Beyond Golf — 17 November 2014 by Bob Sherwin
Foursome Forecast: End of beginning

ONE: This might be a little confusing. The PGA Tour is finished for the year with the OHL Classic at Mayakoba in Mexico Sunday. But we are just in the early stages of the season. Both are true. The Tour wraps around the calendar, not the traditional January start anymore. Both the PGA Tour and the Champions Tour will hold some unique events over the next month they won’t count in the point totals. The LPGA, however, is still going at it. The women have one tournament left, the CME Group Tour Championship in Naples, Fla. They’re the only game in town so take the stage ladies.

TWO: College football actually should be the sport crowding the stage at this point. It’s getting down to playoff final four teams and all those one-loss hopefuls are trying to stay that way so they can remain under consideration. Tough matchups have been the pattern the past three Saturdays but unfortunately there is virtually no compelling game this weekend, at least not among the top eight teams. That’s a shame because this should be the week when college football commands national eyeballs. Not going to happen. Unranked Indiana at No. 7 Ohio State will not keep you from winterizing the house. Nor will unranked Boston College at No. 1 Florida State. And what is Western Carolina doing playing at No. 2 Alabama this time of year? The Tide should be denied just for scheduling that game on Nov. 22. Colorado, at 2-8, will play at No. 3 Oregon. Vanderbilt, at 3-7, plays No. 4 Mississippi State. What’s going on? Bunch of junk. A weekend wasted by the NCAA schedule-makers. Don’t waste your time.

THREE: Only two teams sit out during the final NFL bye week (Pittsburgh and Carolina) so just about the whole league is gearing up for the stretch run. Among the decent matchups Sunday are: Detroit at New England, Arizona at Seattle and Dallas at the New York Giants. Monday night could be a shootout, Baltimore at New Orleans.

FOUR: Soccer slips in as the last member of this foursome. After a season that began in February with training camps, Major League Soccer is down to its final four. Saturday, Seattle hosts Los Angeles in the western conference series finals while New England plays at New York in the east series. The championship series, sometime soon, should not interfere with the opening of the training camps.

 

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Bob Sherwin

Bob grew up in Cleveland, an underdog city with perennial underdog teams, and that gave him an appreciation and an affinity for the grinders in golf, guys such as Rocco Mediate, Jhonattan Vegas and star-crossed John Daly. This is the 41st year for Bob as a sportswriter, the first 34 working for newspapers throughout the west, Tucson (Daily Star), San Francisco (Examiner) and Seattle (Times), and the past seven years as a freelancer. He has covered just about every sport, including golf tournaments, Tucson Open, Bing Crosby/AT&T Pro-Am, the 1998 PGA Championship, the 2010 U.S. Senior Open, the 2010 U.S. Amateur and the annual Champions Tour Boeing Classic. He also writes articles for golf magazines. For most of his 20 years at the Seattle Times his primary beat was the Mariners. He then picked up Washington men's basketball in the winter. He also was the beat writer for the Sonics, including 1996 when they played the Bulls for the NBA title. After a lifetime hacking on public courses, he finally gave in and joined a country club in 2011, the Members Club of Aldarra near Seattle. He won't win the club championship any time soon with his 15 handicap and default-swing slice but he does have a pair of aces – 37 years apart – and in 2009 came agonizingly close to his ultimate golf goal of scoring in the 70s when he finished with an even 80. He lives in Seattle, and spends part of his winters in Marco Island, Fla.

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