Stock Watch: Winning cars is great; cheating is not

By Ryan LavnerNovember 4, 2014, 3:30 pm

Each week on, we’ll examine which players’ stocks and trends are rising and falling in the world of golf.


LPGA’s 1-2 punch (+7%): OK, so it’s not exactly Brady-Manning, Bird-Magic or Federer-Nadal, but the budding rivalry between Inbee Park and Stacy Lewis is at least worth watching. Now, if Michelle Wie could become a consistent winner …

Freddie (+5%): Tour types have spoken (or texted), and they all want Boom Boom as ’16 Ryder Cup captain. After the Tom Watson disaster and years of disconnect, the PGA would be wise to finally listen to the players.

Ryan Moore (+4%): Nice playing to shoot all four rounds in the 60s and win something called the CIMB Classic … but let’s hold off on projecting a 2014-15 breakthrough. Moore still tends to disappear for long stretches at a time and doesn’t have a major top-10 since 2009.

Danielle Kang (+3%): The young LPGAer and ace machine now has an entirely first-world problem, with three cars and space for only one at her Vegas home. (If you’re wondering, it looks like the Porsche Cayenne still makes the cut. Phew.) Since your correspondent has A) never made an ace and B) owns a 2011 Ford Fusion with a dead battery, there will no be tears shed here.

Adam Scott (+2%): For the man with seemingly everything, here’s still another confidence-booster: He has received more than 100 inquiries from prospective caddies. It’s almost like he’s earned more than $18 mil over the past five years or something.

Luke (+1%): The tidy Englishman has swallowed his pride, admitted that the move to Chuck Cook didn’t work, and returned to the coach (Pat Goss) who helped mold him into a No. 1 player. Better days are ahead.


WGC-HSBC (-2%): Forty of the top 50 in the world are playing this week in Shanghai, but there is no Tiger (injury), no Phil (rest), no Rory (lawyer prep) and no DJ (uh, personal reasons), who is the defending champion. Fortunately for us, the latter scenario should produce plenty of awkwardness!

Suzy Whaley’s candidacy (-3%): Well, that was fast: The presumptive favorite for PGA secretary (and, in all likelihood, the 2018 PGA presidency) is now far from a sure thing, with both influential women’s voice Dottie Pepper and legendary PGA member Bob Ford throwing their support behind her opponent in the secretary race. Political fever – catch it while you can.

BMW Masters (-5%): Marcel Siem won the title, but not all playoff losers should be viewed equally: Alexander Levy squandered a four-shot lead with a ghastly 78, while Ross Fisher nearly set a Euro Tour record when he came all the way back from 11 (!) shots down.

Miggy (-7%): Levy’s 78 in a 25-mph wind may have been a disaster, but it paled to what Miguel Angel Jimenez did at the BMW: a Sunday 88, punctuated by a 9-over score on the ninth hole when he rinsed four shots. Though not a reputation-destroyer, it’s hard to look cool while making a 13.

Xin-Jun Zhang (-9%): At first glance, the headline reads like a joke – Leading PGA Tour China Winner Slapped with Six-Month Ban for Signing Incorrect Scorecards! – but it’s clear that officials will be on high alert if he heads stateside to accept Tour membership.  

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Bjorn adds four Ryder Cup veterans as vice captains

By Will GrayMay 22, 2018, 1:05 pm

European Ryder Cup captain Thomas Bjorn has added a quartet of vice captains for the biennial matches this fall in Paris.

Bjorn had already named Robert Karlsson as his first assistant, and he announced Tuesday at the BMW PGA Championship that his group of advisors will also include major champions Padraig Harrington and Graeme McDowell, and former world No. 1s Lee Westwood and Luke Donald.

Westwood is among Europe's most decorated Ryder Cup players, and his addition in this role signals he likely won't participate as a player in the matches for the first time since 1995. The Englishman has spoken openly about his desire to captain the European squad at Whistling Straits in 2020, but he's been quiet on the course in recent months, with a missed secondary cut at the Houston Open his only start since mid-February.

