PGA Tour Confidential: Is Rory McIlroy ready to challenge Tiger Woods at Augusta?

Rory McIlroy
Phelan M. Ebenhack / AP
Tiger Woods is favored to win his fifth Masters, and 15th career major, this week in Augusta.

2. You are betting your house. You can take Tiger or the field. What are you gonna do and why?

Sandra Gal: I would not bet my house on him because he wants to win so desperately. His game will be hit or miss because he is not interested in 2nd place.

Van Sickle: First, I'm not betting my house on any kind of golf event. It's golf. You can hit a perfect putt and it hits a spike mark or the cup liner or a deranged squirrel and it stays out. Normally, I'd take the field -- strength in numbers and all that. This time, I'll take Tiger. He's putting well. Historically, that means Game Over. Also, nobody else is exactly sizzling hot. Well, except Martin Laird.

Gorant: For my house I'd bet the field, because statistically the odds would be in my favor. For some more reasonable wager I'd take TW.

Lynch: The field. Tiger is playing better now than he has in quite a while, but let's not confuse that with how he played during his peak. He is still struggling to hit draws off the tee with his new swing, and that makes life at Augusta National tougher for him than it used to be.

Godich: I'll take the field. It only takes one player going nuts to spoil Tiger's week. Look no further than what Martin Laird did to Rory this week.

Reiterman: When you talk about the roof over my head, I have to go with the field. But if we had a smaller wager (say a beer) I'd go with Woods.

Morfit: Field. Lot of guys can have a hot week.

Ritter: The field. Tiger pressed at the majors last year, which clearly contributed to his subpar weekends. If he does it again this week -- and there's no reason to believe he wants this Masters less than last he did last year -- it's going to hurt his chances. When in doubt, back 93 guys to save your house instead of one.

Bamberger: My house is important to me, as yours is to you. Tiger has played in 18 Masters, as a pro and amateur. He has won four of them. That is incredible. His golf has been superb. He's the best player in the game. I'm taking the field.

3. Would you rather be watching the Masters live on TV or live in person?

Sandra Gal: Nothing is better than an afternoon on the couch watching the Masters. You have a great overall view of the action, instead of trying to catch glimpses of swings amongst the crowds. But it's still my dream to be on the course live. I want to experience the magic of the place.

Bamberger: Live in person. I'd rather feel it than see it.

Reiterman: If you've never been to the Masters, you have to see it in person at least once. Now that I've been fortunate enough to do that, nothing beats watching the drama unfold on TV. Now if I had Jim Nantz walking around with me and narrating the action? Perfection.

Morfit: Live for sure. It's a good course for viewing with all the hills and slopes and the lack of trees.

Gorant: In person. It's a great week. Although TV might be better on Sunday because there's often so much going on.

Ritter: It's great in HD, but there's nothing better than seeing it in person. First, you can spend all day on the course instead of limited to those few precious hours of TV coverage. Plus, you never know when you might stroll past a legend like Arnie or Jack, and hearing those roars rip through the pines on Sunday is something that just can't fully be appreciated from your couch. Golf fans should do everything they can to experience Augusta in person at least once.

Van Sickle: Let's face it, golf is a difficult spectator sport. You can see way more golf on TV and with high-def super-sized plasma screens, it's enthralling. I'd vote for TV… except then I'd take the walk down the 10th fairway to the green, a plunge of some 100-plus feet, look back up toward the clubhouse and think, Never mind. In person, definitely. Also, the exotic flowers mean spring, which there's currently no sign of where I live (Pittsburgh).

Lynch: This year I'll probably be there in person, but truth be told I'd rather see it on TV. Even if the CBS announce crew is tediously reverent, the limiting of commercials makes it a good viewing experience. Compare that with CBS's atrocious broadcast of the PGA Championship, when you'd need a search party to find golf amid the commercials. I swear that National Car Rental "business pro" dude got more airtime last year than McIlroy. Be thankful for small mercies this week.

Godich: Now that the lords of Augusta have expanded the coverage, I'll take the TV option. You just can't beat the high-def.

Shipnuck: This year, I prefer to watch on TV.

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