2014 Newsmaker No. 5: Ted Bishop

By Rex HoggardDecember 16, 2014, 1:15 pm

From the outset, Ted Bishop was going to be a different type of president.

Call it trail blazing. Call it going rogue. However you view the only PGA of America president in 98 years to be ousted from office, he was true to his DNA until the bitter end.

Because from the outset, the dichotomy of Ted was there for all the golf world to see.

Just weeks into the job, Bishop discarded both baby and bathwater when he named then-63-year-old Tom Watson the 2014 U.S. Ryder Cup captain, breaking numerous molds with a rare repeat performance from an aging leader. That he failed to notify either David Toms or Larry Nelson, among the other potential candidates for the ’14 gig, was just as telling.

“If they had made a decision a little earlier and let me know, if they had just called us and said, ‘We’re going another direction,’ I’d have been fine. I’m fine anyway,” Nelson said in December 2012.

“The way it’s come down and to have someone say that they did contact me when they didn’t, that didn’t make sense.”

Bishop would contact Nelson, as well as Toms, but not until the damage was done. It would become Bishop’s signature move - bold decisions followed by easily avoidable miscues.

So it was that with a familiar modus operandi that Bishop penned a 101-character tweet in response to Ian Poulter’s criticism of Nick Faldo in his new book “No Limits.”

“Faldo’s record stands by itself. Six majors and all-time [Ryder Cup] points. Yours vs. His? Lil Girl,” Bishop tweeted on Oct. 23.

It was the final blow for the Indiana golf course operator who once again found himself guilty of the wrong execution of the right idea.

Within 24 hours, Bishop was removed from office with less then a month remaining in his two-year term. It was a surreal ending to perhaps the most eventful presidency in the association’s history.


2014 Newsmakers: 6. Wie7. Reed8. R&A9. Bubba | 10. DJ | Honorable mentions


Along the way Bishop proved equally adept at creating enemies and allies alike.

Among the former you can count Peter Dawson, the R&A’s chief executive who squared off with Bishop during last year’s anchoring debate.

According to various reports, during one particularly heated exchange Dawson questioned Bishop’s decision to oppose the ban, telling the PGA president it was not his association’s responsibility to grow the game in America. In response, Bishop publically challenged the R&A’s male-only membership policy, which was discarded this year in an overwhelming vote.

As for the latter, a portion of Bishop’s legacy should note that relations between the PGA of America and PGA Tour have never been closer, a reality that was hammered home during the association’s annual meeting, when Tour commissioner Tim Finchem made an appearance in Indianapolis while executives from the game’s other association’s - the LPGA and USGA - sent taped video messages.

Bishop will be remembered as the PGA’s first, and likely last, activist president, leading the charge against the anchoring ban, sending the PGA Championship to bold new venues (2020 Harding Park) and even suggesting the association’s major could someday be played overseas.

Bishop was also the first, and likely last, PGA president to fully embrace social media, becoming the association’s de facto front-man, a move that he conceded alienated him from some of his internal support.

“One of the things I have been criticized for privately in PGA circles is my propensity to being with the media,” Bishop told your scribe in November. “Since Day 1 with the anchoring situation, because of (CEO) Pete Bevacqua’s former relationship with the U.S. Golf Association, I took the lead. Right out of the box, now the president of the PGA is the most visible spokesperson and that sort of set the stage for the role that I played.”

It also set the stage for the surreal turn of events that cost him his job and a permanent spot at the decision-making table as a past president.

Things began to unravel on Sunday at the Ryder Cup when the press and some players, most notably Phil Mickelson, began to criticize Watson’s captaincy and, by default, Bishop’s leadership. Before the American team boarded the charter flight home the battle lines had already been drawn.

“Tom gave his heart and soul to the Ryder Cup for two years, so when he got attacked in my mind it was standing up for a friend and someone who was serving a similar role as me,” Bishop said.

Less then a month later, Bishop was attending a junior event hosted by Faldo in West Virginia when Poulter’s criticism became public. Bishop crafted his infamous tweet while waiting for a ride a dinner and told GolfChannel.com in November he has regretted it every day since.

