Category: TPC Sawgrass

March 12, 2013

Video: Crane and Cauley play night golf at TPC Sawgrass

Posted at 9:15 AM by Coleman McDowell

Ben Crane missed the cut at the 2012 Players Championship played at the TPC Sawgrass in Ponte Vedra Beach, Fla. He earned a small token of redemption by defeating fellow PGA Tour member Bud Cauley in a head-to-head matchup on the same course last week.

Only this time, it was in the dark.

To promote Tiger Woods PGA Tour 14 and the EA SPORTS Night Golf Challenge, Crane and Cauley played the final three holes at TPC Sawgrass under the aid of glow-sticks, light-up golf balls and tiki torches in a battle of night golf.

Crane bogeyed No. 18, but won a playoff to claim the Night Golf Challenge Championship.

January 10, 2013

Police find meth lab at Sawgrass Marriott: Truth & Rumors

Posted at 11:50 AM by Samantha Glover

Police discovered a meth lab in a hotel room at the Sawgrass Marriott Resort & Spa, which has a close working relationship with the PGA Tour's Players Championship on the famed Stadium Course, according to Action News Jacksonville.

Sgt. Chuck Mulligan tells Action News a man and a woman checked into the resort. The credit card they used made security suspicious that there could be a fraud issue.

Security went to investigate more, that's when deputies say a security guard noticed equipment that is used for cooking meth. Mulligan says the security guard is a former law enforcement officer who knew the signs of a meth lab and called the Sheriff's Office.

Deputies say the lab was in the process of actively cooking drugs when it was discovered.

Five rooms near the meth lab were evacuated as HAZMAT crews went in to begin the cleaning process. Mulligan says the cleanup was difficult, because the room is on an upper floor and crews had to bring in pipes to pump out potentially hazardous air and chemicals.

According to Action News, the scale of the meth operation was small, but the lab could have posed a danger to other guests.

Investigators described the lab as a small "one-pot" operation. While the size of the operation may have been small, Action News has learned the danger posed by one of these devices is still high. Small units similar to the one discovered in the resort have the power to blow a hole through a wall. Sgt. Mulligan estimates the cost of the cleanup could be in the tens of thousands of dollars.

June 27, 2012

Truth & Rumors: Justin Bieber's good walk spoiled by paparazzi

Posted at 12:19 PM by Mark Dee

The similarities between Tiger Woods and Justin Bieber are not immediately apparent.

But Tiger, the greatest golfer of his generation, has at least one thing in common with Bieber. Two things, actually: they both play golf; and they don't like cameras around when they play golf.

According to Jam!Showbiz ("Entertainment and Showbiz from a Canadian Angle!"), the Biebs has quite a temper when it comes to shutters snapping his downswing off track:

The Baby hitmaker had a bad day on the course at Calabasas Country Club, California after a shot landed far from the fairway and he battled to get the ball out of the rough.

The frustrated singer later took to and blamed the paparazzi for interrupting his game by taking his picture.

He wrote, "Dear paps... golf is supposed to be a relaxing sport... u (you) arent (sic) supposed to be in the bushes yelling at me with cameras. Let me finish the game.

"Gonna stay focused. Back at it. Not gonna focus on the negative. Just a little respect would help."

That's right, Justin. It's a Process. Believe in The Process. Stick to The Process. You'll win a major-- …er…break 90 yet. And if you give up on The Process, give Stevie Williams a call. He specializes in managing photographers.

The Mirror has some pictures of Bieber on the links - probably some of the same ones that made him angry. Have a look, if you're so inclinced.

One Hole is an Island
Next, a bit of revenge footage for angry pros. Sawgrass’s famous island green is finally, actually an island. Seven Inches of rain from Hurricaine Debbie left the par-3 almost entirely submerged Tuesday evening.  As Gary Smits of the Florida Times-Union writes:

Suffice to say that even if you were playing in the pouring rain and hit what was left of the green above water, you'd need a poontoon boat to get to the green.

The rain has obviously affected golf courses throughout the area, a bit of a stumbling block after a warm winter and fall lifted revenues and spirits among course owners and operators.

We also found this video, from TPC Sawgrass Agronomy. It appears to be a smaller target than usual.  And listen closely, I think you can hear Len Mattiace laughing manically in the background.


Tweet of the Day: A touch of inspiration for Bieber...

