POLL QUESTION – FEBRUARY 28
By Leo Haggerty

TIGER WOODS

Now that the Super Bowl has concluded, we are going to resume are POLL QUESTION.  If you aren’t familiar with this column, we pose a question to our correspondents and contributors to get their unfiltered opinion on a sports related topic.

Sadly, this one was easy.  With the automobile crash involving PGA golfer Tiger Woods earlier this week, and the news of his horrific injuries that he sustained, this question had to be asked.

DO YOU BELIEVE TIGER WOODS WILL PLAY ANOTHER COMPETITIVE ROUND ON THE PGA TOUR?

As you will see, individuals have diverse opinions on how this will play out.  Enjoy.

JOHN LENTZ -NCAA MEN’S BASKETBALL CORRESPONDENT
Not on the tour!

JIM THIES – NFC NORTH CORRESPONDENT
I think there is no doubt Tiger Woods will play on the tour again. He has a tremendous ability to come back from all types of setbacks. This will be a tough one, but I think he has the mental and physical strength to play on the tour again. As bad as his physical condition is right now, his mental strength is what will make the difference and help him recover.

SEAN OSBORNE – GUEST CONTRIBUTOR

The first question I had was why a guy as big to ANY tournament he plays in, NOT PROVIDED a driver to and from the course !??  As far as his future I hope for the PGA, and more importantly the Senior PGA tour, that he once again rises from this injury.  Any lower body injury in golf especially with the violent swing that Tiger and most long drivers possess, it’s a major concern and obstacle to overcome.  I think Tiger with a challenge is a lot like we just witnessed with Tom Brady.  Tiger came all the way back from being written off for a decade to win The Masters.  I for one surely hope he does come back and in time to dominate the Senior Tour and make it compete with the PGA tour weekly as well as yearly Major appearances.  Because I’ve said before and it bears repeating ..Watching golf WITHOUT TIGER is like …well …watching Golf!!
DARREN PODOLAK – NHL CORRESPONDENT
There’s absolutely no doubt in my mind Tiger will play on the tour again. As long as his mental isn’t shook, his work ethic will carry him through all the rehabilitation and likely additional surgeries the same way it did through multiple back surgeries in the past 10 years. He’s been here before, and he’s conquered this before.  I’d go so far as to put a timetable on it – I think he’ll get back on tour by 2025.
KEVIN NOWAK – PHOTO JOURNALIST
Yes and no.  He will play in one of the majors, most likely the masters, via his exemption as a past winner.  I don’t think he’ll actively play the tour again though.
STEVE JACOBSON – PHOTO JOURNALIST
I do.
The one person who I can always count on to bring a bit of levity and humor to any poll question is Tom Hepler, the former Owner of Ourlads’ Scouting Service.  As usual, he did not disappoint.
TOM HEPLER – GUEST CONTRIBUTOR
I have no answer to your poll question but I do have a comment about Tiger Woods. I always felt he was a better putter than driver.

I’ll finish it off with my thoughts on the subject.  As you will see, they’re not optimistic.

LEO HAGGERTY – EDITOR ITS SPORTS MAGAZINE
Sometimes you hate to give an opinion when it’s negative and this is one of those times.  I believe we will not see Tiger Woods tee it up again on the PGA Tour with any remote chance of winning and here’s why.  The damage that was done to Tiger’s right leg, but more directly to his ankle and foot, were ones you would expect to see on the battlefield specifically from a paratrooper who experienced some degree of parachute failure during a jump.  His injury is that bad.  The problem, in my opinion, will not necessarily be his ability to play but having to walk 72 holes in four days.  The PGA was adamant about that rule until they were sued by former PGA pro Casey Martin, a teammate of Woods at Stanford, who suffers from a debilitating condition called Klippen-Trenaunay-Weber syndrome to his right leg since birth.  I believe the PGA will happily give Tiger the ability to ride in a cart but the stress of playing at least 65 shots per round as well as having to walk to and from the cart to his shots will be too much to ask.  One false step for Martin on the golf course could have led to break and a possible amputation.  The current University of Oregon golf coach last year took that misstep and fractured his tibia while retrieving, of all things, the garbage can from the curb and may lose the leg.  That same scenario could be what Woods is staring at.  My advice is that you have nothing to prove to anyone other than yourself.  Good luck in rehab and, if that’s successful, then go be a dad to your kids.  They need you more than the PGA or its fans.