Random ruminations while wondering whatever happened to Carl "Goo Baby'' Woods...
- I will never forget the first time I played night golf with Nashville's David Meador. It was darker than the ace of spades, at Hermitage Golf Course.
It was a charity tournament to benefit Tennessee Society to Prevent Blindness. Meador was blind. I couldn't see.
We each had two golf balls designed specifically for night golf. We started on a par-3 and would play six holes as I recall.
There was a lake directly in front of the tee box and that's where my tee shot went. I could see it slowly disappear as it sank to the bottom. Great. I had one ball left to finish the rest of the holes. If had had a white towel, I would have waved it in surrender.
David was amazing to watch. His career as a blind golfer now includes three National Blind Golf Championships, an event where he is almost always in the chase.
On April 10, at the annual Golf Writers Association of America awards dinner, they will present David Meador the Ben Hogan Award for courage in overcoming a physical handicap or serious illness while remaining active in the game.
In addition to totally losing his sight in 1966 after an automobile accident, Meador has more recently battled Hodgkin's disease and colon cancer.
He has won three national blind golf titles, in 1977, 2011 and 2012. Meador has also been successful in the insurance business and as a motivational speaker.
Former Hogan winners read like a who's who of golf. Included are Tom Watson, Ken Green, Hubert Green, Bruce Edwards, Scott Verplank, Judy Rankin, Jose-Maria Olazabal, Paul Azinger, Ken Venturi, Lee Trevino and Casey Martin.
The golf writers could not have honored a more worthy person.
- The recent Outback and Fiesta Bowls had a little bit of everything for you bowl watching enjoyment.
The highlight of the bowl season was South Carolina sophomore defensive end Jadeveon Clowney's detonation of Michigan running back Vincent Smith in the Outback Bowl.
Smith barely had time to take the fourth quarter handoff before Clowney flattened him with enough force to knock Smith's helmet off and send it flying up the field. The football and Smith were separated and Clowney palmed the ball like it was a baseball in his left hand while still on top of Smith. He then got to his feet and returned it approximately five yards.
It may be the best hit I've ever seen and video of it has exploded on YouTube.
The play was preceded by the biggest bone-head call of the game, when the referee ruled after a measurement that South Carolina was short of a first down. The television replays clearly showed it was a link or two short. South Carolina Coach Steve Spurrier came unhinged, running on the field and pointing to the chain with the referee right there. The officials even reviewed it and still came to the same conclusion.
Michigan's first play after that was when Clowney blew up Smith. I guess you could say Clowney took the game in his own hands.
In the Fiesta Bowl, Oregon was awarded a one-point safety, the first time the rule had been used since Texas got one against Texas A&M in 2004.
The Ducks saw a point-after attempt blocked and Kansas State's Chris Harper picked it up at his three-yard line, retreated into the end zone where he intended to return it. But he was tackled before he exited the end zone, thus the one-point safety. It's not like Oregon needed it, as the Ducks pummeled Kansas State.
- NFL Hall of Fame quarterback Joe Montana's sons just can't seem to get settled while trying to fill their father's rather formidable shoes.
Nick Montana will play at Tulane this season after a redshirt year at Washingon prompted a transfer to Mount San Antonio Community College, where his team won a division title last season. Now it's on to Tulane where Montana could stand to gain some weight. That should be no problem with a steady diet of gumbo, red beans and rice with bread pudding for dessert.
Brother Nate Montana is on his third college team since high school and he is currently on the Notre Dame roster. Nate will be eligible for this year's NFL draft, but he is unlikely to be drafted.
- ESPN reporter/anchor Hannah Storm is one lucky lady. She was recently preparing dinner for her family when the pilot light on an outdoor gas grill went off. She turned it back on and the explosion sent a fireball directly at her.
Quick thinking and action by her 15-year-old daughter likely prevent even more damage.
Storm lost her eyebrows, eyelashes, and approximately half of her hair. She also had first-degree burns on her face and neck and second degree burns on her chest and hands. She co-hosted the recent Rose Bowl Parade.
- Florida State baseball player Stephen Spradling's skydiving days are over after he was seriously injured in a skydiving accident in Florida.
Spradling was an estimated 100 feet from the ground when he spotted another skydiver coming straight toward him. He pulled hard on his chute, missing the oncoming skydiver, but hit the ground with significant force.
He suffered a broken pelvis, broken hips, ribs and a bone in his back. He will be confined to a wheelchair 2-3 months after being released by a Melbourne (Fla.) hospital.
FSU assistant coach Mike Martin Jr. was quoted on Tallahassee.com. "They think he'll be able to walk,'' Martin said of the medical prognosis. "They're pretty confident as far as walking. He'll probably never play baseball again, which is irrelevant right now.''
Spradling was second on the team with 12 hit-by-pitcher counts and was batting .262 in 42 at-bats.
- Make fun of the BBVA Compass Bowl if you must, but it outdrew the Sugar Bowl by more than 5,000 fans. The Birmingham-based bowl was up 50% over last year in attendance, thanks in large part to the Ole Miss Nation that showed up to boost the crowd to 59,000-plus. And that is in the aged Legion Field facility.
It was the lowest turnout for the Sugar Bowl since 1939.
Ole Miss pounced on Pitt to finish 7-6 on the season. Former Blackman High running back I'Tavius Mathers led Ole Miss with 96 yards on six carries. Included was a 62-yard TD run.
- Like father, like son. At least in the case of Buffalo University linebacker Wonderful Terrific Monds II.
The name landed him on Athlon's college football 2012 All-Name team.
Joining him was former Ensworth, now Tulane, running back Orleans Darkwa. Others include the appropriately named Wave Ryder of Navy, Wake Forest DE Godspower Offer and the unforgettable George George, a tight end at Virginia Tech.
Not to be catty, but whoever named George George didn't waste a lot of time on creativity.
- Western Kentucky Coach Bobby Petrino was roundly panned for walking out as the Atlanta Falcons' head coach with regular season games still to be played.
Patriots coach Bill Belichick wasn't much better after being hired by the Jets in 2000. Belichick, who was born at Vanderbilt Hospital while his father was an assistant coach at Vanderbilt, never got to the first game.
He left after only one day on the job. Belichick's hand-written note said it all: "I resign as HC of the NYJ.''
Needless to say, neither one of them received a going away party>
- There is only one thing I can say about Texas A&M's Johnny "Football'' Manziel.
Manziel is the truth.
Contact wkrn.com Sports Columnist Joe Biddle at firstname.lastname@example.org.