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Jeff Babineau

Stories by Jeff

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'Passion project:' Golf Channel debuts 'Arnie' Sunday night

It's not easy to capture the life of the legendary Arnold Palmer. Golf Channel tells his story in three episodes fit for the King.

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Woodland's wild ride captivates Masters

With a record-tying front-nine 30 at Augusta National, Gary Woodland sure took advantage of "moving day" at the Masters -- "He put a rush into this place," as his father put it.

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McIlroy shaky in making cut on the number

Rory McIlroy struggled to a 5-over 77 on Friday at Augusta National, barely making the cut and grabbing Saturday's first tee time with a marker.

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Fortunes at Masters can turn on one bad hole

The beauty of Augusta National, from the standpoint of excitement, is that danger lurks everywhere -- and intervenes when one least expects it. Just ask Louis Oosthuizan, Matt Kuchar or Gary Player.

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Young guns survive Augusta National's wild ride

Rory McIlroy was the elder statesman in his first-round group with Jordan Spieth and Patrick Reed. And while that provided an advantage at different points, the entire group gave us a glimpse of golf's future, and it looks pretty good.

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Zach Johnson: Learning curve at Augusta is steep

There are 24 first-timers in the field this week at the Masters and Zach Johnson knows exactly how they'll feel come Thursday, as there is plenty to learn by simply playing Augusta National.

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Our tribute: Ron Balicki (1948-2014)

Ron Balicki, 65, died Tuesday after an eight-month battle with cancer, but his impact on the game – mostly the people within it – will be felt for decades to come.

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Every's win brings new feeling to familiar place

It was a tad surreal for Central Florida native Matt Every to be the last one standing on the 18th green Sunday at the PGA Tour's Arnold Palmer Invitational, the tournament namesake handing him the trophy.

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Bay Hill's biggest star? He won't even hit a shot this week

Arnold Palmer addressed the media on Wednesday, taking on the topics of Tiger Woods, the Eisenhower Tree, lifting weights and his feelings when someone orders an Arnold Palmer.

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5 Things: English ready; Snedeker searches; more

Innisbrook’s Copperhead Course boasts a roster of past champions that proves it’s a great spot for top ballstrikers. Here are 5 Things to know on the eve of the PGA Tour's Valspar Championship.

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Practice?! Derek Ernst (66) doesn't need it

Derek Ernst hasn't had much fun with golf since his maiden victory on Tour last spring, so he took a new approach: "I just didn't work on my game." Well, he fired a 4-under 66 on Thursday at Honda, so it might have worked.

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A new baby and a new chance for Jason Allred

It's been a whirlwind few weeks for Jason Allred, picking up a third-place finish at the Northern Trust Open, a third child that was born on Monday and winding down with a pressure-packed tee time this week at the Honda Classic.

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Mickelson back at Honda for first time since '02

The last time Phil Mickelson played at PGA National he was a junior, and the last time he played the Honda Classic, it was 2002, and he had yet to win a major.

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My Year in Golf: Jeff Babineau

Golfweek Editor Jeff Babineau takes a few moments to take a trip down memory lane, with 2013 offering everything from a Rory walk-off to holding the Claret Jug to witnessing the 17th-hole streaker at the Presidents Cup.

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Babineau: What I am thankful for on this Thanksgiving

From the breakfast ball to Kiradech Aphibarnrat, Golfweek editor Jeff Babineau reflects on all the things he is thankful for on this Thanksgiving day.

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Johnson's hole-out caps strong day for U.S.

Zach Johnson and Jason Dufner flipped the opening match of the afternoon -- the only one to be played to completion -- and suddenly, the U.S. has opened up a five-point advantage heading into Sunday.

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Close competition adds drama to Presidents Cup

At this year's Presidents Cup, the Washington Generals of this matchup, the Internationals, are giving its Harlem Globetrotters, the U.S., a pretty good run so far.

