All interviews will be streamed live on PGATOUR.COM.
Tuesday, March 13
1:15 p.m. ET: Gary Woodland
2:30 p.m. ET: Lucas Glover
3 p.m. ET: Tom Lewis
Wednesday, March 14
11 a.m. ET: Harris English
12:30 p.m. ET: George McNeill
1 p.m. ET: Webb Simpson
TBD: Justin Rose
By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM
There are only two weeks left for players outside the top 64 in the Official World Golf Ranking to qualify for the World Golf Championships-Accenture Match Play Championship Feb 22-26 in Marana, Ariz. In other words, Vijay Singh and Padraig Harrington, among others, have some work to do.
Singh and Harrington are 69th and 90th, respectively, and in need of strong performances in one or more likely both of the next two weeks. Singh is in the field for this week’s Waste Management Phoenix Open, while Harrington has the week off.
Last year, Singh also failed to qualify.
Other notables on the outside looking in include Sean O’Hair (68th), Sony Open in Hawaii winner Johnson Wagner (70th) and last year’s Wells Fargo Championship winner Lucas Glover, who is 77th in the world and has yet to play this year after withdrawing from the season-opening Hyundai Tournament of Champions with a knee injury.
The player currently on the bubble at No. 64 is the Netherlands’ Joost Luiten. However with Phil Mickelson having already said that he plans to take that week off, the field would then extend to the 65th player in the world -- currently Rory Sabbatini.
Also among those outside the top 64: Kyle Stanley. The hard-luck loser of the Farmers Insurance Open is 87th in the world. Had he won at Torrey Pines, he would have moved up to 64th.
Others in more dire circumstances include Branden Grace, a two-time winner on the European Tour this year who has only climbed to 93rd; Camilo Villegas (99th); Anthony Kim (102nd); and Stewart Cink (138th).
Only once in Cink’s career has he failed to qualify for the WGC-Accenture Match Play Champisonhip, a tournament he’s been dominant in with six trips to at least the quarterfinals. On four of those occasions Cink reached at least the semifinals, including from 2008 to 2010 when he finished second, third and tied for fifth.
A paddleboard accident nearly two weeks ago has prompted Lucas Glover to withdraw from the Sony Open in Hawaii.
Glover fell off the board prior to last week's Hyundai Tournament of Champions and sprained the medial collateral ligament in his right knee. He withdrew from the season-opener on Friday but was hoping to be able to play at Waialae this week in the PGA TOUR's first full-field event.
Glover was replaced in the field by Roland Thatcher. According to the Associated Press, Glover hopes to be able to compete at the Farmers Insurance Open in two weeks.
KAPALUA, Hawaii -- Lucas Glover has withdrawn from the Hyundai Tournament of Championship after injuring his knee in a paddleboard accident over the weekend. There are now 27 players in the winners-only event.
“My foot caught on the edge of the board,” Glover told the Associated Press on Thursday. “My body went one way and my knee went the other. I knew immediately I had done a little something. I just wasn’t sure how bad.”
Glover had hoped to play in Thursday’s pro-am but when he went to the range he realized he couldn’t transfer his weight from the right side. He said he could have played “if you put a gun to my head,” but decided to rest instead in hopes of competing in the event.
Glover, who had difficulty even getting in his car, was scheduled to tee off at 11:35 a.m. local (4:35 p.m. ET) with Chris Kirk. He will not be replaced in the field and will share unofficial last-place money Fredrik Jacobson, Dustin Johnson and Brandt Snedeker.
First, Geoff Ogilvy. Now, Lucas Glover. The Hyundai Tournament of Champions has lost one of its marquee players for the second straight year due to a freak aquatic accident.
Glover sprained a ligament in his right knee over the weekend while paddleboarding in Hawaii. Glover, who won the Wells Fargo Championship last May, had to withdraw from Thursday's pro-am and told the Associated Press he was 50-50 at teeing it up on Friday in the first round of the PGA TOUR’s season opener.
Glover is an experienced paddleboarder. He said his foot caught on the board as he took a tumble and his body opted to go in a different direction. The disconnect had heavy consequences to the knee.
A year ago, Ogilvy, the two-time defending champion at Kapalua, sliced his finger on a coral reef prior to the start of the tournament. He had to withdraw and eventually missed the first month of the season.
Today's grouping features five players who know what it takes to win on the PGA TOUR.
Below is a link to each of the 5 players who were revealed on Saturday. PGATOUR.COM will countdown the players for the rest of December, with No. 1 unveiled on Dec. 30.
Be sure to check out this year’s new addition of the Three Wise Men – Chris DiMarco, Arron Oberholser and Craig Perks, who offer their takes on each of the players on the list.
Let’s us know how you think these players will perform in 2012 and whether we ranked ‘em too high, too low or just right.
By John Schwarb, PGATOUR.COM
When Bill Haas won the FedExCup and TOUR Championship by Coca-Cola Sunday at East Lake, it was only appropriate given the 2011 season that he did it with a belly putter in the bag.
But it was a wedge, not the putter, that was the story of the day.
Haas’ amazing water shot (watch it again here) was a priceless endorsement for Titleist Vokey wedges. With his 60-degree Vokey Design Spin Milled 60-E wedge (the “E” refers to the type of grind; this one was bent to 59 degrees per his preference, with seven degrees of bounce), Haas pulled off a shot that instantly became part of PGA TOUR lore.
“The full sole of the Vokey 60-E helped Bill pull off the shot," Vokey said on the Titleist Tour blog. "He was able to open up the face and still have enough bounce to play it like a bunker shot. The grooves of the wedge along with a descending blow allowed him to spin the ball, even out of the shallow water.
