I am pretty sure Keegan Bradley got a text from Ponte Vedra late Sunday afternoon summoning him to the principal’s office. After watching Keegan repeatedly drool on his Tommy Hilfiger shirt over the last nine holes Tim Finchem had to be concerned about stemming the rash of young players projecting lugies during PGA broadcasts. This is a sport where they have shoved the chain smokers into a closet forcing them to hide their butts in their palms while on camera.
Keegan is bad enough with his shpilkus pre-shot routine-it brings back bad memories of Sergio’s 47-Waggle days. But the spitting is downright gross. Either they need to outfit Keegan with a Hilfiger drool bib and a spittoon on his golf bag or get him to learn to do his business behind a tree before he picks his club. If the young kids pick up on this there won’t be a dry place for the Canadian Geese poop on the fairways of courses in the northeast.
Other than that the Northern Trust Open at Riviera was Survivor Pacific Palisades in Soft Spikes. Following the horde of contenders on the back nine was like watching the hockey coaches try to tip toe to the bench in their leather loafers after the Zamboni Machine has done it’s due diligence between periods. The chilly temperatures, encroaching gum trees, and some seriously punitive George Thomas bunkers left a pile of dazed guys lying flat on their backs staring up at the bottom of the Jumbo-Tron.
In the end it was Mickelson and Bradley’s improbable birdies on eighteen-there were only eight all day on the finishing hole and two of them came in this last group-that forced a playoff with the Fed Ex Cup Champ Bill Haas. The playoff was decided on the short and treacherous tenth hole when all three players, knowing it was going to take a three to end the drama, tried to drive it on the green but put themselves in some serious bother. Haas went for the croquet up and down pitching away from the hole and then buried a side-slinging 43-footer for the birdie and the win.
Finchem has to be pleased with the Sunday drama his sport has provided these last few weeks, but I think he will be considering adding the Emily Post Handbook to the welcome pack for the players next year.