August 8th, 2014

On the Kyle Tucker ‘beef’

image Having come off the golf course Thursday, I realized I was “sparring” on Twitter with The Courier-Journal’s Kyle Tucker. Later in the evening, after my TV duties, I ran into Jonathan Lintner of the C-J and he mentioned something about it.

So I went back and looked at what all the fuss was about. I published a line in a column saying that no one was invited to some University of Kentucky basketball practices who wasn’t going to report enthusiastically. Kyle took offense, since he was one of those invited.

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August 7th, 2014

Woods struggles through opening PGA round at Valhalla

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — How did Tiger Woods look at Valhalla in the first round of the PGA Championship?

About the way you’d expect a guy coming off back surgery who hasn’t broken 70 on the weekend of a major since 2011.

He sprayed shots all over Valhalla. Starting on the back nine, he bogeyed both par-threes on the back, but looked like he might get something going after holing a wedge shot on No. 16 from more than 100 yards away. That magic wouldn’t last. Errant tee shots on No. 1 and No. 2 sent him on his way to a 3-over par 74 finish.

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August 7th, 2014

UK basketball heads to Bahamas with a different class of hype

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — University of Kentucky basketball is not a place where subtlety thrives. Everything that happens there, from player haircuts to uniform changes, is a big deal.

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August 6th, 2014

BOZICH | Other golfers skeptical, but Tiger is chasing improbable PGA history

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) – The only place where people were not hyperventilating whenever Tiger Woods twitched his back Wednesday was the players’ locker room at Valhalla Golf Club.

A dozen minutes after Woods pulled his sparking silver Mercedes SUV into the players’ lot in the early afternoon, he cut through the clubhouse and locker room on the way to the practice tee.

Norman Callahan, the guy who has run the clubhouse from the day Valhalla opened, clapped as Woods entered. Woods’ locker, tucked between Y. E. Yang and Lanny Wadkins, 12th from the aisle in the second row, has been ready for Woods since Sunday night.

“Thank you, sir,” Woods said quietly.

He just kept walking, heading to the balcony and then down the steps to start preparing for the practice holes he played Wednesday afternoon.

That was it.

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August 6th, 2014

Valhalla: Hole by hole

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — A hole-by-hole look at Valhalla Golf Club, where the PGA Championship will begin on Thursday. At 7,458 yards, it will be the longest par-71 in PGA Championship history.

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August 6th, 2014

Garcia on a hot streak, but still finding roadblocks to first major

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — If not for the run that new world No. 1 Rory McIlroy has been on, the hottest golfer in the world would be Sergio Garcia.

Instead, Garcia comes to Louisville in the shadow not only of McIlroy, but of whether Tiger Woods will play in the 96th PGA Championship, which begins Thursday morning.

But overlooking Garcia might be a mistake, given the way he’s played lately.

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August 6th, 2014

PGA chief sees ‘mulitple’ championships in Valhalla’s future

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — The CEO of the PGA of America today expressed delight with the feedback the organization has gotten on course changes at Valhalla Golf Club and reiterated the its desire to bring multiple championships to the facility.

"This is a wonderful golf course," Pete Bevacqua said. "It’s a PGA of America facility and I think we have every intention of bringing multiple championships back here over the course of the years."

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August 6th, 2014

Woods arrives at Valhalla, will play a practice round at 2 p.m.

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — Tiger Woods arrived at Valhalla Golf Club at about noon today and is scheduled for a 2 p.m. practice round, the PGA said today.

Woods’ status for the tournament was in question after he withdrew from the WGC-Bridgestone final round Sunday with an apparent aggravation of his back injury. Woods had back surgery earlier this year and has been back in competition for just over a month.

He returned to South Florida for evaluation, and received an extension on registration for the PGA Championship. Woods hasn’t spoken to the media since arriving at Valhalla.

Speaking with the media this morning, PGA CEO Pete Bevacqua said,  “I think it’s no secret, obviously we want him to play. … We are rooting for him to play because it would be a great thing to have Tiger Woods here, that’s for sure.”

Presumably, he’ll make a determination on whether to play after his practice round today. He’s scheduled to begin the tournament at 8:45 a.m. Thursday on Hole No. 10.

