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Despite their very different personalities, the Auburn grads have struck up a friendship over the last two years. They get together when they’re both at Tigers football or basketball games, but Dufner hasn’t been able to coax Barkley and his _ how shall we say it? unique _ swing, onto the course with him.

“We make a good combo,” said Dufner, the co-leader after the second round of the Masters. “He’s a little bit more out there and wears his emotions on his sleeve and tells people what he’s got on his mind no matter the consequences.”

Imagine how well that would go over at buttoned-up Augusta National.

The green jackets can rest easy, however. If Sir Charles has any plans to come cheer on Dufner, who had a share of a 1-shot lead going into the weekend, he hasn’t shared them with his buddy. The two haven’t even talked this week, Dufner said.


MUST-SEE TV: The first round of the Masters was a ratings hit.

ESPN’s live telecast of the first round Thursday averaged 2.6 million viewers, according to fast nationals from the Nielsen Co., a 4 percent increase from last year. The 2.3 household rating was up 10 percent from last year.

Ratings measure the percentage of homes with televisions tuned into a program.