Perhaps you’ve heard that Tiger Woods was apocalyptically bad last week at the Memorial, failing to break 300 in a 72-hole event for the first time in his PGA Tour career.
Here are some numbers, however, that bring into sharper focus just how different this player is from the one who owned the game for so long.
Tiger had six double bogeys or worse in the 2015 Memorial. From 1999-2001, playing in the same tournament and on the same course, he totaled just two doubles over the entire stretch and won all three years.
In 2000 Tiger played Muirfield Village at 19-under-par 271 and lost just four strokes to par along the way. He made a total of four bogeys in four rounds that year.
Last week, in cruel contrast, Tiger finished 14-over and lost four strokes to par on a single hole, taking a quadruple-bogey 8 on No. 18 Saturday.
In 2001 Tiger won the Memorial by seven strokes. Last week he finished dead last among those who made the cut and the gap between him and the next worst players was eight strokes.
During his run of three straight Memorial victories from 1999-2001,Tiger missed a total of 35 fairways. Last week he missed 31 in the course of one Memorial tournament.
Credit the man for making a little joke about the experience during a Monday press day for August’s Quicken Loans National, hosted by the Tiger Woods Foundation.
“It’s about getting reps,” Tiger said. “I got a lot of reps this weekend.”
On that same Monday Luke Donald was grinding out a 36-hole U.S. Open sectional qualifying appearance at the Bear’s Club in Jupiter. He made it at four-under 140 and it took 141 to make a playoff for the last of four invitations to next week’s U.S. Open at the quirky Chambers Bay club near Tacoma, Wash.
Tiger, of course, is still working on a 10-year U.S. Open qualifying exemption from 2008 win. Still, would he have been able to shoot the necessary score to get in if he had been sweating it out at Bear Lakes? It’s a good thing he didn’t have to find out.
That 85 Tiger shot in the Memorial was bad, but some of these other trends, viewed in the context of a tournament he has won five times, are even worse.
His game has gone so far off the rails that he looked and played like a total stranger on Jack’s course, like a guy who had never won anything anywhere.