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PGA Tour: Time To Move On: Notes from the Ballwasher

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Post by kwinigolfer Wed Oct 01, 2014 2:30 pm

First topic message reminder :

1).What a weekend!
And: What a few weeks/months of soul-searching in store for the PGA Of America!!
Not content with losing two Ryder Cups by the narrowest of margins with Captains chosen according to a traditional formula, they stepped back 21 years, appointed a legend of the game who proved a poor communicator and dismal tactician, and got royally thumped.
If the PGA reverts to pre-2012 methods, they'll appoint David Toms for 2016.
If they respond to public pressure, they'll appoint Paul Azinger.
But who would want it after the public mauling endured by Captain Watson? OK, Azinger would.

2).Much has been made of Phil Mickelson's public admonishment of Team leadership; it's still not entirely clear whether his intended target was Watson or the PGA, or both.
Among those weighing in on the affair was Nick Faldo who accused Phil of throwing Watson "under the bus".
How ironic, just a day or two after sirnick threw Sergio under his Valhalla bus.

John Huggan's excellent piece on the matter suggests that the 2008 European Team had unanimously agreed not to discuss Faldo's captaincy and, indeed, the Team jumped to their Captain's defence in post-Valhalla news conferences and at all subsequent opportunities. The suggestion now is that Faldo has broken the pledge of omerta and, with him having thrown the first verbal stink-bomb, more vitriol will follow, perhaps sooner rather than later and of a more combustible nature.

3).I'd imagine the Faldo repercussions will be felt longer than Phil's and it wouldn't surprise me if the buttoned-down CBS Sports Network might tire of their polarising "Analyst".
Regardless: Two points:
~Unlike Team Europe in 2008, I didn't see any Team Member jumping to Old Tom's defence when Phil went "rogue". Was Phil the unofficial Team "spokesman" on this?
~Sergio took the high road when asked about Faldo's comments, but two players who were praised thru'out the week for their "leadership", McDowell and Westwood, were quick to admonish Faldo.

4).Europe certainly got their leadership from Justin Rose (and Westwood who I wouldn't have selected; well done lw1), but USA were poorly served by two of their Steady Eddies, Kuchar and Johnson, although they finally re-engaged in time for their singles.

5).Two players I expect to gain confidence from their RC exploits:
Stenson, who admitted to being knackered during the FedEx tournaments. Perhaps he'll now take a breather and return to his 2013 form in 2015. Time for a Major, Henrik.
Jimmy Walker, who completed a meteoric year-long rise to fame with 2 1/2 points and a solid win over Westwood. He's at it again next week, defending his Frys title, but he's another who could use a break before attacking 2015 with the confidence of a world-class player.

6).Two who must be disappointed with their weeks are Thomas Bjorn and Zach Johnson. Both laid the foundations for their RC places with fine performances many months ago, and both have looked exhausted these past few weeks.
Expect Thomas to be VC to Captain DC (perhaps prior to being appointed Captain for Paris?) at Hazeltine, and Zach to rue being on four losing teams without a win while he assembles his "team" and tries to figure out how to re-energise his game. Could take a while.

7).Some prospects for future RC Teams:
For Europe the games of Tommy Fleetwood and Shane Lowry look just about Ryder Cup ready, while Thorbjorn Olesen should benefit by being back in Europe, ready to succeed Thomasbjorn as the Danish King. (If you want a ready-made foursomes player, look no further than Russell fairways-and-greens Knox.)
Billy Horschel and Chris Kirk have already established their US credentials and it wouldn't be surprising to see Brooks Koepka join them. For a long shot, how about John Peterson, and for a very longshot perhaps Justin Thomas?

8).Multiple sources now report that Messrs Donaldson, Dubuisson, Koepka and FMolinari have accepted PGA Tour Membership for 2014/2015. Let's hope the Europeans will avoid the scheduling pitfalls of their predecessors; teeing it up at the CIMB and HSBC Champions events would be a very good start.

