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HOW MUCH DID TIGER'S PLAY-FOR-PAY STANCE IMPACT FAN BASE?
Published August 16, 1999
CBS' final round coverage of the PGA Championship earned a 7.7/18 overnight Nielsen rating, up 26% over last year's 6.1/14. The event earned a two-day average of a 6.2/16, up 13% over last year's 5.5/14 (CBS). SI, SERGIO! USA TODAY's Christine Brennan notes that Sergio Garcia become the crowd-favorite at the PGA Championship yesterday and wonders if Tiger Woods' position in the play-for-pay Ryder Cup debate had an "impact" on his following (USA TODAY, 8/16). After yesterday's win, Woods complained of being heckled during the last few holes. In Toronto, Dave Perkins writes that the crowd at Medinah "seemed to switch allegiance [yesterday], heckling Woods at times and rooting on Garcia." Woods: "People said some things they shouldn't have said and I couldn't show any emotion" (TORONTO STAR, 8/16). Woods: "Obviously they were rooting for Sergio, as well they should. But to be as tough as they were ... I didn't think that was fair" (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 8/16). In Chicago, Mark Skertic writes that Woods "remains popular, but a rival for golf's affections emerged Sunday" (CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 8/16). In St. Petersburg, Bob Harig writes that Garcia "became a huge crowd favorite" (ST. PETERSBURG TIMES, 8/16). In Boston, Karen Guregian writes that the fans who pulled for Garcia "aren't anti-American," but are "just anti-Tiger at the moment. And it's hard to blame them after listening to the ridiculous pro- compensation stand he's been backing with regard to competing in the Ryder Cup" (BOSTON HERALD, 8/16). In Chicago, Jay Mariotti writes that Woods "wasn't nearly as popular as an animated, fun-loving" Garcia. Mariotti: "Woods is a corporation who has been overexposed and overcommercialized and did himself no favors in the Ryder Cup money allocation debate" (CHICAGO SUN-TIMES, 8/16). Also in Chicago, Skip Bayless: "Woods' millions of fans have made him the world's wealthiest athlete, yet nearly every day he reprimands fans or media or something that disturbs his golden-child concentration" (CHICAGO TRIBUNE, 8/16). In Ottawa, Don Brennan, on Woods: "Your act is starting to make a lot of us cheer against you. Lose the arrogance and phoniness. Just be like Mike" (OTTAWA SUN, 8/16).