Wie 1-Up For Now

By Kraig KannSeptember 23, 2005, 4:00 pm
I've often wondered what Michelle Wie would be doing right now if perhaps Jack Nicklaus and Steffi Graf were her parents and thus helping her in choosing her path in life.
And thats what it is, isnt it? Its a path in life, not just golf.
Michelle Wie
Will Michelle Wie be gaining or losing by turning professional?
By now youve read the reports or heard the reports of Michelle Wies impending leap into the ranks of professional golf ' as a professional.
Wie turning pro before her 16th birthday, Oct. 11th, now seems a lock. And with the jump will come millions. Some are estimating a first-year cash haul of about $10 million. Good for her.
Some of you have written, saying that her parents, specifically dad B.J., whos been the most visible, are pushing her too hard, too fast.
She hasnt won anything, youve said.
Theyre promoting their own financial interests, youve maintained.
Nicklaus and Graf are two of the greatest champions in any sport. Each has won major titles, each has played with class and honor and dignity. Would they be telling their 15-year-old daughter - who couldnt even drive to meet with her agent-to-be William Morris - to sign away her life so soon?
Would they be telling their child to lose the innocence and gain the incredible? Would they tell her to go get after it or let it come to you?
Who knows what theyd say?
Im a father of three under the age of 9, including two daughters. For my money ' and Im not hauling in $10 million this year ' theres nothing wrong with Michelle calling it a career as an amateur and going pro.
Ive met B.J. Wie on a few occasions. Weve had the Wies to our set on the 'Sprint Post Game.' Ive interviewed Michelle on a handful of occasions. I see them as a very grounded family. And I see no reason in telling them to hold back the inevitable.
I said theres nothing wrong with Michelle turning professional at 15 or 16, depending on the official date.
For my money, I wouldnt be advising my daughter to do the same thing. To me, theres too much to miss.
By all accounts, Wie plans to bank the money and still go to college at Stanford while playing a schedule to her liking using special exemptions at her disposal.
But college, from what I recall, is meant to be a full-time thing. Full focus on the books, full focus on the experience of being a college student and an adult-in-the-making. For me, college was far too great an experience to give up so quickly.
Id tell my daughter that no amount of money can make up for a four-year lesson in learning.
Is there a chance that she could lose her game in four years? Sure. Is there a chance shed lose her appeal among the masses? Sure. Is this the best chance to capitalize on $10 million? Perhaps.
Matt Kuchar spent four years at Georgia Tech and probably lost out on a big payday with endorsers running toward that megawatt smile and U.S. Amateur game. But remember, Kuchar graduated and eventually made it on the PGA Tour ' and won a tournament.
The Honda Classic was there for Kuchar to win at 18 and it was still there to win as a fresh-faced PGA Tour pro in 2002.
Its tough to turn down the money for the unknown. I understand why some cant do it. And I cant and wont fault Wie for doing the same. Her choice, her life.
Paula Creamer didnt go to college. She barely wore the high-school graduation gown before turning golf on its ears at the Solheim Cup. Nobodys criticizing or questioning her.
Can you go back to college later to get the degree? Sure. But I just cant see it being the same as a 30-year-old as it is as an 18-year-old.
What would Nicklaus and Graf say?
Right now, Womens Public Links aside, Michelle Wie hasnt amassed a resume full of victories. However, shes soon to amass a bank account most of us could only dream of.
The bank account and endorsement deals with Nike and others have guaranteed her something only Tiger Woods can really relate to.
Her financial future is set. In that regard, Wie is 1-up on everyone else. But when the tournament career is over, and the golf isnt the most important thing, does she feel 1-down?
Her choice to make. Her life to live. I firmly believe there is no wrong answer, but there is a right to wonder about what youd do if you had an impact.
Email your thoughts to Kraig Kann
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.”