Until now, we only thought it. And we only thought it grudgingly, hyperbolically.
Tiger Woods' caddie, Stevie Williams? That idiot thinks he's the reason Tiger is so good.
We thought it but we didn't mean it, because who could mean something as stupid as that? More to the point, who could actually believe something as stupid as that?
Turns out, Stevie Williams could believe something as stupid as that.
He met with the media Sunday, and by "met with the media" I mean he gloated to the media, bragged to the media, stroked his own ego to the media. Given who he is and what he does -- he's a caddie, for crying out loud -- Stevie Williams put on one of the most narcissistic displays I've ever seen in professional sports.
Adam Scott's win at Firestone becomes a secondary story to Woods-Williams drama. Read >>
And I've seen Deion Sanders strut for 50 yards. I've seen Alex Rodriguez kiss his reflection in the mirror. I've seen fighters flex their muscles after knockout wins and I've seen pitchers gyrate on the mound after striking out a batter, but all of those guys actually did something. They were the star. Stevie Williams? He's not the star. He's not even a supporting actor. He's one of those guys who never makes it on camera. What do you call those folks, a grip or a gaffer? A best boy? That's Stevie Williams. He's a best boy.
So on a pound-for-pound basis, he might be the single most narcissistic person in sports. That's saying a lot, but did you hear what Williams said Sunday night after he won the Bridgestone Invitational? He said a lot.
Oh, Williams won the event. Didn't you know that? The scorebook shows that someone named Adam Scott won the tournament by playing four rounds at 17 under par, but that's not the way it went down. Not in Stevie Williams' brain. No, in his mind, he won it.
"I've caddied for 33 years, 145 wins now," Williams told David Feherty of CBS Sports after the tournament. "And that's the best win I've ever had."
That's the best win I've ever had.
OK, fine. He misspoke. He used the wrong pronoun there.
He used the wrong pronoun 27 times.
I've got the transcript of Williams' 90-second interview with Feherty, and in those 90 seconds he used some form of the first-person pronoun -- I, me, my -- 27 times. He used the word "Adam" once. The word "him" or "he"? Never.
Stevie Williams was the story Sunday. Got it?
And granted, he was an interesting subplot. Tiger Woods fired him a few weeks ago after 12 years together, so Williams became Scott's caddie. And in Woods' first tournament since firing Williams, Scott won. That's kind of neat, but that's all it is. Kind of neat. It's a sentence in the tournament story, nothing more.
Nothing more, that is, until Stevie Williams makes the story about himself.
Let's not have one of those media discussions here, OK? Lots of times, I'm all for media discussions. The media did this wrong, or that wrong. We're not perfect. We screw up stuff all the time. And, yes, we at CBS sent David Feherty over to Stevie Williams and put Williams on camera and gave him the chance to talk about himself.
And, by golly, if Williams didn't do a great job talking about himself. Rather than deflecting the attention -- he's a caddie for god's sake -- and putting it where it belongs, on the guy hitting 300-yard drives and 30-foot putts, Stevie Williams talked up Stevie Williams.
Here's some of what he said:
"I've been caddying for 33 years and that's the best week of my life, and I'm not joking," Williams said. "I'm never ever going to forget that week."
Here's some more of what he said. Feherty asked Williams about the difference between caddying for Woods and caddying for Scott, and Stevie Williams turned in a monologue about Stevie Williams.
"I caddie and I go racing [cars in New Zealand]," he said. "When I go to the race track the only place I'm interested in finishing is first. When I go to the golf course, that's the only place I'm trying to finish. Obviously it's a very tough game and you can't always win but I'm a very confident front-runner.
"There were a lot of expectations today. I'd be lying if I said I wasn't a little nervous. Obviously Adam was leading the tournament. And there was a lot that's been said this week. It's an incredible feeling to back it up. I always back myself. Just like I do when I go racing. I'm a great front-runner when I go racing and I feel like I'm a good front-runner when I'm caddying. Great belief in myself."
Great belief in himself? No kidding. Other than a single five-word sentence -- "Obviously, Adam was leading the tournament" -- Stevie Williams took a question about Tiger Woods and Adam Scott and waxed eloquent about the wonders of Stevie Williams.
Later, given another chance to talk to the media -- this time, to a room full of golf writers -- Williams spoke some more about his favorite topic.
Asked what intangibles he brings to the job, Williams made it sound like Adam Scott provides the intangibles -- Stevie Williams provides the golf.
"Obviously it's well documented I've won 145 golf tournaments," Williams said. "Every single guy that I've caddied, even guys that I've caddied for just here and there over the years, has won tournaments. There's no one I've caddied for that hasn't won tournaments."
Stevie Williams has caddied primarily for Greg Norman,
Don't put their names up in lights, people. Don't you understand? Stevie Williams is the star.