Watch WDRB Sports Live at Valhalla at 6 p.m. for a full report.

Copyright 2014 WDRB News. All Rights Reserved.

August 6th, 2014

Perry set for ‘scrapbook moment’ at Valhalla in his final major

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — Kenny Perry has a pretty good deal these days, playing on the PGA Champions Tour, and he doesn’t like to do much to disrupt it.

He babysits his grandkids on Tuesday. Heads to tour events on Wednesday. Plays in a Pro-Am on Thursday then plays in events.

But this week, the PGA extended him an invitation of a lifetime. Perry is at the PGA Championship at Valhalla Golf Club by special invitation, and if you were there for his first practice round at the club, you can see why.

It took Perry an hour to finish with autograph seekers after his round. A lifetime of golf is coming to a crowning moment this week, when he plays what he says is his final major in his home state, in front of fans who clearly love him.

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August 6th, 2014

Louisville football opens camp: Day 1 Notebook

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — University of Louisville football players were spared the physical challenge of two-a-day workouts to open preseason camp on Tuesday.

Coach Bobby Petrino worked out the freshmen and newcomers in a morning session and his veterans in the afternoon. But he didn’t ease either group in by moderating the pace of practice.

"We came out this afternoon, and didn’t do everything right, but we’re a better technical team, I think, than we were in spring ball," Petrino said. "Our guys got tired. They need to practice hard when they get tired. When you split practices, that’s the thing. They have to take more reps."

Some notes:

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August 5th, 2014

Resumption of PGA’s long drive competition is a big hit

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LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — They came to the No. 10 tee to a large gallery, an introduction to the fans, and one challenge: Hit the golf bar as far as possible.

The PGA of America resurrected the long drive contest after a long hiatus, the last competition coming in 1984. The event was inaugurated here in Louisville in the 1952 PGA Championship at Big Spring Country Club.

Phil Mickelson, Keegan Bradley, Rickie Fowler, and Brendan Steele arrived at the tee already primed for competition, playing for money on each hole already, as Mickelson likes to do during practice rounds.

Bradley crushed a 326 yard drive down the fairway to a roar of approval. The Fowler stepped up, ripped one 328 yards, and turned and flexed for the crowd.

Neither was flexing at the end, however. Late in the afternoon, Louis Oosthuizen of South Africa emerged as the winner when his drive came to rest 340 yards from the tee.

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August 5th, 2014

Montrezl Harrell talks about his experience at the adidas Nations camp.

August 5th, 2014

Woods receives extension to register for the PGA Championship

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — There’s still been no sighting of Tiger Woods in Louisville, nor any direct updates on the health of his injured back, but he has asked for and received an extension for registering for this week’s PGA Championship at Valhalla Golf Course.

Granting extensions isn’t uncommon for the PGA. The original deadline for registration for the final major of 2014 was today at 5 p.m. Woods will now have until his tee time Thursday to make a decision, according to ESPN’s Bob Harig.

Woods is scheduled to tee off Thursday at 8:35 a.m. at hole No. 10.

He re-injured his back on the second hole of the WGC-Bridgestone in Akron, Ohio, on Sunday. He flew back home to South Florida for evaluation. On Monday, his agent told ESPN that it might not know even Tuesday whether Woods will compete.

See WDRB.com for more information. Eric Crawford and Rick Bozich will discuss Woods, and more PGA news, on their Sports Page Live webcast Wednesday morning at 10:30 a.m.

August 5th, 2014

Watson declines long-drive contest, says it’s ‘hokey’

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) — We’re talking about practice. Bubba Watson didn’t exactly reprise Allan Iverson’s famous NBA refrain, but the longest driver on the PGA Tour wanted nothing to do with the re-instituted Long Drive Contest on Valhalla Golf Course’s No. 10 tee Tuesday.

It was no surprise. Watson said earlier in the week that he wasn’t going to participate. It’s a little like LeBron James skipping the slam-dunk contest, but Watson has his reasons.

He said he wanted to focus on learning the course, which he’s never played. So he got to No. 10 and hit a 3-iron right down the middle.

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@ericcrawford

Sports writing from Eric Crawford of WDRB.com in Louisville, Ky.

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