- No Phones
The USGA says cell phones will not be allowed during tournament play in the U.S. Open. Two weeks ago, volunteers working at the Memorial Tournament confiscated more than 50 cell phones.
- Rory's Night
Before he tees off to defend his U.S. Open title, Rory McIlroy threw out the first pitch last night at AT&T Park -- home of the San Francisco Giants. Fans were treated to Rory McIlroy bobbleheads and Rory approves, saying it looks better than him.
- Lefty Loses
Phil Mickelson teamed up with lefty club pro Mark McCormick during Tuesday's practice round and lost! 17-year-old right-handed amateurs Beau Hossler and Alberto Sanchez teamed up to win 1up.
- Zhang's Gang
14-year-old Andy Zhang got a lesson at The Olympic Club from Masters Champion Bubba Watson and one of the best putters in the world in Aaron Baddeley during their U.S. Open practice round Tuesday.
- JPMorgan’s CEO Will Testify Today
- 2012 Honda Civic Recall
- $99 Deals From Southwest & AirTran
7:12a ET: Kayla Tausche, CNBC Business Report
7:15a ET: Kristi Albers, The First Tee
7:30a ET: Glenn Weckerlin, Chevron
8:00a ET: Jerry Foltz, Golf Channel Analyst
8:30a ET: Neil Sagebiel, Author
8:45a ET: Mark Wiebe, 3-time Champions Tour Winner
WATCH & LISTEN TO TODAY'S ACTION
Rory's First Pitch at a Ball Game > Watch Now
Best of Morning Drive June 13, 2012 > Listen Now
*WEB EXCLUSIVE* 14 reasons to watch the U.S. Open > Watch Now
If interested in the music you heard today on 'Morning Drive', download it on iTunes.
“I Left My Heart in San Francisco” by Tony Bennett
“Summertime Blues” by Blue Cheer
“Dance to the Music” by Sly & the Family Stone
Tune-in or stream the show live on GolfChannel.com weekdays at 7AM ET
Thursday, June 14
Wednesday - June 13, 2012
Less goals but more consistency for Thomas in 2018
ATLANTA – After winning last year’s FedExCup, Justin Thomas was asked about his goals for the season and he quickly went to his phone.
A list of 13 “goals” had been typed in, a rundown that ranged from qualifying for the Tour Championship to finishing in the top 10 in half of the circuit’s statistical categories. Nearly every goal had a “Y” next to it to denote he’d accomplished what he wanted.
Thomas was asked on Tuesday at East Lake how his goals are shaping up this season.
“I haven't looked in a while. I really haven't. I'm sure if I had to guess, I'm probably around 50 to 60, 70 percent [have been completed],” he said. “I definitely haven't achieved near as many as I did the previous year. But we still have one week left to knock a big goal off.”
Thomas pointed out that although he didn’t add to his major total this season or win as many times as he did last year, he still feels like he’s been more consistent this year.
He has more top-25 finishes (19) than he did last year (14), missed fewer cuts (two compared to six last season) and has improved in nearly every major statistical category.
“It's been a really consistent year, and I take a lot of pride in that,” Thomas said. “That's a big goal of mine is to improve every year and get better every year, so if I can continue in this direction, I feel like I can do some pretty great things the rest of my career.”
Woods' probation for reckless driving ends one month early
Tiger Woods' year-long probation stemming from last year's DUI arrest has been terminated a month early.
According to Sam Smink of WPTV, Woods, 42, was let off probation early for successfully completing all regular and special conditions of his probation after pleading guilty to reckless driving and entering a diversion program last October.
Under the conditions of the program, Woods was required to pay a $250 fine and court costs, attend a DUI school and undergo a substance abuse evaluation and treatment program. He was also subject to random drug and alcohol testing under the program.
#UPDATE: The PBC State Attorney ends #TigerWoods' probation one month early, as of 9/12. Woods was in the first time DUI offender program. While in the program, Woods had random drug/alcohol testing and was not able to consume alcohol. @wptv #wptv https://t.co/bkt3jC3Pfe pic.twitter.com/XASPJFVQtx— Sam Smink (@samsminkWPTV) September 18, 2018
The 14-time major champ was arrested on charges of DUI in May of 2017 after he was found unconscious behind the wheel of his parked Mercedes-Benz in Jupiter, Fla.
Although tests showed Woods was not under the influence of alcohol at the time, he admitted to taking several pain and sleep medications to cope with his fourth back surgery which was performed in April.
Since his arrest, Woods has returned to competition, rising to 21st in the Official World Golf Ranking after a pain-free campaign in 2018.
Players wrapping their heads around FedEx changes
ATLANTA – Even players who have known the details of the PGA Tour’s plan to dramatically change the way it crowns a FedExCup champion were still digesting the details on Tuesday at the Tour Championship.
“I think it’s maybe easier to follow for people at home. Kind of definitely strange and very different to be on 10 under par starting on the first tee,” said Justin Rose, who begins this week’s finale second on the points list.
