Abuse aimed at Andy Murray 'vile' - Online abuse directed at tennis star Andy Murray after he declares support for Scottish independence is described as "vile" by police. Everton 4-1 VfL Wolfsburg - Wigan 57-4 Huddersfield - Super League holders Wigan move within 80 minutes of the 2014 Grand Final with a 57-4 thrashing of Huddersfield Giants. Ex Rangers manager sorry for breaking wife's trust (Yahoo Sports) - Former Texas Rangers manager Ron Washington says he is embarrassed for breaking the trust of his wife of 42 years. While offering no details, Washington publicly apologized to his wife and the Rangers during a 3 1/2-minute statement Thursday. They left without taking questions, with Washington putting his right hand on her right shoulder as they departed through a back door. The 62-year-old Washington led the Rangers to their only two World Series appearances in 2010 and 2011. Eagles could be without top defender Kendricks (Yahoo Sports) - PHILADELPHIA (AP) -- The Philadelphia Eagles could be without their top defensive playmaker as they face a team coming off a 41-point output last week. Partizan Belgrade 0-0 Tottenham - Red Bull Salzburg 2-2 Celtic - Celtic are twice pegged back by Red Bull Salzburg in their Europa League Group D opener in Austria. Krzyzewski: Coaching US is no unfair edge at Duke (Yahoo Sports) - Mike Krzyzewski says his side job as coach of U.S. Krzyzewski met with media in Durham Thursday for the first time since leading the Americans to the gold medal at the Basketball World Cup in Spain. He acknowledged he and Syracuse coach Jim Boeheim, his assistant with the U.S. Without being asked, he also took exception to critical comments about a photograph of him visiting Paul George in a hospital after the Indiana Pacers star suffered a gruesome compound fracture of his right leg during a U.S. MLS says Chivas USA might not play in 2015 (Yahoo Sports) - Chivas USA might not play in 2015 and perhaps longer, a decision that won't be made until a new owner takes over the Major League Soccer team. ''We expect to be able to close an agreement by the end of the season,'' MLS Commissioner Don Garber said Thursday after a news conference to launch the league's new logo. With the addition of New York City and Orlando, MLS will have 20 or 21 teams next year, depending on whether Chivas USA plays. Chivas USA was formed in 2004, and MLS announced in February it had assumed operation of the team from Jorge Vergara and Angelica Fuentes, who have controlled the Mexican club Chivas Guadalajara since 2002. FA chief Dyke to return £16,000 watch - Football Association chairman Greg Dyke is returning a £16,000 watch given to him by the Brazilian Football Confederation.

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Royal & Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews votes to admit female members [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 18, 2014, 6:09 pm]
It only took 260 years.  On Thursday, the Royal & Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews announced its membership has voted to allow female members. Peter Dawson, chief executive of the R&A, the governing body off-shoot of the club, said the club will fast-track membership for "a significant initial number" of women into the club. "I am very pleased indeed to announce that the membership of the Royal and Ancient Golf Club of St Andrews has voted overwhelmingly in favor of welcoming women members," said Dawson, who is also the club's secretary, in a statement. Over 75 percent of the estimated 2,400 members voted, many by a proxy ballot thought critical to secure the simple majority needed to pass this measure. Of those approximately 1,800 members that voted, over 1,500 did so in the affirmative. That means some 300 members said no with another 600 effectively saying no by not voting. The club was founded in 1754. In 2004, the Royal & Ancient Golf Club of St. Andrews formed the body known today as The R&A, charging it with administering the Rules of Golf, running the Open Championship and other events and serving as the game's governing body outside of the United States and Mexico. Reaction from this side of the Atlantic has been positive, if not with a slight foot-tapping tone. In an unattributed statement, the LPGA said, "The LPGA is happy to hear that the members of the Royal & Ancient Golf Club in St. Andrews have voted to include female members. This decision is certainly a step in the right direction and one that better captures the current diversity and inclusiveness of our great game." PGA of America president Ted Bishop applauded the decision, viewing the vote through the prism of a sagging golf industry. "Women have played and will continue to play an integral role in the game of golf," Bishop said. "In fact, women represent the biggest growth market in the sport, and every step to make golf more inclusive is good for the game. The PGA of America is thrilled that

