Truth & Rumors: Rory McIlroy splits with longtime girlfriend

Wednesday January 12th, 2011

According to a report in The Ireland Herald, young and talented Rory McIlroy has broken up with his girlfriend of six years, Holly Sweeney. Evidently the two began dating when Rory was sixteen and Holly was fourteen, while they were both growing up in their hometown of Holywood (think Northern Ireland, not SoCal).
Since McIlroy hit the big time in both fame and bucks he's been pretty good about avoiding the late night carousing scene and has spent most of his free time with his gal pal in their shared home in Ireland. But according to sources close to the burgeoning superstar, things just weren't "working out," between the two. Earlier this year, McIlroy announced he would forgo PGA Tour membership in favor of playing the European Tour, in part, according to some, because he wanted to be close to his special lady friend. In light of recent events, one could speculate that McIlroy might be inclined to change his mind about playing full time in the U.S. in the future.
McIlroy's ex is currently pursuing a career in sports technology at the University of Ulster. Old guys still dominate the "real" money listDespite his well-publicized travails over the last year or so, Tiger Woods still sits atop golf's financial world. Though his bottom line took a hit to the tune of around $48 million last year, Tiger still managed to rake in a cool $74.2 million in 2010 (down from $121 million and change in 2009). Though he's hardly hurting, El Tigre's income in 2010 was his lowest in a decade.
What might be a bigger surprise for those not in the "know," is that four out of golf's eight top earners in 2010 haven't won a meaningful tournament, or any tournament for that matter, in a long, long time. After Tiger and Phil, Arnold Palmer came in third with $36 million in earnings, followed by Greg Norman with $30 million, Jack Nicklaus with $25 million, and Gary Player, who came in eighth, with $15 million.
According to Arnold Palmer, late IMG founder Mark McCormack's innovative vision is the reason behind this seemingly unusual business trend for golf's past greats.

"A brilliant part of Mark's strategy was never to tie my endorsement of a product to how I was fairing on the golf course," Palmer explains. "His aim was never to pitch me as a winner because there always comes a day when a winner no longer wins; when his appeal, accordingly, dramatically dips."
So how did McCormack set his client's up for long-term endorsement and business success? He focused their appeal on traits like personality, reliability, and integrity. Has to make you wonder how Tiger will fare after his playing days are over. Rush Limbaugh speaks: Golf is no game for liberalsIn a recent interview in USA Today, radio personality Rush Limbaugh discussed his role as the latest subject of The Golf Channel's The Haney Project, as well as his feeling about the game of golf in general. When it came to the question of politics in golf, Limbaugh made some interesting comments regarding which party members were better golfers:
I don't know any liberal golfers. I've met one pro golfer who was a liberal and that was Scott Simpson. He came to my TV show a long time ago with Paul Azinger. And Scott was a nice guy. If I had to say, there would be no question conservatives make better golfers. Golf is an individual game. It's about self-reliance. There is no team. You can't depend on a government regulation or a grant or a subsidy to help you. You can't arbitrarily punish somebody else for doing better than you are doing, like liberals do all the time. There is no question that liberals would have a tough time with this game and wouldn't like it because they'd have to rely on themselves. How's that? I dare you to print that.
Tweet of the Day
Azinger @paulazinger: Ouch..tough miss for Robert..Nice start for J Byrd..........And it looks like a new hair color for Sir Nick..Blimey!!!

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