Hello, thanks for checking out this golf chat. Plenty going on in the world of golf, once again. Please feel free to fire away with your questions. Let's get started
Hi Bob, what is your take on why Rory has underperformed to his potential this season? Starting to take on the look of Sergio of someone that can never string 3 or 4 rounds together
Basically, I think we've been spoiled by greatness and started to think that it was going to be easy for him. I think he got off to a poor start and things got out of control from there. His swing was off, confidence issues, lots of distractions. But I expect Rory to get going again.
So Tiger, Adam and Phil are paired together for the first 2 rounds and the PGA Tour has them playing 0 holes on TV the first day. I can watch every point of Federer, Nadal, Williams at the US Open. I can watch a Bucks/Kings game in March on a Tuesday night at 10:30 ET. I can watch almost every minute of the Vuelta a Espana. The Golf Channel showed us 14 hours a day of the Solheim Cup. And yet I can't watch any shot of these three the first day on my TV. Tim Finchem has done a lot of great things but how in the day and age can we not watch this marquee pairing? Does the PGA Tour not want larger ratings/purses for their next contract? Tiger will only be around for so long, why waste this?
This is an excellent question and one that comes up in various forms from time to time. It's complicated, and I'm not here to defend anyone or disparage anyone as it releates to TV coverage. But it's expensive to produce golf telecasts; and the networks who cover it must pay a rights fee. To show all of the golf on Friday morning is expensive, frankly. And for Golf Channel to show more, they'd have to either pay the PGA Tour more for the rights to do so -- along with the production costs -- or more likely be required to show more of another tournament, one where viewership might not be as high.It sounds simple to be out there Friday for that round, and I'm guessing there might be some sort of limited on line coverage and you know there will be numerous highlights shown during the regular broadcast window.
Why are par 72 courses falling out of favor? The last big event on the PGA Tour with a Par 72 was the Memorial. The next will be Torrey Pines in late January.
I hadn't thought of this much, but my quick guess is that there are a lot of courses that have been converted in order to make them look toughr in relation to par. Now saying that, Bridgestone is always par-70, for example.
If Tiger wins one more play-off event (and the fed ex cup) and Scott, Phil or Dufner dont win again, is he player of the year in your mind?
I still think there will be an argument because of the fact that he didn't win a major. Adam Scott had the best record in the majors in addition to his Masters win. Still, Tiger would be a strong candidate. He is now actually.
It's interesting that Phil has always gotten heat for his physique or lack there of but basically has been relatively healthy through out his career, obviously he has the arthritus and had a wrist injury in 2007. Tiger on the other hand has been in supreme condition but seems to break down alot. Any explanation for that or just coincedence.
It's a good point. Phil has been far less injury prone. His swing doesn't seem to put a lot of strain on his back. He's long and fluid and he appparenlty is quite flexible, which really helps.
Do all those involved in the web.com playoff have full status on the web.com tour next year, or just a certain #?
My understanding is those who don't get their PGA Tour cards have full status next year on the Web.com
Other than PGA Tour Canada and the Latin American Tour, can you forsee any additional small/mini tours formally joining the PGA Tour umbrella and feeding players into it like those two tours?
Well, they don't feed into the PGA Tour. They feed into the Web.com. But it's a good point. There have been some rumblings about the tour wanting to get involved in Asia. That would be a natural progression if that were to happen.
Although the Fed-Ex cup play-offs are exciting, I am almost as enthralled by the web.com play-offs. Something about up and comers and grizzled ventures desperately trying to gain/retain their Tour Cards is fascinating. Do you think this 4-tourney series in time will generate some serious buzz? In the past, the Disney tournament that decided the final Top 125 on the money list certainly had that "last chance for a card" buzz to it.....
To be honest, I think there will be limited buzz, mostly among hard-core golf people. I relate to other sports, there isn't a ton of interest in the minor leagues, and this is the same thing, even though you'll see a good number of recognizable names competing. I do think the concept is interesting and will be compelling to follow.
What are the implications of the wrap-around schedule in your mind for the top players? Are we even going to see the top players once before January (or at all)?
My guess is we'll see a few of them. Many will play at the HSBC in China, a world golf event that has no cut. But I'm afraid there will be limited participation in the other fall events that are now part of the schedule.
