CHICAGO -- In the January edition of Golf Digest, Tiger Woods said if he were in charge of golf, everybody would have to play with a persimmon driver and a balata ball. In other words, go back to a time when talent ruled the game rather than equipment.
Perhaps one day Woods could make it happen. At least for his tournament.
Woods will be using all the latest in golf technology this week for his event, the Target World Challenge at Sherwood Country Club in Thousand Oaks. He will play host to 15 other players who will split a purse of $5.75 million.
It isn't an official PGA Tour tournament, but the money certainly is real. Always helps to have a little extra cash around the holidays, especially if it is in six figures.
Woods hasn't played since blitzing the field in the Tour Championship in September. He said the layoff has him hungry to play again.
He probably would be pumped up more if everyone stepped to the first tee with a persimmon driver. Woods always has said the new stuff levels the playing field too much.
"There are a lot of guys who go out there and just hit it," Woods said Tuesday. "They miss-hit it, but the golf clubs and balls are so forgiving, the ball goes the same distance. My old persimmon driver I grew up with, it's only 15 yards behind my driver now. If I miss-hit it, it was like hitting a 3-iron out there. It goes nowhere. That's the biggest difference."
Woods contends the old equipment "puts a premium on quality." You have to shape shots, an art almost lost in today's game, and more importantly, hit the ball flush.
"It would be fun to play a tournament that way, there's no doubt," Woods said.
Anthony Brown came off the bench to score 15 points and grab nine rebounds, calmly sinking two free throws with 56 seconds left to lead Pacific past Santa Clara 71-65 for only the Tigers' 10th road victory in 53 tries in the series. Chad Troyer had 11 points, Steffan Johnson had five assists and the Tigers did an effective job holding Santa Clara big man John Bryant in check. Bryant, the Broncos' 6-foot-10, 305-pound West Coast Conference player of the week, had 13 points on 4-for-12 shooting and four rebounds playing in foul trouble.
Maybe this is why Duke's football team has been so perennially putrid: there's nothing in the coach's job description about winning games. All the details are spelled out on the university's human resources Web site, where -- right above an ad for a nursing assistant -- there's a job posting for "Head Football Coach." Just click to apply. The listing was posted Nov. 29, three days after Ted Roof was fired, and runs down several duties expected of the new coach, such as counseling players in academic and disciplinary matters, preparing budget recommendations and assigning assistants to recruit specific regions of the country. The coach also must represent Duke at civic, charity and alumni events. Despite what athletic director Joe Alleva has said, nowhere in job requisition No. 400160742 is it mentioned that the new coach's most important task is bringing a winner to success-starved Duke. The Blue Devils have won just 22 games in 13 years, including three losing streaks of 15 games or worse. ... Penn State has replaced Arkansas State with Oregon State on next year's home schedule, strengthening the Nittany Lions' nonconference slate.