9).The PGA Tour takes another week off before resuming next week in Napa Valley's Silverado Resort for the Frys.com Open. Ryder Cuppers Kuchar, Mahan, Reed, Walker and Westwood are committed to appear.

10).Finally, two more snippets of news from California:
~Humana have announced the January, 2015, playing of the old "Bob Hope" will be the last under their sponsorship. So Tim Finchem is now without an event in Tucson and a sponsor for Palm Springs - the desert swing looking a bit arid.
~Cadillac have announced a one-off sponsorship of the WGC:MatchPlay Championship, at the one-off venue of San Francisco's Harding Park next Spring. Finchem (and the leaders of other Tours or does Timmy do all this single-handed?) is searching for a long-term sponsor at a long-term venue, with a long-term format on a long-term date.
Finchem has an admirable habit of coming up smelling like a rose every time there's the hint of manure and here's hoping he hasn't lost his midas touch.


Last edited by kwinigolfer on Fri Oct 03, 2014 12:40 pm; edited 1 time in total

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Post by kwinigolfer Fri Oct 03, 2014 11:45 am

And, speaking of the generation gap in the Emerald Isle, the European Tour may be losing Donaldson (and his big new club deal), Dubuisson and Molinari, but it's gaining Darren Clarke who is not re-upping his PGA Tour membership.

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Post by super_realist Fri Oct 03, 2014 12:36 pm

A generation is determined by the age in years of your mother at the time of your birth, not whatever your age is in 2014.

So If your Gran had your mum or dad, say 25 to 30 years of age, that would make the start of generation 2 in 1929-1934, then your generation is the year you were born. I doubt that's any more than 60 years.

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Post by incontinentia Fri Oct 03, 2014 1:36 pm

Ok I thought a generation was longer than that!

Tough conditions at the Dunhill.
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Post by super_realist Fri Oct 03, 2014 1:40 pm

Weather is not nice today Inco. Blustery wind, squally showers although very mild for October.

When I was young and used to work the scoreboards at the Dunhill that it was always terribly cold. Frost was common and it was bitter sitting in the same place all day long.

I remember telling Nick Price's caddy to FK off once.

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Post by incontinentia Fri Oct 03, 2014 2:03 pm

Ha ha! Really? For what?
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Post by pedro Fri Oct 03, 2014 2:15 pm

A generation is defined as 30 years.

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Post by super_realist Fri Oct 03, 2014 2:17 pm

He was completely out of order. We had the wrong score for him up, ( we relied on relayed info from the previous hole via walkie talkie) and he went ballistic. So we told him where to go.

I think we even made his score worse just because he was such a bell end.

Had he been decent it would have been no problem.

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Post by ralphjohn69 Fri Oct 03, 2014 2:26 pm

Wink
super_realist wrote:He was completely out of order. We had the wrong score for him up, ( we relied on relayed info from the previous hole via walkie talkie) and he went ballistic. So we told him where to go.

I think we even made his score worse just because he was such a bell end.

Had he been decent it would have been no problem.

I thought maybe his squeaky voice had annoyed you........... Wink

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Post by super_realist Fri Oct 03, 2014 2:33 pm

I think he's dead now.

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Post by robopz Fri Oct 03, 2014 2:46 pm

super_realist wrote:I think he's dead now.
So that was Jeff Medlin? Surprises me.... he always came across as a pretty decent guy anytime I was around him... even though I suppose he could get kinda "jumpy" from time to time...

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Post by incontinentia Fri Oct 03, 2014 2:48 pm

Shouldn't have been Medlin in super's business Smile
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Post by super_realist Fri Oct 03, 2014 2:49 pm

robopz wrote:
super_realist wrote:I think he's dead now.
So that was Jeff Medlin? Surprises me.... he always came across as a pretty decent guy anytime I was around him... even though I suppose he could get kinda "jumpy" from time to time...

He might have been having a bad day Robo but he was a complete bumhole that day.