Before the NFL, Tom Brady spent two summers working at golf courses [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 18, 2014, 3:39 pm]
Sure, Tom Brady has three Super Bowl trophies, a pair of Super Bowl MVP awards and two NFL MVP honors. But he could have made an outstanding golf course general manager. The New England Patriots quarterback dusted off his post-college resume and shared it on Facebook on Thursday. "Really thought I was going to need this after the 5th round,” Brady said, alluding to being the 199th overall selection of the 2000 NFL draft.  Turns out, Brady has some significant experience working on golf courses. Brady listed a pair of summer jobs at two Michigan golf courses. In the summer of 1998, Brady was a sales representative and course ranger at Polo Fields Golf & Country Club in Jackson, Mich., and assistant clubhouse manager the following summer at the University of Michigan golf course. Among the skills Brady learned in his clock-punching days on the links, the signal caller listed "interpersonal skills" and "flexiblity in order to better serve club members." We're going to assume "serially bad high-five giver" is not an interpersonal skill. Ryan Ballengee is a Yahoo Sports contributor. Find him on Facebook and Twitter. Follow @RyanBallengee

Nicolas Colsaerts hit a 447-yard drive at the Wales Open [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 18, 2014, 3:22 pm]
For most every human on the planet, reaching a 600-yard par 5 in two shots is impossible. For a select few touring pros, they can get there with a big drive and a huge fairway wood. Then there's Nicolas Colsaerts. Playing the 613-yard par-5 18th at Celtic Manor on Thursday in the opening round of the Wales Open, the Belgian smashed a 447-yard drive. He needed just a full gap wedge to hit the green in two, leading to a closing eagle and a share of the Day 1 lead at 5 under par. “The hole was playing downwind (10-15 mph) and I managed to get a good bounce,” Colsaerts said. Colsaerts' tee shot surpassed the previous Euro Tour best of 442 yards, set by Shiv Kapur in 2012. By comparison, the longest drive on the PGA Tour this season was Bubba Watson's 424-yard smash at Firestone C.C.'s 16th hole during the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational. Back in July, Rory McIlroy drove a 436-yard hole during the Scottish Open. Ryan Ballengee is a Yahoo Sports contributor. Find him on Facebook and Twitter. Follow @RyanBallengee

Former PGA star Anthony Kim reportedly could make $10 million by not playing golf [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 17, 2014, 10:59 pm]
Anthony Kim hasn't been seen on the PGA Tour since May 2012, withdrawing from the Wells Fargo Championship in North Carolina after a first-round 74. That Thursday, he cited injuries to his right wrist and elbow, as well continued pain in a surgically repaired left thumb. He said he would review his options and consider competing in The Players Championship the next week.  Kim chose not to play. Then he tore an Achilles and hasn't been heard from since. Two-and-a-half years later, what happened to Kim remains an unsolved mystery.  However, a Golf.com report suggests that according to a friend, Kim is safe and healthy enough to play. So why isn't he playing? Kim reportedly took out a $10 million insurance policy against career-ending injury that could be worth at least $10 million tax free, if not more. If Kim returns to the PGA Tour in any capacity, the policy is void and he would lose the money on what amounts to a lifetime disability plan. According to the Golf.com story, Kim told a friend, "If I take one swing on Tour, the policy is voided." Were Kim to make a comeback at 29, he'd have to earn an estimated $35 million simply to clear what he's being paid not to play. In seven seasons on Tour, Kim earned $12.2 million, with all but $3 million earned from 2008-10. The gamble's simply not worth it. Meanwhile, Kim is free to enjoy life. He's become an urban legend in Dallas, where he's been seen at area bars and playing in high-stakes card games. However, he's rarely seen playing golf recreationally. He reportedly makes the occasional cameo on a driving range or for nine holes at a high-end private club. Kim reportedly contacted the PGA Tour in April 2014 asking for the password to a player information portal. However, Kim has no love for the Tour, its corporate feel or its executives. It doesn't suit his blue-collar background, he feels. Media intrigue in his story and legendary off-course behavior may make him apprehensive to step under a microscope again. However

