Tiger Woods is not at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational this week, which feels like having Christmas without Santa.
In his last 15 tournaments at Firestone Country Club, Woods has left the Akron, Ohio, course with the trophy eight times. On four other occasions, he finished in the top 10. Fractions were never a strong suit of mine, but that seems like a pretty sound success ratio. (Woods also owns the course record at a 21-under 259.)
Due to his plunge in the world rankings, Woods failed to qualify for the 2015 competition. Woods is missing out on the Bridgestone for only the second time in his career, sitting out in 2008 due to injury.
As we pour one on the pavement for Woods' absence, here are seven players -- including El Tigre himself -- that have reigned over specific courses in their careers:
Sam Snead - Sedgefield/Starmount Forest, Miami Springs
It should be no surprise that Slammin' Sammy makes an appearance. With a record 82 PGA Tour wins, it stands to reason a few venues would be recurring scenes of the crime. Snead won the Greater Greensboro Open eight times, hosted at Sedgefield and Starmount Forest, and racked up six titles at the Miami Open.
Alec Ross - Pinehurst No. 2
The North and South Open may not ring a bell to some golf fans, but the event was once a distinguished competition. Held at Pinehurst No. 2, the event saw Ross, a club pro at Brae Burn Country Club near Boston, claim the title on six occasions.
However, one could argue Ross, who captured the 1907 U.S. Open, had an unfair advantage. After all, his brother, Donald -- yes, that Donald -- designed the course.
Ben Hogan - Colonial Country Club
The Hawk, a native of the Fort Worth, won the inaugural Colonial Invitational in 1946. When he finished atop the leader board at the 1959 event, it was his fifth Colonial championship.
Hogan was a member at Colonial in retirement, and the course is now known as "Hogan's Alley."