He could have simply told us we had the wrong score, but he behaved like I'd just shat in his mouth. So deserved to be told to FK off.

I should have told him not to mess with "us Irish"

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Post by McLaren Fri Oct 03, 2014 3:28 pm

Hi guys.  This is my dad.  Great guy, but currently going through a rough patch.  retweet or shout out would be much appreciated.
PGA Tour: Time To Move On: Notes from the Ballwasher - Page 3 Tom-Watson
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Post by kwinigolfer Fri Oct 03, 2014 4:59 pm

Looks more like your Grandad.

Good leaderboard at The Dunhill, for French, Irish & Scots anyhow.
Nick Dougherty in with two good rounds and sirnicky Faldo flirting with the cut.

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Post by robopz Fri Oct 03, 2014 6:34 pm

super_realist wrote:

He might have been having a bad day Robo but he was a complete bumhole that day.

He could have simply told us we had the wrong score, but he behaved like I'd just shat in his mouth. So deserved to be told to FK off.

I should have told him not to mess with "us Irish"
Oh i believe you... and hey, if he deserved it that day... no problem giving it to him...

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Post by Davie Fri Oct 03, 2014 8:27 pm

Super claiming Irish descendant! lol .. no I'm not immune to the sarcasm or irony of it .. just a subtle ploy to give him free license to make more potato eating, kneecap crunching comments with impunity :P

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Post by GPB Sat Oct 04, 2014 12:00 am

Five players inside the top 30 at the Frys (Kuchar, Walker, Hideki, Mahan, Reed).  Last year Hideki was the highest ranked player at #30.

Some other notables: Sneds, Westy, Gonzo, Delaet, Koepka.


Edit:  Jarrod Lyle did not get a sponsors invite

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Post by navyblueshorts Sat Oct 04, 2014 3:02 am

Here's an interesting article, if substantiated, on the Ryder Cup furore:

http://espn.go.com/golf/rydercup14/story/_/id/11636089/captain-tom-watson-ripped-us-team-ryder-cup-meeting-angering-phil-mickelson

If true, think Mickleson might have been a bit understated last Sunday...
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Post by robopz Sat Oct 04, 2014 11:12 am

navyblueshorts wrote:Here's an interesting article, if substantiated, on the Ryder Cup furore:

http://espn.go.com/golf/rydercup14/story/_/id/11636089/captain-tom-watson-ripped-us-team-ryder-cup-meeting-angering-phil-mickelson

If true, think Mickleson might have been a bit understated last Sunday...
Yeah... I just came on to post the same link. If it's true (and the article seems well sourced), the it certainly goes a long way in explaining Mickelson's dickishness on Sunday...

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Post by robopz Sat Oct 04, 2014 1:18 pm

More verification has come out on Harig's article... and all I can say is WOW... just WOW.    

I thought Phil was being a total PR**K with his comments during Sunday's presser, and I  wasn't the least bit reluctant to say so. But sheesh... guess I couldn't have been more wrong on that one. Like somebody else said elsewhere, maybe it turns out he was "understated" in his approach last Sunday.  

I'll be the first to admit that i thought Watson was a GREAT choice for RC captain..  IMO the PGA of A wanted to "shake things up" by bringing in a tough as nuts proven Ryder Cup winner (of which we American's ain't got many still around) who could in and instill some "toughness" in our players.  

And while I knew Watson has an ego as big as Kansas... that didn't bother me either because I don't know of ANY truly great iconic player since Jack that didn't share much the kind of ego.  But that said, I thought Tom would inspire, and not turn out to be the one to be a total pr**k.  But the more and more I hear... that's what it's sounding like.... or maybe more like TOTAL PR**K in ALL CAPS, BOLD & EMPHASIS...

Shocking... an disappointing to say the very least.  In the end Phil's gonna end up being heralded for what he did last Sunday and rightly so.  And Tom... sheesh... he didn't punch anybody out, but this "Woody Hayes" moment is gonna stick to him forever...  won't define his career, but will certainly put a stain on it.  Too bad, but hey, you make your bed, you gotta lie in it.