The Olympic impact of an independent Scotland [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 17, 2014, 5:47 pm]
On Thursday, Scots vote to decide if they will break off from the United Kingdom, launching an independent Scotland after hundreds of years under the Union Jack. The impact of such a decision is far-reaching, including impacting the world of golf. When golf returns to the Olympics in 2016, it will select the 60-player fields for both the men's and women's tournaments based on respective world rankings. However, countries will be limited in the number of players that can represent them in the 72-hole events. A country can send no more than four players, and that's if all four players are ranked inside the top 15 of the world rankings. Outside of the top 15, the two highest-ranked players from a country qualify until the field is filled. As you might imagine, Scotland is pretty good at golf. In both the men's and women's ranking, Scots rank highly enough to earn a pair of slots in the 60-player field, kicking out players from other countries. Were Scotland to go independent and the Olympic tournament held today, Ryder Cup player Stephen Gallacher and Marc Warren would be in the men's draw, kicking out Juvic Pagunsan of the Philippines and Adilson da Silva of Brazil. On the women's side, Catriona Matthew and Kylie Walker are in while Fabienne In-Albon and Margarita Ramos would be out. Ryan Ballengee is a Yahoo Sports contributor. Find him on Facebook and Twitter. Follow @RyanBallengee

Miguel Angel Jimenez saves the most interesting Ice Bucket Challenge for last [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 17, 2014, 5:11 pm]
The ALS Ice Bucket Challenge has kind of come and gone in terms of viral popularity and public delight at each new celebrity taking a cold water over the head. However, Miguel Angel Jimenez had yet to take on the challenge. He finally got to it this week, and it's delightful. Jimenez challenged several fellow Spaniard golfers as well as a professional bullfighter before kicking back with a stogie on a golf-course bench. A bunch of friends came in to dump a trash can full of cold aqua on the Mechanic's head, and the oldest winner in European Tour history took it like the champion he is. This should officially end golf's involvement with the Ice Bucket Challenge, bringing full-circle the sport's integral part in rise of the challenge. Ryan Ballengee is a Yahoo Sports contributor. Find him on Facebook and Twitter. Follow @RyanBallengee

Tiger Woods says swing coaches don't understand tournament pressure [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 17, 2014, 4:10 pm]
To paraphrase Will Smith, Coaches just don't understand. That's how Tiger Woods feels about golf coaches, including the three he's worked with over the course of his professional career. While not mentioning Butch Harmon, Hank Haney or Sean Foley by name, Woods believes their lack of tournament experience leaves them lacking in understanding high-pressure situations. "I would have to say on the technical side, I probably don't know as much as some of them," Woods said Monday at a news conference for his World Challenge in December. "But from a feel standpoint, which is something I think is innate because of what we're able to do at such an elite level, yeah, I think I know a lot more than they do. Because they've never played down the stretch of a major championship. What do the hands feel? What does the body feel?" Woods' coaches have suggested the 14-time major winner never incorporated all of their advice into his swing. He took what he wanted, eschewed what made little sense to him. "Will they work on the back nine on a Sunday of a major? Either yes or no," Woods said. "And I think that's one thing I've always tried to tell all my coaches. Will it work or not work? And if it's not going to work, then we're not going down that road." Woods said he has set no timetable and is in no rush to decide who, if anyone, will be his next swing coach. In fact, Woods could be his own coach for several months, like he was briefly after parting ways with Hank Haney in 2010. Nevertheless, Woods expects to play what he terms a "full" schedule in 2014-15. Ryan Ballengee is a Yahoo Sports contributor. Find him on Facebook and Twitter. Follow @RyanBallengee

