1. Hunter Mahan. Duval, redux: love the game, hate the sunglasses. They have similar temperament and similar games. Will Hunter fly as high, or fall as far? Likely to be somewhere in between.
2. David Frost. Dude has always been flammable, but nine under for 11 holes? On a Sunday? Well played, old man.
3. Bill Lunde. In 2005 he quit competitive golf and started selling real estate. Now, after a stellar weekend at Turning Stone, the 34-year-old is a PGA Tour winner with a bright future. Nice little story.
4. Mini-tour studs. Tadd Fujikawa won the eGolf Tour Championship by a whopping nine strokes. At the Gold Strike Casino Classic, on the Hooters tour, Russell Knox set a course record with a 62 … then went out the next day and broke his own record with a 61. And to think that these guys aren’t good enough for the big leagues.
5. Corey Pavin. Lots of red, white and blue on the Firestone leaderboard, Lee Westwood is on the shelf and Sergio Garcia (career Ryder record: 14-6-4!) has all but announced he doesn’t want to play. Suddenly the European squad is looking a lot less invincible.
1. Corey Pavin. Assuming Tiger Woods fails to move up in the Ryder Cup standings — and there’s no reason to think he will on a demanding test like Whistling Straits — Pavin will face the muthah of all captain’s selection quagmires: 1) Pick Woods and have him potentially sink the team by playing poorly and/or pouting when benched. 2) Don’t pick Tiger and be second-guessed in perpetuity for snubbing the greatest player of all time. Yowsa.
2. Phil Mickelson. When he plays well, it’s highly entertaining. And when he struggles it’s even more so. Sunday’s self-immolation was absolutely riveting in its absurdity.
3. Sergio Garcia. What’s he gonna do on his break? Chase models? Drive Ferraris? Play a little golf? He already does that now!
4. Y.E. Yang. He has to give back the Wanamaker trophy this week and, worse still, play alongside Tiger and Vijay Singh over the PGA’s first two rounds. Yang will surely be doing most of the talking in this group … and he doesn’t speak English.
5. Sean O’Hair. He was in control of the Bridgestone early in the final round but got run over as he played the final 11 holes in three over par. For a cat on the Ryder Cup bubble, that was a very troublesome performance.