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PGA Tour Now Truly Heads Into Life Without Tiger At Torrey Pines
Published January 28, 2010
|Woods Notably Absent From
Farmers Insurance Open Today
TICKETS, SPONSORSHIPS DOWN: USA TODAY's Michael McCarthy reports Woods' absence is "taking a toll on tournament sales." Farmers Insurance Open Tournament Dir Tom Wilson said that ticket and sponsorship sales are "down 15%-20% at Torrey Pines from the last time Woods played" in '08, though sales are "about even" with '09. McCarthy notes other tournaments Woods "normally plays will have a harder time selling tickets and attracting sponsors" without his presence, and if "recent history is a guide, TV ratings will be sliced in half for those events." CBS Sports Senior VP/Programming Rob Correa: "There'll probably be a ratings dip in the Tiger events. But we're confident established stars like Phil Mickelson and new ones like Anthony Kim will pick up the slack" (USA TODAY, 1/28).
PHIL-OSOPHY: GOLF.com's Cameron Morfit wrote to "say that all eyes will be on" Mickelson this weekend "would be an understatement." Mickelson is the "Pitt to Tiger's Clooney, and seldom has golf needed him more." Golf Channel is "promoting its next month or so as 'Five weeks of Phil,' because the game is desperate for a story other than the one the tabloids and mainstream news outlets have feasted on for months" (GOLF.com, 1/26). Golf Channel's Charlie Rymer said the two events played in Hawaii earlier this month and last weekend's Bob Hope Classic "were a little subdued." Rymer: "All of that is going to change this week because (Mickelson) is teeing it up in San Diego. Make no mistake about it, the Phil-fanatics will be out in force. The energy level will be high" ("Golf Central," Golf Channel, 1/26). In Charlotte, Ron Green Jr. writes golf "needs sunshine, and that's what Mickelson brings this week" (CHARLOTTE OBSERVER, 1/28). Golf World's John Hawkins, on Mickelson: "He needs to be playing and he needs to be front and center because he is basically all we've got right now in terms of mainstream pull" ("The 19th Hole," Golf Channel, 1/27).
Mickelson (l), Woods Top The Bloomberg
BusinessWeek 2010 Power 100 Ranking