Adam Scott and Steve Williams end player-caddie relationship [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 17, 2014, 3:15 pm]
Adam Scott believed he could convince caddie Steve Williams to work his bag full-time in 2014-15, despite Williams' protestations that this past season would be his last in that capacity. Scott was wrong, and on Wednesday the termination of their player-caddie relationship became official.  “After discussing this in detail with Adam it became evident that my plan was not going to fit with Adam’s requirements so we decided to end our partnership,” Williams said in a statement. “Steve has been an integral part of my team in a period where I have fulfilled some of my lifetime golfing goals,” Scott said. “His dedication and professionalism have been without question, and his friendship is highly valued. Our priorities and stages of life are different now, and so we decided that this is the best time to end our partnership.” Scott and Williams began working together in 2011 when Tiger Woods was unable to play in the U.S. Open at Congressional in suburban Maryland. The Aussie-Kiwi duo hooked up for what both likely thought was a temporary partnership before Williams would return to Woods' bag. Instead, Woods and William soon after had a falling out. Scott quickly picked up Williams on his bag and won the WGC-Bridgestone Invitational.  A season later, Scott nearly won his first major at the Open Championship but surrendered a four-shot lead with four holes to play, letting Ernie Els snag a fourth major title. The following April, however, Scott got his major, beating Angel Cabrera in a playoff to become the first Aussie to win a green jacket. The following November, Williams publicly said this season would be his last as a full-time looper. ”Next year will be 36 years,” Williams said. ”I like 36, it’s a nice number, it’s a golf number.” He said he would be open to caddying for bigger events, particularly the majors, The Players, World Golf Championship events and the Presidents Cup. However, Scott made it clear recently he hoped Williams would r

Lexi Thompson's newest photo shoot will catch your attention [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 16, 2014, 7:41 pm]
Lexi Thompson first entered the public consciousness at 12 years old when she qualified for the U.S. Women's Open. Now at 19, Thompson has set LPGA records as their youngest champion (since eclipsed by Lydia Ko) and won a major championship. However, it's tough not to recall her as a pre-teen phenom. A new photo shoot for GolfPunk Magazine should change that. Thompson dons a bikini in what would probably be considered in golf circles a steamy shoot accompanying an interview. The magazine names the LPGA star "Sexi Thompson." This is the second time in recent memory Thompson has made a splash in a bikini. She recently starred in a Puma ad, called "Calling All Troublemakers," in which she wore a bikini in a hot tub, flanked by a pair of men. Ryan Ballengee is a Yahoo Sports contributor. Find him on Facebook and Twitter. Follow @RyanBallengee

Why hasn't Hunter Mahan won the FedEx Cup yet? [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 16, 2014, 7:18 pm]
Hunter Mahan is the only player to have played in every FedEx Cup playoff event. He's the only player to have advanced to the Tour Championship in all eight years of the playoff concept. Despite those accomplishments, Mahan has only finished inside the top 10 of the final FedEx Cup standings twice. He's never even pierced the top five, much less top three. For as consistent as he's been the last eight years, it's staggering Mahan has not fared better, padded his bank account more. At first glance, the hypothesis as to why is simple: Mahan must not be able to figure out East Lake, home to the playoffs-ending Tour Championship. As it turns out, however, that's just one part of a frustrating equation. Since the FedEx Cup adopted its current format in 2009, Mahan has substantially improved his FedEx Cup position over the course of the playoffs twice. In 2011, Mahan began the playoffs in 20th place, entered the Tour Championship at 21st and, on the back of a runner-up finish, ended in seventh place. (In 2013, Mahan began the playoffs in 21st, ended in 20th.) This year, a win at The Barclays thrust him into the conversation for the season-long title. Clearly, the combination of the points reset before the Tour Championship and his Atlanta record play a key role in Mahan's playoff mediocrity. In 2011 and '12, Mahan improved his position over the course of the Tour Championship. Otherwise, he lost ground. However, Mahan's Tour Championship finishes are positively mediocre, averaging 13th over the last eight seasons. That's beating half the field, but certainly not good enough when the points system rewards contending at East Lake. The playoffs, however, are a battery of four events, and Mahan's problems really stem from his inability to improve his position during the first three events. In every year of the FedEx Cup concept, Mahan began the playoffs inside the top 30. Obviously, he never ended the BMW Championship outside that position. Mahan, however, rarely improves his