When is Q school this year? How many cards will it provide to the web.com tour next year?
It is Dec. 12-17 and everyone who makes it there will have some status on the Web.com Tour, with their finish determining priority ranking. Have yet to see if there is a set number of fully exempt spots.
In the 2011 PGA Tour season, Keegan Bradley won the PGA Championship and the HP Byron Nelson Championship. Luke Donald won the WGC-Accenture Match Play Championship and the Children's Miracle Network Hospitals Classic. Luke Donald was voted PGA Tour Player of the Year. It seems that a major win might not be the dominant factor in the vote.
It's a good point, there seems to be a lot of focus on winning a major this year. the Player of the Year has not always won a major. Tiger was player of the year in '09 without a major. In your example, as good as Keegan won, he also missed 10 cuts that year.
John Feinstein has some harsh things to say, calling Tiger a drama queen. Do journalists ever go after each other for being out of line or making ignorant statements?
He's entitled to his opinion. I happen to think it is dangerous territory to question if someone is injured or not.
"But five victories should not be diminished. In the past 33 years, only two players have won as many as five times in a season: Woods did it 10 times, Vijay Singh once." Nick Price 1994?
Yes, my mistake. Price actually won 6 times in 1994. Since Tom Watson won 7 times in 1980, only Tiger, Vijay and Price have won at least 5 in any year.
Just amazing how Woods has a 5-win season and people want to scoff at the accomplisment... I forget the stat, but I think 12 times in the last 15 years a player won 5 or more tournaments in a season and Tiger did it 10 of the 12 times...
Going back to 1999, it's happened 11 times, and Tiger has done it 10 times.
What are your thought on Graham Delaet...Is a future star...
Quite possibly. Hopefully he gets to shine in the Presidents Cup
Another one: Jim Furyk was voted PGA Tour Player of the Year in 2010 without winning a major tht year.
He was the only player to win three times.. And it's acually happened numerous times.
When Furyk won POY with 3 wins, no one made a case of major winners... Media needs to give Tiger credit when it's due... Major or not, 5 win season is a phenomenal season..
I'm not arguing with you.. I will say though that Graeme McDowell was a worldwide player of the year in 2010.
Has Tiger Woods officially announced he will be playing this Friday or is there a chance he will withdraw?
He had to enter the tournament by last Friday so as of now he is playing.
All the Player of the Year speculation is getting to me. There's still 3 weeks left, and it's obvious the results in those 3 weeks will heavily influence the race, so it's kind of pointless to speculate this much.
A fair point. These last tournaments will have a lot of influence, no doubt.
Bob - lets get the question out of the way, Eldrick in or out this weekend?
Still don't know! Guess here is he'll play.
You question injuries at your own peril. How do you know? He also made a couple of bogeys after that bad tee shot too.
Does AK have any status for next year? Any update as to when he might tee it up again?
Not sure when he'll be back, but when he returns, he will do so on a major medical extension, which means he'll have to win a certain amount of money ina certain number of events. According to the tour, he'll have 16 tournaemnts to earn just over $600,000 to remain exempt for the rest of the year -- then he'll need to do what is necessary to gain full status for 2015.
Will Vijay continue to play the PGA Tour next season or switch over to the Champions?
he has not said and as you know Vijay isn't talking to anybody in the media!
Sort of weird that a lot of people feel that Phil or Scott should win player of the year. 2 PGA wins each vs 5 for Tiger?? I understand that the Majors are significant, but 2 doesn't seem close enough to 5, does it?
The majors get a lot of weight. So does the fact that Adam Scott was cumulatively the best in the 4 majors. Phil also has the win at the Scottish Open (which can't be dismissed.) But yes, 5 wins -- the Playres and 2 WGCs -- is pretty strong.
So, we're only going to post the TW butt licking posts today, Bob?
I actually post questions
Player of the Year award should be based on normal expectations for a golfer. Tiger has a different set of expectations (majors) for his career, but those shouldn't carry over to the award. It's almost like people want one set of POY criteria for Tiger and another set of POY criteria for everyone else.
That's pretty much true, I'd say.
I think this is about the 20th consecutive year that Phil has qualified for the Ryder and President's Cup, meaning he has been at least the 10th best American player every year over that period. Do you think that ever happens again? Do you think that is better than Ripken's streak? I do, based on consistent greatness. Tiger's cut streak is even a greater accomplishment to me.
