Chat with Bob Harig
Harig covers golf for ESPN.com and provides columns, features and analysis on the world of golf, specifically the PGA Tour. He has contributed to ESPN.com's golf coverage since 1997.
Send your questions now and join Bob on Thursday at 11 a.m. ET for all the answers.
Harig Archive: Columns
Bob Harig (10:59 AM)
Hello, welcome to Charlotte,where I'm chatting from the Quail Hollow Championship. We're getting started a little earlier than usual and I might have to bow out early depending on circumstances. So fire away with your questions and I'll try to get in as many as possible.
CJ-Salt Lake City, Utah
Kim was saying the course looks different this year, how so? Who is your sleeper this week?
Bob Harig (11:01 AM)
CJ, Anthony Kim was referring to the fact that there is very little rough at Quail Hollow, unlike years past. The course is playing very fast, which means the ball rolls forever and often through or out of a fairway. But so far it appears you can play from the rough, which is minimal. Sleeper? I picked Sergio for that role, even though it's hard to pick the third-ranked player in the world as a sleeper. He's had a rough year to this point.
Nate: (Morrisville, NC):
What did Peyton shoot in the pro-am round?
Bob Harig (11:02 AM)
Nate, I don't think Peyton was keeping a true score. As you know, they play a best-ball format. His team, which included Tiger and Quail Hollow chairman John Harris, tied for third.
Patrick Hanover PA
Since HSBC is now a WGC event, will top players such as Tiger be able to command huge appearance fees?
Bob Harig (11:03 AM)
Patrick, good question, because that has always been a big lure to overseas events for American players. However, now that the HSBC is part of the PGA Tour famly as a world event, players will not be allowed to accept appearance money. It's a strange deal. The tournament will not count on the PGA Tour money list, nor will count as an official victory.
Tommy (Green Bay, WI)
John Daly's play was solid today... do you think his new attitude and weight loss help him return to old form? And what is with that outfit?
Bob Harig (11:06 AM)
Tommy, don't know what to make of the clothes, but did see that JD got off to a respectable start in Spain with a 70. One round, however, is all it is. A new attitude for Daly was imperative, as was losing weight and getting his game in shape. He's got a month of tournaments in Europe and it'll be interesting to see how he fares.
Mark (st. paul, MN)
I keep reading that even the pros are anonymously saying that Tigers swing is flat and this and that. Do you think its a little ridiculous that just because he didn't win the Masters, that people are saying he is "struggling". I would love to have his "struggling" game.
Bob Harig (11:08 AM)
Mark, I made reference to this a bit in the piece I wrote on ESPN.com about Tiger and his coach, Hank Haney. He lives by a different set of expectations. It is hard to believe that anyone would question him after he has three top-10s in his three stroke play events, including a victory -- after eight months off. It is true he struggled with his putting and at times his swing, but doesn't every golfer?
Barbara Philadelphia, PA
I'm hoping for another exciting Tiger / Phil Sunday pairing - only this time in the last group !!! Looks like Tiger is doing pretty well this morning. How are the crowds on a Thursday morning?
Bob Harig (11:10 AM)
Barbara, the crowds here are excellent. I was surprised how big it was Wednesday for the pro-am. Quail Hollow is a terrific course and sets up nice for spectator viewing. It is easy to see why it is so popular.
Gus - New City,NY
Hello Bob, So if the HSBC doesn't count and you can't squeeze appearance money out of it, why would anyone go? Thanks
Bob Harig (11:12 AM)
Gus, it's a good point, and I'm guessing a good number of Americans will skip it. Why go? Well, there will be some good reasons. There's a $7-million purse with no cut. Some guys might want some competition at that time of year and will get paid to play for rounds. There are World Ranking points at stake. And maybe they turn it into a China vacation as well. But your point is well taken.
Davis, Phil and Anthony has got to be the group to follow today, right?
Bob Harig (11:13 AM)
Marc, that's a a pretty good pairing, for sure. And they don't go until 12:50 which gives you plenty of time to get out here.
Jack Dale Sterling VA
How's Tiger doing as far as his putting so far??
Bob Harig (11:17 AM)
Tiger is 3 under par through 13 holes and has needed just 19 putts. He has no three putts, no bogeys and three birdies. Not sure if he's missed any close ones, but on the surface, he appears to be doing well.
Joe New Haven
So with less rough, are the closing holes still brutal?
Bob Harig (11:19 AM)
Joe, it's early, but the guess here is that they are, simply based on their length. The par-4 16th and 18th holes are each 480 yards.
Hey Bob, I'm heading out there on Saturday. Any differences fans need to know about?