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Post by Mad for Chelsea Sat Oct 04, 2014 1:54 pm

back to the golf that's actually being played, and McIlroy has six birdies on the front nine to surge into the lead. Great scoring conditions with soft greens and plenty of players peppering the flags, including Tommy Fleetwood (7 under for the day so far). All very congested at the top of the leaderboard it must be said.

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Post by GPB Sat Oct 04, 2014 1:55 pm

Many people were quick to point out that none of Mickelson teammates one on the US Ryder Cup team was backing up what Mickelson said.

However, no one seemed to realize that they were not defending Tom Watson either.

I was a big fan of Watson when I was younger.  My opinion of him has gone down quite a few notches.

I doubt if many on this board know the Woody Hayes analogy.  He was a legendary College Football Coach at Ohio State University, historically one of the best college football programs.

About 35 years ago, he punched and tried to choke an opposing player on the sidelines after the player intercepted a pass.

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Post by kwinigolfer Sat Oct 04, 2014 5:23 pm

Been out of touch for 24 hours, just like Old Tom Watson, and hadn't seen this Bob Harig article.
Glad that Phil was somewhat vindicated - always thought it was telling that no Team Member spoke in Watson's defence, that there must have been more to it and he might have been speaking for the Team.
Phil says some daft things, but I would say he's been a staunch supporter of all USA's Cup Teams annually since the Oakland Hills fiasco. Good for him, just a shame that no-one else spoke up. Bet they will sooner or later though.

Hope Watson goes back to Kansas City and reflects upon a chance offered which he comprehensively wasted.

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Post by robopz Sat Oct 04, 2014 5:58 pm

GPB wrote:Many people were quick to point out that none of Mickelson teammates one on the US Ryder Cup team was backing up what Mickelson said.

However, no one seemed to realize that they were not defending Tom Watson either.

I was a big fan of Watson when I was younger.  My opinion of him has gone down quite a few notches.

I doubt if many on this board know the Woody Hayes analogy.  He was a legendary College Football Coach at Ohio State University, historically one of the best college football programs.

About 35 years ago, he punched and tried to choke an opposing player on the sidelines after the player intercepted a pass.
yeah... that presser was kind of a "mixed message" at the time. Even re-watching it... Mahan couldn't have seemed any more uncomfortable when Phil was speaking... and earlier Furyk seemed to be defending Watson's foursomes pairings... and even later after his funny "Gee, thanks. Just sitting over here minding my own business" crack... he said: "I think that I have a lot of respect for both gentlemen. I've known Phil my entire life. Since I was 16, I've competed against him. He's one of my dearest friends on the PGA TOUR. And I have a lot of respect for our captain. I know he put his heart and soul in it for two years. He worked his ass off to try to provide what he thought would be the best opportunity for us."

So yeah... nobody was really defending or lining up behind either of them in the presser... I thought at the time Phil was just miffed at not playing Saturday... but obviously, the situation was more "robust" than simply that...

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Post by kwinigolfer Sat Oct 04, 2014 8:44 pm

Wonder how Ollie Wilson will make out on Sunday? Nine runner-up finishes, spent the last few years in golfing purgatory, scarcely able to make a cut on the Challenge Tour, and now with a 3-shot lead at St.Andrews.
Incredible really - even if he doesn't bring home the Duty Free, he has a very good chance at earning enough swag to retrieve his card for 2015.

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Post by kwinigolfer Sat Oct 04, 2014 10:18 pm

Re: Ryder Cup:
It sounds as if Phil advised PGA President Bishop during a Pro-Am two months ago that there was little or no communication between Capt Watson and the players. Sounds as if things never improved.

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Post by kwinigolfer Sat Oct 04, 2014 11:36 pm

And this is what Old Tom has to say on the matter:

http://www.golfchannel.com/news/golf-central-blog/watson-issues-statement-responding-criticism/

Watson will return to Scotland next July for his final Open Championship appearance. Doubt he'll be able to avoid a press conference and a young cub reporter looking to make a splash . . . . .

