Rory McIlroy is in line to pick up some more honors in 2012. The United States Sports Academy has nominated McIlroy for its Male Athlete of the Year award. He's one of a dozen athletes -- including NBA star LeBron James, top-ranked tennis player Novak Djokovic and record-breaking footballer Lionel Messi -- to be in the running for this annual award. The USSA, in conjunction with NBC Sports, will reveal the award winner on Christmas Day, Dec. 25. Click here for more information, or to vote on the award. McIlroy also made the shortlist for the 2012 BBC Sports Personality of the Year award, joining 11 Olympic or Paralympic athletes. Cyclists Bradley Wiggins and Sir Chris Hoy, tennis star Andy Murray, athletes Jessica Ennis and Mo Farah, rower Katherine Grainger, boxer Nicola Adams and sailor Ben Ainslie are other hopefuls. Paralympians Sarah Storey, Ellie Simmonds and David Weir also make the list for the award, which will be announced on Dec. 16. While the shortlist was selected by a panel of experts, the winner will be decided by a public vote. For more information, click here McIlroy had four victories in 2012, including the PGA Championship in record fashion and a pair of FedExCup Playoffs events. He had 10 top-10 finishes in all and is one of the nominees to win PGA TOUR player of the year.
By Brian Wacker, PGATOUR.COM
THOUSAND OAKS, Calif. -- Steve Stricker hasn’t played golf since the U.S. lost the Ryder Cup two months ago outside Chicago.
“It still lingers,” Stricker said Tuesday from the World Challenge presented by Northwestern Financial. ”That wasn’t much fun the way it ended.”
None of it, at least inside the ropes, was fun for Stricker, who failed to earn a point in four matches, which included going 0-for-3 alongside Tiger Woods. Stricker said the loss hurt more than anything else in his 24 years on the PGA TOUR, including the years in which he lost his card.
“I feel a lot of responsibility for not winning a point,” Stricker said. “I still think about it a lot, and there are reminders all over the place. Every corner I take (at home), there’s a picture from the Ryder Cup or a present or something.”
Stricker added that he wouldn’t have changed anything about the experience -- other than the outcome.
He was so haunted by the defeat, he had trouble sleeping the first two weeks after the historic collapse.
“I think it still hurts a lot of us just because how it all played out,” said Stricker, who never had more than a 1-up lead in any of his matches and who trailed for much of them.
If there’s a moment that sticks out in particular, it came on the 17th hole on Sunday against Martin Kaymer.
Stricker hit his tee shot through the green on the par-3 and failed to get up and down to save par. Kaymer made his par to take a 1-up lead he would never relinquish.
“I haven’t watched it,” Stricker said of the matches. “I don’t plan on watching it.
“I feel a lot of responsibility there just because I didn’t do anything for the team.”
As for playing on the next team when he’ll be 47 years old, the wounds of this loss are still too fresh for Stricker to think that far ahead.
“Not right now,” he said. “I’ve had a good run with it. It’s been a lot of fun. Yeah, you know what, I don’t know. It still stings. It’s not a fair question at this time.”