Friday, December 21, 2007

Golf: 2007 year in review

By Jim Brighters, Sports Network, The Sports Network

What a year. Drug accusations, some mysterious Cup, bulging discs, fatherhood. It sounds like the ingredients for a bad soap opera set in a chiropractor's office, but these were some of the biggest things in the golf world this year.

PLAYER OF THE YEAR - Lorena Ochoa Runner up - Tiger Woods

Wow, how difficult was this call?

Let's go to the tale of the tape for 2007.

Ochoa: 8 tour wins, 1 major, No. 1 year-end ranking, No. 1 money list, 69.69 scoring average, 21 top-10s, 1st in greens in regulation.

Woods: 7 tour wins, 1 major, No. 1 year-end ranking, No. 1 money list, 67.79 scoring average, 12 top-10s, 1st in greens in regulation.

Whereas Woods dominates Ochoa in scoring average, how can you discount 21 top 10s in one season? That number is frightening, especially when you consider only four times in one year did Ochoa miss out on the top 10.

Woods' $10,867,052 makes for the second highest single-season performance in PGA Tour history. The difference is Ochoa's $4,364,994 for one year's earnings represents the best ever. By $1,501,090. That difference is enough to be No. 3 on this year's money list.

Ochoa was the first woman to eclipse the $3 million plateau and a short time later said bye-bye to the $4 million zone.

History is what drives the greats. To obliterate the LPGA Tour money record by such a margin is an amazing achievement.

Ochoa's major win was her first, but expected. She elevated her game this year. Not coincidentally, her chief rival, Annika Sorenstam, went down with neck and back injuries. Sorenstam was largely ineffective when she did play, but don't take that away from Ochoa's year.

Every time Ochoa put a peg in the ground, everyone, including Ochoa, expected a trip to the winner's circle. That always happens with Woods, but this year Ochoa dominated her tour more than Tiger.

This is certainly not to take away from yet another spectacular season from Woods. However, Ochoa did too much to not earn Player of the Year. History and dominance will get it done. Just ask Woods. Unfortunately for him, it was Ochoa's year this year.

More to follow - tomorrow.

13 comments:

Artful Golfer said...

Good review! BTW, I've added your blog to my new list of nearly 200 golf blogs. Let me know if you're aware of any I missed.

Artful Golf Blogs

Tom said...

Thanks for the comment and thanks for adding me to your list of golf blogs it is very comprehensive.

Cheers
Tim

Tom said...

Thanks for the comment and thanks for adding me to your list of golf blogs it is very comprehensive.

Cheers
Tom

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