JACKSONVILLE, Fla. (AP) — John Daly has been suspended five times and cited 21 times for not giving his best effort, according to a 456-page rap sheet kept by the PGA Tour that is now public record because of libel lawsuit Daly failed to win.
The Florida Times-Union reported Tuesday on Daly’s disciplinary file, which the tour had to give Morris Publishing Co. during Daly’s libel lawsuit against a columnist who once worked for the newspaper. The Times-Union is part of the Morris group.
The lawsuit was dismissed in March 29.
The disciplinary file grew to 456 pages over 18 years of Daly’s career, starting in April 1991 when the tour said Daly cursed a playing partner and ending in the fall of 2008, when Daly was suspended for six months.
The two-time major champion was placed on probation six times, ordered to go to counseling or alcohol rehab seven times, cited for conduct unbecoming a professional 11 times and fined nearly $100,000, according to the file.
Most of the incidents have been widely reported, such as Daly trashing a hotel room in 1997 during The Players Championship or getting into a scuffle at Firestone with a 62-year-old man whose son, Jeff Roth, said Daly had hit into him at the World Series of Golf. Even so, the PGA Tour does not disclose its discipline, and Daly usually makes for good reading.
Despite the file becoming a public record, the tour stayed with its position of not commenting on discipline.
The Times-Union said the file also contains letters from fans and tournament officials, some flattering and some not. One fan wrote to former PGA Tour commissioner Deane Beman after Daly was suspended: “I’m disappointed the suspension is indefinite. Please reconsider and get John Daly back so many of us can get enthused about the PGA.”
Another golf fan wrote, “How long does it take for this young man to grow up and remember that thousands of young junior golfers are out there watching him make an (expletive) of himself?”
Daly won the 1991 PGA Championship as the ninth alternate, and won the 1995 British Open at St. Andrews. His last victory was the 2004 Buick Invitational at Torrey Pines. He has not had a full status on the PGA Tour since 2006 and is playing mainly on sponsor exemptions. The Golf Channel is producing a reality show on Daly that was to begin Tuesday night.