1. Tiger Woods. Is he the greatest winner in the history of sports? He gets my vote.
2. Woody Austin. He was a fist-pumping revelation on Sunday, and easily the press room MVP with a series of madcap interviews. The Woodman will bring exactly the right spunk to the U.S. Presidents Cup team.
3. Ernie Els. Sure, he made his usual crippling mistakes down the stretch, but he also hit a series of spectacular shots to put some serious heat on Woods, at least for a few minutes. At the last two British Opens and now this PGA, he has begun to re-emerge as a force. The eternal question with Els is if he will ever overcome his Sunday demons.
4. Arron Oberholser. The chatty Kathy from California had his best-ever finish at a major, further burnishing his rep as a guy who plays his best on hard courses. Plus he was a journalism major, so it’s nice to see that one of us is making decent money.
5. CBS. Those super-duper slow-motion replays are one of the coolest things on TV. I could watch Tiger’s rippling back muscles all day and never get bored.
1. Sergio Garcia. So this is how you avoid another Sunday meltdown, by getting DQ’d on Saturday. Clever.
2. Stephen Ames. No one really expected him to beat Woods, but it was painful to see him completely unravel in the final pairing. And despite his politic comments, you know Tiger enjoyed every minute of it.
3. Tulsa. Actually, it was too hot. When over 200 fans need medical care, you have to question the wisdom of selecting such a steamy venue. I know the PGA doesn’t control the weather, but it does choose the locales. Sahalee has never looked so good …
4. John Daly. His disdain for the championship was an embarrassment: He arrived in Tulsa on Tuesday, but instead of playing practice rounds he spent all of his time at a casino, laying eyes on Southern Hills for the first time when he began his first round. If Daly doesn’t care how he plays, why should we?
5. Phil Mickelson. His streak of consecutive seasons with a major championship victory ended at three, and he was never a factor at Southern Hills. Mickelson traditionally goes into hibernation after the PGA, but given what a lost summer it’s been, he may be the one superstar who’s motivated during the so-called playoffs.