Crossville Chronicle, Crossville, TN

Glade Sun

June 18, 2014

Glade Sun covers the U.S. Open

CROSSVILLE — The Abacus Column is not always about sports or golf. However, it is my intention to cover the U.S. Open for the Glade Sun. I will be there anyway, since one of our sons sent me a birthday present invitation to join him in Pinehurst, N.C. for the open. It is about time the Glade Sun covers the U.S. Open. How long can Cumberland County claim to be the "Golf Capital of Tennessee" if we do not cover golf’s major events with our own sports writer? The desert of inside stories and one-on-one interviews with famous golfers is about to end!  

I know Sports Illustrated, Golf and Golf Digest Magazine will have a huge contingent at the open. ABC, The Golf Channel, NBC, and CBS will probably add to the crowd. Since there are currently 156 of the best golfers in the world listed on the leader board, there will also be a huge contingent of foreign press. Not to worry, Mr. Abacus, ace sportswriter will be on the job.

So that you will understand how knowledgeable and professional I am about golf; you may be interested to know that I have handicapped the players and narrowed the field down to a mere handful of players. The process was very scientific; the categories are based on first or last names. Categories with a preponderance of outstanding players offer the best chance to pick the winner. Initially, I thought the S’s were a shoe-in. The S’s include Web Simpson, Jordon Spieth, Adam Scott, Henrik Stenson, and Brant Snedeker. How could the winner not come from such an illustrious group of golfers?

Then, I looked at the J’s. That group was equally impressive. Justin Rose, Jason Day, John Senden and Jim Furyk were first name J’s and Zach Johnson and Dustin Johnson were last name J’s. What a fantastic collection of great golfers. I thought, maybe one of the J’s will claim the championship. That was before I looked at the M’s. Phil Mickelson, Rory Mcllroy, Graeme McDowell were the last name M’s and Matt Kuchar rounded out a fantastic golf foursome. There was only one other duo that could possibly win; the pair were the dynamic duo W’s of Bubba Watson and Jimmy Walker. Without question after this scientific breakthrough analysis the top players and the winner on Sunday’s leader board would be awash with these names. Now however, I had to pick a winner. I just could not pick one! With all this scientific analysis my sentimental favorite is Phil Mickelson; my Tennessee favorite is Brant Snedeker; and my “bet two golf balls” favorite is Bubba Watson; so much for my scientific analysis.

Despite my handicapping handicap, never fear that I will come back with the inside story of the 2014 U.S. Open. As an elected community leader and editor of our township newspaper, I once posed as a reporter for the Deerfield, Ohio Township monthly newsletter during an annual trip to Washington, D.C. I was able to squeeze my way to the front of a herd of reporters and TV camera operators surrounding the chairman of the impeachment committee for President Bill Clinton. We were just outside the congressional chambers. The CBS reporter standing next to me apparently did not recognize me and inquired what paper I worked for as I busily scribbled notes on my notepad. With my best impression of Walter Cronkite I answered proudly, “The Deerfield Digest.” There was a quizzical look on his face, but I got the story, and that guy is probably still trying to figure out who I was. Think what could happen now at the U.S. Open; The Deerfield Digest was monthly; the Glade Sun is a weekly! Money cannot buy this kind of insider coverage of the U.S. Open, and I am certain that it won’t.

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