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Post by kwinigolfer Sun Oct 05, 2014 12:07 pm

It may be cool and breezy at St.Andrews for Rory and the boys, but it's forecast to be 98F degrees in Napa today, site of next week's Frys.com action. That's the contrast Richard Sterne can look forward to. But if he wins today, perhaps it won't bother him too much.

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Post by incontinentia Sun Oct 05, 2014 12:43 pm

A win would mean a lot to Ollie Wilson, mainly because of the 2 year exemption on the Euro tour. Hope can do it.
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Post by kwinigolfer Sun Oct 05, 2014 12:57 pm

Storm clouds gathering tho' inco; he's just about to be swallowed up. With eight players all covered by one stroke Wilson could find himself outside the Top Ten in a hurry.

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Post by Mad for Chelsea Sun Oct 05, 2014 1:01 pm

yep, not a great start from Wilson, missing those short ones won't help. 3-way tie for the lead, and another 6 guys one shot back, tight! Just seen that McIlroy started the day with a double-bogey, silly boy! Then 4 birdies on the trott before making his first par right now.

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Post by kwinigolfer Sun Oct 05, 2014 5:20 pm

Fantastic win for Oliver Wilson - must be one of the sporting stories of the year.
Comeback Player Of The Year!
And a leap of about 600 places in the owgr's.

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Post by McLaren Sun Oct 05, 2014 6:26 pm

Kwini

I am sure it is a great win for him but you can see why he has had such a terrible time the last few seasons when you see his pre-shot, set up and swing. Somehow they stayed together under pressure but wouldn't bet on it happening again.
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Post by kwinigolfer Sun Oct 05, 2014 6:36 pm

Maybe Mac, but you can't take anything away from such a wonderful win. Whatever Wilson does, it held up when some sweet swingers were falling by the wayside.
Nice interview as well, easy to see how much it means to him.
Hope he has a good travel agent; he'll be revising his schedule for just about every week now. Good for him.

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Post by pedro Sun Oct 05, 2014 8:03 pm

Watson sounds like some crazy drill sergent in a Hollywood movie.

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Post by kwinigolfer Sun Oct 05, 2014 8:35 pm

Nice to see plenty of congratulatory tweets sent Wilson's way, from McIlroy, Westwood, Poulter x 2, Donald, Donaldson, Sterne etc.
Good when a veteran pro is so well regarded by his rivals and team-mates.
Sure David Howell's win last year was equally well received, Ryder Cuppers both.

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Post by McLaren Mon Oct 06, 2014 2:33 pm

So Watson had told some team members that Bill Haas would be a captians pick, then changed his mind after a text from Simpson. I wonder if news got to Haas that he should expect to be confirmed as a pick?
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Post by kwinigolfer Mon Oct 06, 2014 2:56 pm

Just read that Mac!

http://www.golfchannel.com/news/golf-central-blog/watson-told-team-members-he-was-picking-haas/

Article for anyone interested in the Captain Watson soap opera!

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Post by pedro Mon Oct 06, 2014 3:07 pm

McLaren wrote:So Watson had told some team members that Bill Haas would be a captians pick, then changed his mind after a text from Simpson.  I wonder if news got to Haas that he should expect to be confirmed as a pick?
Watson: Why should I pick you Webb?
Webb: I'll treat you as an IOC member.
Watson: Done deal!

Or maybe Watson just likes young Christian boys? After all he was appointed by a Bishop.

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Post by Bob_the_Job Mon Oct 06, 2014 3:12 pm

Does anyone else, like me, think texting a team captain to plead your case to be more than a little desperate/pathetic? Being swayed by such a text falls into the same camp IMHO.
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Post by kwinigolfer Mon Oct 06, 2014 3:16 pm

Strange thing is that the College Sports system is something Americans show great pride in, and Haas and Simpson attended the same Uni!
Old Boys Network failed this time!!

