Better Than Caffeine


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Carla Gugino turns 44. 35.5-25-35. American actress. 

Entourage, Night at the Museum, Watchman, Sin City, San Andreas, Spy Kids trilogy

Italian, English-Irish mix. Valedictorian in high school. Discovered by Elite Modeling agency as a teen, but ultimately deemed too short for runway work. 

"I'm a sensualist. My two main indulgences are dark chocolate and massages."

Enjoy the weekend.


"Are You Kidding Me? All Of That...After THAT?" player Peter Malnati found himself in a water hazard. Tried to play it out. Cue possible mud and white outfit interracting. 

Which led to this. 

Malnati went on to quad the hole. And make a nice contribution to his dry cleaning fund. 


The Precarious Bromance Of Player And Caddie


Scott 1's Cameron Morfit profiles the iffy relationships between golfer and caddie

The ones that caught my interest were those that included several breakups and reunions. 

Never say never in possibly the most precarious partnerships in sports. 

Richard Burton and Liz Taylor married and divorced each other twice. So did Don Johnson and wife/ex-wife/wife/ex-wife Melanie Griffith. But they were amateurs compared with Ernie Els and Ricci Roberts. Since the two first got together in 1992, four-time major champion Els, 45, and his longtime caddie and friend Roberts, 50, have split up and reunited…well, no one's quite sure how many times, exactly.

"After the third time, we stopped counting," Els says with a rueful smile. "Sometimes it was a pure frustration thing, and other times it was health- and injury-related. There were a couple of pure firings. But we're like family. He was with me when his first child was born."

"I've had more comebacks than Sinatra!" says Roberts, who guesses he's won "about 58" events with Els, including the Big Easy's majors.

Although Vijay Singh and Paul Tesori promised each other that their second partnership wouldn't revert to the way it was, old habits die hard. Having amassed six wins in their first collaboration, they raked in six more the second time around. The bad news? Singh, as driven as ever, was still dragging Tesori to the range on their off weeks.

"After another year and a half, I quit," Tesori says. "[Going back] was a decision I never liked. I did it for the money, the notoriety and the respect, and none of those were the right reasons. Jerry Kelly was top 30 in the world at the time, we'd done the 2003 Presidents Cup, and he was treating me well. It was something I said I wouldn't do again. When it's time to split up, it's time to split up."

If absence makes the heart grow fonder, so, too, does familiarity breed contempt. Ray Floyd once estimated that he fired his caddie, Dolphus "Golf Ball" Hull, six times, but joked that his wife, Maria, hired Hull back seven times. No one is immune from the madness, no matter the era. Before joining Els, Byrne did two stints with young Brit Tom Lewis.

"The most important thing as a caddie is to not burn bridges," Byrne says.


How Did This Golfer's Bag And Clubs End Up Here?


First question that comes to mind: How did this golfer's clubs end in the drink?

Watching him fish out the push cart, bag and sticks begs for answers. 


Better Than Caffeine



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Barbara Bach turns 70 (!) Saturday. 36-24-32. American actress.

The Spy Who Loved Me, Force 10 From Navarone, The Unseen, The Great Alligator

Married the Beatles drummer Ringo Starr in 1981. Sister-in-law of the Eagles guitarist Joe Walsh. Received a Masters Degree in Psychology from UCLA in 1993.



Is Bypassing College To Turn Tour Pro A Prudent Choice?


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The road to riches and fame is alluring but also a precarious rocky road. In golf, there are no guarantees (outside of some promised sponsor exemptions) as you have to earn your way to the Big Show via mathematical reality. 

18-year-old Austin Connelly from Irving, Texas carries dual citizenship in the U.S. and Canada. He was on the Golf Canada Natioanl Amateur squad and is exempt from the pre-qualifying stages for its Q-School via making two cuts this year on the PGA Tour. 

Committed to the University of Arkansas, Connelly then asked several Tour players--including Jordan Spieth--about their thoughts on going pro immediately. 

The result? Goodbye Arkansas. Hello, Mackenzie Tour's PGA TOUR Canada’s Great Waterway Classic. Anyone heard of the Mackenzie Tour? I surely did not. 