"It was an amazing shot, one of the best I've seen in all my years of watching TOUR players."
RENEWED: Dustin Johnson is in the market for a new caddie, but won’t be hunting for a new equipment or clothing deal anytime soon. Johnson, most recently a winner at The Barclays, signed a contract extension through the 2015 season with TaylorMade-adidas.
"Dustin tops the charts in terms of talent, potential and charisma," said Bob Maggiore, TaylorMade-adidas vice president of global brand marketing. "He has the ability and determination to win anytime, anywhere, and the way he’s handled both victory and adversity during his first few years on tour has won him a huge fan following, and rightly so. He’s the real deal.”
SWOOSH: If there was an equipment scoreboard in the PGA TOUR Playoffs for the FedExCup, Titleist would be the big winner with Haas and Webb Simpson (the Deutsche Bank Championship winner and pre-TOUR Championship No. 1 in points), while TaylorMade (Johnson, BMW champion Justin Rose) would come in second.
Nike Golf wouldn’t have been on the board.
None of its staff players qualified for the 30-man TOUR Championship. Charl Schwartzel, Lucas Glover and Jhonattan Vegas played at the BMW but failed to advance to the Playoffs finale.
Nike’s stable of players figure to have an enhanced presence in the Fall Series, however. Justin Leonard is fighting for a spot inside the all-important top 125, and of course Tiger Woods is teeing it up at the Frys.com Open.
RORY’S GIFT: Rory McIlroy’s relationship with tennis star Caroline Wozniacki is clearly healthy and happy – because what says true love like a hand-stamped wedge?
Wozniacki tweeted a picture earlier this week of a custom Titleist wedge McIlroy had made, featuring “WOZZILROY” stamped along the side of the clubhead.
No word on whether McIlroy has a similar wedge stamped “MCNIACKI.”
By John Schwarb, PGATOUR.COM
If Las Vegas could have put odds on the first two-putter bag on the PGA TOUR, Phil Mickelson probably would have been the even-money choice. After all, he had carried two drivers before.
That didn’t happen at the Deutsche Bank Championship, as Mickelson completely abandoned his blade for a belly. But there was another player on the fence just enough to carry two flatsticks in competition – Brandt Jobe.
As Doug Ferguson of the Associated Press reported, Jobe played the third round at TPC Boston with his conventional putter and a belly. He had used a belly a few years back but hadn’t quite recaptured the feel enough to fly solo with it, so his other putter came along for the ride just in case.
"I've been hitting it real good and putting so bad that the last month hasn't been fun," said Jobe, who’s moving on to the BMW Championship at No. 63 in FedExCup points. "It was getting to the end of the year and I had nothing to lose, but I didn't want to shoot 80 if it didn't go well."
Of course, there’s a drawback to a bag that’s 14 percent putters. The club that had to come out, a 4-iron, was dearly missed. Jobe said he needed it four times during the round.
NICE PROBLEM TO HAVE: Lucas Glover, a winner earlier this year at the Wells Fargo Championship, made a ball switch at the start of the PGA TOUR Playoffs for the FedExCup. He switched from Nike’s new 20XI ball to the older-model One Tour D.
He said he had been hitting shots too far.
Glover missed the cut at The Barclays, but dialing it back proved the right play at the Deutsche Bank, where he finished T21. He’s No. 45 in the FedExCup standings and will make at least one more Playoffs start.
MUSCLE UP: Ryan Moore isn’t one of the TOUR’s long bombers, so he looked to a beefed-up driver for help at TPC Boston. The Adams Speedline 9088 LDA is designed specifically for Long Drivers of America players, and only made in 5-, 6- and 7-degree lofts.
Moore used a 7-degree model with a high-torque UST Mamiya VTS Silver 6 tx shaft, which he said allowed for increased carry distances. He averaged 298.3 yards off the tee, 43rd-best in the 100-player field. For the season on TOUR he ranks 115th in driving distance, at 288.8 yards.
And, oh yeah, he finished T10 in the event, moving up to No. 39 in FedExCup points.
SMART SNEDS: Brandt Snedeker has become a strong candidate to win the FedExCup since switching from an older set of Bridgestone Tour Stage irons to J40 Cavity Back irons.
He started the Playoffs at No. 18 in points, but consecutive T3 finishes in the first two events have moved him to No. 5.
MORE PHIL: Mickelson’s belly putter was the prime topic of conversation at the Deutsche Bank. Golfweek’s James Achenbach shared the backstory of how it actually got in his hands.
Mickelson wanted an Odyssey Sabertooth model similar to Keegan Bradley’s, but the company doesn’t sell any lefthanded models. (Try finding a lefthanded long putter at your local golf shop.)
Fortunately the Sabertooth’s creator is lefthanded and had one in his office, so the putterhead was taken off and customized for Mickelson with a tungsten weight insert. The head came in at 392 grams and the completed putter was 45 1/4 inches long, an inch and a half shorter than Bradley’s.
EDISON, N.J. – Jonathan Byrd has joined Harrison Frazar and J.J. Henry in the lead at 5 under after making his third straight birdie at the 11th hole.
Byrd, who entered the Playoffs ranked 24th, started the spurt with a 13-footer at the ninth hole and followed it with a putt of 26 feet. The South Carolinian also made a birdie and a bogey on the front nine before getting back into red numbers with a 12-footer for eagle at the fifth hole.
Byrd got his 2011 season off to a great start when he beat Robert Garrigus in a playoff at the Hyundai Tournament of Champions. He was also in a playoff at the Wells Fargo Championship but that time his former college teammate Lucas Glover ended up getting the victory.