Phil's first team was the '95 Ryder Cup and he hasn't missed since. It is impressive. Tiger has been on every team since '97 Ryder Cup except 08 -- he would have easily qualified -- due to injury. But he got put on two teams with captain's picks. Phil made it on his own every time. Really an impressive achievement.
Is the cut this week top 70 and ties or top 60?
Good quesiton, I'm not sure. Anyone?
How will Conway Farms play - is it long? Tight?
Have not seen it yet, but it has gotten good reviews.
The cut is the usual top 70 including ties.
Here you go, thanks..Of course, only 100 players in the field.
Hey Bob, how big would it be for American golf if Jordan Spieth did get picked on that Presidents Cup team? What do you make of Spieth's rising star and how he is getting there versus Phil, Tiger, and other prominent Americans over your time covering golf?
It would be a great thing for him, and probably the future of American team competition. Good to get him some experience. What he did was similar to Tiger, who only had a handful of sponsor exemptions -- and ended up winning twice. Phil was fully exempt when he turned pro because he had won an evetn as an amateur in Tucson in 1991.
Hey a plug for my column. But lots of people have other views than this, as is their right.
Can we loan Tiger and Phil to the international team this year? That seems like the only way to make the event competitive this year - and to clear the logjam in the US standings.
True, it looks a bit of a mismatch at this point. But we've said that about the Ryder Cup too.
Who is more overrated?? Poulter, or GMac?
Not sure either is overrated. Poulter has not had a great year. Gmac has won three times this year!
To your knowledge, is there ever a "skins" pot during a PGA tour event (purely for entertainment sake, of course)?
If there is, it's done on the sly because it is not allowed.
Have you read Hanks "The Big Miss". He wrote about Tiger working on a stinger type shot with a driver and thought he would/could not be stopped with that shot. Its evident that tigers last two flaws to clean up is wedge play (120-60yds) and obviously driving with a driver. How many strokes do you feel he is losing to the field based on distance lost off the tee and proximity with his wedges...
No question he does not have the go-to shot off the tee. And his ability to hit it close -- or not close enough -- is more of the reason why he struggles than any putting problems that are generally talked about.
Hi Bob- Does the Presidents Cup need a makeover? It seems like it completely lopsided and outside of the top 5 international players it is a drastic dropoff in talent (atleast it appears that way on paper).
One thing that has been suggested has been turned donw by Tim Finchem. Going from 34 matches to 28. Depth isn't as important when you have less matches.
Any word on Al Czervik who was teeing off on 17 around the time TW went down at 13? I heard he broke his arm when he drove the ball off the tee into a ball washer and it ricocheted back and hit him just below the left elbow....
Clearly a person with too much time on his hands and a lame sense of humor -- and the last time you'll see his name here.
Tiger is ranked 10th from 50-125 in accuracy...
He's actually much better than he was last year. He's not scrambled as well as usual, although then he has some amazing rounds where he missed greens and scores.
If TW had only won the Masters, people would be complaining that he didn't win more. And regarding back spasms, they come and go.
That was sort of the point of the column I wrote today. And yes, if it's back spasms, he can deal with it.
How bad do you feel for Badds? Barely made the Playoffs and then after 3 Rounds looked like he'd easily crack top 100 and put himself in good position to even advane through this week... only to shoot plus-6 in final round and miss the cut ranked 101... ouch!
Not only that he bogeyed the last 3 holes. Very tough.
With the strong South African contingent I think the international team will have a great chance. I think Ernie and Nick will have these guys motivated do you not think so Bob?
I hope so. The event needs some drama.
Bob I see you pick McIlroy to win this week, I left him off my team, because he starts off slow and the key to win at Deutsche Bank is to start off fast (as in the stat scoring average before cut). Many pick Phil this week. Do you think his odds are too short?
Just took a chance on Rory. I think he's due to turn it around.
Why not take the subjectivity out of it (like LPGA) and assign points to wins/finishes for events?
The PGA Tour has a player vote instead.
Bob - Do you have any idea why Tiger tried to take a high-fade approach 2nd shot into the par 5 13th(not sure if this is the right number) on Sunday? That was the shot that had him on all 4s. It seems like a fade would cause more stress on his back. He was missing fades left going left all day and from the looks of the hole on TV shot looked like it required a draw to avoid trouble short and left. Seemed like bad course management...
