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But the good news is I took the time to do some research for you, the golf fan. And I can now confirm this breaking news: The barbecue sandwich at Augusta National is very tasty. Now that the final group on the course is about to make the turn, it's time to discuss a point my buddy Casey brought up to me a little while ago: With what score today should we consider a player out of contention?
Now, Ernie Els at 6-over 78? Eh, getting a little closer to being out of it, but I'm not writing him -- or anyone else who shot that score -- off just yet. There's a lot of golf left to be played and with conditions this tough, a guy like Els can shoot 68, 69 tomorrow and find himself right back in the thick of things.
By the way, Woods' group, which also consists of Aaron Baddeley and Paul Casey, has yet to make one birdie today. That's some pretty heavy hitters without a red number. Tiger Woods just made a tough left-to-right slider to save par on That's nine pars and a bogey to stay at 1-over. Just hanging in there. Better believe he knows par is a great score today. Love this quote from Dean Wilson earlier today he shot What's it like out there?
I smell a goofy Golf Central piece for tonight. Somehow I've gone almost nine full hours without once mentioning Fred Couples' name. He's for in making the cut here, but there's a lot of adversity against him this time around, considering he's played just two rounds this year because of injury.
Freddie shot 4-over 76, which really isn't too bad today, all things considered, but the bogey on 16 and double on 18 aren't gonna sit too well tonight.
From the same spy who gave us the news that Olazabal actually used a wedge on the second green comes this report: He tapped it down with his foot and Olazabal's entire divot came up, stuck to his shoe" Augusta National officials can not be happy about that. Can they revoke playing privileges for a two-time champ? Casey Watabu's got his fingers crossed. Actually, he probably doesn't care Watabu shot 87, but Seve Ballesteros is hot on his heels, now over with two holes to play.
When the United States Ryder Cup team headed to Ireland with four rookies on its roster, it was widely thought that the team would get pummeled.
When the team did get pummeled, it was widely thought that the lack of experienced players contributed to the loss. But it also contributed to making those players much, much better.
Henry -- are all currently on the leaderboard and under par. It's pretty cool, if you think about it. These guys were good players before, but hardly great major guys; only Johnson had made the cut here before. Wetterich and Henry had never even played this event. As Wetterich moves to 3-under through 13 holes, I really think this is a noteworthy theme for Day 1.
OK, time for the trivia question of the day: Who can spot the most interesting theme to emerge in Round 1 of the Masters? In my opinion, at least. You're on the clock. Answer in five minutes An addition to the O'Hern comment on not being able to read some greens.
This comes from Scott Verplank, who knows a thing or two about putting, too: And this is my 12th Masters. Tiger follows his wayward tee shot on 7 by making bogey on the hole.
It's playing as one of the toughest -- if not the toughest -- hole on the course, so when you block your drive, you can't expect to save par. Interesting you'd mention Stadler. He's got the highest first score ever 75 for an eventual winner Looks like something like that is going to happen this year, too.
And keeps me from having to look it up later, which I appreciate. But there are plenty of guys at 74 or below -- and many more still on the course -- so I'm not too sure I'm ready to give you that one just yet.
I was chastised Wednesday by one reader who took exception to my comment that Nick O'Hern is one of the world's top putters. He did have some stats to back it up, but I've spoken with Nick's peers the past few years and they all know how deadly he is with that broomstick.
So it says a lot when a guy like O'Hern admits this after his round: Great birdie by Mickelson on the par-3 16th. That's two in a row. Don't count him out, folks. And an update on the Tiger birdies vs. No birdies through six holes.
Five strikeouts through five innings. Tiger just hit his tee shot waaaaaaayyyyyy right on No. One of those that was so bad he dropped the club right after impact. Sent patrons scurrying for cover, then running to stand next to his ball. Speaking of the old folks, how has no one mentioned to me yet that Fuzzy freakin' Zoeller is 1-under through seven holes!?
To me, that's a bigger surprise than Stadler or even Floyd.
Lightning City Gymnastics and Cheerleading
Think we'd have anything to talk about if Tiger and Fuzzy played in the final pairing Sunday? Flip-flops are against the dress code here at Augusta National well, for members and in the clubhouse, at leastbut we have a flip-flop atop the leaderboard, as Justin Rose and Jeev Milkha Singh have switched positions, putting Rose in first place at 3-under through OK, time to give some love to the old dudes.
