Chat with Bob Harig
Harig covers golf for ESPN.com and provides columns, features and analysis on the world of golf, specifically the PGA Tour. He has contributed to ESPN.com's golf coverage since 1997.
Send your questions now and join Bob on Friday at 11 a.m. ET for all the answers!
Harig Archive: Columns
Bob Harig (11:01 AM)
Hello from Oakland Hills and the PGA Championship. The first round was completed this morning, the second round is underway. Let's get started with your questions about golf.
Hey Bob, what storylines are you looking at heading into day two?
Bob Harig (11:08 AM)
Mostly how the course places after the place got a bit of water, but also if Sergio can hang in there, if Ernie Els can make a move, can Phil move up. What about the co-leaders, can they hang tough? Lots of things to keep an eye on.
Christian (High Point, NC)
What's the word on Kenny Perry's injury? Is he going to miss the next few weeks?
Bob Harig (11:09 AM)
He was not likely to play next week and then the FedEx Cup playoffs begin in two weeks. This does not appear to be serious. He scratched his cornea when removing a contact lens.
Thoughts on Mickleson thus far?
Bob Harig (11:10 AM)
I thought he did well to bounce back from opening with two straight bogeys on Thursday. It would be good to see hi steady himself a bit. He's made a lot of bogeys and offsetting them with as many birdies as he made can't be expected on this course.
Bob, Gun to your head, you HAVE to pick 12......as of this minute, who is your guess for the US Ryder Cup team.
Bob Harig (11:13 AM)
Let's say the top eight stay the same: Cink, Mickelson, Perry, Furyk, Kim, Leonard, Weekley, Stricker -- and that is not guaranteed, but for arguement's sake let's say it does. I think believe Azinger will pick Austin, Mediate, Mahan and O'Hair. . . If anyone falls out of the top eight, I think they will have to do something big in the next three weeks to get picked -- unless nobody else does. But there's a lot that can happen.
What do you think of this prediction: Aaron Baddeley will win. He came on real strong on the back 9 yesterday.
Bob Harig (11:14 AM)
Sure, why not? He's 1 over and right in it. . . And he is the only player in round 1 who birdied the tough par-3 ninth.
Matt (Columbus, OH)
Does the number of international flags on the first couple pages of the leaderboard surprise you? I know it's early, but this is the PGA Championship, after all.
Bob Harig (11:15 AM)
No, it is such an international game with so many players around the world competing a the top level. That trend will continue.
Brennan (Barnegat LIght, NJ)
what is the cut rule at PGA? is it just top x number, within x # strokes, etc. thx
Bob Harig (11:16 AM)
It is simply the top 70 players and ties advance to the weekend. There is no 10-shot rule here.
Adam Scott, Aaron Baddeley one-two
Bob Harig (11:16 AM)
Well, Adam Scott has some work to do after the first-round 77.
Does Daly make the cut for the weekend?
Bob Harig (11:17 AM)
It doesn't look good. He is now outside the cut line at 7 over.
Rob: New Castle, Pa.
With Tiger out this week I have found myself willing to schedule other things that will keep me from watching this weekend which I normally wouldn't do. If tiger were to be out longer than anticipated how do you think sponsors will react if ratings go down dramatically
Bob Harig (11:19 AM)
You have to remember that Tiger plays in only about a third of the PGA Tour events when he is healthy. There are lots of events that don't get him. And yet, the PGA Tour is fully sponsored. Sure, ratings are lower when he is not around, but they deliver a certain demographic that advertisers covet.
Sergio Garcia (Oakland Hills)
I am going to nail down my first major right this weekend. This is my best chance, no Tiger. Who woulda thought ten years ago when I battled him that I still would have no majors.
Bob Harig (11:20 AM)
Nice of you to get your morning diversion chatting on line. Hopefully your mind is clear and you can handle the task at hand.
Matt (Columbus, OH)
If Steve Stricker putts to his potential on these testy greens, what do you think of his chances?
Bob Harig (11:22 AM)
I find it hard to say about a guy who has won just four times in his career. I'm sure if he putts well, he can put himself right there, but you can say that about a lot of guys.
Thanks for the Ryder prediction. Two things....is it just me, or is that list signifcantly less flash/intimidating than past teams? No Woods, obviously, but also no Couples, Love, Duval.....traditional names. Not too scary a roster. But, maybe that's a good thing? Fewer big egos, more fearless young guns? Maybe this is the mix we need to get the cup back to the US?
Bob Harig (11:23 AM)
There is no question that the U.S. Ryder Cup team is going to have a different look. A lot of guys with no experience. Few who have even won many Ryder Cup points. But maybe that is good. The U.S. has a lot of guys with the experience of losing. These guys won't have that.
Hey Bob...remember Tommy Tolles? Whatever happened to him?
Bob Harig (11:25 AM)
He is playing the Nationwide Tour. In fact, he opened the tournament in Kansas yesterday with a 62. But he's made just 6 cuts in 11 events but does have two top-10s.
Hey Bob. Do you think Phil Mickleson, on the whole, is overhyped in a majors-to-media comparison? He has been a huge name for so many years, but we all know his record in majors. Is lefty that good, but a choker? Or have we overevaluated his talent?
Bob Harig (11:26 AM)
Say what you want about Phil, and he has his detractors and has given us reason to question him. But. .. nobody else other than Tiger among active players has won more majors than Phil. Viajy and Ernie each have three, just like Phil. He's got 34 PGA Tour wins, more than anybody but Tiger. He's won the Players. It is a very solid record.
