I’m a pretty big golf guy. I enjoy playing, though I’m not very good. I enjoy watching, especially the majors.
And especially the Masters.
There is just something about Augusta National and the spring-time tournament that gets my blood flowing. When the snow is deep, the temperature below freezing and the sun hibernating, I’ll pull out my tape of the 1986 Masters and watch Jack win again.
The shadows, the flowers, the sunshine, the memory of the unexpected victory, all those things can lift me out of a winter depression.
Which is why Zach Johnson’s victory was so cool. It was so unexpected.
When putting together my list Sunday of the favorites – besides the inevitable win from Tiger – I listed Retief Goosen, Vijay Singh and Jim Furyk. Those were the guys I thought would make the charge. Then I picked Vaughn Taylor as the guy I wanted to win, because he’s from Augusta and it would make a great story – sports writers always want the best story for their brethern.
Little did I know the guy playing with Taylor would win. The guy who three-putted from 3 feet on 16 earlier in the tournament. It was a surprise. Just like Tiger’s inability to stay in front once he got in front.
• John McGrath wrote about Johnson jumping from nowhere – in the public’s eyes – to the championship.
• Jerry Brewer focused on Tigers’ telling tantrum on the 17th and Johnson’s history.
• Jim Moore’s column was about the unexpected nature of Johnson’s win, and how it allowed his personality to come through.
And, of course, there are a million stories and columns available (here’s Bob Ryan’s column and Thomas Boswell’s Washington Post column), but one of the more interesting pieces is this Associated Press story we ran about Tiger’s aura of invincibility. Sure it’s broken. Until he wins the U.S. Open by 11 strokes.