Players not thrilled with early tee times at BMW
LEMONT, Ill. (AP) — Add pro golfers to the list of folks annoyed with Notre Dame these days.
NBC Sports wants the third round of the BMW Championship to be finished before the 3:30 p.m. EDT kickoff for Notre Dame’s game against Michigan State, so tee times Saturday will be about three hours earlier than they were for the first two rounds. The first group will tee off at 8:25 a.m. EDT, with the leaders going off at 10:15 a.m.
“Thanks Notre Dame for my 7.35am tee time. I knew there was a reason why I didn’t like you!” Luke Donald, the world’s No. 1 player, said Friday on Twitter.
The conflict is nothing new, however.
NBC has broadcast Notre Dame home games since 1991 and also has the rights to the final three FedEx Cup playoff events – all of which occur after the start of the college football season. Saturday tee times were pushed up at last year’s BMW, and again at the Tour Championship.
“A bunch of kids ruling the show? What’s going on?” co-leader Justin Rose said when asked about it Friday.
“You know, that’s one of the amazing things I find about this country, really, is how big college sports are and how big the college system is,” said Rose, who is from England. “It’s something I’ve never experienced, but it’s fascinating to see how big these games are and the attendance it gets and the TV ratings.”
This will be the only week tee times are moved this year. Notre Dame was on the road last week, and plays at Pittsburgh next weekend.
NO COMPLAINTS: Whether he makes it to next weekend’s Tour Championship or not, Brandt Jobe has no complaints about his year.
Not after how the last few years have gone.
Jobe broke a bone in his left wrist in 2003 and again the next year, and still can’t feel his pinky finger as a result. He cut off the tips of his fingers while sweeping out his garage in 2006, and lost his PGA Tour card in 2009. He spent last year playing the Nationwide Tour before earning his way back onto the PGA circuit by tying for sixth at qualifying school.
“I had some opportunities to make this a great year, but I’m playing in the third leg of the playoffs,” Jobe said Friday at the BMW Championship. “I remember where I was and think, ‘It could be a lot worse. I could not be here.'”
Not only is Jobe still in the hunt for a spot at East Lake, he tied Brendon de Jonge for low round of the day Friday with a bogey-free 64. Jobe is at 3 under for the tournament.
“Yesterday it seemed like I wasn’t ever prepared for what I was doing,” said Jobe, who shot a 4-over 75 on Thursday. “I didn’t hit it bad, but I didn’t hit it good. I put myself in a lot of places where I didn’t recover and then I didn’t putt well.”
That’s been his problem for much of the second half of the season. Jobe had three top-10 finishes through June, including a tie for second at The Memorial that matched his career-best finish.
Since then, however, he’s cracked the top 25 only once and has missed two cuts.
“I haven’t managed my game well,” Jobe said.
But he worked on a few things at the range Thursday night, and everything fell in place Friday. He was playing so well, in fact, he had a shot at the course record of 62 after back-to-back birdies on 14 and 15. But he played his final three holes at even par, just missing a birdie at 18 when his sand shot rolled about a foot past the cup.
“Everything went well today,” Jobe said. “Just a very nice, solid round of golf.”
BRRR!: Bill Haas is expecting a word from his sponsors.
Haas was so unprepared for the chilly temperatures at the BMW Championships – the high Friday was just 59 degrees – he had to go buy sweaters. The off-the-rack wear may be keeping him warm, but it’s doing nothing for his sponsors.
“I’m actually wearing sweaters that don’t have any logos on them,” Haas said. “I did not pack accordingly. I was not expecting this. My sponsor is probably not too happy with me.”
CUT!: Steve Stricker’s withdrawal ends what had been the longest streak of cuts made on the PGA Tour at 40.
Though there is no actual cut at the BMW Championship, the streak ends because Stricker will not finish in the money at Cog Hill. He’s already qualified for next weekend’s Tour Championship and plans to play.
Masters champion Charl Schwartzel now owns the longest streak of cuts made with 18.
DIVOTS: Brandt Jobe (64) and Robert Allenby (67) were the only players to not make a bogey Friday.