Sportsmanship. Phooey!!! There’s no way around it. In sports, there are
people or teams you just hate. The New York Yankees, the Dallas
Cowboys, Notre Dame Football, Michael Jordan and Tiger Woods are just a
few of the "HATED JUST BECAUSE" list. They are usually the team or
person, at the top of their sport, your biggest rival or as the list
implies... HATED JUST BECAUSE. Very rarely do sports fans ever break
away from that belief. You won’t see a Redskins fans suddenly pull for
the Cowboys. Or a Red Sox fan root the pin stripes to a title. It just
Until now. I can’t seem to hate Tiger Woods. I’m a Redskins fan, I have
no problem hating Dallas. But I can’t hate Tiger. Tiger’s first ten
years were incredible. He’s the best front runner in sports history.
12-for-12 when leading a major going into the final round. That’s sick.
He now stands at 51 PGA Tour wins and chasing Jack Nicklaus’ record of
18 majors, which is only a matter of time.
He’s the got a bouncer for a caddie (Steve Williams). By the way, can
you name anyone else’s caddie on tour? He’s got the beautiful Swedish
wife. He’s been the top ranked golfer in the world for years. But when
Earl Woods, Tiger’s mentor, coach and beloved father died this past
spring, we all saw a crack in the armor. Tiger missed a cut, previously
unheard of in about five years and it was the US Open.
Friedrich Nietzsche said, "That which does not kill us, makes us
stronger." I have great respect for people who can circle the wagons,
re-group and come out fighting better and harder than before. Since
missing the US Open cut, Tiger circled the wagons and came out in his
next four tournaments: 2nd place (Western Open), 1st place (British
Open), 1st place (Buick Open) and 1st place (PGA Championship). WOW!!!
Now after he wins, he shows emotion. Smiles, hugs, and tears. He’s
making jokes at press conferences. That’s what I think I wanted to see
from him all along. Personality. Let the person out. I can relate to a
person overcoming tough times or just enjoying life. I can root for
Tiger is a Freak. Believe me when I say that is a compliment. And he is
a Freak that sports fans should be lucky enough to watch in our
lifetime. I am not ready to be his fan club president, but I have
changed my stripes and proud to say I am a Tiger Woods Fan.