Tiger Woods on track for December return, in no rush for new swing coach [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 15, 2014, 6:12 pm]
Tiger Woods is on target for a return to competitive golf in December at his World Challenge in Orlando.  Speaking at Isleworth Golf & Country Club on Monday for a media event, Woods said he was "right on timeline" to play in his silly season event benefiting the Tiger Woods Foundation. However, that timeline has no golf on it right now; Woods hasn't been practicing since the PGA Championship. In the meantime, Woods has been hitting the gym pretty hard. “I’ve been busting my butt in the gym,” Woods said. “It’s nice to be able to shut it down and get stronger.” Woods indicated he'll pick up a golf club again at the end of month or in October, but does not know who, if anyone, will be his golf teacher. After parting ways with Sean Foley in August, Woods said he was on no timetable to select his next instructor. He reiterated that Monday saying he is in "no hurry" to find a replacement. Ryan Ballengee is a Yahoo Sports contributor. Find him on Facebook and Twitter. Follow @RyanBallengee

Watch Rory McIlroy drain 55 putts in a row at the Tour Championship [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 15, 2014, 5:09 pm]
On the PGA Tour, a player makes a 10-foot putt about 38 percent of the time. Over the weekend at the Tour Championship, Rory McIlroy made that length of putt 55 times in a row. McIlroy was preparing for the final round at East Lake Golf Club, working on his putting stroke. On the practice green, McIlroy set up shop about 10 feet from one of the cups on the green. He then proceeded to make 55 putts in a row before falling just short of the Joe DiMaggio number. The world No. 1 didn't win the Tour Championship nor the FedEx Cup on Sunday, but did prove that, even after four straight weeks of playoff golf, he had the mental toughness to grind out 55 putts in a row. Ryan Ballengee is a Yahoo Sports contributor. Find him on Facebook and Twitter. Follow @RyanBallengee

Billy Horschel wins Tour Championship, FedEx Cup and $11.44 million [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 14, 2014, 10:02 pm]
Papa's got a brand new bag, and it's filled with $11.44 million.  Father-to-be Billy Horschel closed out a historic run in the FedEx Cup playoffs on Sunday, winning the Tour Championship at East Lake for his second consecutive win and, in the process, claiming the FedEx Cup and its $10 million bounty.  Horschel shot a final round of 2-under 68 to beat Rory McIlroy (71) and Jim Furyk (69) by three shots to win his third PGA Tour title. Furyk had opportunities to make Horschel sweat the final few holes, but a pair of closing bogeys on the 71st and 72nd holes gave the Florida Gator the breathing room to make it an easy finish. Chris Kirk, who entered the week at No. 1 in the reset FedEx Cup standings, finished tied for fourth place with Justin Rose and Jason Day, locking up the runner-up spot in the final standings. Horschel entered the playoffs ranked 69th, making him by far the worst-ranked player through the regular season to go on to win the FedEx Cup. Brandt Snedeker was 19th entering the 2012 playoffs. Over the course of the playoffs, Horschel, who missed the cut at The Barclays, has earned $13.48 million, more than double his prior PGA Tour winnings. Ryan Ballengee is a Yahoo Sports contributor. Find him on Facebook and Twitter. Follow @RyanBallengee

European Tour ace earns Andy Sullivan a trip to outer space [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 14, 2014, 12:55 pm]
Most weeks in pro golf, a hole-in-one gets a player a car. Andy Sullivan's Sunday ace at the KLM Open, however, earned him a much more unique prize: a trip to outer space. Sullivan made a hole-in-one at the par-3 15th hole at Kennemer Golf & Country Club, winning a seat on a future space excursion from sponsor XCOR Space Expeditions. The trip is valued at $95,000. Starting in the second half of 2015, the excursions will take off from a launch pad in the Mojave Desert and going almost 39 miles into space before coming back to Earth. Ryan Ballengee is a Yahoo Sports contributor. Find him on Facebook and Twitter. Follow @RyanBallengee

