Chamblee attempts to clear air in Woods dustup
Brandel Chamblee took a more public stab Wednesday night at ending the verbal warfare with the Tiger Woods camp.
The sharp criticism of Chamblee from the Woods camp began after the TV analyst wrote on Golf.com that Woods was “cavalier with the rules,” citing four highly publicized incidents during the 2013 season.
In his Golf.com column, Chamblee graded the seasons of several PGA Tour players. When he got to Woods, Chamblee recalled cheating on a fourth-grade math test. His teacher, Chamblee said, gave him a grade of “100,” but crossed that out and gave him an “F” because it was obvious that he had cheated. Similarly, Chamblee gave Woods a grade of “100” for the 2013 season, then crossed that out and gave him an “F.”
“I said Tiger Woods was cavalier about the rules,” Chamblee said during an appearance on Golf Channel’s “Golf Central” on Oct. 30. “I should have stopped right there. In comparing those incidents to my cheating episode in the fourth grade, I went too far. Cheating involves intent. Now, I know what my intent was on that fourth-grade math test. There’s no way that I could know with 100 percent certainty what Tiger’s intent was in any of those situations. That was my mistake.”
Mark Steinberg, Woods’ agent, threatened legal action against Chamblee after the remarks appeared on Golf.com.
Chamblee tried to end the conflict with a Twitter apology Oct. 23, to no avail. He said he issued that initial apology after a comment from his son.
“He said, ‘Dad, if you had been more diplomatic in what you wrote, perhaps people would be talking more about the issue than your assessment,’ ” Chamblee recalled. “He’s a smart kid. It wasn’t until after he said that I offered my apology on Twitter.”
In an interview before his appearance on “Golf Central,” Chamblee told Golfweek, “This back and forth needs to stop.”
“I’m here to end this,” Chambee said in the phone interview. “They (Golf Channel officials), like I, think I crossed the line when I inferred that (Woods) cheated. Look, I took it too far. I could have rewritten – I actually did rewrite the end of my story. They want me to do what I’m doing, and I want to do it. They didn’t ask me to write my apology on Twitter. I wanted to do that because people were writing ‘cheater’ in stories. I get it; that’s what people do. I said he’s ‘cavalier with the rules,’ but no one was using ‘cavalier.’ ”
Chamblee said Golf Channel has given no indication that it plans to discipline or suspend him. He is scheduled to work again during The McGladrey Classic on Nov. 7-10 on St. Simons Island, Ga.
Chamblee added that Woods’ camp was “barking up the wrong tree” by hounding Golf Channel to take action, given that the remarks appeared on a website that’s not affiliated with the station.
He added that he would not write for Golf.com in 2014, though he will contribute to Golf Channel’s website.