Another Issue for Tiger to Chew Fat Over

From Associated Press

An anti-cholesterol crusader is launching an advertising campaign urging Tiger Woods not to pitch McDonald's products, but the golfer's spokesman says there is no endorsement agreement with the fast-food chain.

At the La Costa Resort and Spa in Carlsbad, where Woods is playing in the Mercedes Championships this week, he denied he would sign an endorsement deal with MacDonald's.

"My sponsor won't let me do that," Woods said.

"I'm with the All-Star Cafe," he said, referring to the New York restaurant he is involved with along with such stars as Ken Griffey Jr. and Andre Agassi.

Phil Sokolof, 74, of Omaha, Neb., who has spent millions of dollars to urge Americans to stay away from cholesterol-laden and fatty food, said he is taking out ads this week in newspapers in Las Vegas, Denver and Houston, and in USA Today.

"Tiger Woods, say it isn't so!" the ads say. "The word is out--you're going to start promoting McDonald's fat food. . . . As a role model for millions of Americans, don't encourage your generation and mine to eat fatty, artery-clogging fast food. Please don't!"

Woods, 21, has made no secret of his love for fast food, particularly from McDonald's and Taco Bell. "I don't know where to stay, what restaurants to eat at, so I'm going to have to stick with McDonald's, something greasy," Woods said in August at the Greater Milwaukee Open.

Bev Norwood, a spokesman for Woods, said Sokolof's advertisement "is not based in fact."

In a statement sent to Sokolof, Norwood said Woods "has not made an endorsement agreement with McDonald's. Despite widespread speculation, there have not even been any substantive discussions between McDonald's and us."

Sokolof said he has learned from sources he would not identify that McDonald's has made a "very lucrative" offer to Woods.

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