Rory Tweet

May 14, 2012

Truth & Rumors: Tiger says Tour pros should be penalized for slow play

Posted at 11:25 AM by Mick Rouse

The issue of slow play has become even more prominent following the Players Championship and the circus sideshow that was Kevin Na. Following his round on Sunday, Tiger Woods spoke out against the slow pace of play bogging down PGA Tour events, reports Ryan Ballengee.

Asked Sunday to assess the pace of play on the PGA Tour compared to four years ago, Woods simply said, "Worse."

"Last week, we were playing 4:40 (on Thursday and Friday at Quail Hollow) and there's no wind. That's hard to believe."

It was worse than Woods thought. He took 4 hours, 52 minutes to play on Friday before missing the cut at the Wells Fargo Championship.

According to Tiger, many of the young players on Tour are picking up bad habits while playing college golf that slow down the game which has led to slow play infiltrating the professional ranks more prominently than ever.

"College has gotten just incredibly slow," he said. "It's so bad that now they are giving the guys the ability to use lasers to try to speed up play. And they're still playing in 5:45, six hours plus."

While the PGA Tour threatens players with penalty strokes for falling out of position relative to the field and continuing to play slowly, a player must falter twice while on the clock before they are penalized. For Woods, eliminating that initial warning is a sure-fire way to speed things up out there.

"I think it's very simple," he said. "If you get a warning, you get a penalty. I think that would speed it up."

With the difference between first and second place this week costing $684,000, Woods rejects the Tour's existing system of fining players between $5,000 and $20,000 for consistent pace of play violations.

"Strokes is money," he said. "I would take the five grand (fine) over the 800K. That's one shot. That's the difference. That's what people don't realize – that one shot is so valuable out here."

Charles Barkley sympathetic to Na

While Tiger Woods may not be overly sympathetic to Kevin Na's "demons," Charles Barkley is, according to Mike McAllister.

Charles Barkley, possessor of arguably the most agonizing-looking swing by any golf-playing athlete, sent a text to Roger Maltbie late Saturday night: "Kevin Na is my hero. Welcome to my world."

Johnny Miller was also sympathetic, stating, "I feel bad for him. I mean really, it is embarrassing to him."

Brandel Chamblee, on the other hand, was a little less PC:

"We hear guys talking about needing swing coaches, sports psychologists, fitness instructors or changing managers. He needs an exorcist. I half expect winged bulls to fly out of his head when he is standing over a shot. I'm not sure if Sigmund Freud were alive he could figure this one out."

What's your take on Kevin Na and the state of his mental game? Should he be pitied or punished? Leave your comments below.

Harris English's errant tee drive

By now you've probably seen the video of a man getting nailed on the head by Harris English's drive at the Players Championship. That man was Denny Meredith, a volunteer at the Players for the past 11 years. And though he is ok now, it was a scary scene on No. 1 following the incident, reports Jessica Clarke and Erich Spivey of First Coast News.

According to Meredith, he watched the tee shot through his binoculars head left towards the crowd, but must have become distracted as the ball came closer. As the ball ricocheted off his head, Meredith recalled hearing a "loud thump." What followed was a lot of blood as nurses in the crowd rushed to his aid.

"This is as serious as I've seen," said longtime golf writer Garry Smits of the Florida Times-Union, a newsgathering partner of First Coast News. "You just don't see that amount of blood for a golf ball hit and this case, it was pretty bad."

Smits snapped this photo moments after the accident:

Injured man

Meredith was taken to the hospital and received six stitches, but was allowed to return home that night and is now doing okay.

"Well, after getting hit I feel fine and I think it was more of a glancing blow and not quite a direct hit," Meredith said. "So, a lot of blood but not a lot of pain."

Screen Shot 2012-05-14 at 9.25.13 AM

Both English and playing partner (and eventual champion) Matt Kuchar left Meredith with signed golf gloves following the incident which may not eliminate the pain, but should certainly sweeten it.


Tweets of the Day

Oh, Bubba, how we've missed you. Have you missed us?

May 10, 2012

Truth & Rumors: Mini-choppers make debut over TPC Sawgrass

Posted at 3:17 PM by

This week, stray shots aren't the only objects flying through the air at TPC Sawgrass.

Two small remote-controlled helicopters are also buzzing around the course. The mini-copters, created by Ben McClung and Jose Buezas, will take footage for the NBC and Golf Channel television broadcasts, reports Garry Smits of the Florida Times-Union.

