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Thursday, January 18, 2007

DD Looking Sharp in the Desert

It might have been obscured by Robert Allenby's blistering 63 yesterday, but David Duval got off to a very clean start at the Hope Classic yesterday. He shot five under with no bogeys.

As most people remember, DD put together a very promising comeback campaign in 2006. He's only played one round, but it looks like he might be able to build on last year and make some serious noise in 2007. No one's ever questioned his talent, but his drive and his confidence definitely took a hit from 2002-2005. It looks like he has found both of those important elements again.

Networked Golfer roots for several players every week they tee it up, and DD is one of them. Here are a few of the others (in no particular order):

1) Jason Gore
2) Ernie Els
3) Charlie Wi
4) Ryan Moore
5) Stuart Appleby
I know there are lots of Tiger and John Daly fans out there, but I'm wondering who else (underdogs, maybe?) people root for. Let me know!

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Bayonne Makes T&L Golf List

My brother Jimmy is a member at Bayonne Golf Club. Needless to say, it's an incredible track, made even better because of its location along the Hudson River. It has views of the New York skyline from almost every hole, but the course doesn't rely on the views for the accolades it's been receiving. I played it this past summer with Jimmy, Tim Maxwell and Jack Hession, and I owe everyone a post about the experience. It will be coming soon.

In the meantime, I received my new issue of Travel & Leisure Golf in the mail today, and it lists Bayonne as one of the Top 10 New Courses in the World. Nice work, Jimmy. When am I going to be invited back to play?

Monday, January 15, 2007

No More Michelle Wie Bashing

This blog is officially a Bash Free Zone for Michelle Wie. It's a place for her to take refuge from her many critics in the media.

On Networked Golfer, Michelle can forget her most recent train wreck at the Sony Open, where she finished Friday 14 shots outside of the cut and 25 shots out of the lead. Here, she can tune out everyone who says she shouldn't be playing with the men. Our site is a respite from the harrowing memories Michelle must be experiencing from embarrassing herself a few months ago in Japan, Europe, and Pennsylvania, where she finished last or second to last against the men. Networked Golfer can be Wie's sanctuary from her inconsistent overall game and lackluster putting that plagued the second half of her 2006 LPGA campaign.

Sorry we can't help her hide out from her overbearing, know-it-all father, B.J. Wie. He's the one responsible for getting her into this mess in the first place.

My prediction for her in '07 is that she wins once on the LPGA at a weak field event, but she will continue to struggle. And, her sponsor exemptions on the guy's tour will start to dry up (it's about time). If she wins nothing, she could go into such a tailspin that she'll become the Jennifer Capriati of women's golf.

Like I said, we're not bashing her here...

Thursday, January 11, 2007

More Gorman Bros. Invitational Draft Details

After the draft party on April 27th, teams will be able to trade players. The trade deadline will be midnight Friday.

It has been suggested by Mike Grady that we incorporate a "combine" into draft day. He recommends that each player hit 5-10 shots at the range in front of the discerning eyes of the team captains. I think this is a good idea. A player's stock can go up or down as a result of such a workout, so this feature will bring extra credibility to the process.

As Player-GMs, the captains will not have to workout at the combine. I see this as a positive for a short-knocker like me.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

Draft Will Be Used at 2007 Gorman Brothers Invitational

Though the details are still muddy, the 2007 version of the Gorman Brothers Invitational on April 28th will feature a draft to determine the four-man teams. This idea was brought to the table over the weekend by my brother Patrick.

The number of captains is obviously contingent upon how many players enter, but it has been decided that the captains will definitely be:

1) Me (Charter Member)
2) Patrick Gorman (Charter Member)
3) Jim Borger (Charter Member)
4) Jim Tyre (Charter Member)
5) Jimmy Gorman
6) Tubby Gorman
7) Billy Murphy (Charter Member) - if he shows up for the weekend

Alternate captains will be chosen by seniority and family affiliation. It's not the golf mafia, but there are similarities. The draft order will be determined by a putting contest on Friday afternoon, and the Draft Party will be held on Friday night, April 27th.

Any ideas to help us hash out the finer points are welcome in the comments section below.

Monday, January 08, 2007

Watching Pros Play for Each Others' Money Would Be MONEY!!

Golf gets a lot of kudos for being a sport in which prize money (or salary) is not guaranteed. The players on the PGA Tour and all of the lesser tours have to qualify for each tournament, pay an entry fee, pay for their travel to the tournament, and then play well enough to make the cut. Otherwise, they slam their trunks on Friday afternoon with significantly lighter wallets.

I think the play-for-pay format is terrific. Aside from sponsorships, there are really no guarantees and no long-term deals. Signing bonuses just don't happen in golf, because each player is his own team. The players like to call themselves "independent contractors", and in a way, that's exactly what they are.

However, wouldn't it be more exciting if they were playing with their own money instead of the millions of dollars put up by the tournament sponsor?

My idea is to round up a bunch of hot-shot players (a field of 125 would be fine) and have them play with their own dough, much like us hackers do. That would be real pressure.

I haven't decided on a format, but they could all post their own cash and play a Calcutta, or they can set up a bracket like in the Match Play events and bet predetermined sums of money each round. As they move through the tournament, they would play for more of their own money.

When a sponsor ponies up $6 million for everyone to play for, it's like playing with house money. How cool would it be if they were staking themselves against the field? I think it would create huge interest from fans and would make for compelling television. They could play it in the Bahamas or Costa Rica where gambling isn't an obstacle.

Thoughts on how it would be set up?

Thursday, January 04, 2007

Gotta Love Fantasy Golf

Today is the first round of the Mercedes Championship at the Plantation Course at Kapalua. Stuart Appleby is again the defending champion, but the most exciting thing about the start of the season is that it also begins the Fantasy Golf season.

A few years ago I began playing fantasy golf on My friend Jack Hession turned me on to the fantasy game on last year. I think I ended the year in 4th place (out of 12), but I'm not satisfied. This season I will dominate.

It sounds kind of goofy to play fantasy golf, but it's actually really fun and a great way to stay on top of the goings-on of the Tour. It's not too late to start, so email me if you want to get into our group. There's a decent chunk of change at stake for the winners.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

I Love Global Warming

I'm not convinced that the earth is experiencing warming caused by the emissions of greenhouse and other gases. However, if we are indeed experiencing the onset of a prolonged period of warming (for whatever reason), I'm all for it.

Global Warming = More Golf!

The last few weeks have been unseasonably warm (50s and 60s), and I even played on Christmas Eve in Pennsylvania. This Saturday, I'm hoping to play outside of Baltimore, as it's going to be around 65 degrees.

As 2007 begins, let's resolve to stop worrying about global warming and rejoice in its benefits.