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The Numbers Game

Tiger and Jack

Aug. 10, 2006     By     Comments (22)

The Numbers GameSince everyone is on the Tiger train this week, I thought I'd jump aboard. Cody wrote a great article earlier in the week and so did Gary Van Sickle over at CNNSI. Gary stole some of my numbers thunder, but I have some other interesting nuggets to share this week in The Numbers Game about Tiger at 50… wins that is.

Since Jack Nicklaus is constantly disparaging Tiger's achievements, I thought I'd do a bit of a comparison between the two. Even though it's difficult to compare golfers from different eras, the results can still be quite revealing. For me, it has cleared the picture up a bit more and prepared the stamp "Greatest Golfer of All Time" for Tiger Woods.

Read on to see what I mean.

Top Ten Courses I’d Love to Play

Aug. 3, 2006     By     Comments (8)

The Numbers GameOf course there are more than ten, but I thought about this the other day and it got me going. One can only hope to play just a few of the great golf courses in their life. I have a few that are realistic and a few that are not but this is a list of those I'd like to play, not a list of those that I can play.

This week in The Numbers Game, it's a top ten list of courses I want to play. (By the way, any help in playing these courses is appreciated… <grin>).

British Open Nuggets

Jul. 27, 2006     By     Comments (3)

The Numbers GameI thought the Open Championship at Hoylake was one of the better Opens in recent memory. Tiger showed what his greatest asset is: his mind. He didn't have to overpower the course, just take what it gave him… and it gave him a lot of stinger 2-irons.

This week in The Numbers Game I'll take a look at a few of the numbers from and related to the Open Championship. Also, I'll see if The 40-30-20-10 Rule holds up for a tournament on a links style course.

Thoughts on Hoylake

Jul. 20, 2006     By     Comments (0)

The Numbers GameWe get to see a new 'old' course on the rotation this year. We're used to seeing the names St. Andrews, Muirfield, and something with a Royal on the front of it. The 2006 British Open will be contended on another Royal course, but it is known as something else.

Royal Liverpool Golf Club is the official name of the course commonly called "Hoylake." The British Open was last played there in 1967 and is back after a 39-year absence. There aren't many numbers out there to research, but there were a few things about Hoylake and the British Open to consider in this week's The Numbers Game.

Drop In Distance

Jul. 13, 2006     By     Comments (3)

The Numbers GameLast year, one of The Sand Trap's favorite golf course architects had a regular update his site about the number of players averaging over 300 yards on the PGA Tour. This year, he's spared us from such updates. I didn't really understood why until I took a closer look.

There were 26 players last year averaging over 300 yards per drive. This year, it has dropped to eleven. This week in The Numbers Game I'll look not only at the longer players, but the rest of the tour to see if the drop in distance is spread out and how it affects another stat.

2006 U.S. Open Numbers

Jun. 22, 2006     By     Comments (2)

The Numbers GameThe U.S. Open produces some of the most interesting golf all year long. In a tournament where par is a great score, it is always fun to view the aftermath.

This year, we have some new words because of Winged Foot's 18th hole. "A Phil," or a "Monty"… maybe a "Phonty" can be defined as letting an Aussie win a major championship after throwing up all over oneself. Any way you describe it, the U.S. Open has provided many interesting factoids for this week's The Numbers Game.

The Modern Open and Majors

Jun. 15, 2006     By     Comments (2)

The Numbers GameIn 1974, Sandy Tatum was in charge of setting up Winged Foot for the U.S. Open. A quote he gave that week has become a mantra for all succeeding Opens: "We're not trying to humiliate the best players in the world. We're simply trying to identify who they are."

To his credit, the USGA did just that. It took the massacre at Winged Foot to stamp it down. There really isn't a question now that the U.S. Open has been and is now the toughest golf tournament in the world with the best regularly surfacing to the top. This week in The Numbers Game, I'll look at events leading up to and after the defining moment of U.S. Open golf and also compare this major with the others since that point in history.

Reader Email, Volume One

Jun. 8, 2006     By     Comments (4)

The Numbers GameA popular sports radio host says "if you take the time to email me, I'll take the time to read it." The same goes for me. Of course, he probably gets tens of thousands more emails than me. Still, I do read and think about the emails I receive, and I encourage you to send me more. Our email addresses can be found on the staff page.

Over the past few weeks, two emails in particular have inquired about The 40-30-20-10 Rule. Recently, I applied the rule to the LPGA and to the Champions Tour. Both emails posed questions or suggestions that I thought I'd answer here.

Do Seniors Follow the Rule?

Jun. 1, 2006     By     Comments (2)

The Numbers GameIf you were like me and many other golf fans, you spent Sunday afternoon watching an exciting finish to the Senior PGA Championship. Both Brad Bryant and Jay Haas made nerve wracking birdie putts on the final hole of regulation to send the championship into extra holes.

During those three holes, Haas spent most of the time scrambling around and sinking longer putts to keep himself alive. Bryant, on the other hand, could not rekindle the magic he had on #18 in regulation and lost the tournament by missing a four footer on the last playoff hole, which happened to be #18 again.

This week in The Numbers Game, I thought it would be an appropriate time to take the 40-30-20-10 rule and see if it applies to the Senior PGA players as well as it does to the PGA Tour and LPGA Tour. We saw just how important the 30 (putting) was in those final few holes. Will the others fall into their normal place? Read on to find out.

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