A Different Kind of Swing


The business of sports is taking a big hit in the weak economy, none more so thatn the Ladies Professional Golf Tour.

The LPGA depends on corporate sponsors to fund its tournaments and guarantee attractive purses. But in this economy, corporations are cutting back on sporting events. Only 25 LPGA tournaments are planned this year. Mike Scanlon was an LPGA spokesman at last weekend’s LPGA tournament at Blackhawk Country Club in California. He told me the LPGA’s new CEO Michael Whan is meeting present and potential sponsors individually to keep them in the game.

“It changed the way that we have to do business. We kind of had to go down to bare bones and figure out what is it that we can offer and how can we do it better.”

And their solution was to turn to the talent.  read more »

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An Early Start

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Want to jump start your athletic career? Get a hole in one in front of thousands of fans.

At the recent LPGA tournament at Blackhawk Country Club near San Francisco I talked with 13 year old Casie Cathrea. She's just a freshman at local Livermore High School who was virutally unknown until hitting a hole in one during her first round, after qualifying for the professional event earlier in the week. But her low score was years in the making. Cathrea says she picked up her first club at five and by seven was entering tournaments. While Cathrea didn't make the Friday cut, her golf career is just teeing off, and despite fierce competition she says she is determined to play the game.  read more »

The Game of Life


Corporate sponsored golf tournaments have been criticized by some politicians claiming it's not the proper use of stockholder money in these bad economic times. But defenders say such bogie comments are not up to par.

During a recent LPGA tournament at Blackhawk Country Club in California, I spoke with Acting Commissioner Marsha Evans about corporate sponsorships on the ladies tour. Evans says political pressure to end expensive athletic sponsorships is misguided. Such events bring thousands of jobs to local communitites that would not exist without corporate sponsorships. But as a retired U.S. Navy Admiral, she also wants to show young women what they can achieve with dedication and hard work.  read more »

Lady Golfers in the Spotlight

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Today marked the final round of the year’s biggest professional tournament for female golfers, the United States Women’s Open. And in typical fashion, it was a dramatic ending, with a come-from-behind victory by Eun-Hee Ji of South Korea. The 23-year old sunk a 20-foot birdie putt on the finishing hole to finish ahead of crowd favorites Cristie Kerr and Paula Creamer.  read more »

An Outside Office

Ever fantasize about ditching that nine to five desk job for a professional golf career, sounds great but you'll have to start working even harder.

At the recent Sybase Golf Classic LPGA Pro-Am I has the chance to play with some of the best women golfers in the world. During our rounds, I asked a few of them about their chosen path in life. Pro golfer Paige MacKenzie, who gave up a desk job following an internship says the constant travel can be grueling and there's a lot of personal sacrifice but she loves golf and the career it's given her.

Paula Creamer known as the "pink lady" for always wearing pink while on the course agrees with MacKenzie and has some advice for anyone looking to take up golf as a career.  read more »