Welcome to The Fringe, Back9Network's daily feature created to keep you up to date on the best stories happening in golf, social media and pop culture.
All By Himself … Joe Lacava is … All By Himse-elf
Just because Tiger Woods is at home -- resting and trying to figure out whether or not his surgically repaired back will be well enough to tackle Valhalla and the 96th PGA Championship this week in Kentucky -- doesn't mean his caddie is.
Joe Lacava was spotted going the through motions on Monday, collecting course data, mapping greens and doing all the other things a good caddie does for his pro. The only thing missing was Tiger Woods.
Tiger Woods... Will he play this week? Maybe his caddie knows! Joe LaCava at Valhalla mapping the golf course Today! pic.twitter.com/quxfmQfeYD
— Nyle Pruitt (@NylePruitt) August 4, 2014
After finishing up his work, Lacava said, "I’m optimistic. I’m hoping he plays. So I’m just doing whatever work I would normally do.”
Woods' agent Mark Steinberg said in an email that doctors wouldn't know by Monday whether Woods would be able to play -- or if he should even try. The PGA announced that Woods' pre-tournament press conference scheduled for Tuesday morning would not be happening. Still, Lacava remains optimistic.
"He’s tough,” LaCava said. “Tough and stubborn would be two good words [to describe Woods].”
Woods, a four-time PGA Champion, is scheduled to play the first two rounds with 2008 PGA Champion Padraig Harrington and 2005 champ Phil Mickelson.
Photo Gallery: Tiger's Major Victories
Rickie Fowler Turns Laps at Valhalla
Rickie Fowler's need for speed is well-documented. Sometimes, however, his busy schedule doesn't allow him much time to enjoy his fast toys. For instance, this week is the PGA Championship at Valhalla and that means Fowler -- amidst a major championship season for the ages -- is in Kentucky early, trying to gain every advantage he can for this week's tournament.
After turning those hot laps in the comfort of his golf clothes, Fowler took the time to sign autographs for some of his younger fans:
Fowler wasn't the only one feeding a need for speed. Aussie Adam Scott also took a turn behind the wheel at the simulator:
With a T-5 at the Masters and T-2 showings at both the U.S. Open and the Open Championship, Fowler is poised for a major breakthrough at Valhalla. Only four times before has a player finished T-5 or better in all four major championships -- Jack Nicklaus and Tiger Woods have each done it twice. If Fowler can pull it off without winning at least one major, he'd be the first to do so.
Related Link: The Breakdown - Rickie Fowler's Majorly Impressive Year
It's likely that by now, you've heard of FootGolf -- the sensation that's been on the rise in the United States in recent months -- but you've probably never seen Mini-FootGolf. That's right, just like golf, FootGolf now has a miniature version of the sport.
While there aren't any actual Mini-FootGolf courses open or in operation, a course of makeshift holes spread out around downtown Portland, Ore., as part of MLS All-Star weekend drew more than 200 competitors and raised money for Girls, inc.
"This is actually really impressive," Michael Roberts said. "It's a lot more finesse, a lot more skills, it's just challenging."
Who knows? Maybe Mini-FootGolf will become the new craze? As long as it brings people to the game of golf, you have to hope it does.
Related Link: Tiger Woods' 'Celebrity Shot' & FootGolf Grows
In Case You Missed It
Jason Dufner Putted with 3-Wood After Giving Fan his Putter
This is awesome. Jason Dufner was out of contention at the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational on Saturday, so he decided to turn his rough day into a spectacular one for someone else.
After shooting 4-over through the first two rounds, and 2-over through 10 holes on Saturday, Dufner made a young fan's day when he gave a kid his Scotty Cameron putter. What did he putt with for the rest of the day, you might ask? His 3-wood. Dufner bogeyed No. 11 and incredibly made par the rest of the day. Read More
Got $60 Million? Buy Your Own Private Golf Course & Mansion
Not too many people can say they own their own 18-hole golf course, but you could be one of those few. That is, as long as you have $60 million lying around.
A 20,000-square-foot Long Island mansion with its own private USGA-rated golf course is for sale in the Hamptons. And just in case you want to run your own five-star resort, it has everything you'll need to do so. Read More
Out of Bounds
With school starting up again very soon, members of Division I athletic programs are already heading back to campus. With more time than normal to kill before and after practice with no classes in session, these student athletes need to find something to do. Clemson quarterback Cole Stoudt decided he'd pull one of the oldest pranks in the book. Obviously, he pulled it off convincingly:
The reaction people have when they go from fearing for their lives to realizing they've just been had is one of the most unpredictable parts of humanity. Some people keep running, some stay and fight -- others swear and laugh and collapse to the floor. Whatever the reaction, we've all been scared before and it's funny to watch when it happens to someone else … as long as there's no real peril.
Related Link: Bubba Watson Won't Drive for Show
More PGA Championship Links:
- Flashback: Sergio Challenges Tiger at 1999 PGA Championship
- 9 Greatest Moments in Valhalla Golf Club History
- Live Updates: 2014 PGA Championship Long-Drive Contest
- 'Walk-In Putt' at Valhalla Just One Of Tiger's Famous 16th-Hole Shots
- 2014 PGA Championship: Rounds 1 & 2 Tee Times and Pairings
- 2014 PGA Championship: adidas & Ashworth Scripting
- PGA Championship 2014: PUMA Golf Scripting
- 2014 PGA Championship: Nike Golf Scripting
- 2014 PGA Championship Scripting for Oakley's Bubba Watson
- Why the PGA Championship Is Not a Minor Major
- Return to Valhalla: Tiger Woods vs. Bob May 14 Years Later
- The Odds: Rory Remains Huge Favorite at PGA Championship
- Tiger Woods, Rory McIlroy Get Custom Louisville Sluggers
- 2014 PGA Championship: Valhalla Hole-By-Hole
- 2014 PGA Championship Scripting for Jason Dufner
- Last Shot: Colin Montgomerie Gets Final Major Chance at Valhalla
- 9 Greatest Moments in PGA Championship History
- PGA Championship To Welcome Back Long-Drive Competition
- You Can Influence the PGA Championship's Outcome
- Players & PGA Championships To Offer $10 Million Purses
- The Fringe: Bubba Watson Won't Drive for Show
- The Fringe: Tiger's Caddie Carries On & Fowler Turns Some Laps
- 'Stay Tuned': Keegan Bradley Teases Fans With Jordan Shoes
- Greg Norman Collection Featured at PGA Championship, Ryder Cup
- The Breakdown: Rickie Fowler's Majorly Impressive Year
- Oh, the Places Golf's Majors Trophies Have Been