Memorial Tournament

Muirfield Village Golf Club

The Loop

Is Tiger possibly bad for the game?

February 20, 2009

Lawrence Donegan of the Guardian has an interesting take on Tiger Woods' dominance, suggesting that it's a potentially greater hurdle for the sport than Allen Stanford's alleged misdeeds. Donegan asks: "But what about a sport that finds itself consumed by its greatest asset rather than distracted by its most embarrassing interloper?"

Donegan's conclusion: "None of this is Woods' fault, of course - he can't hardly be blamed for his own brilliance, or for the relative inadequacies of his peers - but the fact is he has become bigger than the sport itself, so much bigger that it may never be able to escape from the shadow he has cast."

The column is worth reading in its entirety.

The feeling here is that the Woods era has been a transcendent one that elevated golf's stature in the greater world of sport, and that once he's gone it will find a comfort zone somewhere between the niche category it occupied pre-Tiger and the mainstream to which Woods dragged it. That's not a death knell. That's progress, in a two-steps-forward, one-step-back vein.

-- John Strege