Next year when a new strokes-based system will decide the season-long race, Rose would begin his week at East Lake 8 under, two strokes behind front-runner Bryson DeChambeau and eight shots ahead of Nos. 26-30 on the points list.
Most players said the new format will be an improvement over the current model, which is based on a complicated points structure. That’s not to say the new plan has been given universal support.
Under the current format, the 30th-ranked player has a .4 percent chance of winning the cup, while the first player on the points list has a 27 percent chance. Those odds remain virtually identical under next year’s strokes-based format.
“I’m not saying the 30th guy should have the same shot as the fifth guy, but just make the odds a little bit better. Give them a 5 percent chance,” Billy Horschel said. “The strokes could be distributed differently. Maybe put the leader at 6 under [instead of 10 under] and then you go down to even par. Five or six shots back, over four days, you still have a chance.”
There will no doubt be a period of adjustment, but after more than three years of planning, most players were pleased with the general elements of the new plan if not all of the details.
“It's never going to be perfect,” said Justin Thomas, last year’s FedExCup champion and a member of the player advisory council. “No system in any sport is ever going to be perfect, and the Tour has done such a great job of talking to us and trying to get it as good as possible. But it's just hard to understand the fact that you could be starting behind somebody else and still somehow win a golf tournament or an official win.”
Tour Championship: Tee times, TV schedule, stats
The top 30 players in the FedExCup standings are back at East Lake for the Tour Championship. Here's the key info for the 48th and final official event of the 2017-2018 PGA Tour season.
Golf course: East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta, Ga., was opened in 1908 and designed by Tom Bendelow. East Lake was redesigned by Donald Ross in 1913, George Cobb in 1959, and Rees Jones in 1995 and 2008. The course will play as a par 70 at 7,362 yards. East Lake first hosted the Tour Championship in 1998. This year marks the 15th consecutive year and 18th overall that it has played host to the season-ending event.
Purse: $8.75 million ($1.575 million to winner)
TV and live streaming schedule (All times Eastern): Thursday, 1-6 p.m. on Golf Channel (live stream); Friday, 1-6 p.m. on Golf Channel (live stream); Saturday, 12:30-2:30 p.m. on Golf Channel (live stream), 2:30-6 p.m. on NBC (live stream); Sunday, 2:30-6 p.m. on NBC (live stream)
Notable tee times (pairings adjusted after each round): Rickie Fowler and Jon Rahm, 12:10 p.m.; Tommy Fleetwood and Tiger Woods, 12:30 p.m.; Rory McIlroy and Xander Schauffele, 12:40 p.m.; Francesco Molinari and Phil Mickelson, 1 p.m.; Justin Thomas and Keegan Bradley, 1:40 p.m.; Tony Finau and Dustin Johnson, 1:50 p.m.; Bryson DeChambeau and Justin Rose, 2 p.m. Click here for full tee times.
Defending champion: Xander Schauffele defeated Justin Thomas by one stroke to earn his second career PGA Tour win and the second win of his rookie season. Schauffele became the first rookie to ever win the Tour Championship and he finished third in the season-long race for the FedExCup while runner-up Thomas joined Vijay Singh in 2008 and Tiger Woods in 2009 as players to win the FedExCup without winning the Tour Championship.
Notables in the field: The field has been cut to the top 30 in FedExCup points. The field includes 23 of the top 30 in the Official World Golf Ranking, four FedExCup champions (Woods, Horschel, McIlroy, Thomas), five previous winners of this event (Woods, Mickelson, Horschel, McIlroy, Schauffele) and 13 major champions. Click here for FedExCup title scenarios for all 30 players.
• All 30 players in field have mathematical possibility of winning $10 million bonus
• Only two players have won the Tour Championship more than once: Woods (1999, 2007) and Mickelson (2000, 2009)
• In the last 11 years, eight players have won both the Tour Championship and FedExCup in the same year: Woods (2007), Jim Furyk (2010), Bill Haas (2011), Brandt Snedeker (2012), Henrik Stenson (2013), Billy Horschel (2014), Jordan Spieth (2015), and Rory McIlroy (2016)
• The defending champion is Schauffele, who played his way into the top 30 in the BMW Championship for a second consecutive year. No player has ever successfully defended his Tour Championship title
• Players in the field this week will earn a minimum of $395,000 combined ($144,000 for 30th place at East Lake and $175,000 for 30th place in the FedExCup) with the potential for a $11,620,000 payday for winning both the Tour Championship and the FedExCup.
• For the 10th consecutive season, points are reset going into the Tour Championship. That guarantees that if a player in the top five (DeChambeau, Rose, Finau, Johnson, Thomas) wins at East Lake, he will also win the FedExCup
• Seven of the last eight winners of the FedExCup have also won the Tour Championship. Five of the last six FedExCup winners have been a top-five seed coming into the week – the only one not was Rory McIlroy at number six in 2016.
• The FedExCup points leader going into the Tour Championship has gone on to win the FedExCup just three times – all in the competition’s first three seasons: Woods in 2007, Vijay Singh in 2008 and Woods in 2009.
(Stats and information provided by the Golf Channel editorial research unit)