Following his second back surgery in the last two years, Tiger Woods seems to have tempered expectations for what remains of his career—at least according to Notah Begay III, Woods’ close friend and former college teammate at Stanford.
Begay said that Woods post-surgery is “giving it a little extra time to heal up before he starts rehabilitation. He’s just spending a lot of time at home and going to soccer games and watching Sam and Charlie play their fall soccer. It’s hard. It’s a challenge to be on the couch, but you’ve got to do what you’ve got to do.”
Speaking on an NBC Sports conference call, Begay touched on Woods’ expectations for 2016, which, if an accurate reflection of Woods’ thinking, represent maybe the first time the 14-time major winner has come close to publicly acknowledging that he's reached the twilight of his career.
“I think he has a clear understanding with where he’s at in regard to his career that the sun is setting,” Begay said. “He’s very fair about where he’s at with his career and his body, and he’s certainly not going to go down without a fight, without trying to do everything he can to get back to a world-class level.”
Woods announced Sep. 18 that he had undergone a second microdiscectomy surgery a few days earlier and that he hopes to return to competition in early 2016. With the Ryder Cup on the horizon and Woods far from peak form, Team USA captain Davis Love III said Monday that Woods, if unable to qualify, would make a great assistant captain.