Golf Buzz

Lee Westwood
Getty Images
The logo of Lee Westwood's golf school will festoon the front of Worksop Town FC's soccer jerseys this season.
A lot of us Americans are into the World Cup this summer. Or at least we were …
Most of us, however, are amateurs compared to true soccer aficionados like Lee Westwood. The former world No. 1 was so distressed to hear that Worksop Town FC, his hometown club back in England, was having money troubles this summer that he came to the rescue.
So, when the new season begins on July 15, the team will sport the Lee Westwood Golf School logo on the front of its jerseys.
"Worksop will always be my home, people will always associate me with my home town and I'm proud of my roots," Westwood told The Worksop Guardian. "Worksop Town are the world's fourth oldest club, and their history and position in the heart of the community should be safeguarded."
The future of the semi-pro team – which will play in the Premier Division of the Northern Counties East Football League this year – was uncertain after owner Jason Clark said that he was walking away earlier this summer. A group of fans, called the Team 500 Club, began a fundraising drive, and the newspaper contacted Westwood – who is by far Worksop's most famous son – about the possibility of sponsoring the jerseys.
"It's fantastic news for the fans, and Worksop in general, to see such a high-profile sportsman" backing the team, said Kev Keep, chairman of the Worksop Town Supporters Trust. 
The Lee Westwood Golf School, by the way, operates educational centers in Cheshire and Essex, and Westwood's desire was that his budding teenaged golfers also received a well-rounded education.
"Lee plays an active role in the schools. The students got to meet him at Wentworth this year and he speaks to them on Skype," said Dainty. "The students get a good education and that’s important to Lee."
And, by the way, Worksop Town's nickname is the Tigers. Maybe Westwood can hit Tiger Woods up for a little contribution to the cause!
July 2, 2014 - 3:21pm
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Tiger Woods
USA Today Sports Images
U.S. Ryder Cup Captain Tom Watson reiterated Wednesday that Tiger Woods' chances of having a spot on the team will be dependent upon his health and if he's playing well.

U.S. Ryder Cup Captain Tom Watson said in a press conference at Greenbrier on Wednesday that he's hoping to connect with Tiger Woods in two weeks at the Open Championship.

After a three-month absence from the PGA Tour to recover from back surgery, Woods returned to competition last week at the Quicken Loans National where he missed the cut.

Woods is currently No. 69 in the U.S. standings. The top nine players at the conclusion of the PGA Championship earn an automatic berth on the team. The team will be filled out in early September when Watson makes his three captain's picks.

RELATED: Here's how Tiger Woods could make the U.S. Ryder Cup team | More Ryder Cup coverage

"As I've said in front of the press, if he's playing well and he's healthy, he's on the team," Watson said. "Right now he's way down the list as far as points, but who wouldn't pick Tiger Woods to be on your Ryder Cup team? That is the question to everybody. Who wouldn't pick him?"

While there's an outside chance that Woods would add tournaments to his schedule in a push to earn more Ryder Cup points, chances are he'll only make three starts between now and the PGA Championship -- the Open, the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational and the PGA Championship. All of those tournaments are on courses where Woods has won before -- Royal Liverpool, Firestone and Valhalla. Keep in mind the majors are worth double points.

The other concern in terms of Tiger's Ryder Cup hopes becomes his FedExCup standing. Right now, Woods is No. 208 in points. Only the top 125 players qualify for the first leg of the PGA Tour Playoffs for the FedExCup -- the Barclays.

The only tournament between the PGA Championship and the Barclays in which Woods could earn points is the Wyndham Championship.

Watson has routinely stated that Woods needs to be "playing well and healthy," to be deserving of a Captain's pick.

There's a chance, however, that Woods -- while healthy -- may not be eligible to play in the two playoff events leading up to Watson's decision on his Captain's picks.

"He'll be considered less of a pick then if he didn't have a track record going into the Ryder Cup, of course," Watson said. "He'd be the first to tell you, 'I haven't been playing.' Like I said, how he's been playing and if he's healthy, those are the two factors that I'll weigh in choosing. That's just common sense in my opinion." 

Here is Watson's news conference:



July 2, 2014 - 1:05pm
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
TPC Harding Park
TPC Harding Park
The PGA of America announced on Wednesday that TPC Harding Park in San Francisco will host the 2020 PGA Championship. It will mark the first time the PGA Championship is played in California since 1995 at Riviera Country Club.

For the first time since 1995, the PGA Championship will soon be making a return to the west coast.

The PGA of America announced on Wednesday that the 2020 PGA Championship will be contested at TPC Harding Park in San Francisco.

It was also announced that TPC Harding Park will host the the 2025 Presidents Cup and the 2015 World Golf Championships-Match Play Championship.

"The PGA of America is proud to be taking its major championship in 2020 to the City of San Francisco, home to one of the premier venues that embraces public golf along with the skill to stage some of the game’s greatest events," said PGA President Ted Bishop. "It is exciting to be sharing today's announcement with the PGA Tour and the City of San Francisco. Together, we look to grow the game among new audiences and present the finest championships for the greatest players in the world."

ENTIRE PRESS RELEASE: TPC Harding Park to host PGA Championship, Presidents Cup and Match Play

The 2020 PGA Championship will mark the first major played at a TPC property. Overall, it will be the fifth PGA Championship played in the state of California and the first since 1995 when Riviera Country Club in Pacific Palisades hosted the season's final major. Steve Elkington won that year.

