Thursday, January 21, 2010

McCord might turn up dead on CBS. No, it's not Masters week yet. Tonight's episode of CSI will no doubt feature a batch of unplayable lies, thanks to a golf-themed episode which features Duffy Waldorf, Rocco Mediate, Natalie Gulbis, David Feherty and Gary McCord. A legendary golfer gets murdered. Legendary? That couldn't possibly be McCord, could it? Bill Huffman of AZGolf.org caught up with CBS announcer McCord, who managed to meet with producers from the popular series in hopes of achieving his dream of playing a corpse on the show. Did he succeed? You'll have to tune in to find out, but McCord told Huffman he enjoyed his time on CSI. "It was bizarre yet
beautiful. The only problem
during the filming  was I had to share a trailer with Feherty,
and that's not right. ... At the same time, I'm playing myself, which
was fairly easy. I'm still pretty good at that, and really, that's the
only person I can hide behind these days is myself. It's a little pump to
(the ego), and if you're marketing yourself –- and, really, who else is
going to market me? –- it enhances the Gary McCord brand. But mostly, my four granddaughters think
it's cool to watch grandpa on TV."
"Really, I don't know
what to expect because I haven't seen the final version. I don't even
know if I did a good job (acting) or not. ...It's not a big role,
but I do get about two paragraphs of continuous dialogue. Actually, when I finally read my lines, Feherty and Rocco
bet me $100 that I couldn't do them in one take without gagging. As it turned out, I
did get it all out with a glitch the very first time, but when I went
to ‘throw it' to another (actor), I threw it to the wrong person like a
choking dog. But I did get the lines out without blowing them, so I'm
not paying either Feherty or Rocco no matter what they say."
If McCord is, indeed, the murder victim, the CSI crew should look for motive. May we suggest Ben Wright? Rory McIlroy can drive like Tiger Woods, really

Tiger Woods was not the only player to have a minor fender-bender in the last two months. He was the only player whose minor fender-bender was followed by a major scandal.
Rory McIlroy drove his Audi R6 through a hedge into his Northern Ireland neighbor's cabbage patch. (No dolls were hurt in the performance of this crash.) Karl McGinty got the story for The Irish Independent. Said McIlroy of his crash, "I didn't have anyone chasing me!"
Actually, McIlroy said, snow made it icy and his car simply slid off the driveway. "I
was crawling down the driveway," he explains. "There's a sharp
left-hand bend and as I braked to turn into it, the car just slid. As
it did, I thought to myself, 'I know where this is going' -– straight
into the hedge. I ended up in the neighbor's cabbage patch."
The consolation, McGinty reports, is that McIlroy hadn't been driving his new Lamborghini. Also, McIlroy is wise beyond his years, thanks to advice from his father, Gerry. Said Rory: "Dad always told me when I was growing up,
'There's always someone watching.' He said, 'It doesn't matter what you are
doing or where, you can be certain somebody is going to see you.'" Diogenes, I'd like introduce you to J.P. Hayes It's old, old news but always good column fodder. No surprise that somebody brought up the fact that J.P. Hayes, in contention after the first round of the Bob Hope Classic, lost his Tour card in 2008 when he called a penalty on himself at the tour's Q-School and was disqualified.
Everyone loves an honest man story and Hayes, who still doesn't think it was a big deal, has been hearing about it ever since. Mark Whicker covered the Hayes angle for The Orange County Register.
From Hayes: "I think it was good for the PGA Tour and good for the fans to be
reminded that we all play by the rules that way. But I didn't like being singled out as the one guy who decided to
do it. I mean, that's not true. It will probably happen every week this
year. I was uncomfortable with people making it seem like it was an
isolated incident, that I did something heroic." Hard times for Bob Hope Classic The PGA Tour is a quickly changing landscape. A long fall is waiting around every corner. Larry Dorman in The New York Times looks at the Bob Hope Classic and how it used to be a big deal but isn't now. The history of the Bob Hope
Classic is not so much written as engraved, and time has rendered even
larger the outsized characters who have peopled it. From the time Arnold Palmer shot 22-under-par to win the first event in 1960, the Hope has been on
a 50-year run that, for the most part, has glittered like a clear night
in the desert.
The Hope is barely hanging on now, low-hanging fruit on a Tour facing tough financial times. The celebrities are scarce. Yogi Berra is now the tournament's ambassador. (He's no George Lopez.) No players in the top 25 are teeing it up this week at the Hope, but a number of them are playing halfway across the world in Abu Dhabi. The tournament has no sponsor and its $5 million purse is being underwritten by the tournament and others, Dorman reports. How is the tournament going to restore its sheen? It's not going to, at least not on a Tour where World Golf Championships and majors are the only places the best players congregate.
Commissioner Tim Finchem's quotes, as reported by the Times, are interesting: "I think as long as the economy maintains where it is, maybe ticks
up a little bit, I think the prospects are very good," Finchem said.
"The Hope is — the Hope has a long history with the PGA Tour. It's got
a great charitable relationship with the Eisenhower Medical Center.
It's raised millions and millions of dollars for that complex. It is a terrific experience for amateurs, that we all know. We have
a group of our own customers we're hosting there this week. And it's
performed well in the marketplace. So I'm very bullish about it for
next year."
It's funny that Finchem would mention the tournament history because in other cases of long-running tournaments going away or suffering, history and loyalty haven't meant much. Rest in peace, Greater Milwaukee Open; B.C. Open; Tucson Open; the International and Kemper Open, to name just a few.

