June 3, 2015 - 10:58am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Tiger Woods
USA Today Sports Images
Is it crazy to think Tiger Woods can win right now? Maybe not when you consider this week's venue.

If there is such a thing as a "mini-major" on the PGA Tour, this week's Memorial Tournament is it.

The Memorial is played at Muirfield Village in Dublin, Ohio, home to none other than the Golden Bear, Mr. Jack Nicklaus.

If you've ever been to the Memorial, you know it has a Masters-like feel -- everything from the white jumpsuits for the caddies, to the stunningly manicured grounds with not a blade of grass out of place.

RELATED: Memorial Tournament tee times | This week's pro golf events schedule

Muirfield Village is the only course to have hosted a Ryder Cup (1987), a Solheim Cup (1998) and a Presidents Cup (2013). It's a big-time venue.

Not surprisingly, this big-time venue also has a list of big-name champions: Nicklaus, Tom Watson, Raymond Floyd, Hale Irwin, Greg Norman, Fred Couples, Jim Furyk, Ernie Els, Tiger Woods and Justin Rose, just to name a few.

Here are the five players I'll be keeping a close eye on this week at Jack's place.

5. Tiger Woods
Best finish in 2014-15 season:
T17 at the Masters
Reason to watch: I'll be the first to admit that Tiger hasn't shown me anything lately that would suggest he's ready to contend again. That said, no one has been more dominant at the Memorial than Woods, who has a tournament-best five victories, the latest coming in 2012. I don't think Tiger will ever again be the insanely dominant Tiger we once knew. That said, I do think he's got some great golf left in him. Given his track record at Muirfield Village, this seems as good a place as any for Tiger to get the train back on the track. Surely Tiger would love nothing more than to gain some much needed confidence in his final event before the U.S. Open at Chambers Bay in two weeks, which he was scouting out early this week.

4. Matt Kuchar
Best finish in 2014-15 season:
T2 at Humana Challenge
Reason to watch: Over the past several years, Kuchar has been a top-10 machine. For most players, the three top-10 finishes in 15 starts this season -- including a T2 and a third -- would be pretty good. Not for Kuchar though. Outside of a fifth-place showing at the RBC Heritage, Kuchar has been in a funk since the beginning of April. His last three starts look like this: T34 at the WGC-Cadillac Match Play Championship; Missed cut at the Players Championship; T39 at the AT&T Byron Nelson. That's not what I expect from Kuchar. He's going to break out of his slump and I have a good feeling it could happen this week at Memorial, where he won in 2013 and was a runner-up in 2011. Dating back to 2007, Kuchar has played in every Memorial expect for 2012. His worst finish? A T15.

3. Justin Rose
Best finish in 2014-15 season:
Won the Zurich Classic of New Orleans
Reason to watch: This will be Rose's first PGA Tour start since a missed cut at the Players Championship (though he did play in the BMW PGA Championship on the European Tour, where he finished T38 a couple of weeks ago). Rose rolled to a three-stroke victory at the 2010 Memorial. He's had two missed cuts and two top-8 finishes at Memorial since then. He's either really good, or not so hot at Muirfield Village. Coming off a missed cut a year ago, I think Rose will be trending toward one of those "really good" weeks.

2. Bill Haas
Best finish in 2014-15 season:
Won the Humana Challenge
Reason to watch: In his last two starts at Muirfield Village, Haas has finished T8 (2014) and T4 (2013). He also compiled a 2-2-1 record during the 2013 Presidents Cup. It should be noted as well that Haas will be more motivated than usual to rack up top finishes. He really wants to be a member of this year's U.S. Presidents Cup team, which will be captained by his father, Jay. He doesn't want to put dad in a position to have to use a captain's pick on his son... he wants to make the team outright. Haas is a consistent player and, as you can see by his on-course demeanor, he never gets too high or too low. That's important around a course like this.

1. Dustin Johnson
Best finish in 2014-15 season:
Won the WGC-Cadillac Championship
Reason to watch: It's been a very good season thus far for Johnson with six top-10s in 11 starts, highlighted by the win at Doral and the playoff loss at Riviera. His latest top-10 came just last week at the Byron Nelson, where he finished T8. Johnson has a few top-20 finishes at Memorial, the best of which was a T4 in 2011. Muirfield is a big park. Since Johnson is such a big hitter, you'd think it would be perfect for his game. He'll be in the mix come Sunday evening, grinding to snag his second victory of the season.

Here's how my five to watch fared last week at the Byron Nelson:

5. Ryan Palmer -- T10
4. Brandt Snedeker -- T6
3. Dustin Johnson -- T8
2. Jimmy Walker -- T2
1. Jordan Spieth -- T30 

Five players to watch at the Memorial
June 3, 2015 - 8:47am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
I'll never understand what people are thinking when they allow another person to hit a golf ball teed up in their mouth -- especially when the person hitting said shot is a toddler.

Quick question: Would you let someone -- anyone -- hit a golf ball, sitting on a tee that was lodged into your teeth instead of the ground?

For me, the answer is quite simple... it's a resounding no. I don't care if it was Bobby Jones, Ben Hogan, Jack Nicklaus, Tiger Woods in his prime, whatever. Nobody is putting a tee in my mouth and taking a lash with a driver to hit the ball off it.