Not sure exactly what happened there. He clearly appeared to be aiming left and the ball went dead left.
Bob-love the chats and tweets. What are your thoughts about one of the final Fed Ex stops being "tougher"? I believe we have seen scores of -20 at TPC Boston.
I'm all for mixing it up as much as possible. But at this time of year, with so many tournaments, it seems that the feeling is it should be more about birdies than bogeys.
The PGA has a Player of the Year award based on a formula.
This is true. This is a different award than the tour's award.
IF Tiger finishes at 14 majors and 100 wins, he is the greatest golfer of all time. In his day, Jack had to beat 3-4 players at each tournament who realistically could beat him versus dozens against Tiger. The depth of the game today is way beyond what it was even 15-20 years ago. Jack's record in today's game would not nearly be as dominant as it was in his day, no offense.
Lots of opinions on this subject. Hard to say what is right. I have maintained that Jack had to defeat more high-end players, but Tiger had to taken on everyone, unlike Jack.
Billy Horschel and Kevin Streelman also have legitimate shots at being picked by Fred Couples?
In my opinion, they dont' have that great of a shot when you've got D Johnson, Bubba, Furyk Stricker and even Spieth. i think one of those guys could slip in possibly but not both. Think some of it depends on this weekend.
Bob, IS it mandatory for Tiger to play Pro-Am or he can skip it?
He can do skip it and do something else sponsor-related -- something he's never opted to do.
Lee Westwood brought up a great point this morning on "Morning Drive" when discussing the POY. He said that it is important that we judge everyone from the same bar, and that some people are judging Tiger by the bar that he has set when deciding who should be player of the year. Taking that into account he said that Tiger would get his vote for POY and i agree with that sentiment wholeheartedly.
An interesting perspective for sure.
I think Spieth seals the one of the captains pick this week with a top five finish, what do you think Bob?
Well, if he finishes top 5, yes.
Is it only players are allowed to vote for POY? If only players who are eligible to vote?Thanks.
When Tiger started playing professionally and targeted Jack, if he had targeted Snead, would we think differently?
We very well might think differently. Seems as though Tiger is getting grief for setting a lofty goal.
Is Stricker going for the Prez Cup? He's on a limited schedule so I wouldn't be sure if he would actually want to go...
He has said he would play if he made the team.
At the Barclays David Lingmerth and Justin Hicks dicn't finish their second rounds on Friday and then withdrew rather than finish on Saturday. Did they withdraw because they had no chance to make the cut? What do the rules say about this?
You are only supposed to withdraw with an injury. This sort of thing happens all the time, however.
Bob - your Birdies/Bogeys today made great points and I think you are spot on, Tiger just cannot win no matter what he does! If his back starts acting up on Friday while playing would he WD to get ready for the remaining events? The worst he could be is 4th after this week with a MC so why not just skip!
Biggest reason he wants to play is this tournament benefits his foundation, which means a lot to him. Also, don't expect him to W/D mid-round. That would make him inelgible for the Vardon Trophy.
With next year's Major venues, will 2014 be the best full year opportunity for Tiger to win a Major during the rest of his career?
He's won at 3 of the 4 venues, and finished second at the other. I would say 2014 looms large fo rtiger.
Bob... If Tiger only had ONE win this year and it was a major... would you consider that a successful year compared to his 5-win campaign so far?
Not really. Not for him. And that was the point of my column. We expect him to win more than once. But the general sentiment is that having won 5 times doesn't matter. Seems an odd way to look at it.
How often do you get out and play?
At Conway you will need to bring out a few drivers, so I think Tiger and Phil will be motivated to win this week. For this reason, Bob do you see TW skipping this years' BMW, especially if he has a top three finish at Boston (points)?
No, I don't see him skipping if he's healthy. He's won that tournament a bunch of times, even though it's a new venue.
Does Tiger care if he wins Player of the Year? It seems like everyone else does, but would it be meaningful to him in any way?
I think it's meaningful to him because the players vote on it.
Okay folks, out of time. Thanks for all the quesitons, sorry I could not get to them all. Hit me up on Twitter if you see fit @bobharig. Enjoy the golf.