Blog Entry

Mediate says Woods problem stems with coaches

Posted on: August 31, 2011 11:41 am
Edited on: August 31, 2011 1:28 pm

NORTON, Mass. -- Rocco Mediate is rarely at a loss for words.

Sometimes, that's not a great thing.

The ever-loquacious PGA Tour veteran weighed in with his opinion on old pal Tiger Woods' travails in the San Francisco Chronicle on Wednesday and effectively trashed the fading former No. 1's last two swing coaches.

"I love the way he plays, but I'm disgusted with what's going on with him because it's sad for our game," Mediate said Tuesday. "A lot of guys are happy Tiger isn't playing well. I'm not. ...

"We need to have Tiger back at the top, because he's the draw. It's fantastic all these other kids are winning, but they're not Tiger Woods."


Mediate believes that Woods' new swing under new coach Sean Foley is putting too much stress on his body. By design, it's supposed to do just the opposite, by the way.

"The physical motion is wrong," Mediate told the newspaper. "To get that stress off his body is a piece of cake -- the guys working with him just don't know. Sean knows some stuff, but what's going on with Tiger is not correct. That's why he keeps breaking and that's why the ball keeps going sideways."

Wow, hard to know where to begin here. Mediate knows more about the golf swing than Foley, whose students include Justin Rose and Hunter Mahan, who both won twice last year? Mediate didn't leave out Hank Haney, Woods' former coach, either.

"Starting with Haney until now, it was a complete and absolute destruction," he said.

As an aside -- Woods was more consistent from week to week under Haney than at any point in his career. Haney has the incontrovertible data to back it up. Woods won 45 percent of his starts in their final three seasons together.

"Everyone is entitled to their own opinions, but no one is entitled to their own facts," Haney said in an email Wednesday.

Mediate said that if he was coaching Woods at this point, he might bow out.
"If it was me [as his coach], I would say to Tiger, 'Look, dude, I'm not helping you, you're getting worse. You've broken down three times and you've had 57 knee surgeries. It's not happening,'" Mediate said.

So, the assertion here is that none of Woods' issues are of his own making? Really? Recall that 13 months ago, after Haney quit as his coach, Woods hit rock bottom while flying solo at the Bridgestone Invitational, finishing one spot out of dead last, his worst 72-hole finish ever. He was lost and looking for a lifeline, and began working with Foley a week later.

Then there's the loss of his psychological edge, his crisis of confidence, his frequent and various injuries, the fact that his putting has been frequently ghastly, and that he hasn’t won on the U.S. tour in nearly two years. Woods beat Mediate in a 19-hole playoff to win his most recent major title, at the 2008 U.S. Open. Mediate is the defending champ at the Open, where Woods will make his debut in a second-tier Fall Series event on Oct. 6.

If it were only as simple as the swing coach, Woods might have righted the ship by now.

Mediate lauded Woods' decision to play, although it might have been a condition of being added to the Presidents Cup team as an at-large pick. The U.S. team is captained by Fred Couples, who publicly asked Woods to add a tournament because he is ineligible to play in the current four-week FedEx Cup series.

"It just shows another side of him," Mediate said of Woods' commitment to the Fry's event. "He's trying to get better, trying to figure out his swing problem. When he gets his stuff together, he'll be No. 1 again and everything will be back to normal."

Normalcy and Tiger Woods? That not only would be welcome, it would represent a first.


Since: Apr 5, 2011
Posted on: September 2, 2011 11:09 am

Mediate says Woods problem stems with coaches

how about using the criteria that woods turned professional golf on it's ear over the last dozen years ! no one , in my opinion has transformed a sport more than tiger did in golf - like it or not , he took no prisoners snd changed the face of the game forever

Since: Sep 22, 2007
Posted on: September 2, 2011 7:11 am

Mediate says Woods problem stems with coaches

The problem with Tiger is simple to understand, it's Tiger!  I'd venture to say that he will never recover.  The psychology of his situation would say he has one mighty big mountain to climb.  To understand this, you have to understand that his history is unlike anyone else'.  He grew up with a father, Earl, who treated Eldred in a way that a lot of people would call child abuse.  I realize that all that yelling and forcing him to practice was all for the purpose of toughening him up so he wasn't suseptible to "distractions" while golfing.  So, with the way he started, and while Earl was alive, he felt invincible.  With Earl no longer around, he no longer had the scream of "focus" ringing in his ear.  Of course, he also thought that nothing could get to him and that he is entitled because he is Tiger. 

From the beginning I questioned whether he would break Nicklaus's record.  Not because he wasn't a good enough golfer, but because for one to stay on top of their game they had to have the focus on the game.  It's not unusual for successful people to branch out and try other things.  Jack did it with his Golden Bear business and golf course designing.  He was fortunate to have a loving wife, Barbara, bless her heart (not sure I could have put up with him being on the road all the time).  But, that was the extent of it.  Tiger falls into a different category.  He, like Jack, branched out.  But, his branching out was more than just business.  Enjoying the life of a prima dona John is much more stressful and takes a lot more effort.  As we all know, his juggling act came crashing down.  I don't care who you are, but you get divorced and humiliated like Tiger has been, well it will take it's toll.  Now, there is no one there to yell in his ear to force him to get back his focus.  And that appears to be just what he needs, and is not likely to get.  To put it simply, it was all too much for him.  So, time for the golf world to move on.