RELATED: Mini FootGolf specialist | Romo's wife's golf swing | High schooler's miracle shot

Fortunately for people like me, not everyone feels the same way. And that leads to videos that pop up on the internet. Like this one, where a father trusted his roughly, what, 2-year-old, to pull off such a shot?

What could go wrong?


Chunk City.

OK, so it wasn't all that bad. At least the kid was using plastic clubs.

It reminded me of this scene from the show "Feherty" where David Feherty, much to the chagrin of his camera crew, allowed no less than John Daly to smash one off a tee placed in Feherty's mouth.

Remember this?


If Daly had done what the little kid did, the results could have been devastating.

So, please, heed this public service announcement, folks -- don't ever let a person hit a golf ball out of your mouth.  

Toddler attempts to hit golf shot out of dad's mouth
CBS Sports via YouTube
CBS Sports analyst Peter Kostis liked Candice Romo's set-up, but had some advice for her downswing.
Not too many years ago, Tony Romo spent his summers playing in charity golf events and even trying to qualify for the U.S. Open. He's not playing so much high-profile golf these days, but it's clear that the game is still very much a part of the Romo family.
During last weekend's telecast of the AT&T Byron Nelson, Romo's wife Candice was featured in CBS Sports' "Help Me Kostis" segment. And as analyst Peter Kostis noted, Candice has a pretty good swing of her own – which is no surprise, seeing as how she's always been athletic.
The Romos' oldest son, 3-year-old Hawkins, also makes an appearance in the segment. And, oh the irony – the strongest part of young Hawkins' swing, Kostis pointed out, is the weakest part of Candice's. But that's all right. While Tony is busy chasing that elusive Super Bowl for his Dallas Cowboys, his wife and son can help each other get better – and challenging him for the title of best golfer in the family.
Here's Candice's segment:
Tony Romo's wife Candice shows off her golf swing during Byron Nelson telecast
James Nicholas
James Nicholas, a high school senior, will have quite the story to tell for years to come about the time he won the 2015 NY State High School Championship.

Every shot counts. And, during the course of a tournament, one of those shots likely stands out above the rest.

James Nicholas can attest to that.

Nicholas won the New York State High School Championship by a single shot on Monday.

The victory for the Scarsdale High senior may not have been were it not for an incredible shot Nicholas pulled out of the bag in the tournament's opening round.

Playing the 17th hole at Cornell University's Robert Trent Jones Golf Course on Sunday, Nicholas found himself in the pond to the left of the green.

RELATED: Epic photo of Kirk's backwards flop shotMini FootGolf specialist shows off

According to GolfDigest.com, he proceeded to remove his shoes and enter the pond to play the shot even though half of the ball was submerged. What happened next was a near miracle:


How about that? Unfortunately, Nicholas didn't convert the putt, but he most likely saved himself a stroke by playing from the water instead of going to the drop zone 125 yards back.

Well done.

It reminded me of this shot that Bill Haas hit on the 17th hole of the 2011 Tour Championship in a playoff against Hunter Mahan on his way to winning the tournament and the FedExCup:


According to lohud.com, Nicholas will play football and golf at Yale.

h/t Golf Digest

N.Y. high school golfer channels Bill Haas, wins state title
June 2, 2015 - 11:31am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
Nike Golf

Over the last couple of years on the PGA Tour, Keegan Bradley has been making a fashion statement with his custom Air Jordan golf shoes.

Bradley is a regular golf buddy of NBA legend Michael Jordan when the two are home in South Florida.

If you were jealous of Bradley's on-course Air Jordan shoes, well you don't have to be anymore.

RELATED: Bradley, Jordan joke on Twitter | Bradley, Jordan, Brady -- golf and hoops

Nike announced on Monday that, "as a celebration of Michael Jordan's well-known passion for golf," Jordan Brand would be releasing the Jordan Flight Runner Golf shoe.

Since retiring from basketball, Jordan has fueled his competitive drive on the golf course, inspiring Jordan Brand designers to create this new performance silhouette. The limited-edition offering combines one of Jordan Brand's premium training styles, the Jordan Flight Runner 2, with Nike Golf's innovative Nike Free-inspired tooling.

"The Jordan Flight Runner Golf is the perfect combination of Jordan and Nike innovation coupled with Michael’s love for the game of golf," said Larry Miller, President, Jordan Brand. "This is the same formula that helped us create some of the most iconic shoes over the past thirty years and we are excited to bring Jordan Brand energy to the golf course."

The Jordan Flight Runner Golf will be available this month in a black and grey colorway, exclusively on Jordan.com.

Check out the new Jordan Flight Runner Golf shoe
June 2, 2015 - 10:52am
Posted by:
T.J. Auclair
tj.auclair's picture
mini FootGolf
With FootGolf becoming more and more popular, it seems it was only a matter of time before it also hit a mini golf course near you.

By now, you've surely heard of FootGolf.

Well, it turns out that "Mini FootGolf" might just be a thing too.

Check out this video from the folks at Skratch TV:


The video was posted to YouTube on May 28 by Adalberto "Borgetti" Lopez.

Impressive stuff, but I think I'd rather stick to the putter.

'Mini' FootGolf specialist shows off skills