Tim Rosaforte - June 11, 2012

By Morning Drive TeamJune 11, 2012, 12:52 pm

Dustin Johnson won in Memphis in his second start after returning from a back injury and his teacher Butch Harmon was surprised that the win happened this quickly. When you are away with an injury, it takes time to return to the competitive mode and Johnson met some pressure during the final round and showed that he was ready for the test. During his time away, Johnson spent a lot of time working on his fitness and parts of his golf game at home in Jupiter, Florida. Johnson had said that he was eager to return to the PGA TOUR and he proved that was not only eager but also ready to return and win.

San Francisco is a great sports town, people town, and golf town. The Olympic Club is located in Daly City and it is just one of several great courses in that area including Harding Park, Lake Merced Golf Club, and San Francisco Golf Club. The people in San Francisco are passionate and knowledgeable about their golf and unlike 1998 when it was used as a parking lot for the U.S. Open, Harding Park is now a jewel of the area thanks in large part to local people like former USGA President Sandy Tatum.

One of the great stories from Sectional Qualifying was Dennis Miller. Miller is a pro at a public course in Ohio and he advanced out of the Columbus, Ohio qualifier in his 13th attempt to play in the U.S. Open for the first time. The putt that he made on the fourth playoff hole has gone viral which shows that people relate to the story of this man from Youngstown, Ohio. Miller will be taking his wife Denise to San Francisco for the first time and they plan to enjoy this week before returning to  their normal lives in Ohio – Denise as a nurse and Dennis as a pro at Mill Creek Golf Course. The fact that Golf Channel is airing Miller’s News Conference live on Monday is more evidence of how strong this story is.

In his second visit to Monday’s Morning Drive, Rosaforte began by discussing some of the best storylines entering the U.S. Open. Casey Martin has to be at the top of the list because of his disability, the fact that he will be playing in his first U.S. Open since the 1998 U.S. Open at The Olympic Club, and the fact that days before qualifying he had led his Oregon Ducks to the semifinals of Match Play in the NCAA Men’s Championship at Riviera Country Club. Rosaforte said that he has been communicating with Martin recently and he knows that Martin is very busy and very stressed heading into the U.S. Open. It was amazing that Martin finished T23 in 1998 and was just one back of former Stanford teammate Tiger Woods. The USGA has said that are more capable of accommodating Martin this year than they were in 1998.

Mark McCormick, a golf pro from New Jersey with bad knees who was giving qualifying one more shot at the age of 49, earned his spot in the U.S. Open field with Bruce Springsteen’s former drummer as his caddie although his son Ryan, who is on the golf team at St. John’s, did not make it. Mark McCormick will be playing a practice round on Tuesday with his golfing idol Phil Mickelson at The Olympic Club and McCormick said that he has been advised to take a few $100 bills for the round.

Shanshan Feng won the Wegmans LPGA Championship and although she may not be familiar to American audiences, the 22-year-old from China entered the week ranked 10th in the world and she has won numerous times around the world. Feng moved to the United States from China at the age of 15 to compete and she has a strong mastery of the English language. While Feng’s win may be great for women’s golf around the world, her win may not be great for women’s golf in the United States as Asian players have won each of the last five Majors. It is an interesting time for the LPGA Tour as they are trying to market women’s golf both locally in the United States and globally around the world. Shanshan Feng could well be the next Yani Tseng and she is unlikely to become a one hit wonder with this win because she has so much talent.

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Tiger Tracker: Tour Championship

By Tiger TrackerSeptember 23, 2018, 3:00 pm

Tiger Woods has a three-shot lead entering the final round of the Tour Championship and is alongside Rory McIlroy in the final group. We're tracking him.

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Rose tries to ignore scenarios, focus on winning

By Rex HoggardSeptember 23, 2018, 12:59 am

ATLANTA – No one has more to play for than Justin Rose on Sunday at the Tour Championship.

The Englishman will begin the day three strokes behind front-runner Tiger Woods after a third-round 68 that could have been much worse after he began his day with back-to-back bogeys.

Winning the tournament will be Rose’s top priority, but there’s also the lingering question of the FedExCup and the $10 million bonus, which he is currently projected to claim.

