3. At the Greenbrier, another WD for John Daly -- perhaps with surgery to come. He's almost a running joke right now, but the guy won two majors -- more than most of the recent Hall-of-Fame inductees. Formidable skills, major head case. Who would you pick in recent history as the player who accomplished the least, given how much talent he possessed?
Van Sickle: Daly should be embarrassed for taking a sponsor's exemption and then pulling out. If he was hurt, as he says, he should not have accepted a spot and taken it away from a real player. He's got to be the PGA Tour's all-time leader in WD's. In fact, he's only two away from WD 40. As for underachievers, I'd say Sergio Garcia has fallen into that category. He's got a bunch of wins on both tours, yes, but given his ability, I think he'd be first to admit he expected more.
Morfit: Probably Big John, but I'd have to put Charles Howell III and Davis Love III up there as well. Other players always looked at Love and asked themselves how he didn't win every week. Streaky putting has held them back as much or almost as much as anything else.
Godich: Charles Howell III. Two PGA Tour victories for a 34-year-old most of us thought would win at least that many majors.
Passov: He's not done yet, but Anthony Kim is the first name that pops to mind. Maturity and injury issues to be sure, but world-class talent and confidence that disappeared far too quickly. In the historical division, I'll go with a three-way tie between late-blooming Tom Lehman (only five PGA Tour wins total with that ball-striking?), Tom Weiskopf (16 wins, one major, with THAT swing and length?) and Greg Norman (maybe the greatest driver of all time--should have won 10 majors).
Ritter: Daly probably headlines that list. Despite his recent Hall of Fame induction, Couples is probably somewhere near the top, although his cranky back was a major factor. As for pros who should be peaking today, Dustin Johnson should have more Ws and at least one major by now for all of his talent.
Bamberger: I am not answering that question directly. I will say that for purity of strike, Fred Couples was maybe the best I've ever seen, with John Daly right beside him. I didn't see Nicklaus in his prime. Tiger would be right up there with Couples and Daly. Woods has 14 majors, Fred and Daly have three combined. Purity of strike is only one measure of talent.
4. Architecture fans gushed after the restoration of Greenbrier's Old White course to its 1913 C.B. Macdonald glory. Yet it yields some of the lowest scores on Tour. Can a course be considered "great," or even be a great PGA Tour venue, if it yields a steady diet of 63s and 64s?
Bamberger: Absolutely. Sixty-three is the new 69. The Tour pros aren't beating themselves up and neither should we. Enjoy!
Passov: Tough call, because it just shows how ridiculously good that PGA Tour pros are and how modern equipment has obliterated the challenge proffered by many Golden Age courses, unless they're set up like Merion was. As long as the pros have multiple options on many shots and have to both think and execute to succeed, the course holds up, even with low scores. If the layout serves up soft conditions and too many driver-wedge scenarios, it might still be fun for member play, but can't be considered "great."
Godich: I have no problem with it. The place looks spectacular. And let's not forget that we're talking about a par-70 layout. Why doesn't anybody get up in arms when the Masters champion finishes at 12 under?
Morfit: I don't think a course necessarily has to beat back today's top pros to be considered architecturally noteworthy. I played a course the other day, Eastward Ho in Cape Cod, Mass., that wouldn't hold up against Tour pros unless it was quite windy, but it was still a gem.
Ritter: Sure. Why can't a course be great and while also serving up the occasional low number? I'm no architect, but Kapalua is the coolest course I've seen in person, and the pros destroy it every year. Doesn't taint my view of the place at all.
Van Sickle: Scores have little to do with what makes a course great. Scores are based mainly on conditions. I guess Oakmont is lousy then because Johnny Miller shot 63 there once. I haven't played at Greenbrier so I'll withhold comment on its greatness until I got a better look at it.