Greg Norman 'lucky' to keep left hand after chainsaw accident [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 14, 2014, 11:32 am]
Greg Norman feels "lucky" to not have lost his left hand in a Saturday chainsaw accident. The two-time major winner shared a picture through his Instagram account of him laid up in a hospital bed with his left hand bandaged heavily. “Working with a chainsaw ALWAYS be respectful of the unexpected,” Norman said in the caption accompanying the photo. “I was one lucky man today. Damaged, but not down & out. Still have left hand.” The 59-year-old Norman is an outdoorsman with a do-it-yourself attitude. In fact, on Sept. 6, Norman shared a photo on Instagram in which he is wielding a chainsaw. The caption, in part: " Never ask someone to do something that you can do yourself. Love to work!" Ryan Ballengee is a Yahoo Sports contributor. Find him on Facebook and Twitter. Follow @RyanBallengee

The case for delaying Ryder Cup captain's picks [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 14, 2014, 1:50 am]
Look at the bottom of the Tour Championship leaderboard. You'll find three American Ryder Cup team members among the last five names, including Hunter Mahan and Webb Simpson, two of Tom Watson's three wild-card picks. The other pick, Keegan Bradley, didn't qualify for the playoff finale in Atlanta. Meanwhile, Billy Horschel is in contention for a third consecutive week. After giving away a chance to win the Deutsche Bank Championship on the 72nd hole, he came back the next week to win the BMW Championship at Cherry Hills. On the back of three strong rounds at East Lake, Horschel not only finds himself again in position to win but with world No. 1 Rory McIlroy in the final group on Sunday. Chris Kirk wasn't on Tom Watson's radar until he won the Deutsche Bank Championship on Labor Day. However, Watson favored Simpson and his ability to gel emotionally with a finicky Bubba Watson over the hyper-stoic Kirk. The Georgia product is four back heading into Sunday with an off chance of snagging the Tour Championship, FedEx Cup and its $10 million bounty. Had Watson been given longer to evaluate his choices, would he still have picked the three he did? Just some of them? Watson won't say, but it's hard not to see the juxtaposition of players that were picked for the team against the ones staying home when the U.S. team heads to Gleneagles. There's no reason not to give future captains all the time they need to make their choices. In fact, captains should be allowed to wait until the week prior the Ryder Cup to announce their wild-card selections. Affording captains the opportunity to name their picks anytime after the automatic qualifiers are announced adds intrigue to the picks and gives the maximum time to evaluate players. And it's not as though the teams are traveling by boat; the charter jet will be fueled up and ready to go regardless of which dozen players get on it.  Given that each of the last two Ryder Cups has been decided by a point, any potential edge is worth

McIlroy, Horschel tied for lead heading into final day of Tour Championship [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 13, 2014, 11:40 pm]
ATLANTA, Ga. - All day long at East Lake, everyone seemed to be waiting for something, anything, to happen. The skies wavered between blinding sunshine and foreboding cloud cover. The gallery had at least one ear ready for the impending Georgia-South Carolina game. The players burbled around the leaderboard, with all major swings taking place well away from the leaders. And then came 15, and Rory McIlroy's eagle putt, and all of a sudden, the game was afoot. McIlroy shot a 67, while Horschel fumbled a bit on the back nine and ended with a 69. It's his 11th straight round in the 60s, but it was enough to erase his two-shot lead on McIlroy coming into the day. Horschel and McIlroy now find themselves 18 holes away from golf's richest prize: the $10 million FedEx Cup. All each player needs to do is win the tournament and the Cup and payday is his. Both are -9, and will once again be paired with each other on Sunday. A little further down the leaderboard is Jim Furyk at -6, whose last win was the Tour Championship in 2010. Furyk can win the FedEx Cup as long as Horschel or Chris Kirk don't finish in solo second place. One stroke behind Furyk are Rickie Fowler, Justin Rose, and Jason Day. All three can only win the FedEx Cup with a series of college-level algebraics determining where their pursuers must finish. At the moment, it's McIlroy or Horschel's to lose. "Can we go tee it up right now?" Horschel said afterward. "I'm serious. That would help me out a lot. I'm ready to go. It's going to be so fun." ____ Jay Busbee is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Have a tip? Email him at jay.busbee@yahoo.com or find him on Facebook or on Twitter. Follow @jaybusbee

