-Ball (all Snead wins), but its likely he will get to 82 if he plays long enough.
 
Friends, we are seeing something that is unique in sports history. A young man is rampaging through the pages of history, and we are the fortunate witnesses. Jones won the Grand Slam in 1930, an enviable accomplishment. Nicklaus won six Masters titles and 71 victories, certainly a great career. But Woods ' what is there that this young man cant accomplish?
Getty Images

Storms halt Barbasol before Lincicome tees off

By Associated PressJuly 20, 2018, 11:29 pm

NICHOLASVILLE, Ky. - Brittany Lincicome will have to wait until the weekend to resume her bid to make the cut in a PGA Tour event.

Overnight storms delayed the start of the second round Friday in the Barbasol Championship, and an afternoon thunderstorm suspended competition for good. The round will resume Saturday morning with much of the field still to play.

The second stoppage at Champions Trace at Keene Trace Golf Club came 20 minutes before Lincicome's scheduled tee time.

Lincicome was near the bottom of the field after opening with a 6-over 78 on Thursday. The first LPGA player since Michelle Wie in 2008 to start a PGA Tour event, she needs a huge rebound to join Babe Zaharias (1945) as the only female players to make the cut.

Troy Merritt had the clubhouse lead at 15 under, following an opening 62 with a 67.

Getty Images

Third-round tee times for the 147th Open

By Golf Channel DigitalJuly 20, 2018, 9:05 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Eighteen major champions made the cut at The Open and will be playing the weekend at Carnoustie, including 60-year-old ageless wonder Bernhard Langer, and both major champs so far this year, Patrick Reed and Brooks Koepka.

Twenty-four-year-old Gavin Green will be first off solo Saturday at 4:15 a.m. ET. Reed and Rhys Enoch will follow along 10 minutes later.


Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


Phil Mickelson and Tiger Woods, both at even par for the tournament, six shots behind leaders Zach Johnson and Kevin Kisner, are in consecutive groups. Mickelson is playing with Austin Cook at 8:05 a.m. and Woods is with South Africa’s Shaun Norris at 8:15 a.m.

Jordan Spieth and Rickie Fowler, both three shots off the lead, are also in consecutive groups. Fowler is at 10 a.m. with Thorbjorn Olesen and Spieth is 10 minutes later with Kevin Chappell. Rory McIlroy, looking to win his first major since the 2014 PGA Championship, is at 10:40 a.m. with Xander Schauffele. McIlroy is two shots behind.

Johnson and Kisner are last off at 11 a.m.

4:15AM ET: Gavin Green

4:25AM ET: Rhys Enoch, Patrick Reed

4:35AM ET: Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Justin Rose

4:45AM ET: Yusaku Miyazato, Tyrrell Hatton

4:55AM ET: Ross Fisher, Keegan Bradley

5:05AM ET: Ryan Fox, Jason Dufner

5:15AM ET: Bryson DeChambeau, Henrik Stenson

5:25AM ET: Tom Lewis, Sam Locke (a)

5:35AM ET: Paul Casey, Chris Wood

5:45AM ET: Bernhard Langer, Rafa Cabrera Bello

6:00AM ET: Paul Dunne, Brett Rumford

6:10AM ET: Masahiro Kawamura, Shubhankar Sharma

6:20AM ET: Cameron Smith, Brendan Steele

6:30AM ET: Marc Leishman, Lee Westwood

6:40AM ET: Byeong Hun An, Kevin Na

6:50AM ET: Julian Suri, Adam Hadwin

7:00AM ET: Gary Woodland, Si-Woo Kim

7:10AM ET: Yuta Ikeda, Satoshi Kodaira

7:20AM ET: Marcus Kinhult, Thomas Pieters

7:30AM ET: Beau Hossler, Haotong Li

7:45AM ET: Cameron Davis, Sean Crocker

7:55AM ET: Louis Oosthuizen, Stewart Cink

8:05AM ET: Phil Mickeslon, Austin Cook

8:15AM ET: Tiger Woods, Shaun Norris

8:25AM ET: Lucas Herbert, Michael Kim

8:35AM ET: Jason Day, Francesco Molinari

8:45AM ET: Sung Kang, Webb Simpson

8:55AM ET: Patrick Cantlay, Eddie Pepperell

9:05AM ET: Matthew Southgate, Brooks Koepka

9:15AM ET: Kyle Stanley, Adam Scott

9:30AM ET: Charley Hoffman, Alex Noren

9:40AM ET: Ryan Moore, Brandon Stone

9:50AM ET: Luke List, Danny Willett

10:00AM ET: Thorbjorn Olesen, Rickie Fowler

10:10AM ET: Jordan Spieth, Kevin Chappell

10:20AM ET: Zander Lombard, Tony Finau

10:30AM ET: Matt Kuchar, Erik Van Rooyen

10:40AM ET: Rory McIlroy, Xander Schauffele

10:50AM ET: Pat Perez, Tommy Fleetwood

11:00AM ET: Kevin Kisner, Zach Johnson

Getty Images

Facial hair Fowler's new good-luck charm

By Rex HoggardJuly 20, 2018, 8:12 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Before, during and after the Fourth of July, Rickie Fowler missed a few appointments with his razor.

He arrived in the United Kingdom for last week’s Scottish Open still unshaved and he tied for sixth place. Fowler, like most golfers, can give in to superstition, so he's decided to keep the caveman look going for this week’s Open Championship.

“There could be some variations,” he smiled following his round on Friday at Carnoustie.


Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


At this rate, he may never shave again. Fowler followed an opening 70 with a 69 on Friday to move into a tie for 11th place, just three strokes off the lead.

Fowler also has some friendly competition in the beard department, with his roommate this week Justin Thomas also going for the rugged look.

“I think he kind of followed my lead in a way. I think he ended up at home, and he had a little bit of scruff going. It's just fun,” Fowler said. “We mess around with it. Obviously, not taking it too seriously. But like I said, ended up playing halfway decent last week, so I couldn't really shave it off going into this week.”

Getty Images

Spieth (67) rebounds from tough Round 1 finish

By Ryan LavnerJuly 20, 2018, 7:55 pm

CARNOUSTIE, Scotland – Guess whose putter is starting to heat up again at a major?

Even with a few wayward shots Friday at Carnoustie, Jordan Spieth made a significant climb up the leaderboard in the second round, firing a 4-under 67 to move just three shots off the lead.

Spieth showed his trademark grit in bouncing back from a rough finish Thursday, when he mis-clubbed on the 15th hole, leading to a double bogey, and ended up playing the last four holes in 4 over.

“I don’t know if I actually regrouped,” he said. “It more kind of fires me up a little.”


Full-field scores from the 147th Open Championship

Full coverage of the 147th Open Championship


Spieth missed more than half of his fairways in the second round, but he was able to play his approach shots from the proper side of the hole. Sure, he “stole a few,” particularly with unlikely birdies on Nos. 10 and 11 after errant drives, but he took advantage and put himself in position to defend his claret jug.

Spieth needed only 25 putts in the second round, and he credited a post-round adjustment Thursday for the improvement. The tweak allows his arms to do more of the work in his stroke, and he said he felt more confident on the greens.

“It’s come a long way in the last few months, no doubt,” he said.

More than anything, Spieth was relieved not to have to play “cut-line golf” on Friday, like he’s done each start since his spirited run at the Masters.

“I know that my swing isn’t exactly where I want it to be; it’s nowhere near where it was at Birkdale,” he said. “But the short game is on point, and the swing is working in the right direction to get the confidence back.”