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Stricker guides Spieth through Presidents Cup debut

Steve Stricker, the last man to hit a shot at the Presidents Cup on Thursday, stood on the 18th green in near darkness at Muirfield Village, put his arm around the young charge to his right, and smiled like a father who'd just helped to guide his son to his first driver's license.

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Babineau: Southern Africa contingent key for Int'ls

If captain Nick Price and his International squad are really, truly – and finally – going to get their Charlie Brown-like fortunes reversed, and make this biennial event competitive, then it’s likely a contingent from southern Africa that provides the key to opening the door.

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Z. Johnson sick, but will be ready for Prez Cup

Zach Johnson was stricken was the 24-hour bug on Sunday night and spend the next 20 hours at home in bed. No need to fret, Johnson, who will play a practice round on Wednesday, said he will be able to go for Thursday's start of the Presidents CUp at Muirfield.

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Presidents Cup: Stricker-Spieth pairing looms

Steve Stricker had to skip a hunting trip with buddies in order to play the Tour Championship, but at this week’s Presidents Cup, he’s expected to land the young buck that has everyone’s attention: Jordan Spieth.

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Happy birthday, Mr. Palmer

Arnold Palmer celebrated his 84th birthday in Latrobe, Pa., where he also hosted the Latrobe Classic, which benefits his hospitals in Orlando, Fla.

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Furyk steps up as Oak Hill dons its gloves

On a tough afternoon when the greens began to dry and the winds began to swirl and the atmosphere transitioned into full PGA Championship mode, it was no surprise to see who took on Oak HIll – one of the Tour’s brawlers, Jim Furyk.

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5 Things: Tiger struggles; Dufner's new irons

Jason Dufner was about a foot shy of establishing an all-time low for a round in one of golf's four majors, while Tiger Woods didn't fare nearly as well, nor did Phil Mickelson. Here are 5 Things to Know from the PGA Championship's second round.

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Even with 1-over 71, Mickelson lends thrills

Phil Mickelson's opening effort in the 95th PGA Championship at Oak Hill? Gee, you know, the normal stuff, with more twists than a Stephen King plot.

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New outlook produces positive results for Woodland

Gary Woodland has had to deal with plenty of change over the past two years. Injuries. New coaches. New equipment. On-course struggles. But the changes he employed finally took effect last week in Reno, and now he is teeing it up at the PGA Championship again, full of his old confidence.

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U.S. Open winner will need to hang on for dear life

Sundays at the U.S. Open identify the last man clinging to a bending branch just before it snaps off the side of a cliff. The U.S. Open’s resounding chorus? A collective groan.

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Mickelson retains lead despite tough day with putter

Phil Mickelson had plenty of short birdie misses Friday, but a 20-footer at No. 18 allowed Lefty to jump into a share of the lead with Billy Horschel as play was suspended because of darkness.

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Rain, dark give Tiger seemingly needed breaks

Tiger Woods missed fairways and struggled direly with the speed of Merion’s suddenly wet and slowed-down greens in the early going of the U.S. Open.

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Merion Golf Club's 17th adds brawn to test

Merion Golf Club’s brawn is delivered in scattered doses, much of it coming on three stout par-3 holes, including the 246-yard 17th, its tiered green protected by a lineup of rugged, jagged bunkers.

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Island green at 17th endures as Players' tough test

Certainly at TPC Sawgrass, the smallest is not necessarily the meekest. The 17th is not the most difficult hole on the golf course, but it’s the main attraction, with its large but intimidating island green.

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Love's long-awaited return comes at The Players

Davis Love III will be making his 28th Players start at TPC Sawgrass, a stat he says speaks to two things: “One, that means you’re old,” said the 49-year-old Love with a grin. “And two, it means you’ve stayed pretty competitive.”

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Babineau: Hall showcases potent power of dream

The thread of a Hall of Fame evening, as it usually is, is how the inductees took small sparks of opportunity and chance and somehow wove such a great game into the fabric of their lives.

