There's no crying in golf, unless it's Michelle Wie at the U.S. Open
NBC’s cameras captured Michelle Wie obviously unsuccessfully fighting tears after one of her two-foot putt misses in the front nine of her collapse Sunday afternoon. Nothing wrong with that. She’s only 15.
Well, there’s nothing wrong with that unless you’re wagering the future of your entire sport on this still fragile competitor. Still think LPGA officials are so convinced their Wie future is so bright?
Call me heartless, but Wie looks like a Jennifer Capriati of golf waiting to happen. Scratch that. At least, Capriati won some major tournaments before she burned out. And Capriati was 10 times tougher than Wie at 15.
It’s not all the Wie family’s fault. Maybe all of us in the media will think twice before buying the hype machine of junior high graduate athletes after seeing the early steps of Michelle Wie and Freddy Adu.
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Your blogs and predictions are becoming increasingly erratic. Next you'll say that Tiger is done for his career, and then proceed to explain how Jack Nicklaus never was any good.
And what of Creamer, Ochoa, Lang and Pressel? All leaders at some point in the last few days, all cried at one point or another during or just after the Open. They must all be finished too, no? So who is going to win all the tournaments? "Birdie" Kim?
She will be back with a vengeance. This setback will do her a lot of good. This is character building.
Last week she beat 84 guys, in a couple of weeks time she will make history by becomming the first female to make the cut at a PGA event.
Who is Jennifer Capariati? If she is the female tennis sensation, maybe you should learn how to spell her name. Jennifer Capriatti deserves better. Bob DeStefano
Jennifer Capriati came from a different background than Michelle Wie. Besides comparison is odious, it's as if I compare you to some thugs who like to hit at people when they're down. It wouldn't be an accurate picture ...
No. She never has been. To mention her in the same sentence as Anika is to do women's golf a huge disservice. Will she become a great player on the LPGA Tour? Possibly. She certainly has the tools.
Will she be able to play on the PGA Tour or the Nationwide Tour? Never.
To understand Michele, you have to understand the women's game. It is dominated by power. The short courses, lack of rough and slower greens make players like Laurie Davies competitive. Females mature so much earlier than males that it is not unusual for a very young girl to be competing with the best women in whatever sport. Morgan Pressel made it to the Women's Open at 12. It is impossible for a boy to compete with a 30 year old man for any length of time. It is very possible that Michele is as good now as she will ever be. It happens all the time. Physically, she is fully grown.
I believe a 14 year old girl is at the same physical level as a 18-20 year old male.
If Michele makes the cut at the PubLinks, it will be a major story. You and I both know, they went looking for qualifing sites that were easy and suited for her game. To suggest that she can play with the best male amateurs in the country is ludicrous. At the Sony, she played as well as she can, on her own course and had 22 putts and did not make it.
Why is it that golf is the only sport where people think women can compete with men? When Anika played at Ft. Worth, she did not want to go back. And she is the best they have. By far. It is a different game, played on different courses. It is to no ones favor to let her go there. What happens if she shoots 80-80? What about her personally? Why isn't Paula Creamer or Morgan Pressel or other women who have proven to be better than Michele clamoring to go the men's tours? (Because they want no part of that action!) Why is Michele? Publicity, misguided expectations, you name it. The press is at fault for feeding it.
It is ok for her to shoot 80 in the final round yesterday. It is normal and expected and a integral part of her development. Would you like her to shoot 90 at Pinehurst a week earlier? What purpose would that serve.
The U.S. Open is probably the most mentally fatiguing event in sports. I think all these girls deserve to shed a tear just for surviving.
When all is said and done, this is not about what the media thinks. It's about a young girl following her dreams. I wish more of you would follow this story from that angle, and realize that success doesn't have to be measured by the number of trophies won.
Let's look at the record this year in tournaments in which Wie played. At the SBS Wie finished tied for 2nd 10 storkes ahead of Creamer and 11 ahead of Aree Song. At Safeway Wie tied for 12th, 4 shots ahead of Creamer, while Aree Song missed the cut. At The Kraft Nabisco, Wie tied for 14th, 2 strokes ahead of both Creamer and Pressel, and 14 strokes ahead of Aree Song. At the McDonald's LPGA Wie was 2nd, again 2 shots ahead of Creamer and 14 ahead of Aree Song.
In the Women's Open Wie tied with Anaka for 23rd 7 strokes behind Pressel, 2 behind Creamer, and 3 ahead of Aree Song.
This year Michelle Wie is clearly better than Aree Song. Wie has beaten Creamer in 4 out of 5 tournaments, and she is 1 and 1 against Morgan Pressel in common tournaments--but that includes Pressel's tie for 2nd, while it does not include Wie's 2nd or her tie for 2nd. So while the jury may still be out, neither Creamer nor Pressel has proven to be beter than Wie.
As far as mentioning Wie in the same sentence with Anaka, as long as Anaka can do no better than tie a 15 year old, I think she will have to put up with being mentioned in the same sentence. Wie has certainly been a lot closer to Anaka this year than she has been to the struggling Aree Song.
Actually both Anaka and Michelle struggled at Cherry Hills for the same reason. They are both long hitters. But while thin air made everyones drives go further, the narrow fairways and thick rough punished errant shots so severely that the driver was taken out of both players' hands. Both players had to change their game for the Open--and that is not a good thing in a major tournament.
As far as that other long hitter Laura Davies is concerned--the average of her two rounds 84 and 81 was worse than Wie's final round 82. Laura missed the cut for only the second time in 12 tournaments this year--so Cherry Hills seems to have been pretty consistently bad for long hitters. But it is the fact that Wie is a long hitter that gives her a chance against men that otherj women would not have.
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