Craig Stadler, who won here 25 years ago if that makes you feel old, raise your handis making the turn at 1-under And Raymond Floyd is now 1-over through 10, following his opening-hole bogey with nine straight pars and prompting this e-mail from Steve in Bermuda: Sure his six-pack is of the conventional variety, rather than Player's, and his bag probably smells like an ashtray, but heck, the old man's right in there with players who, literally, weren't born when Raymond was winning on the big tour!
Brett Wetterich has found his way onto the leaderboard. Coming off that gutty solo second finish at Doral -- where he beat Tiger,in the final pairing -- the Masters rookie made birdies on 7, 9 and 10 and is 2-under.
I'm not getting too excited yet. He has a tendency to go really low and really high. Expect Wetterich to make a big number before too long; it's just a matter of whether he can make a bunch of birdies to counteract it. Considering how many three-putts Phil Mickelson has taken today -- I don't have the exact number in front of me, but it's more than a few -- and noting the "SportsCenter" clip that showed his two daughters combining for an easy two-putt par at yesterday's Par-3 Tournament, Tom in Pittsburgh makes a good point: I think Phil's daughters putted better than him on the par-3 yesterday.
Are you suggesting that Sophia and Amanda should take the flatstick out of Dad's hands today? It's not that bad. Let's hear from Tim Clark, one of the clubhouse leaders at 1-under 71 and a player who has figured out a thing or two about this place: I was putting cautiously. I had chances, but I made a lot of good two-putt pars. I realized you don't have to go out and attack the golf course, especially on the first day.
He has never won on the PGA Tour, but he just might win a major someday. One more spy report: On the second hole, with his ball on the far right side of the green and the pin on the far left, Jose Maria Olazabal decided to use a wedge, taking a huge chunk out of the green. Can't imagine the members were too pleased about that, but JMO likely was -- he made birdie on the hole. Tiger Woods hit driver on the fairly short yards par-4 third hole.
He settled for par and is even-par through three. So, wanna know what it's like to play Augusta National for the first time in competition? How 'bout this from rookie Troy Matteson, who barely broke 80 today: Hit a lot of bad shots.
You do this on this golf course, it's pretty painful. I hit a lot of bad shots. It's a bitter golf course. It's going to make for a tough week. When you miss a shot, you get severely penalized.
It does reward some good shots. Lucas Glover has joined the group at 2-under, and he'd be a terrific story if he can play well this week. Not sure how many non-diehard golf fans know the story, but Glover's longtime coach, Dick Harmon son of great pro Claude, brother of Butch, Bill and Craigpassed away suddenly last year. Glover has remained close with the other Harmon brothers and joined them at last night's Golf Writers Association of America dinner in which they received the William D.
Richardson Award, given annually "to recognize individuals who have consistently made an outstanding contribution to golf. Josh in Raleigh e-mails: Looks like your prediction of high score totaling 85 is going down quicker than Ohio State against Florida This one hurts double, as I have to report that Casey Watabu -- the pride of Hawaii and my pick to be low am -- has finished the day with a over Josh in Raleigh also would like to point out that he's the first e-mailer to make this blog twice today.
We're all very proud of you. I've been told current co-leader Jeev Milkha Singh looks like a magician. Maybe it's the jacket; not sure I'm buying it. Then again, I don't know many magicians, either. Whatever the case, he's looking like a magician today, with two birdies in his first seven holes. Some other interesting Singh facts: And he's been a member of just about every major tour other than the PGA Tour. Not exactly laugh-out-loud stuff, but Eric in Battle Creek, Mich. I know, I know. But it was the funniest thing I'd gotten in the last four minutes, so I went with it.
You've got to be happy for Vaughn Taylor right now. OK, you don't have to be happy for him, but I'm happy. Good guy, Augusta native, this tournament means so much to him. This might be a little too insider, but what the heck. A few weeks ago, I contacted Taylor's agent to speak with him for a pre-Masters piece I was writing on the Augusta natives in the field. Five minutes later, Taylor called me. Doesn't always happen like that, but when a guy does that, well, you tend to root for him a bit harder the next time you see him.
My pick to win the Silver Cup as top amateur is getting absolutely Watabu'd right now. Hawaiian Casey Watabu is over through 16 holes. Cue Larry Beil, please: And the March to History begins!!