The other three PGA Championships played in California consist of Hillcrest Country Club (1929), Pebble Beach Golf Links (1977) and Riviera Country Club (1983). TPC Harding Park will be the second municipally owned golf course to host the PGA Championship. The only other PGA Championship to be conducted at a municipal golf facility was the 1974 Championship at Tanglewood Golf Club in Clemmons, N.C.

TPC Harding Park -- formerly Harding Park Golf Club -- opened for play in 1935 after a design by noted architects Willie Watson and Sam Whiting, who also oversaw the construction of nearby Olympic Club.

The course was named after President Warren G. Harding, the 29th President of the United States, an avid golfer who died at the Palace Hotel in 1923 during a visit to San Francisco.

Over the years, Harding Park, which hosted the San Francisco City Championship, lost its prestige, but was revitalized after a massive renovation before hosting the 2005 World Golf Championships-American Express Championship.

In advance of the event, Harding Park underwent a 15-month renovation project that expanded the course from 6,743 yards to around 7,200 yards. The course reopened on August 22, 2003, and the World Golf Championships event was held in October 2005.

TPC Harding Park is also the site of The First Tee of San Francisco, which now reaches more than 80,000 young people annually through chapter programs and elementary schools. 

July 2, 2014 - 12:10pm
Posted by:
dpurdum's picture
Greenbrier Classic
Old White TPC will be the site of this week's PGA Tour stop, the Greenbrier Classic.

Greenbrier Head Professional Hill Herrick shared his local knowledge of the Old White TPC, site of this week's Greenbrier Classic, with A score of 13-under won last year. Do you see a similar score winning again this week?

Herrick: I would predict 12-15 under par will win the tournament; The Old White TPC is a challenging 7,300-yard, par-70 layout. In order to have success on The Old White, a golfer must do what?

Herrick: Avoid the fairway and greenside bunkers, most are deep with steep fescue faces, which will challenge even the best short games.

GREENBRIER CLASSIC: Tee times and leaderboard | 5 players to watch Where is the most popular spot on the course for spectators to catch the action?

Herrick: No. 18, a short par 3 with one of the more unique green contours on the PGA TOUR. The hole is almost completely surrounded by grandstands and sky boxes. What is the most popular concessions item?

Herrick: Fried Green Tomato Sandwich. Are there any local storylines surrounding the tournament that standout?

Herrick: The winner of the West Virginia State Amateur Championship (which is also played annually at The Greenbrier) is given a sponsor’s exemption into The Greenbrier Classic.  This year’s winner, Brian Anania, a recent Marshall University graduate, should have many fans in attendance.

July 2, 2014 - 10:33am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Rickie Fowler
USA Today Sports Images
Early Tuesday evening, Rickie Fowler was involved in an accident. He indicated in a tweet posted early Wednesday that he was OK.

Early Wednesday morning, Rickie Fowler sent out a tweet that got a lot of attention in the golf world.



Fowler, a massive fan favorite, didn't give anymore details.

READ: Fowler, Tringale play 18 holes left handed | Fowler takes stunt-plane ride

Golf Channel reporter Steve Sands did a little digging on Wednesday. Sands reports that the accident happened early Tuesday evening close to Fowler's home in Jupiter, Fla.

From the Golf Channel report:

Fowler, who was driving, was treated for minor cuts and abrasions on his forehead (near his hairline) by doctors at JFK Medical and then released Tuesday night. The passenger was also treated at the hospital and released without any injuries.

No citation was issued for the incident.

All seemed well Wednesday morning, as Fowler was back to tweeting to his nearly 700,000 followers, promoting the Drive, Chip and Putt Championship, and sending out birthday wishes to a friend.

Fowler's next scheduled event is next week's Scottish Open at Royal Aberdeen Golf Club ahead of the Open Championship at Royal Liverpool. Fowler tied for fifth at the Masters in April and in his last start -- the U.S. Open -- Fowler recorded his best ever finish in a major, a tie for second. 

July 2, 2014 - 9:35am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Errie Ball
PGA of America Archive
Errie Ball, a participant in the 1934 Masters and a PGA Hall of Famer, passed away early Wednesday morning at the age of 103.

Sad news came through this morning with the passing of Errie Ball at 5:20 a.m.

Ball, 103 years old, had been the oldest living PGA member and the only living participant from the first Masters in 1934.

RELATED: Photos of Errie Ball through the years | Ball recalls 1934 Masters

"The PGA of America is saddened by the passing of Errie Ball, a professional in all aspects of life," said PGA of America President Ted Bishop. "Errie's amazing career spans the legends of the game -- from Harry Vardon through Tiger Woods. His longevity, according to those who knew him best, was founded upon a love of people. Each day, like each step he took on the course, was spent with purpose. We will miss him dearly, but his legacy continues to shine through the many PGA Professionals he inspired to grow our game."

Ball, originally from Wales, worked as an assistant professional under Bobby Jones at East Lake Country Club in Atlanta. Ball has been a PGA Professional since 1932.

In 2011, Ball was inducted into the PGA Hall of Fame. He served the PGA of America for an incredible 83 years.