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Rory revives golf


There’s a new sheriff in town and his name is Rory McIlroy; and how about that golf swing. Most think a new era of golf is now underway. People are now officially labeling Rory McIlroy the “new Tiger.” Some media outlets are going so far as to say that McIlroy is better than the “old Tiger.”

The comparisons are going to come and deservedly so. Before doing that, we need to put this all in perspective and explain what lies down the fairway for Rory and the game of golf.

The FedexCup playoffs are two weeks away and the Ryder Cup will follow that. It will be a tall task for the Americans to take back the cup from Rory and his talented European squad who won the past two Ryder Cups.

Rory won the British open a month ago and two weeks after that he won the World Golf Championships at Firestone Country Club with the top 50 players in the field. Victory at Valhalla in the PGA Championship means Rory has won three straight tournaments on the PGA Tour.

“He’s better than everyone else right now,” said Phil Mickelson who finished runner up to Rory and has five major victories in his own career.

“He’s the best player in the world hands down,” said Rickie Fowler who finished tied for third

He’s on fire and it couldn’t have come at a better time.

In a weekend where Tiger Woods missed the cut for only his fourth time in his career and looked more like an elder statesman than ever before with a lingering back issue. You actually felt sorry for Tiger watching him play golf.

Tiger spoiled audiences by winning at an incredible pace and dominating a sport that is impossible to dominate, simply because its an individual sport with a large pool of players. The percentages are just not there for domination.

Television ratings went down when Tiger was out of contention in tournaments. Now with players like McIlroy and Fowler on the scene, people are excited without Tiger in contention. Fans who only watched golf when Tiger had a chance found themselves watching Rory, Rickie, Mickelson and Henrik Stenson compete for the year’s final major.

This is great news for golf to have viewers without Tiger. Audiences will now watch golf and mainly watch it to see if Rory can do what Tiger used to do. As good as Rory is and will probably become, Tiger did incredible things during his reign as well.

Rory has won four of the last 15 majors, respectively. Tiger had a stretch of seven major victories in 11 opportunities. Rory won two majors in 2014. Tiger accomplished this feat four times in his career (2000, 2002, 2005, 2006). At one point from 2000-2001, Tiger held every major title. It’s known as the “Tiger Slam.”

I am highlighting these accomplishments because it’s the pressure people are going to put on Rory due to his recent success. It’s unfair but that is what it has come to. Rory is not worrying about these comparisons. He’s got his own method to achieving success and its working just fine for him.

The truth of the matter is Tiger will never dominate again. He had his time and what a run it was. Leave any speculation of domination up to Rory. Now, it’s his time and it needs to be appreciated what Rory has done so far. No one thought that “another Tiger” would come along in terms of domination. Rory is that hope.

His mentality is right and his game is just flat out sick. Since Woods was a kid he had Nicklaus’ 18 major victories as his main goal. For Rory, he is just concerned with winning the next one.

All eyes turn to The Masters at Augusta National in April of 2015. With victory at Augusta, Rory will have won all four majors, a feat only five other golfers have accomplished— that being Jack Nicklaus, Gary Player, Gene Sarazen, Ben Hogan, and Tiger Woods.

Don’t think for a second that Tiger is done. Notah Begay III is a golf analyst for the Golf Channel and NBC. He is a teammate of Tigers in college at Stanford and speaks to him every day. He says Tiger was definitely watching Rory win. He also says that Tiger is definitely motivated.

One thing is certain, 2015 will be great for golf. The U.S. Open returns to famed Pebble Beach Golf Links and the Open Championship returns to the “Home of Golf” at historic St. Andrews. Get ready.


Luis Barrio may be reached at [email protected].

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About the Contributor
Luis Barrio, Staff Reporter
Luis Barrio is a staff reporter specializing in Sports. He is also the co-host of the Prospector News Weekly, a weekly broadcast that covers all of the top stories at UTEP. He is a Senior graduating in December 2014. Luis is a product of El Paso, TX. He enjoys being outdoors and being physically active. His family comes before anything else. He is a big sports enthusiast and a fan of good movies. Luis spent the summer of 2013 interning for ABC-7 KVIA. Upon graduation Luis aspires to work for CBS as a sports broadcaster. “I never saw a wild thing sorry for itself. A bird will drop frozen dead from a bough without ever a having felt sorry for itself.” D.H. Lawrence
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Rory revives golf