Pick the top three finishers this weekend
Bob Harig (11:28 AM)
I'm not sure I could pick who will be the top three finishers by the end of today.
You know Sergio? This will be the week in which Adam Scott becomes the best player without a major.
Bob Harig (11:29 AM)
It's possible. Sergio has yet to tee off and nobody is pulling away from him.
Kevin (Glen Rock, NJ)
Where do they have the pin on number 9 today? I don't think I have ever seen a hole where there was only 1 birdie and over 50 bogeys. Do you think that par 3 was unfair yesterday?
Bob Harig (11:32 AM)
The pin is front left today, but I think the difficulty was more in length. That hole is in the 250-yard range and how many people are going to make a birdie from that distance?
James: (Sugar Land, TX)
I thought Zinger said he wanted some long bombers like J.B. Holmes or Bubba Watson. J.B. is playing well this week. What are his chances of making it on the Ryder Cup team?
Bob Harig (11:33 AM)
He has said more often that he wants hot players. Holmes won back in February and needs to show something this week. He is even par for the tournament and could play himself onto the tee with a high finish. Bubba Watson is not on the radar at the moment.
Matt (Columbus, OH)
I was pretty surprised by Lee Westwood's 77 yesterday. Do you think he'll recover and make the cut?
Bob Harig (11:34 AM)
Me too. I've been picking him all year to win a major. He seemed to be pretty upset with the course set up and he'll need to get over that if he is to have a chance.
Considering all the changes made to courses these days, making them longer and all.. Do you think solidified legends such as Nicklaus, Palmer, etc, could hang on today's longer courses and still post the scores needed to be right there on sunday afternoon?
Bob Harig (11:36 AM)
Yes, because they would also have the benefit of today's equipment. Think of what those guys did with wooden clubs and irons that didn't have nearly the forgiveness of today's clubs. And the golf balls they played with were a joke compared to today's. They would hold their own and then some.
Marc (Milford, CT)
What about Ben Curtis as an outsider looking in for the Ryder Cup team? If he manages a top 5 this weekend doesn't Zinger have to give him a look?
Bob Harig (11:36 AM)
Curtis is 20th in points and a top five would move him way up the list. Probably not into the top eight, but enough to get a look if he could do anything in the tournaments before the picks are made.
Mike (New York)
I noticed in Roland Thatcher?s player rankings that he said Phil was the most talented player out there, Tiger or no Tiger in the field. Do you really believe that as well? I mean Tiger has 11 more majors and countless more wins and he?s several years younger. I can?t see how anyone can say Phil has more talent.
Bob Harig (11:38 AM)
Roland is a pro golfer and can see things that I can't. I don't doubt for a minute that Phil has a lot of skills. He can hit all the shots, is long, has a great short game. To me, though, it is hard to argue against Tiger for numerous reasons. Tiger is more athletic and that allows him to do things others can't.
Bob, it seems that Sergio Garcis has a ton of expectations on him this tournament. However, I've been hearing for years how he will break through and win a major, and it still hasn't come. Do you think if Sergio misses the win here that he may become yesterday's news?
Bob Harig (11:39 AM)
He's still only 28 years old and those expectations follow him around regardless.
I saw David Duval at the British (along with Greg Norman). Do you recall when he shot a 59, played Tiger in a 1-on-1 prime time tourney at night, and was being deemed as Tiger's competition? I think we all noticed the fall off. While I saw that he lost a lot of weight, he was also never the same player. Do you know anything more on why Duval didn't stay on top?
Bob Harig (11:43 AM)
There are many, many reasons for Duval's decline. After he won the 01 British Open, he sort of wondered what was next. He also had numerous injuries that led to compensations in his golf swing. He got married and it changed his priorities. He says he is close to regaining his form, but his numbers have not shown it.
Is Ty Tryon trying to make a comeback? Have you seen anything from him?
Bob Harig (11:44 AM)
Tryon, who qualified for the tour at age 17, is now 24 and kicking around golf's minor leagues, playing mini tour events and trying to qualify for Nationwide events.
Matt (Columbus, OH)
What do you think needs to happen for D. J. Trahan to make the Ryder Cup?
Bob Harig (11:47 AM)
He can make it with a high finish here, depending on what others do. And I really do think he needs to make it on his own. But what if he wins the Barclays? Then maybe Azinger picks him.
James (calgary, AB)
Bob - If the keys are Aptitude, Attitude & Desire, I can bite on Phil having more aptitude. Does anyone come close to Tiger on the other 2? If so, can you list 3 or 4 who are close?
Bob Harig (11:51 AM)
I'm not sure anyone has Tiger's attitude and desire. Those attributes are amazing. He never, ever gives up. And he shows up at every tournament trying to give his all .That is why he plays so little. He doens't want to go through the motions, which is inevitable from time to time if you play a lot.
Hey Bob, I am curious. How do players decide what to play and what not to play? At the beginning of the year do they put in their names to events? Do they have a deadline? Do they have responsibilities (Like Tiger with Buick)?
Bob Harig (11:53 AM)
A lot of it depends on the courses and cities they like. Some like to play two or three or four weeks in a row. Some prefer to not go for more than two at a time. Players are required to commit to a tournament by the Friday prior at 5 p.m. If they miss that deadline, they cannot play but they can still withdraw after it. As for responsibilities, the tour requires that you play in a minimum of 15 events to retain membership. Some players might have endorsement incentives to play a certain number of events or in certain tournaments. It varies widely.
Bob Harig (12:00 PM)
Time to run. . Thanks for all your questions. . Enjoy the PGA Championship.