- The Washington Times - Thursday, June 11, 2009

QUOTABLE

“I wish you’d all quit pissing him off. I wish you’d just quit chapping him so much and make him come back and keep proving stuff. Tiger Woods is always Tiger Woods. He can’t be 100 percent every week, but I’m sure he answered a lot of questions today.”

- Jim Furyk, joking with the media after he finished a shot behind Woods at the Memorial

“I couldn’t feel my hands the last three holes.”

- Unheralded Dane Jeppe Huldahl after collecting his first European Tour victory at the Wales Open

“I was yelling at the TV, the whole deal. You know, it’s fun to watch your friends go out there and play and compete. I get just as nervous doing that as I do playing because they’re my friends.”

- Tiger Woods on watching Roger Federer’s French Open finale

BY THE NUMBERS

49 Of 56 fairways hit by Tiger Woods en route to victory at the Memorial. After switching to a driver with an extra degree of loft (9.5 to 10.5), Woods matched his career-best tournament performance in driving accuracy, hitting all 14 fairways during Sunday’s round of 65.

0 LPGA Tour victories for Michelle Wie. The 19-year-old Wie is making her 55th start on the tour in this week’s LPGA Championship at Bulle Rock, and the clock stopped ticking long ago on her status as a prodigy.

ROARING PACE

Given his customary number of starts, Tiger Woods has completed almost exactly 14 full seasons on the PGA Tour as a professional. Here is a closer look at his consistent career and the mystifying projections for his final numbers if he plays 10 more seasons:

Starts Wins (pct) T10s (pct) Majors

1996-99 70 15 (21.4) 43 (61.4) 2

2000-02 57 19 (33.3) 39 (68.4) 6

2003-05 58 12 (20.7) 39 (67.2) 2

2006-current 44 21 (47.7) 35 (79.5) 4

Totals 229 67 (29.3) 156 (68.1) 14

Per season* 16.4 4.8 11.1 1.0

Career projections**393 115 267 24

Tour records 734 (Palmer) 82 (Snead) 358 (Snead) 18 (Nicklaus)

* Though Woods has yet to play 14 calendar seasons as a pro, he likely has made 14 seasons’ worth of starts because his last eight projected 2009 starts are offset by his eight starts as a pro in 1996. Thus, the divisor of 14 seasons is fair, if somewhat conservative.

** Assuming he plays 10 more full seasons, also likely a conservative estimate

MAJOR MONSTERS

Next week’s U.S. Open at Bethpage Black will become the longest Slam challenge in history in terms of yardage relative to par. Here’s a closer look at the 30 longest majors in history:

Course Yards (par) Event Full-swing quotient*

Bethpage Black 7,445 (70) 2009 U.S. Open 218.97

Torrey Pines South 7,643 (71) 2008 U.S. Open 218.37

Oakland Hills 7,395 (70) 2008 PGA 217.50

Baltusrol Lower 7,392 (70) 2005 PGA 217.41

Winged Foot West 7,264 (70) 2006 U.S. Open 213.65

Oakmont 7,230 (70) 2007 U.S. Open 212.65

Bethpage Black 7,214 (70) 2002 U.S. Open 212.18

Pinehurst No. 27,214 (70) 2005 U.S. Open 212.18

Congressional Blue 7,213 (70) 1997 U.S. Open 212.15

Atlanta Athletic Club 7,213 (70) 2001 PGA 212.15

* Assuming that two putts are allotted a hole, a course’s “full-swing quotient” is calculated by subtracting 36 (two putts a hole) from total par and then dividing the layout’s yardage by that remainder. The full-swing quotient is the average yardage that must be covered on a given course by each allotted full swing.

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