Oh, and he coincidentally signed with Spieth's management company Lagardère Unlimited.

“I knew my path was not going to be by the traditional route. I felt it was time to be a full-time golfer,” Connelly explained. “I feel like my game is already good enough to be out here, it’s just a matter of taking advantage of opportunities.”

He lost in the first round of the U.S. Amateur last week, but said if he had made it to the finals, he would have stayed an amateur in order to participate in the Masters.

“That’s too good an opportunity to pass up,” he said.

“At some of the amateur events, you find yourself bored. It’s such an incredible atmosphere on TOUR and on the amateur circuit sometimes you’re not playing in front of anybody, even though you’re playing these incredible course,” Connelly said. “Once you get a taste of the TOUR, that’s where you want to be.”

There are certainly successful examples of young bucks going pro and bypassing college. The 2014 Euro Ryder Cup team had only one player attend college (Graeme McDowell). But that Tour is far chummier than its PGA Tour counterpart. The competition isn't as stout either. Danny Lee learned over on the Asian Tour. 

Jordan Spieth and Tiger Woods at least attended college for a bit. Have fun. Be a kid. And if you consistently beat the other college golfers, then go pro. Which makes you wonder what Jordan suggested to Connelly. 

Austin Connelly is a good kid from a great family. And sure, the lure of the Tour is strong and intoxicating. But, there's plenty of time for him to mature a bit before swimming with the professional sharks. Ty Tryon is the leading example of why you shouldn't rush it when he infamously attempted to (while receiving millions in endoresments) gain Tour status before burning out in quick fashion.

Hopefully, this kid made the right decision.  


Tiger Woods New Restaurant Reviewed


Woods Jupiter

Tiger Woods' new eatery The Woods Jupiter gets reviewed by Josh Sens at 

Gotta love the "new wife smell" description of the female customers...

It’s 5 p.m. -- discounted calamari! -- but to call it “happy hour” is an understatement. The vibe at The Woods Jupiter: Sports and Dining Club (catchy, right?) verges on euphoric. A pop soundtrack pounds from unseen speakers. Cocktails clink. Flatware clatters. Conversations swirl around a single subject, which is not the blue cheese crumble on the deep-fried squid.

I squeeze my way up front, through a scrum of silver foxes and platinum blonds. The scene is moneyed Florida in microcosm, as if a nightclub mated with a country club. Many of the men look like Ted Bishop. Many of the women have that new-wife smell.

“Think he’ll be here tonight?” I ask the bartender, a comely twenty-something who, like all the staffers, wears sports attire adorned with swooshes. Hers: a Nike golf skirt and black Nike top. Natalie Gulbis would play her in the movie.

She cups an ear. I repeat the query.

“Who’s he?” she answers coyly, and hands me a margarita that’s only a shade smaller than the Claret Jug.

I scan the four-page menu, the appetizers hovering mostly in the teens, the entrees largely in the $20 to $40 range. No Cablinasian chicken salad, but there is almost everything else: lobster-crab cakes and shrimp cocktails; tuna clubs and tacos; wood-fired flatbreads and French onion soup.

Tiger sightings have been scarce. She then repeats a rumor I’ve heard several times: that Tiger comes and goes by way of secret elevator, which leads upstairs to a private dining room. Such gossip rubs against the facts cited by Woods spokesman Glenn Greenspan, who says there’s no lift in the restaurant, only an elevator that takes patrons to the parking garage.


How One Measly Shot Hurt This Golfer


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Newly turned pro Ollie Schniederjans' chances looked pretty good to gain entry into the Fall Wraparound season's four events. 

GolfChannel's Ryan Lavner reports on the cruel confluence of reasons leaving Ollie on the outside looking sadly in. It's a long frustrating tale of what-ifs. And why each shot matters. 

If he finished one shot better at the Canadian Open – where was five back heading into the final round in his pro debut – then he would have had enough points to qualify for the Finals. 

If he finished one shot better at the Quicken Loans National – where he had a two-shot lead through 31 holes – then he would have enough points. 