Bob Harig (11:23 AM)
Pete, from what I can tell, there are no differences for spectators, although a few less corporate hospitality tents, which ought to make things easier to get around.
Gotta work today Bob.
Bob Harig (11:23 AM)
Marc, time for a sudden "illness." Just kidding.
tom nj [via mobile]
How drunk was Daly when he went clothes shopping?
Bob Harig (11:26 AM)
Tom, not nice! Maybe John has a new fashion sense.
Mike (New York City, NY)
Hi Bob. Great point about the LPGA not televising two of their biggest stars going head-to-head (Ochoa and Peterson). Do you see the LPGA thinking about maybe streaming some of their events to get more exposure?
Bob Harig (11:27 AM)
Mike, in fairness, the LPGA might not have had a choice, might not have been able to get a broadcast partner for the event. It's just a shame. As for streaming, it's a great idea, but what you don't know is if it is cost prohibitive, if it can be supported through advertising, etc. In any case, I have a feeling they are considering any and all options.
Paul (Indianapolis, IND)
Great article about your round at the Masters the monday after the tournament. How many times have you played the course? And is that tee shot on 18 still as intimidating, even if you are 40yds closer?
Bob Harig (11:30 AM)
Paul, believe it or not, that was the third time for me. Pretty fortunate. . . And every tee shot is intimidating to me. Even being so far up on 18, the tee shot is very difficult.
Bill, New York
I am predicting a HUGE (2 majors) summer for Tiger. It is pretty obvious that he is still a little rusty and has lost some distance with the driver, but he is only going to get better as he plays more
Bob Harig (11:31 AM)
Bill, you may be right about a big summer for Tiger and him needing some time to get fully back. And he's got a couple of major venues this summer that will suit him.
How is the following for Boo Weekley? He's a frequent guest on the afternoon sports talk radio show and everyone loves him.
Bob Harig (11:32 AM)
Marc, as you probably know, Boo is a bit of a cult hero just about everywhere he goes. If is game would come around -- he's been a bit off lately -- his popularity would soar even more.
Paul (Indianapolis, IND)
Wow! 3 times! You've played there more than some past U.S presidents! I'm hoping to try and volunteer at the tournament, because I hear they invite all the volunteers back later in the year to play the course.
Bob Harig (11:35 AM)
Paul, at the end of May they have a week where the various people who help put on the tournament get to play the course. One day its the marshals, one days it the concession people, etc. all the way through to the caddies. I'm told they even get a crack at the Par-3 Course.
I know a couple of the par 4s are pretty short, do you see a lot of people hitting the greens in one? (PS Come by the Champions club on 8 and I'll buy you a hot dog)
Bob Harig (11:37 AM)
Clay no reports yet of anyone driving a par-4 but it's certainly possible. Any chance you could bring that hot dog by the media center?!)
I have a pretty good streak going on "ESPN's Steak for Cash" -- should I take Phil heads up against Anthony Kim in the first round? Seems like a safe bet, right?
Bob Harig (11:40 AM)
Andy, I'm honored that you would trust my judgment on this. Tough one, really. I picked Phil to win this week, so I can't go against that right? But we're talking about a single round?
tom nj [via mobile]
Wow! A hot dog! What did ya do? Hit the lotto?What kinda bird goes CHEAP CHEAP CHEAP!
Bob Harig (11:42 AM)
Tom, someone's willing to buy me a hot dog, who am I to say no?
Hey I would buy you a beer, but your working.
Bob Harig (11:47 AM)
Clay, good point. Thanks for thinking of my welfare.
David (Cincinnati, OH)
What are your thoughts on Bo Van Pelt? He had the early lead, and looks like he's going to finish at 3 or 4 under. He's played well here the past two years and even held second or third round leads at the event. What are your thoughts on his chances?
Bob Harig (11:49 AM)
David, as you probably know, Bo has had difficulty closing out tournaments. But he hangs around a lot and as long as you keep giving yourself chances, one day perhaps it goes his way. He's been out here awhile, shows flashes of great play. He ended up shooting 69 today.
most of the top players rave about this course do you ever seeing it getting a major?
Bob Harig (11:57 AM)
Mike, there has been some discussion about the club wanting to get in the mix for the 2014 PGA or a future Ryder Cup. There is no issue with the course itself. The issue will be with all the other things that go into having such a big event.
most of the top players rave about this course will it ever get a major?
Bob Harig (11:57 AM)
Oops, sorry Mike, your question didn't get posted. . . As you'll see, I wrote that the club is talking about a PGA or the Ryder Cup.
Bob Harig (11:58 AM)
I'm out of time folks. Thanks for the questions. Next week I'll be checking in from the Players Championship. Enjoy the golf.