This week's heroes? Zach, Suzann and Lexi. Zeros? Tiger, Furyk and Rory

This week’s heroes? Zach, Suzann and Lexi. Zeros? Tiger, Furyk and Rory

Zach Johnson earned his first title of the season at the BMW Championship.
Charles Rex Arbogast / AP


1. Zach. Dude has been on a tear for two months — his victory in Chicago is his sixth top-8 finish in his last seven starts. Is it possible to have 10 wins, including a Masters, and still be golf's most underrated player?

2. Suzann Pettersen. If she continues her evolution into an efficient closer it's game over for the rest of the LPGA.

3. National Golf Links of America. I'm still on a high from soaking up the majesty of this place during the Walker Cup. If you could play ten rounds between National and its neighbor Shinnecock Hills, how would you divide it up? I'd play twice at Shinny and the rest at C.B. Macdonald's masterwork.

4. Elk. No, not the bombastic Australian golfer — I'm talking about those majestic critters wandering the countryside. With his continued good play in the playoffs Steve Stricker has bagged an elk-hunting trip in favor of competing in the Tour Championship. This is a win-win, for golf fans and defenseless animals everywhere.

5. Lexi. The talented Ms. Thompson made a strong showing at the Evian, the high point (so far) of an otherwise iffy season. Here's hoping Thompson can start achieving her awesome potential — if so, she and Lydia Ko could put women's golf two-thirds of the way to a pretty fab neo-Big Three.


1. Tiger. The one place his character has always been beyond reproach is between the ropes, but that's changing. His decision to play on at the Masters after signing an incorrect scorecard was revealing. Now Woods is still moaning about the penalty he was assessed for causing his ball to move in the twigs. Did it merely oscillate and return to its exact same position, as he so stridently claims? Impossible to tell. But in the long history of the game, when there's uncertainty about a breach of the rules the gentlemanly thing has always been for a player to assess himself a penalty to protect the game's integrity. And his own.

2. Jim Furyk. Pressure is not having to birdie the last hole to shoot 59 on a Friday. Pressure is then having to go on and take the tournament when you're in a three-year winless funk. Three bogeys on his final eight holes doomed an overwrought Furyk to yet another disappointing finish. Freddy, you can stop gobbling Tums now!

3. The Evian. There shouldn't be a fifth major, and it surely shouldn't be aborted to 54 holes. What's wrong with being just a really great tournament? The Players has always been content with that designation. Oh, wait…

4. Harris English. The computers always win: With a stumbling finish in Chicago, English dropped from 28th to 31st in FedEx Cup points, missing out on the everlasting glory of reaching the Tour Championship. (Read: free money.)

5. Rory McIlroy. Thank gawd it's over.

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