Joined The Augusta Chronicle in 1996 after spending nine years at The Aiken Standard. Served as copy editor, South Carolina bureau chief and Metro Editor before being named Sports Editor in April 2000.
Posted June 7, 2011 10:40 pm

Majors aren't same without Tiger

I didn't care much for Tuesday's big sports news: Tiger Woods is skipping next week's U.S. Open because of his ailing knee.

I know there are tons of good stories to write about in the 156-player field, but Tiger is the most interesting to me. Love him or hate him, no one moves golf's needle like Tiger. Golf's biggest storyline over the next few years will be Tiger's pursuit of Jack Nicklaus's record of 18 majors.

Deep down, though, I know it was the right decision for him. It must kill him to miss a major, and it only means he is missing another opportunity to break out of his slump that has lasted more than 18 months.

But let's be honest. This version of Woods probably was probably not going to be a strong contender to win, not after he withdrew from The Players Championship after shooting 42 on his opening nine. He tweaked a variety of ailments in a little over two hours at Sawgrass, so there's no telling what damage he could have done trying to hit out of the junk at Congressional Country Club.

Here's hoping that Tiger resolves his health issues, and soon. I look forward to the chase.

Congrats to ASU

OK, I admit it. I was one of the nonbelievers who didn't think Augusta State could repeat as NCAA champion in golf.

But I'm glad I was wrong.

The Jaguars beat two in-state rivals and the host team after making it into the match play portion. Now, coach Josh Gregory is leaving for SMU and the five players who hoisted the trophy won't be back. But that doesn't mean they can't make it back to the NCAAs next year. Plenty of talent is on campus or on the way, I'm told.

Gamecocks move on

South Carolina's baseball team was the only one of our big four colleges to advance to the NCAA Super Regionals this weekend.

The Gamecocks only need to beat UConn this weekend to advance to Omaha, Neb., and the College World Series.

I'm not sure the Gamecocks have the pitching depth to go all the way as they did a year ago, and the loss of Jackie Bradley Jr. was a blow to the offense. So I'm saying South Carolina makes it to Omaha but doesn't quite make it.

But, hey, what do I know?