One last note, Freddy, you did yourself and your team a terrible disservice by inviting Woods to the President's Cup.  The sad fact is that he doesn't deserve it based on what he's done in the last 2 years.  You took the place from a more deserving golfer.  For all you Tiger fans who think that he should get the spot because he's Tiger, using that criteria, he should have picked the Golden Bear himself!

Since: Aug 23, 2011
Posted on: September 2, 2011 5:47 am

Mediate says Woods problem stems with coaches

Tiger problem is that he is psychologically frazzled by the events in his life that unfolded. His injuries have compounded the problem of a shattered psyche. I think he is so unnerved by the exposure of his private life that he has lost an ability to focus under pressure the way he once did. Instead of standing over his putts with clarity and confidence, emotions are running rampant in the space where calm once prevailed. Tiger wants the genius produced by an undestracted psyche to just miraculously start happening as if that pysche has not been shattered. Tiger is still in the process of punishing himself for indiscretions that have proved so costly to his image and self esteem. At the PGA he admitted that he grew impatient with a mechanical like discipline that was needed for him to do well. He abandoned the discipline methodical approach to see if he could swing freely without being deliberate. I think he has to be at peace with what he has done to his image, mother, wife, children, and friends like Oprah Winfrey whom he disappointed. Only when Tiger makes peace with his demons will his spontaneous, natural feel for the game return. He can have a thousand swing coaches but if he has lost the background of peace, calm, and tranquility of being oriented of the right stuff, Tiger may never perform at his highest level ever again. People or Friends like Rocco and Freddie Couples are the key to his recovery. We have to be careful not to push Tiger into a corner the way Michael Jackson was pushed. Sometimes these freaks of nature are moe fragile than we know. Some are fragile and easily broken and are never put back together again. Maybe an outpouring of public forgiveness is the panacea of what ails Tiger.

Since: Jun 5, 2011
Posted on: September 2, 2011 12:16 am

Mediate says Woods problem stems with coaches

Swing coach, schming coach.  All Tiger has to do is take everything out of his left pocket and put it in his right pocket.  Problem solved and then we can get back to normal.

Since: Mar 19, 2008
Posted on: September 1, 2011 1:57 pm

Mediate says Woods problem stems with coaches

Maybe Woods juiced and now he is breaking down?

Since: Jun 29, 2011
Posted on: September 1, 2011 1:11 am

Mediate says Woods problem stems with coaches

I love these comments. Not only do I get an education (microcephalic cretins- can't wait until I can use that with my friends) , the best advice for Tiger is " to shut up and hit the bleeping ball", and Sean Foley is a douche. Love it! You guys crack me up!

Let's face it, Tiger has been playing some miserable golf lately. Whatever his personality and however you feel about his personal failings  you can't deny he was, and yes is, a golf talent and entertaining to say the least.  We all have opinions of him and many critics and so called professionals have offered him advice. I believe that whatever it took to get him to the number one ranking in the past is still inherant in his being. He appears to still have the drive. Only his age and physical condition have changed - personal life not withstanding.

I think it's great that Rocco wants to see him do well. Fred Couples I'm sure, does also. Maybe there is some truth to all the criticism of his game and how to correct it, although, the finished product is up to Tiger himself. I am not saying he is finished competing at the level he has in the past as some of you  ... I just wouldn't bet against it.

I for one enjoy watching great golf. There are now a number of 20 somethings that are fun to watch that have somewhat filled the Tiger void. Personally feelings about him aside, I'm just not ready to put him out to pasture. It may take more than the, Australian, and the President's Cup to get back to form and he may never win another major but to be consistently competiting for wins on Sunday would be great for golf. Hope he does well in the PC. Last time in 2009 I believe he was 5-0. That bodes well for the team. Stricker was certainly a good partner.

Since: Mar 1, 2010
Posted on: September 1, 2011 12:14 am

Mediate says Woods problem stems with coaches

Of course Elling can't break one hundred - he's a professional writer. 
The problem is he can't make the cut doing that.

Since: Jul 27, 2010
Posted on: August 31, 2011 10:05 pm

Mediate says Woods problem stems with coaches

Of course Rocco knows more about the golf swing than Mr. Eiling or Sean"douche" Foley.  Sighting last years winners doesn't mean Foley is any good - anyone who coaches several PGA tour players is bound to have a winner in their kennel occasionally.  Rocco Mediate is a 20 year+ veteran who has the clout & knowledge to make this comment.  I'm not so sure that Mr. Eiling can say the same.  Tiger needs to play in more tournaments bottomline, until that happens he will struggle.  Making few putts would probably help his overall game immensely as well.

Since: Aug 31, 2011
Posted on: August 31, 2011 8:37 pm

Mediate says Woods problem stems with coaches

I think Rocco is trying to sell Tiger on the V-Harness.

Since: Mar 4, 2008
Posted on: August 31, 2011 8:27 pm

Mediate says Woods problem stems with coaches of the top ten posts ever. Beautifully sarcastic. Thank you!

The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or