Happy New Year to one and all. With the PGA Tour set to begin the season in Hawaii, plenty of golf fans are shivering on the mainland as winter sets in. Here are some answers to burning questions to help you stay warm.
1. What can be done to improve the PGA Tour's season-opening event, the Hyundai Tournament of Champions?
Without using Google, can you name the player who won last year at Kapalua? If you can't, Jonathan Byrd can. And so can Robert Garrigus, because he lost to Byrd in a playoff.
2. As of January 1, Ernie Els, Retief Goosen, Anthony Kim and Camilo Villegas are among the big-name players who are not exempt to play in the 2012 Masters. Which of them will earn a spot in the field at Augusta?
- Past champions have a lifetime exemption
- Winners of the other three majors get a five-year exemption
- Winners of a previous-season's PGA Tour event are automatically qualified. (Sorry Fall Series winners and players who win events held opposite a World Golf Championship, those don't count.)
- Finishing in the top 16 in a Masters gets you into the next season's field
- Finish 30th or better on the PGA Tour's money list
- Finish in the top 50 in the last Official World Golf Rankings of the previous season.
Villegas was disqualified at Kapalua
Top 10 Finish for
Top 10 Finish for
|Farmer's Insurance Open||2011||2009|
|Waste Management Open||-||2006, 2010|
|AT&T Pebble Beach||-||-|
|WGC-World Match Play||-||2009|
|Honda Classic||2010||2007, 2010 (W)|
|WGC-Cadillac Champ.||-||2006 , 2009|
|Arnold Palmer Invitational||-||-|
|Shell Houston Open||2007, 2010 (W)||-|
3. Which golfer who won a major championship in 2011, not named Rory McIlroy, is most likely to win another?
4. Is Webb Simpson for real or was his 2011 season an aberration?
|Year||Player||Stroke Avg.||Strokes behind No. 1 player|
|2011||Webb Simpson||69.25||.39 (Donald)|
|2010||Steve Stricker||69.66||.05 (Kuchar)|
|2009||Steve Stricker||69.29||1.24 (Woods)|
|2008||Phil Mickelson||69.17||.05 (Garcia)|
|2007||Ernie Els||69.29||1.5 (Woods)|
|2006||Jim Furyk||68.86||.75 (Woods)|
|2005||Vijay Singh||69.04||.38 (Woods)|