Projected FedExCup standings

Full-field scores from the Tour Championship

Tour Championship: Articles, photos and videos

“The way I look at tomorrow is that I have many scenarios in play. I have the FedExCup in play. I have all of that to distract me,” Rose said. “But yet, I'm three back. I think that's my objective tomorrow is to come out and play good, positive golf and try and chase down the leader and win this golf tournament. I think in some ways that'll help my other task of trying to win the FedExCup. It'll keep me on the front foot and playing positive golf.”

Although there are many scenarios for Rose to win the season-long title, if Woods wins the Tour Championship, Rose would need to finish fifth or better to claim the cup.

There’s also the top spot in the Official World Golf Ranking to consider. Rose overtook Dustin Johnson for No. 1 in the world with his runner-up finish at the BMW Championship two weeks ago. He will retain the top spot unless Justin Thomas, Brooks Koepka or Johnson win the finale and he falls down the leaderboard on Sunday.

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McIlroy needs putter to heat up to catch Woods

By Rex HoggardSeptember 23, 2018, 12:29 am

ATLANTA – Although Rory McIlroy is three strokes behind Tiger Woods at the Tour Championship and tied for second place he had the look of a man with a secret when he left East Lake on Saturday.

Trying to play catch up against Woods is never ideal, but McIlroy’s confidence stemmed from a tee-to-green game that has been unrivaled for three days.

“I definitely think today and the first day were similar,” said McIlroy, whose 66 included birdies at two of his final three holes. “I gave myself plenty of chances, and I think the biggest thing today was only just that one bogey. Got to put your ball in the fairway, put yourself in position, and for the most part, I did that today.”

Projected FedExCup standings

Full-field scores from the Tour Championship

Tour Championship: Articles, photos and videos

For the week McIlroy ranks first in strokes gained: off the tee, third in strokes gained: approach to the green and second in greens in regulation. But to catch Woods, who he will be paired with, he’ll need a much better day on the greens.

The Northern Irishman needed 30 putts on Day 2 and ranks 23rd, out of 30 players, in strokes gained: putting.

McIlroy skipped the first playoff event, opting instead for an extra week at home to work on his swing and the move has paid off.

“I hit the ball well. My wedge play has been really good,” he said. “I've done a lot of work on it the last few weeks, and it seems to have paid off.”

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Glover trails Straka at Web.com Tour Championship

By Associated PressSeptember 23, 2018, 12:19 am

ATLANTIC BEACH, Fla. – Sepp Straka moved into position Saturday to earn a PGA Tour card in the Web.com Tour Championship, shooting a 7-under 64 to take the third-round lead.

With the top 25 earners in the four-event Web.com Tour Finals getting PGA Tour cards Sunday, Straka birdied the final three holes to reach 18-under 195 - a stroke ahead of Curtis Luck, Lucas Glover and Denny McCarthy at Atlantic Beach Country Club.

''It's always good to get an extra birdie in late. I got three of them to finish, which was nice,'' Straka said. ''It's very bunched up there, so you can't really take off, you've got to keep the pedal down and see where you end up at the end.''

Straka entered the week tied for 80th in the card race with $2,744. The 25-year-old former Georgia player from Austria won the KC Golf Classic in August for his first Web.com Tour title. He finished 31st on the money list to advance to the four-tournament series.

''My ball-striking is really good,'' Straka said. ''It's been good all week. It's been really solid. I really haven't gotten in a whole lot of trouble and have been able to capitalize on a good number of chances with the putter. Hit a couple of bad putts today, but some really good ones to make up for it.''

Full-field scores from the Web.com Tour Championship

Luck also shot 64. The 22-year-old Australian went into the week 16th with $41,587.

''Obviously, it just comes down to keeping that momentum going and trying not to change anything,'' Luck said. ''That's the really important thing and I felt like I did that really well. I played really aggressive on the back nine, still went after a lot of shots and I hit it close a lot out there.''

Glover had a 68. The 2009 U.S. Open champion entered the week 40th with $17,212.

McCarthy shot 67. He already has wrapped up a card, earning $75,793 in the first three events to get to 11th in the standings.

The series features the top 75 players from the Web.com regular-season money list, Nos. 126-200 in the PGA Tour's FedEx Cup standings, and non-members with enough money to have placed in the top 200. The top-25 finishers on the Web.com regular-season money list are competing against each other for tour priority, with regular-season earnings counting in their totals. The other players are fighting for the 25 cards based on series earnings.