In a strange way, Bishop’s presidency had come full circle from those early days in 2012 when he mishandled the captain’s announcement, a high-minded concept that would land horribly off the mark.

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M. Jutanugarn eyeing first win with L.A. Open lead

By Associated PressApril 21, 2018, 1:50 am

LOS ANGELES - Moriya Jutanugarn took the lead into the weekend at the Hugel-JTBC L.A. Open in her latest bid to join younger sister Ariya as an LPGA winner.

Moriya Jutanugarn shot a bogey-free 5-under 66 on Friday at Wilshire Country Club to get to 8-under 134 in the LPGA Tour's first event in Los Angeles since 2005. The 23-year-old from Thailand started fast with birdies on the par-5 second, par-4 third and par-3 fourth and added two more on the par-4 11th and par-5 13th.

Ariya Jutanugarn has seven LPGA victories.

Marina Alex was second after a 68.


Full-field scores from the Hugel-JTBC Open


So Yeon Ryu was 6 under after a 69, and fellow South Korean players Inbee Park(71) and Eun-Hee Ji (69). Park was the first-round leader at 66. Lexi Thompsonwas 3 under after a 71.

Top-ranked Shanshan Feng followed her opening 74 with a 67 to get to 1 under.

Ariya Jutanugarn (71) was even par, and Michelle Wie (70) was 1 over. Brooke Henderson, the Canadian star who won last week in Hawaii, had a 79 to miss the cut.

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Johnson, Moore co-lead Valero Texas Open through 36

By Associated PressApril 21, 2018, 1:00 am

SAN ANTONIO - Zach Johnson was going nowhere in the Valero Texas Open when it all changed with one putt.

He made an 8-foot par putt on the 13th hole of the opening round to stay at 2 under. He followed with a big drive, a hybrid into 12 feet and an eagle. Johnson was on his way, and he kept right on going Friday to a 7-under 65 and a share of the 36-hole lead with Ryan Moore.

''You just never know. That's the beauty of this game,'' Johnson said. ''I felt like I was hitting some solid shots and wasn't getting rewarded, and you've just got to stay in it. You've got to persevere, grind it out, fight for pars. You just never know.''

Moore had three birdies over his last five holes for a 67 and joined Johnson at 9-under 135.

They had a one-shot lead over Grayson Murray (69) and Andrew Landry (67).

Ben Crane (66), Martin Laird (65) and David Hearn (68) were three shots behind. Billy Horschel and Keegan Bradley shot 71 and were four shots behind at 5-under 139.


Full-field scores from the Valero Texas Open

Valero Texas Open: Articles, photos and videos


Sergio Garcia, who consulted Greg Norman on the design of the AT&T Oaks Course at the TPC San Antonio, had a short stay in his first time at the Texas Open since 2010. Garcia shot an even-par 72, and at one point became so frustrated he threw his driver into the shrubs.

Garcia finished at 2-over 146 and missed the cut.

It was the first time since 2010 that Garcia missed the cut in successive starts. That was the PGA Championship and, 10 weeks later, the Castello Masters in Spain. This time, he missed the cut in the Masters and Texas Open three weeks apart.

Johnson, a two-time winner of the Texas Open, appeared to be headed to a short week until the key par save on the 13th hole, followed by his eagle, par and three straight birdies. He began the second round Friday with five birdies in a six-hole stretch on the back nine, a sixth birdie on the par-4 first hole, and then an eagle on the short par-4 fifth when he holed out from a greenside bunker.

The only sour taste to his second round was a three-putt bogey from about 30 feet on his final hole. Even so, the view was much better than it was Thursday afternoon.

Moore thought he had wasted a good birdie opportunity on the par-5 14th hole when he left his 50-foot eagle putt about 6 feet short. But he made that, and then holed a similar putt from 8 feet for birdie on the next hole and capped his good finish with a 15-foot putt on the 17th.

''That was a huge momentum putt there,'' Moore said of the 14th. ''It was a tough putt from down there with a lot of wind. That green is pretty exposed and ... yeah, really short and committed to that second putt really well and knocked it right in the middle.''

The birdies on the 14th and 15th were important to Moore because he missed a pair of 10-foot birdie tries to start the back nine.

''So it was nice to get those and get going in the right direction on the back,'' he said.

