The Grind: A Ryder Cup do-over, Sneds' frugal win, and Rickie gets romantic
Welcome to another edition of The Grind, where we wish we had a Ryder Cup Task Force monitoring our every move. Write a bad column? No problem! Those understanding souls will just give us a do-over! Make a bad joke on Twitter? Do-over! Pick the wrong thing to eat for lunch in the office cafeteria? Do-over and stay away from the meatloaf next time! Man, these guys would have really come in handy during college mid-terms. But alas, do-overs don't usually exist unless, apparently, you're a Ryder Cup captain. So here's the final version of what has us talking this week. Be kind.
Brandt Snedeker: Two years ago, Snedeker was the hottest player in the world. Three weeks ago, he'd been almost completely forgotten about. But after solid starts in Phoenix and San Diego, Snedeker broke his own tournament record at Pebble Beach and he did it with a driver valued at about $20, causing the world's weekend hackers who blame their equipment to sigh. In picking up his seventh career PGA Tour title and reclaim his spot as one of the best golfers in the world, Snedeker qualified for the Masters, more World Golf Championship events and hopefully, more commercials in which people call him "SnEEEEdeker."
Clint Eastwood thinking about his next movie: "American Snedeker"
Davis Love III: Is it a boring pick? Yes, but Love obviously has the support of fellow players and Ryder Cup Task Force members or he wouldn't be getting a second chance after being at the helm for the Meltdown at Medinah. Besides, it was thinking outside the box and selecting Tom Watson that wound up backfiring at the last Ryder Cup. The next task for the task force should be tracking down Sammy the Squirrel. Things really went downhill for Team USA after Love let him back into the wild.
Mark Hubbard's romance game: The PGA Tour rookie made a name for himself by pulling off a Pebble Beach proposal on the 18th hole that completely shocked his girlfriend. Of course, she said yes. It's Pebble Beach.
Unfortunately, Hubbard's golf game wasn't as good as he missed the cut. But perhaps that was all part of his plan to spend more time with his girlfriend on Valentine's Day weekend. Savvy.
Pro-am performances: First off, congrats to our boss, Golf Digest Editor-in-Chief, Jerry Tarde, for hitting a great clutch/nationally televised shot on Pebble's famed 17th hole on Thursday. We won't mention the ensuing putt or him missing the cut because he brought in donuts to the office on Tuesday. Again, how about that shot on 17?! There were also some amazing scores turned in by some of the participants. Country music star Jake Owen shot 67 on his own ball on Saturday at Pebble Beach. Very impressive, especially for a 3-handicap. Even more amazing was 8-handicap Michael Lund, the co-founder of Pandora jewelry, shooting even par at Monterey Peninsula on his way to claiming the team title with Pat Perez. Hmm, perhaps those scores were a bit too amazing. Is the Ryder Cup Task Force going to have to investigate?
Jim Furyk: No one has had a 54-hole lead on the PGA Tour more in the past four-plus seasons than Furyk and yet no one has won less. Furyk extended his incredible streak of not converting in the final round to nine with a disappointing Sunday 74 -- after a brilliant Saturday 63 -- to finish T-7. The toughest part for Furyk is he's not getting any younger (44) and he's a borderline candidate for the World Golf Hall of Fame. The least tough part is he's made $14.5 million since his last win in 2010.
Speaking of wishing he had a do-over. . .
Tiger Woods: Nobody could understand what exactly his announcement on his website meant, but here's what we do know: Tiger Woods potentially not playing golf is not good for golf. We hope Tiger can figure things out and get back soon. And if he needs a boost of confidence, he should try the new golf video game featuring Kim Jong-un. Everything's a hole-in-one! Fun!
Tiger taunters: There have been plenty of these types surfacing of late, but Jacksonville Jaguars kicker Josh Scobee garnered the most attention last week. Scobee taunted Tiger Woods on Twitter by challenging him to a big-money match and saying he'd give Woods two shots a side, which drew a lot of backlash. Scobee, who is a solid golfer in his own right, said he was just joking -- and he probably was -- but the fact of the matter is we've entered an era where even NFL kickers are making cracks about arguably the greatest golfer of all time. Strange times, indeed.
The PGA Tour heads to Riviera for the Northern Trust Open, aka that tournament Ben Hogan won a bunch of times long before it was called the Northern Trust Open.
Random tournament fact: Despite shooting a still-tournament record of 20 under par in 1985, Riviera wasn't re-nicknamed "Lanny's Alley."
RANDOM PROP BETS OF THE WEEK
-- Ben Hogan would have hated playing with Brandt Snedeker's obsolete "$20 driver": 1 million-to-1 odds
-- Jim Furyk will make a double bogey on purpose the next time he has a chance to be a 54-hole leader: 3-to-1 odds
-- Tournament rounds will be a LOT faster at Riviera without those pesky amateurs: LOCK
PHOTO OF THE WEEK
OLD, BUT NEW TO US PHOTO OF THE WEEK
Paula Creamer posted this pic on the two month anniversary of her wedding:
She was particularly excited about showing off her "custom lace and sequin Adidas sneakers." Paula is what companies call "a marketing dream."
VIRAL VIDEO OF THE WEEK
Charles Barkley played Hallway Golf with Jimmy Fallon and Hugh Grant and he wasn't awful.
THIS WEEK IN CAMILO VILLEGAS ALLISON STOKKE MAKING US FEEL BAD WITH HER TRAINING
OK, so this has nothing to do with golf and everything to do with. . . pole vaulting. Oh, and GoPros, which are very popular in the golf world these days. The video also has about three million views in less than a week.
And here's a photo of the lovely couple together going on a sunset stroll in California.
Thanks, Rickie. You're making the rest of us look bad.
THIS AND THAT
Adam Scott and his wife announced the birth of their first child, daughter Bo Vera Scott, in Australia. If Scott is going to play even less golf as a new parent, then we're never going to see him. . . . Lee Janzen beat Bart Bryant in a playoff on the Champions Tour. It's tough to feel disappointed after a final-round 62, but we're pretty sure Bryant is. . . . Still basking in the glow of being a victorious Ryder Cup captain, Paul McGinley had his golf clubs stolen out of a rental car just after arriving in California. His trip probably seemed ruined until he remembered he was about to spend a week playing golf at Pebble Beach. . . . Speaking of steals, here is my lunch -- and dessert -- from Costco on Sunday. This entire glorious feast cost me a grand total of $2.85. What a magical place.
RANDOM QUESTIONS TO PONDER
Why can't you buy Costco frozen yogurt in bulk?
Will Jim Furyk ever win on the PGA Tour again?
Will Hugh Grant ever make a good movie again?