1. Geoff Ogilvy. The long-time Hot List fave came through with another big-time performance to win another big-time tournament. Here’s hoping he brings this kind of game to Augusta, or Pebble, or St. Andrews. Or better yet, all three.
2. South Africans. Rory Sabbatini went bonkers on Sunday at the SBS, Retief Goosen was solid all week and their young countryman, Charl Schwartzel, continued his ascent by winning the African Open on home soil. The only black mark? Matt Damon’s faux-accent in “Invictus.”
3. Sasha and Malia. The U.S. Solheim Cup team visits the White House on Tuesday, and after getting to know these terrific role models, surely the Prez will be inspired to get his girls out on the links. Nothing would help the game’s image like Obama goofing around on a golf course with his adorable daughters.
4. Waialae Country Club. The host of this week’s Sony Open is an old-school jewel, and with its tight, twisty fairways and crosswinds it will be a great lab for the new grooves as players spend the whole week in the rough. Bring on the bogeys!
5. Margaret Gay. This very proud matriarch boasts my favorite Twitter handle: BrianGaysMom.
1. Lucas Glover. Yikes, what a way to start the year, with a confidence-sapping final-round meltdown. The SBS is a fun, mellow adventur…until winning time, and then the pressure is as crushing as any other Sunday.
2. Tim Finchem. In his pre-tournament presser the Commish was asked some basic Tiger questions, and his snippy answers were inappropriate and weirdly defensive. Memo to Finchem: Much as you’d like it to, this story isn’t going away anytime soon, so learn to deal with it more gracefully.
3. Phil. I understand he likes to enjoy a long off-season, and time at home is especially precious this winter, but the SBS desperately needed his star power. And how fun would it be to watch Mickelson attack the Plantation Course?
4. Thongchai Jaidee. In front of the home crowd, the overachiever from Thailand had a chance to win his singles match against Henrik Stenson and send the Royal Trophy into sudden death, but Jaidee missed a 12-footer on the 18th hole, handing the Trophy to Europe. The worst part? Having Europe’s smarmy captain, Colin Montgomerie, gloat about what this means vis-a-vis the Ryder Cup.
5. Tiger. Just because.