Originally created 01/31/98

Celebrities are one of the big attractions at AT&T



PEBBLE BEACH, Calif. -- It's not just the unpredictable coastal weather that makes the AT&T Pebble Beach National Pro-Am unique. It's also the suspense as Jack Lemmon tries once again to make the cut.

Lemmon, one of the most popular celebrities in the annual event that pairs professional golfers with amateurs, has not advanced to the final round in some two-dozen tries, dating back to when the tournament was known as the Bing Crosby National Pro-Am.

Would this be Lemmon's year?

"Hopefully," the actor said as he warmed up on the putting green Friday at Spyglass Hill.

The fans were encouraging, offering a warm round of applause when Lemmon teed off. "Make the cut, Jack!" one yelled.

Lemmon was paired with pro Peter Jacobsen, who won at Pebble Beach in 1995. They played in a foursome with pro Scott McCarron and singer Huey Lewis.

Andy Garcia, last year's winner in the Pro-Am division, was paired again with Paul Stankowski, in a foursome with fellow actor Kevin Costner and pro John Cook. Not surprisingly, their galleries were made up largely of women.

"Over here, Mr. Costner! Please!" shouted one autograph seeker.

Costner caused a stir last year when he was teamed with Tiger Woods, attracting large noisy galleries that concerned security officials and annoyed other golfers.

Woods was playing this year with his father, Earl. Despite the change in partners, Woods still was the biggest draw among fans.

Galleries for the talented young pro numbered in the hundreds, with some fans climbing trees to get a better view. In the gift shop, small stuffed tigers wearing Pebble Beach T-shirts were the hot souvenirs.

Comedian Bill Murray, playing with pro Scott Simpson, attracted crowds still enamored with Murray's portrayal of Carl the groundskeeper in the movie "Caddyshack."

"This is what makes Pebble Beach Pebble Beach," said spectator Alan Peters. "The mud and the stars."

The sloppy course was still a big factor Friday, after heavy rain and hail pushed back the start of the tournament Thursday. Because of the delay, golfers played nine-hole rounds on each of the two days, with a full 18 set for Saturday.

PGA officials had not yet determined whether the tournament would conclude after 54 holes on Sunday, or be extended to Monday to get in the full 72 holes.

It didn't seem to matter to most of the celebrities, who appeared genuinely excited to be playing alongside the pros. San Francisco 49ers receiver Jerry Rice happily obliged autograph seekers.

Other star golfers included actors Joe Pesci, Michael Douglas and James Woods; business leaders Donald Trump and Charles Schwab; and singers Vince Gill and Alice Cooper.