If he finished one shot better at the Wyndham – where he was inside the cut line heading to his 36th hole – then he would have had enough points. 

Heck, if he finished one shot better at the Open Championship – where he tied for 12th as an amateur – then he would be exempt at Royal Troon next year.   

The Wyndham was the final blow. 

Playing on sponsor exemptions this summer, he began the week with 99 non-members points and basically needed to make the cut in Greensboro to continue his season. (The equivalent of a T-66 finish would have been enough.) After an opening 71 in easy conditions, he was 4 under for his second round and safely inside the cut line when he lined up his second shot on the ninth hole, his 18th of the day. He caught a flier from the first cut, his ball sailed over the green, and he had no shot to get the ball close. The bogey capped a Friday 67 and put him on the cut line at 2 under. 

Schniederjans looked safe for the weekend – and for a spot in the Finals – until Roberto Castro, another Georgia Tech alum, stuffed his final approach to a foot in the last group of the day. That single-handedly moved the cut back to 3 under, and Schniederjans was out.

But there’s more: Erik Compton withdrew prior to the start of the third round, citing a sore left ankle. Had he withdrawn before the end of the second round, the 36-hole cut would have moved back to 2 under and allowed 19 players – including Schniederjans – to move on. 

“I was devastated,” he said. “I was crushed.” 

Now, instead of a shot to earn his PGA Tour card through the four-event series, he has three weeks off and no status on any major tour. 




Better Than Caffeine


Blake -livelyBlake1

Blake Lively turns 28. 35-25-36. American actress/model. 

Gossip Girl, Savages, Green Lantern, The Town

Didn't even audition for role in The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants. Just left her photo and got the part. The role was her big break into the biz. Married to actor Ryan Reynolds. Ranked #4 on Maxim magazine's Hot 100 Women of 2010 list. 

"Yeah, I don't comment on my relationships... My anonymity is something I treasure. Wanting to be an actor and wanting to be famous are different."


Is The PGA Tour Shunning It's Young Stars?



Good thought-provoking article on regarding how the PGA Tour commissioner Tim Finchem's wraparound season is hurting those young stars the Tour desperately needs to insure continued fan and sponsor interest moving forward. 

One can kneejerk and say the Tour is a closed shop, making it decidedly tougher for young guns to find their place. The elimination of the Q-School (for the PGA Tour but keeping it for the, and the new wraparound season has caused new emerging players to go overseas (Brooks Koepka and Peter Uihlein) to gain experience and fund their careers. 

However, the wraparound does give those tournament sponsors some added incentive to cough up additional purses since their events are more significant than before. I'm not a big fan of Finchem, but his main purpose is to increase sponsorship involvement--and increase money--to keep the Tour thriving. 

It's a slippery slope for sure, but somehow the cream does rise eventually. It's just not as quick as many would hope.

Koepka then rode his way into some PGA Tour events by cracking the world top 50, played just well enough, and made it to the PGA Tour as a "member." But it was far from easy and a few shots here and there could have the American still playing in Europe with his buddy Uihlein. As it stands, Koepka should be on the cusp of making the Presidents Cup team on points, but because of the "membership" situation in 2013-14, is missing out on key points.

Sadly, Koepka’s case is a minor blip compared to the embarrassing situation involving Patrick Rodgers (Stanford)and the unfortunate luck of Ollie Schniederjans (Georgia Tech). Both are immensely talented young American college golf-grads whose clubs will be collecting dust the next few weeks because of the entire debacle that is Tim Finchem’s wraparound schedule.

You may recall that Phil Blackmar wrote eloquently about how the end of Q-School would close the door to emerging talents, and with the recent situations involving Rodgers and Schniederjans, the reality has become painfully obvious. I wrote last year about Rodgers and what it would take for him to get to the tour, yet even as well as the Stanford graduate has played, it's still not been enough to get him into the almighty playoffs. Membership in the club should not be a playoff priority, accomplishments should. 

Good stuff to ponder, but don't expect anything to change in the near future. Finchem will continue to fund the Tour at the expense of those talented prospects. Money now. Players later. 

Priorities, priorities. 


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