Horschel, McIlroy share lead heading into Tour Championship finale [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 13, 2014, 10:23 pm]
The best player in the world and the hottest player of these FedEx Cup playoffs are tied heading into the 16th, and final, round of the four-event series. World No. 1 Rory McIlroy and BMW Championship winner Billy Horschel are tied at 9 under par through three rounds of the Tour Championship at East Lake in Atlanta. McIlroy caught Horshcel with a 3-under 67 on Saturday. An eagle at the par-5 15th brought McIlroy level, aided earlier on the side by a pair of Horschel (69) bogeys. While the co-leaders are two clear of the field, their nearest pursuer, Jim Furyk, made the Tour Championship his last PGA Tour win in 2010 when he clinched the season finale at the $10 million FedEx Cup first-place prize. A trio of players are three back, including Justin Rose (third-roudn 72), Rickie Fowler (67) and Jason Day (70). Meanwhile, Jordan Spieth turned in a shocking, 10-over 80 to fall from the fringes of contention to 28th place out of a 29-player field. Spieth is among three Americans on the Ryder Cup team in the bottom five of the leaderboard, with captain's picks Hunter Mahan tied for 25th and Webb Simpson in 27th place.

Billy Horschel would miss the birth of his daughter for a shot at $10 million [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 12, 2014, 5:30 pm]
ATLANTA, Ga. - It's not often that you get a chance to witness the birth of your first child. It's also not often that you have a legit chance at a $10 million payday. Which one would you choose? Coming into Friday, Billy Horschel was tied for the lead at the Tour Championship at East Lake Golf Club in Atlanta, the final event in the PGA Tour's season. Should he win this tournament, he would also win the season-long FedEx Cup, which means a tidy $10 million check. But his wife is due with their first child, a little girl, two weeks from Saturday. It's not inconceivable that Little Miss Horschel could be early for her tee time. What would daddy do then? "We have decided that if she goes into labor while I'm playing, I will just keep playing, because $10 million is a lot of money and I'm not going to pass that by," Horschel said. "Right now the plan is not notify me while I'm on the golf course ... I would love to know, but [it does] sort of deviate from focus a little bit.  So I'll obviously get the information as I walk off 18 green if it does happen that way." Yes, we'd imagine that the impending birth of your child would deviate from your focus a bit. There is precedent for this; as recently as last year, Hunter Mahan walked away from a tournament while in the lead when his wife went into labor. In 2009, Ross Fisher pledged to leave the British Open while close to the lead if his wife went into labor. (She didn't.) And in 1999, Phil Mickelson played one of the finest U.S. Opens in history knowing that his wife was about to give birth to their first child; he would lose to Payne Stewart, who memorably pulled Mickelson close and congratulated him on impending fatherhood. Still, Horschel's in unprecedented territory here, financially speaking. He's got career earnings of $8 million; a $10 million payday would buy an awful lot of diapers. Plus, it's not like the kid's going to remember if you were there or not anyway. ____ Jay Busbee is a writer for Yahoo Sports. Hav

Rory McIlroy's tee shot literally lands in a spectator's pocket [Yahoo! Sports: Blogs: September 12, 2014, 4:47 pm]
Rory McIlroy's drives have landed in some strange places, but this one may take the cake.  McIlroy's tee shot on the par-4 14th hole in the second round of the Tour Championship sailed well right of the fairway, finding a tree. The ball rattled down around briefly in the tree before falling straight down...and into the right-front pocket of a spectator's shorts. The spectator then stood still until McIlroy could make his way to him. After a brief conversation and bringing in the nearest rules official, McIlroy was given free relief, dropping the ball where the fan's pocket caught the ball. From there, McIlroy found the green, but the fan left without a souvenir ball. Instead, he got to shake hands with the world's No. 1 player. McIlroy went on to make par. It's not the first time a McIlroy tee shot has landed in a strange place. At the 2012 PGA Championship at Kiawah Island, McIlroy's tee shot at the par-4 third hole. It was no matter; McIlroy went on to win his second major title in a blowout. Ryan Ballengee is a Yahoo Sports contributor. Find him on Facebook and Twitter. Follow @RyanBallengee

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