The Back Nine is back after a week of vacation that included the joy of Father’s Day when us dads all realize how lucky we are. Not a lot of recharging on this vacation with so much work to do for the 16th Bob Dooley Invitational. By the way, we’re full.
10. The only glitch on a perfect Father’s Day was that the U.S. Open wasn’t very much fun to watch. Hey, I’m all for train wrecks at the Open but when all of the trains wreck it’s kind of boring. Graeme McDowell started the day three shots back, shot 74 and won? I know the USGA has a mission at this tournament every year but on such a beautiful golf course it would have been nice to see some beautiful golf on Sunday. It just wasn’t very entertaining. Nothing against McDowell, who seems like a good guy. But I was looking forward to some prime-time golf that involved an occasional putt being made. The question I have — why did the best golfers in the world all seemed to have the shakes?
11. Tiger Woods, of course, was dealing with his own issues. Not his personal life. His caddy Steve Williams. “I told Steve we made three mental mistakes,” Woods told NBC. “The only thing it cost us was a chance to win the U.S. Open.” So this is the new Tiger? Blaming his caddy? Lame, Tiger. On Thursday, he ripped the greens at Pebble Beach. This is a guy who never made excuses and liked those greens fine 10 years ago when he blew away the field. Or when he was lighting up the course on Saturday to get back into contention.
12. At least Woods gave an interview after his round. Dustin Johnson and Ernie Els both refused to do interviews. I know it was a painful day, but man up, guys. I’m not saying this because I’m in the media. I’m saying it because it’s the right thing to do.
13. The most entertaining thing I saw during the World Cup this weekend was the French fitness coach Robert Duverne who took off his credential after an argument at practice and threw it away. Pretty good throw, too. Hey, there have been times I felt like throwing my credential away (Women’s College World Series comes to mind). It was hilarious. And then the French team refused to practice. Who says soccer isn’t fun to watch?
14. Remember when Florida used to own UCLA? The Gator boys dispatched the Bruins from the Final Four in 2006 and ’07 o their way to a pair of national titles. But UCLA had its revenge this year. Actually this month. First, the Florida softball teams gets run-ruled by the Bruins in Oklahoma City and then the baseball team gets hammered by UCLA in Omaha. The combined scores? 27-6. So does UCLA become another in the growing list of rivalries for Florida?
15. OK, so I predicted a college football revolution a couple of months ago and it didn’t quite happen. It was still fun to watch all of the possibilities being floated around. I still think we’re going to see something big happen to the conferences down the road, but in the end all that happened was that the Big 12 got smaller, the Big Ten got a little better and the Pac-10 got Utah and Colorado. Now comes the big question — what do we call these conferences now. How about the “Real Big Ten?” And the “Not-So-Big 12?” Meanwhile, the SEC did nothing except remain college football’s best conference.
16. Congrats to the Lakers, although for about 45 minutes of Game Seven that was some really bad basketball. To be honest, other than the Game Seven final minutes, it was a pretty boring series for an NBA Finals that went the distance. Maybe it was just because those are my two least favorite teams.
17. Who says Michael Vick is not a winner? For the second straight year he was named Forbes’ “Most Hated Man in Sports.” Next year he goes for the three-peat.
18. Only one iPod suggestion this week because I just downloaded “Mojo,” the latest from Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers. Really, really good. I envision long walks on the beach in St. Augustine next week with Tommy in my ears.