eBay sellers want big bucks for old Ping Eye2 wedges Square grooves are banned on the PGA Tour for 2010. That's why only two players used them at the Sony Hawaiian Open. Golf Digest.com's E. Michael Johnson addresses the inequality of the new ban that still allows some 20-year-old square-grooved clubs to be used, thanks to a 1990 court settlement between Karsten Manufacturing and the USGA. Dean Wilson and John Daly dug up some pre-1990 Ping Eye2 wedges to use in Hawaii, sparking controversy.
As word spread of players using the clubs, opinions differed. "I
think it's funny," said Paul Goydos. "Not to disparage lawyers too
much, but that's what happens when you have more than one lawyer in a
room."
Stewart Cink, however, was not amused. "I have a problem with it,"
he said. "I wouldn't go up to a player and say, 'You shouldn't be using
them,' but I'm not alone in thinking they shouldn't be using them. The Tour can't really do anything. It has to be through peer pressure."
Daly, who used the Ping wedges last month in Australia, also checked
to make sure the wedges he played as far back as the 1986 U.S. Open
were OK. "Ping said the ones I have are all good to go," Daly said. "I
think a lot of guys are going to switch. I know a lot of guys are
buying them off eBay."
Perhaps. Yet those searching for Eye2 wedges on the auction website are
going to find slim pickings. At press time only 39 Eye2 wedges were up
for auction, including one from a seller who clearly feels a Tour
player will come-a-calling. Asking price: $275. Additionally, finding
20-year-old wedges with grooves suitable for Tour use can be incredibly
difficult. Repairs such as a new shaft or an alteration to lie and/or
loft remain OK, but players cannot have them re-grooved.
That would be an advantage. Jack as competitive as ever at 70 What do you do for your birthday when you've already traveled the world and pretty much done it all already?
If you're Jack Nicklaus, you go fishing. Off Christmas Island in the Pacific Ocean. Then you go back to work in the golf course design business. At least that's what Nicklaus, who turned 70 today, told Reuters. "I'm a very fortunate guy in that golf course design is
something that kept me in the game of golf. I had my
competition with a piece of land and the ground I was working
with. In golf, my expectations were major championships. In golf course design, my expectation is to be able to
produce the best golf course that can go on that piece of
ground which competes against the best players in the world,
and I guess competes against other designers. It's a lasting thing that will remain long after my golf
game and lifetime."

"How old do I feel? A lot of people tell me I am
one of the youngest 70-year-olds they have ever seen. I do whatever I want to do. I go skiing when I want to.
Outside of my arthritis, which is substantial in some places on
my body, I feel great. I feel young."

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