The decline of Tiger Woods has hit the pity stage with his round of 80 in the U.S. Open on Thursday. It might not be rock bottom, but it must be no more than a lob wedge from there.
"I hate to watch this," Tom Weiskopf said on Fox' telecast Thursday evening. "When you're at the top of Everest and now you're in a coal mine, it's hard to watch."
Golf Channel's Brandel Chamblee called it "the apocalypse of imaginative power. "At his best he showed us what a human being was capable of," he said. "The apocalypse of imaginative power happens when you turn your game over to someone else and start to look outside of yourself for answers. I'm thoroughly convinced that the way to get out of this is to do it on your own…If he got away to a range he'd figure it out on his own. That's how you learn this game, by imitation, and then creation with imagination. We know he has the ability, but he's got so many thoughts in his head."
Even Woods' close friend, Notah Begay III, seems to be hedging his bets on whether a comeback is in Woods' future.
"Confidence is such an elusive thing for any athlete," he said. "You have to get positive reinforcement for any game you play. He's not getting that. He has to go on faith. He has to go on a belief that what he is doing and the choices that he's made are the right things for his game.
"He wants to stick this thing out, and I think we are going to see him stay on this course through the summer, through the next few events, and find out if he can turn any of this around in any way, shape or form."