The cut was at 1-over 145, and because 80 players made the cut, there will be a 54-hole cut on Saturday.

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Garcia tosses driver, misses Valero cut

By Will GrayApril 21, 2018, 1:00 am

It wasn't quite to the level of his watery meltdown earlier this month at the Masters, but Sergio Garcia still got frustrated during the second round of the Valero Texas Open - and his driver paid the price.

Garcia had a hand in redesigning the AT&T Oaks Course along with Greg Norman several years ago, but this marked his first return to TPC San Antonio since 2010. After an opening-round 74, Garcia arrived to the tee of the short par-4 fifth hole and decided to get aggressive with driver in hand.

When his shot sailed well left, a heated Garcia chucked the club deep into the bushes that lined the tee box:

It took considerable effort for Garcia to find and retrieve the club amid the branches, and once he did things only got worse. He appeared to shank a chip once he got up to his ball, leading to a bogey on one of the easiest holes on a demanding track.

Garcia closed out his round with four straight pars, and at 2 over he eventually missed the cut by a shot. It marks the first time he has missed consecutive cuts on the PGA Tour since 2003, when he sat out the weekend at the AT&T Byron Nelson, Fort Worth Invitational and Memorial Tournament in successive weeks.

Garcia entered the week ranked No. 10 in the world, and he was the only top-20 player among the 156-man field. He missed the cut at the Masters in defense of his title after carding an octuple-bogey 13 on the 15th hole during the opening round.

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Daly-Allen team grabs Legends of Golf lead on Day 2

By Associated PressApril 20, 2018, 11:14 pm

RIDGEDALE, Mo. - John Daly and Michael Allen took the second-round lead Friday in the cool and breezy Bass Pro Shops Legends of Golf.

Daly and Allen shot an 8-under 46 on the Top of the Rock par-3 course with wind gusting to 15 mph and the temperature only in the high-50s at Big Cedar Lodge. They had three birdies on the front nine in alternate-shot play and added five more on the back in better-ball play to get to 13 under.

''Michael and I go back to the South African days in the late 80s and playing that tour,'' Daly said. ''We've been buddies since. He's just fun to play with. We feed off each other pretty good. And if he's not comfortable guinea-pigging on one hole, I'll go first.''

On Thursday, they opened with a 66 on the regulation Buffalo Ridge course. They will rotate to the 13-hole Mountain Top par-3 course on Saturday, and return to Top of the Rock for the final round Sunday.

''I went to high school in Jeff City, so it's cool to have the fans behind us,'' Daly said.

Allen won the PGA Tour Champions team event with David Frost in 2012 and Woody Austin in 2016.

''I'm just here to free up John,'' Allen said. ''It was fun. Luckily, I started making good putts today. We just want to keep the good times rolling.''


Full-field scores from the Bass Pro Shops Legends of Golf


Defending champions Vijay Singh and Carlos Franco were a stroke back along with Bernhard Langer-Tom Lehman and Paul Broadhurst-Kirk Triplett. Singh and Franco had a 7-under 32 in best-ball play at Mountain Top, and Lehman-Langer and Broadhurst-Tripplet each shot 6-under 48 at Top of the Rock.

''Part of the issue here is all the tees are elevated, so you're up high hitting to a green that's down below and the wind is blowing, and there is more time for that wind to affect it,'' Lehman said. ''If you guess wrong on the wind, you can hit a really good shot and kind of look stupid.''

Former UCLA teammates Scott McCarron and Brandt Jobe were two strokes back at 11 under with Steve Flesch and David Toms and the Spanish side of Jose Maria Olazabal and Miguel Angel Jimenez. McCarron-Jobe had a 47, and Jimenez-Olazabal a 48 at Top of the Rock, and Tom Flesch shot 34 at Mountain Top.

First-round leaders Jeff Maggert and Jesper Parnevik had a 52 at Top of the Rock to fall three shots back at 10 under. Madison, Wisconsin, friends Steve Stricker and Jerry Kelly also were 10 under after a 32 at Mountain Top. Jay Haas aced the 131-yard seventh hole at Mountain Top with a gap wedge. Haas and fellow 64-year-old Peter Jacobsen were 8 under after a 32.