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Cut Line: Jon Rahm No. 1 in world despite OWGR math; no HBD for Ian Poulter

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In this week’s edition, we question the new world ranking math, Tom Hodge’s travel choices, and the legally venomous tone that has consumed professional golf.


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Rambo. Nine shots behind leader Collin Morikawa at one point Sunday in Maui, Jon Rahm closed with 63 to win the Sentry Tournament of Champions and jump from No. 5 in the world rankings to No. 5 in the world rankings.

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If the new ranking math is too much for the average fan, consider how Ram must feel as he roared through the fall with two victories in Spain and the DP World Tour final and still remains at number five in the world.

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“I feel that since August I have been the best player in the world, I feel and I think that many of us should feel like the best many times. Earlier this year Scotty clearly [Scheffler] was that player then Rory [McIlroy] was that player and I feel like it was me now,” Ram said in Maui.

There has always been a lag in the world ranking formula due to the gradual expiration of points, but Ram’s point is correct. He is the best golfer at the moment, no matter what the ranking math says.

Central Golf

Ram wins in Kapalua but nothing comes out in OWGR

OT Brentley Romaine

John Rahm has repeatedly voiced his dissatisfaction with the new Official World Golf Rankings and it certainly won’t go away after he remains in 5th place after winning the TOC.

More sensations, less formula. If the best stick of its generation is combat mechanics, what chances do the rest have?

Jordan Spieth admitted Thursday at the Sony Open, where he opened with 64 for a share of the lead, that he’s been fighting for the past few years, trusting his shot.

“I think it’s more like I had some arm trajectory issues, so I hope that during the good times when I feel like I’m doing 50 percent of feeling, I should be doing 250 percent of feeling, and sometimes it’s hard to fully believe when you’re actually playing,” he said.

Spit was sixth in hits scored on Thursday with a 3 ½ shot lead on the field. Not bad for someone who fight with it.

Central Golf

Spieth tries to walk away from swing rehearsal

OT Colby Powell

It’s no secret that the former world No. 1 struggled with swing thoughts for much of 2022.

Made a cut – not finished (MDF)

Dog days. Tom Hoge traveled about 5,000 miles to watch Monday’s CFB title game between his alma mater TCU and Georgia, or roughly 80 miles for every point the Bulldogs inflicted on the Horned Frogs in a historic 65-7 rout.

Hoge flew to Los Angeles on Sunday after the final round of the Sentry Tournament of Champions and returned to Honolulu on Tuesday to prepare for the Sony Open.

Associated Press writer Doug Ferguson asked Hodge if he even had good spots. “Saw a lot of touchdowns in Georgia,” he said.

However, Hoge also has a positive side. At the very least, Georgia superfan Kevin Kisner is out of the Sony Open and has limited his winning lap to Twitter.

“Damn Dogs!” Kisner tweeted Monday night.

Full results from the Sony Open tournament in Hawaii

Quit voting. This may be nothing more than testament to a breakout season and a dominant week at the Augusta National, but it sounds like a statement.

Scotty Sheffler was voted the Golf Writers Association of America’s Men’s Player of the Year with 49.2 percent of the vote. Scheffler won his first Tour event at the WM Phoenix Open and added two more (WGC-Match Play and Arnold Palmer Invitational) before winning the Masters. The stellar season without a doubt, but also the easiest choice for golf writers.

Sheffler beat Rory McIlroy, who won three times in 2022 and won the FedExCup, and Cam Smith, winner of The Open and Players Championship, before joining LIV Golf.

In the fractured world of professional golf, McIlroy and Smith represent the extremes of two sides, so Scheffler may not have been the easiest choice, but he was certainly the safest.

Central golf

POY GWAA for 2022: Scheffler, L. Ko, Alker

OT Brentley Romaine

Scotty Sheffler, Lydia Koh and Steven Alker have been named the best players of 2022 in their divisions by golf reviewers.

Missed cut

Dead end. For those few optimists who are longing for some sort of detente between the PGA Tour and LIV Golf, take a look at the legal haggling that has already unfolded just two weeks into the new year.

In the opening dispute in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, lawyers for LIV argued that the 9/11 groups “participated in the astrotuf campaign against Kingdom and LIV,” while lawyers for the public relations firm that represents Tour countered that legal maneuvering was aimed at identifying those critical of Saudi Arabia and the LIV.

In a northern California court, Tour is stuck in an equally heated opening dispute with the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia Public Investment Fund and its Governor Yasser Al Rumayan, and a hearing in the United Kingdom is fast approaching that will decide the fate of the LIV players who defied the penalties handed out during DP world tour.

Perhaps at the bottom of the legal avalanche there is a ramp for some sort of dialogue between the two factions, but it’s hard to see a way out of it.

Judge Denies LIV Golf’s Motion to Stay Hearing

Judge Denies LIV Golf's Motion to Stay Hearing

Tweet of the week:

In the extreme passive-aggressive version, it was also Poulter’s birthday on Tuesday, the same day he replied to the tweet that was sent out by Ryder Cup Europe. Perhaps the birthday snub on social media is a bit of kindergarten for the Ryder Cup in Europe, but given the contentious and contentious nature of the division in professional golf, what does Poulter expect?


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