Harrington is seen as another possible captain for the 2020 matches, and he'll don an earpiece for the third straight Ryder Cup, having represented Europe as a player on six straight teams from 1999-2010.

Donald played on four Ryder Cup teams from 2004-12, with the Europeans winning each time he was on the roster. This will mark his first stint as a vice captain, as Donald announced last month that he would be sidelined indefinitely while recovering from a back injury.

At age 38, McDowell will be the youngest vice captain in the room, having holed the winning putt eight years ago at Celtic Manor. He won the French Open in both 2013 and 2014 at Le Golf National, site of this year's matches, and will also be making his debut as a vice captain.

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Bidder pays $50,000 to caddie for Woods

By Grill Room TeamMay 22, 2018, 12:28 pm

Someone has paid $50,000 to caddie for Tiger Woods at this year’s Hero World Challenge.

An unnamed bidder paid for the opportunity at an auction Saturday night at Tiger Jam, where monies are raised to support the Tiger Woods Foundation.

The Hero World Challenge will be contested Nov. 29-Dec. in Albany, Bahamas. The pro-am is scheduled for Wednesday, Nov. 28.

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NCAA DI Women's Champ.: Scoring, TV times

By Golf Channel DigitalMay 22, 2018, 11:28 am

The NCAA Division I Women's Golf Championship is underway at Kartsen Creek Golf Club in Stillwater, Okla.

After three days of stroke play, eight teams have advanced to the match-play portion of the championship. Quarterfinals and semifinals will be contested on Tuesday, with the finals being held on Wednesday. Golf Channel is airing the action live.

Wake Forest junior Jennifer Kupcho won the individual title. Click here for live action, beginning at 4 p.m. ET.


TV Times (all times ET):

11AM-conclusion: Match-play quarterfinals (Click here to watch live)
4-8PM: Match-play semifinals

4-8PM: Match-play finals

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Arizona grabs last spot with eagle putt, playoff win

By Ryan LavnerMay 22, 2018, 3:18 am

STILLWATER, Okla. – With her team freefalling in the standings, Arizona coach Laura Ianello was down to her last stroke.

The Wildcats began the final round of the NCAA Championship in third place, but they were 19 over par for the day, and outside the top-8 cut line, with only one player left on the course.

Bianca Pagdaganan had transferred from Gonzaga to compete for NCAA titles, and on the 17th hole Ianello told her that she needed to play “the best two holes of your life” to keep the dream alive.

She made par on 17, then hit a 185-yard 6-iron out of a divot to 30 feet. Not knowing where she stood on the final green, Pagdaganan felt an eerie calm over the ball. Sure enough, she buried the eagle putt, setting off a raucous celebration and sending the Wildcats into a play-five, count-four team playoff with Baylor at 33 over par.

Their match-play spot wasn’t yet secure, but Ianello still broke down in tears.

NCAA Women’s DI Championship: Team scoring

NCAA Women’s DI Championship: Individual scoring

“Bianca is such an inspiration for all of us,” she said. “She’s the kind of kid that you want to root for, to have good things happen to.”

Arizona prevailed on the second playoff hole. As the 8 seed, the Wildcats will play top-seeded UCLA in the quarterfinals Tuesday at Karsten Creek.

Though the finish had plenty of drama, no teams played their way into the coveted top 8 on the final day of stroke-play qualifying.

Baylor came closest. The Bears barely advanced past regionals after a mysterious stomach virus affected several players and coaches. They competed in the final round with just four healthy players.

On Monday, Gurleen Kaur put Baylor in position to advance, shooting 68, but the Bears lost by three strokes on the second extra hole.

Arkansas finished one shot shy of the team playoff. The second-ranked Razorbacks, who entered NCAAs as one of the pre-tournament favorites, having won seven times, including their first SEC title, couldn’t overcome a 308-300 start and finished 10th. Player of the Year favorite Maria Fassi finished her week at 19 over par and counted only two rounds toward the team total.