The talk of the town lately has been the breakup between Tiger Woods and Sean Foley. Or to be exact, the firing of Sean Foley.
As a student of the game, I never quite liked Tiger’s swing under Foley’s supervision. But as a fellow coach, I feel bad for him.
It’s easy to blame the coach when a student is not seeing the results he expects on the course. But the fact is the swing is just one part of the equation. And it’s hard to argue with the results of Foley’s two other celebrated students, Justin Rose and Hunter Mahan who are both enjoying relatively successful seasons in 2014.
Who knows if Tiger even followed all of Foley’s instructions. At least that’s what Hank Haney implied.
With all the criticism that Foley has received, I never read anywhere about him defending himself or saying anything remotely negative about his former boss. That’s a true professional if you ask me. In fact, he expressed nothing but gratitude and appreciation for the opportunity to coach one of the greatest of all time.
Sorry. No kiss-and-tell book this time around.
Of course, it’s also possible that Tiger’s PR guys already learned their lesson from “The Big Miss” and managed to make this separation more amicable in the eyes of the public. Maybe Tiger just didn’t want to be the one getting fired again and decided to pull the trigger first.
A part of me does hope that they have developed a real friendship behind the scenes. Maybe Tiger actually cared enough for Foley and decided to spare him from further agony.
The question everyone is asking… who’s next?
I doubt if money and the promise of fame will be enough motivation for any of the top instructors to accept what has been referred to as an impossible job. In times of crisis, we all wish we had a list of people whom we can trust and call anytime for help. Unfortunately for Tiger, that list doesn’t seem very long.
(I wonder what happened to Mark O’meara.)
Wait… maybe we’re all looking at this the wrong way.
What if Tiger somehow manages to “dig it out of the dirt”, figures out what to do, and comes back as dominant as ever.
Ben Hogan did it.
“Take that, all you swing gurus!”
Should he succeed, I will be a fan again.