It's cheaper than renting a real helicopter, and much more practical. Fans and players noticed O.B. 1 flying over the 18th hole Tuesday but it created only a slight buzzing noise as it flew back and forth from tee-to-green and landed on top of the hill overlooking the 18th tee.

Buezas explained that the TV networks wanted shots with fans and players on the hole. He and McClung had already filmed all 18 holes of the Stadium Course since last June, and have edited two hours of video to 20 minutes of flyover shots.

"We're getting a little attention today," McClung said. "But it's a lot more practical than a real helicopter, and you couldn't land one of those on this hill."

J.J. Henry's New Caddie
In an effort to kick start a disappointing 2012 season, J.J. Henry has a special guest caddying for him this week at TPC Sawgrass: 1996 PGA Champion Mark Brooks. Both pros live in the Fort Worth area, and Brooks has teed it up in 21 Players Championships as a competitor, which Henry hopes will help him this week, reports Brian Wacker at

“I’ve always looked up to his work ethic and how he’s approached course management,” Henry said. “This course isn’t about how far to it, it’s about where to hit it. There’s probably nobody in the last 20 years who’s been so creative and articulate around these holes than him. For as good a career as he had, he never overpowered golf courses. He always worked his way around them, so to see that perspective is only going to help me.”

Ballybunion Fooled By McIlroy Hoax
Ireland's Ballybunion Golf Club received an unexpected phone call last weekend when Mark O'Meara's agent phoned to set up a tee time for his client and Rory McIlroy. Naturally, this created a lot of buzz at the course. There was just one problem...

Saturday rolled around and everything was in place for O'Meara and McIlroy's arrival. But there was just one problem: The entire phone conversation was part of an elaborate hoax that left course officials feeling silly, and young fans let down.

Well used to VIP visitors, Ballybunion saw nothing amiss and swept into action with their preparations. Extra catering arrangements were made, caddies took precise measurements to ensure their yardages were spot on, and the Old Course was in pristine condition for Rory and his entourage.

Except they never showed -- much to the disappointment of up to 100 young fans, club members and local media who had gathered from 7.30am. Most waited patiently until 11.30 when it became clear that McIlroy was a non-runner.

Tweet of the Day



May 14, 2011

Ian Poulter sprints to avoid early Sunday wake-up

Posted at 9:27 PM by Cameron Morfit

PONTE VEDRA BEACH, Fla. -- Ian Poulter values his sleep.

Rather than getting stranded on the Stadium Course at TPC Sawgrass as darkness fell Saturday night, necessitating an early call for a 7:45 a.m. restart Sunday, Poulter left playing partner Dustin Johnson and sprinted to his ball on the 17th green, where he quickly two-putted for par and sprinted to the 18th tee. Poulter got the attention of Martin Laird and Phil Mickelson in the group ahead, who got out of the way while Poulter hit his all-important 18th tee shot of the day.

The horn blew at 8:04 p.m., but since players have the option of finishing the hole they've started, not only did Laird, Mickelson and Poulter finish, so did Johnson. Even though he was back putting on the 17th green, he was considered to have started the 18th hole because his playing partner had. 

"Saved us probably a 7:45 restart, I think it is," Poulter said. "So that's a 5:30 wake-up call. That's four hours in bed. A little 300-yard sprint is well worth four hours in bed."

A four-and-a-half-hour rainstorm that scattered patio furniture outside the mammoth clubhouse at TPC Sawgrass led to Poulter's rushed Usain Bolt impression. The jaunty Englishman said he knew well in advance that it was going to be close as to whether he finished his round.

"We were waiting on the 16th tee," Poulter said, "and Phil was waiting and just came over and said to us, 'Listen, if you have to tee off, just give us a shout.'" 

Although he bogeyed 18, Poulter took some satisfaction out of his massive drive, which hugged the water line and left him with only a sand wedge in for his second shot.

"Something to be said about adrenaline," he said.

After his round, Poulter, who has almost 1.2 million followers on Twitter, responded to criticism in the online forum that his sprint was disrespectful to Mickelson and Laird.



Paul Azinger, another player active on Twitter, agreed.


Video: Turtle dives into water off 16th green at Sawgrass

Posted at 8:45 PM by Mike Walker

Wildlife was the star during NBC Sports' broadcast of the Players Championship on Saturday—and we don't mean a night out with Anthony Kim. Cameras caught a large turtle performing a dive off the 16th green at TPC Sawgrass.

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