Here comes Tiger Woods, folks! He steps right up to the first hole and, unbelievably Sorry for the big buildup. I just had to do it. Yep, this thing is pretty much playing out as scripted, huh? Stat of the day so far: If Phil Mickelson and Ernie Els were playing a best-ball match together on the front side, they would have been even-par at the turn.
Mickelson shot 40; Els shot Remember, when Tiger won by 12 shots inhe shot a front-nine 40 on Thursday, too. A golden rule for the e-mailers: If you make me spit tuna from laughing, you get in the blog as long as it's clean. From one reader, on Sergio Garcia: What is with that gawd awful beard? He looks like a homeless man's Steve Bedrosian. But it's not nice. Due to some computer issues, the last hour or so was dictated to folks back in Bristol well, one folkbut I'm going to try to recover and finish my round strong.
Sorry for any delay. The president said that he ordered a "melon, cherry and lime-flavored" shave ice, which is not quite the "SnowBama," which Island Snow bills as a combo of lemon-lime, cherry and passion-guava syrups.
After savoring shave ice, Obama stepped outside the small store to greet about 40 people who had gathered when they realized the president was inside.
President Obama told onlookers that he could not take selfies but did end up posing for a few pictures with kids, according to a press pool report. The Obamas also dined late into the evening at Hoku's at the Kahala Hotel and Resort, which boasts on its website that it's "heralded for its innovative fusion fare" -- combining Hawaiian, Asian, Mediterranean and European flavors.
The eatery is widely regarded as one of Hawaii's finest restaurants and is located in perhaps the most ritzy neighborhood on Oahu. He even played through a rain storm. Thus far, the president has played four rounds of golf, gone on three hikes, went out for dinner twice, had one beach outing, and visited service members and their families at Marine Corps Base Hawaii.
In the midst of his holiday vacation with his family in HawaiiPresident Obama thanked U. During his remarks, Obama referenced the six U.
It gives me some inspiration. The Judd Trial "traverses through primarily bamboo, ironwood and eucalyptus forest" high above Honolulu, according to a local hiking website. The press didn't see them, but reporters traveling in the motorcade said it was raining up there during the hike. After hiking the trail, which was just under a mile long, they headed directly to the beach, the beach at Bellows Air Force Station to be exact.
They spent about 3 hours there before returning to their rental. It's billed as a trendy spot known for using local ingredients and serving Hawaiian cuisine. The White House releases a transcript of the calls and some of the exchanges could be filed under "kids say the darndest things.
And have a great Christmas in the morning," according to the transcript. Jill Biden released their holiday playlists. You may peruse the lists at http: After his minute workout, the president, joined by the first lady, opted for a hike -- a very steep one.
The Obamas scaled Kohelepelepe, or Koko Crater, a dormant cinder cone volcano on Oahu's southeast side.UCLA at ASU 2-4- 17 (1920x1080 4728K)
The trail runs about 1, feet up, and locals say it's a tough climb. Commercial real estate agent Bill Froelich was surprised to bump into the first couple at the summit. Obama are in great shape. I do this hike weekly and they did it very fast. I would say faster than 90 percent of people," said Froelich, who says he's been climbing the trail over the past nine years. They hustled to the top and took a nice family photo. Obama shook my hand.
And we exchanged Merry Christmases and a shaka. Obama and I exchanged Merry Christmases. I also thanked her for her involvement in Play 60 and childhood obesity. She said, 'Thank you,'" he said. The Obamas' hike took only about an hour up and down, and by a little after 12 p.
The president enjoyed a near-PGA moment as he sunk a chip from 40 feet on the 18th green. Obama's golf partners included childhood friends Greg Orme and Bobby Titcomb, as well as golf buddy Darrell Harrington. Obama started his day with his first trip to the gym this vacation, working out for about an hour at his usual gym on the grounds of the Marine Corps Base Hawaii. He was a hero at What's our excuse for not acting? Dobson, police say, was trying to shield three female friends from the gunfire when he was hit in the head late Thursday night.
Shortly after Obama tweeted, he departed his Kailua rental home in a light rain to take his family on a hike. The Hawaii Nature Center is a nonprofit dedicated to preserving areas of Oahu and Maui for connecting children with nature. The drive to the Nature Center took Obama by his childhood school, Punahou School, a private college prep institution where the president spent much of the s.
The first family ended their Sunday with dinner at Morimoto, one of their go-to spots on Waikiki Beach.