The pro-am tournaments are fewer in number and sometimes they don't always get the celebrity fields they would like -- not to mention all the pros they want -- and Peter Jacobsen says that shouldn't be the case.
Players should always put this week's Bob Hope Chrysler Classic and next week's AT&T; Pebble Beach National Pro-Am on their schedules, he said.
"These two tournaments should be required attendance, more than the Players Championship, more than the majors," Jacobsen said. "It's early in the year, you have a chance to play on some great golf courses in fabulous conditions and you have a chance to rub elbows with the corporate CEOs that make our tournaments go."
Jacobsen, who won the Hope in 1990, has a chance to set a tournament record by making the cut for the 22nd time. He says he enjoys playing with amateur partners.
"That's my perspective," he said. "Probably not shared by a lot of the players out here.
"There are a lot of tournament guys that can be selfish. Maybe this week and next week is a time to be a little unselfish."
David Duval, who won the Hope in 1999, says he looks forward to playing with the amateurs and was pleased to see he would be paired again with Joe Pesci and Roger Clemens.
"Mr. Hope brought so much popularity to the game," Duval said. "He helped drive the dollars up from nothing. I think it's important to play here and the AT&T.;"
All 125 bunkers are being refurbished at both courses at Pelican Hill Golf Club at Newport Beach, the layout designed by Tom Fazio. In case it's important, the mix of the components in the bunkers is 75% crushed marble and 25% sand. The South Course will be closed in February and the North Course will be closed in March.
Want to play the TPC at Sawgrass the day after the Players Championship? You can bid for the honor online at www.ebay.com/pgatour as part of a new "open shop" deal between the tour and EBay. By the way, bidding on the round at Sawgrass is already more than $1,000. Proceeds from the agreement benefit charities, including the First Tee.
The top recognized athlete for endorsements? According to Marketing Evaluations/TvQ, it's Michael Jordan, with Tiger Woods second.
On the list of charitable donations from the U.S. Ryder Cup team that was released recently -- each player could award $160,000 -- Woods donated $80,000 to his foundation and $80,000 to Stanford.
Other notable donors: Phil Mickelson, $80,000 to his foundation and $80,000 to Arizona State; David Duval, $80,000 to Warm Springs Charitable Trust and $80,000 to Georgia Institute of Technology; and Scott Verplank, $15,000 to the First Presbyterian Church of Edmond, $25,000 to the Oklahoma State golf team, $15,000 to St. Mary's School, $25,000 to the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation and $80,000 to Oklahoma State University.
Or better yet, who's cooking? Little-known fact: Earlier this month, Annika Sorenstam took a position in the kitchen at Lake Nona Country Club in Orlando, Fla., and worked eight-hour shifts on Thursday, Friday and Saturday for two consecutive weeks. She worked the oven, the fryer and made pastries.
Why did she do this? Apparently, for fun. Sorenstam fancies herself as a chef, which might come in handy if that golf thing doesn't work out.