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Experience, patience leave Cabrera confident

Angel Cabrera simply loves Augusta National and will play in the final group for the third time in the last five years on Sunday, hoping his 2009 victory will give him advantage over the top of the leaderboard.

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Experience pays this year at Augusta

On a trying day when the winds kicked up, a little experience came in quite handy. Look at some of the names on the board: Fred Couples, Angel Cabrera, Jim Furyk. And some Tiger guy.

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McIlroy at par after 4 bogeys on back nine

Rory McIlroy stepped onto the grounds at Augusta National Golf Club this week and proclaimed that the “real” golf season had started – unfortunately, his Opening Day at the Masters was something of a wash.

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Immelman chases championship form of '08

Trevor Immelman's Masters victory at age 28 was expected to propel the South African to the next level. But it simply hasn’t happened.

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Masters moment: Mickelson's 1st tops 'MagicMeter'

In 2004, we all wondered if changes to Augusta National's back nine might rob fans of those incredible Sunday finishing stretches. Phil Mickelson and Ernie Els provided a resounding answer to that question.

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Masters blog: Laird's victory a good 'omen'

Our editor Jeff Babineau and Senior Writer Jeff Rude are gamblers at heart and always look for an 'omen' at the outset of any major. Rocky Hambric provided some food for thought on Monday in Augusta.

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Babineau: A band of believers

They wore Seve on one sleeve and their hearts on the other, which is what you get with the Band of Brothers that is the European Ryder Cup team. Always.

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McIlroy WDs after miserable start to second round

The No. 1 golfer on the planet sure doesn’t appear anything near it these days. On a chilly, overcast Friday morning at PGA National, the bubbling pot that has been Rory McIlroy’s rugged 2013 season finally spilled over in frustration.

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Babineau: McIlroy grinds his way to an opening-round 70

Despite a closing bogey that led to an even-par 70, Rory McIlroy says that his game is "getting there." On a wet and soggy day at PGA National, even par was about what McIlroy deserved to shoot.

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Despite injuries, Jobe not done on PGA Tour

Brandt Jobe has overcome injury after injury during the course of his PGA Tour career. He shot 5-under 66 Thursday in just his third round on Tour since surgery last summer to repair two nerve blocks in his neck.

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Levin (thumb) likely to miss rest of 2013 Tour season

Spencer Levin says he probably won’t be playing golf again until next season. The silver lining? With the PGA Tour’s new year-round schedule configuration, the start to the 2014 season is only eight months away.

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5 Things: Stars come out of hiding at Riviera

5 Things: Three of the past four major winners, plus the season debuts of Luke Donald, Adam Scott and Graeme McDowell put a spotlight on the Northern Trust Open.

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Babineau: Conscience clear, Barber gets his chance on Tour

Blayne Barber might not be one of the 25 marquee players teeing it up at Northern Trust Open, but after his self-disqualification at Q-School, he is simply ready to show off his game on golf's biggest stage.

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Stricker challenges Johnson despite pain in leg

Despite a jarring pain shooting up his leg, defending champion Steve Stricker had a chance to tie Dustin Johnson for the lead on the back nine. His ability to hang in there is why we'll miss seeing him more often on Tour, says our Jeff Babineau.

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Johnson puts on a clinic to take TOC lead

Dustin Johnson (69-66) is the man everyone will try to chase down in Tuesday’s 18-hole sprint to the finish, and if he plays anything like he did on Monday, well, good luck with that. Tee to green, Johnson put on a clinic, hitting 33 of 36 greens in regulation.

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Welcome to PGA Tour season that just wouldn't start

Start and stop, start and stop, and after three long days of trying, everybody stands shoulder to shoulder at the starting line once again. Thus far, the 2013 Hyundai Tournament of Champions has been the bridge to nowhere.

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Fowler simply stands out from PGA Tour crowd

Rickie Fowler, whose preparations for the Tour's opener in Hawaii aren't necessarily confined to the practice range, stands out among his touring-pro brethren. Above all, though, he wants to win.

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