Coincidentally, the University in question is Wake Forest in North Carolina, attended also by Lanny Wadkins . . . . . and we know who Lanny chose as HIS Captain's Choice in 1995 don't we! None other than Curtis Strange, his good mate and fellow Wake Forest alumnus.

Agree Bob: Don't think Simpson will ever be a Captain's pick again, and certainly not for next year's Presidents Cup when the US Skipper is . . . . . . . Jay Haas.

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Post by pedro Mon Oct 06, 2014 3:30 pm

Will Haas pick Haas?

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Post by navyblueshorts Mon Oct 06, 2014 5:03 pm

McLaren wrote:So Watson had told some team members that Bill Haas would be a captians pick, then changed his mind after a text from Simpson.  I wonder if news got to Haas that he should expect to be confirmed as a pick?
Interesting in some ways but I wonder whom the puerile children are who're leaking this stuff? It doesn't make anyone look any good.
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Post by kwinigolfer Mon Oct 06, 2014 5:48 pm

The only individual specifically referred to in the article is E.T.Woods, but there's a disclaimer to the effect that it is not known what Woods said to Watson.

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Post by GPB Mon Oct 06, 2014 6:22 pm

Patrick Reed and David Toms have WDed from FRYS.com.

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Post by GPB Mon Oct 06, 2014 6:36 pm

Yet another ESPN article:


ESPN: Bob Harig wrote:But if we've learned anything from this episode, it is that the mantra that the Americans "don't care" is simply a tired excuse. Mickelson certainly showed he cared when he dumped on Watson and the system as he did in the Sunday night news conference


...


Given the opportunity, he unloaded, knowing that his remarks would be controversial and raise the ire of many. And having a glimpse now of what happened behind closed doors, his motives are much clearer. Not only was he sticking up for his teammates, but he was intent on forcing a discussion on a broken system.



....


"Two years from now, 10 years from now, we'll look back at this moment as the thing that turned the Ryder Cup around for the U.S.," one source told ESPN.com.



...


In a Golfweek story on the same subject, a source told the magazine: "If Phil did this in private, if he said it to Watson's face, to Ted Bishop's face, no changes would be made. The U.S. would continue to go down the same alley."



http://espn.go.com/golf/story/_/id/11648901/ryder-cup-fallout-years-away-golf

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Post by incontinentia Mon Oct 06, 2014 9:21 pm

What a difference a week makes for Phil Mick, From treasonous traitor to Ryder cup revolutionary! There has to be more to the US's struggles than bad captaincy though surely?
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Post by kwinigolfer Mon Oct 06, 2014 9:55 pm

Is it idle speculation to think David Toms is missing the "Frys.com" to attend a drains-up meeting at the PGA with a view to him being appointed as the next Captain?
Plenty of blame for the Gleneagles mauling to go around and you'd think the PGA would be looking to address it sooner rather than later.

Wonder if Watson will be consulted or has he done enough damage?
Perhaps he'll start drinking again and Feherty will have to bail him out this time?

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Post by super_realist Tue Oct 07, 2014 6:49 am

I get the impression that the woes of the US team is like trying to have in inquiry into why Burnley don't beat Chelsea more regularly, but simply blaming Sean Dyche every time the result doesn't go their way.
No body seems to want to admit the bleeding obvious. They just aren't good enough.

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Post by navyblueshorts Tue Oct 07, 2014 9:31 am

incontinentia wrote:What a difference a week makes for Phil Mick, From treasonous traitor to Ryder cup revolutionary! There has to be more to the US's struggles than bad captaincy though surely?
I still don't really agree that Mickleson's approach was correct but I understand why he did it that way. I also don't buy that he couldn't have spoken to Bishop, forcefully, behind the scenes instead. Maybe with less than veiled threats to go public later if nothing happened.
You're right about it being more than bad captaincy. That's just easy scape goatism.
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