Bubba Watson Throws "Big Pink" at Tiger and Lefty

Tom EdringtonSenior Writer IJune 13, 2012

Bubba Watson brings out "Big Pink" at the U.S. Open.
Bubba Watson brings out "Big Pink" at the U.S. Open.Andrew Redington/Getty Images

You saw golf history last April when a guy named Bubba won the Masters with, of all things, a pink driver.

Bubba Watson, golf's modern redneck, finds himself right smack dab in the U.S. Open spotlight come Thursday morning out there at the ritzy Olympic Club, where no poor guys need to apply for a membership.

The owner of the General Lee finds himself stuck in between Lefty and Tiger, as in Mickelson and Woods, hold back the crowds, quit snapping pictures and by all means and don't fall out of a tree in Tiger's back swing.

Not sure Bubba's big on mob scenes, but he's going to be in the middle of the chaos that the USGA drummed up by pairing Woods and Mickelson. Then they simply threw in Bubba for good measure because, well, he's the only guy with a shot at the Grand Slam this season and maybe two lefties are better than one when it comes to creating a pairing for Woods.

Mickelson's last time out was a disaster. He won't say it, but plenty of folks felt that the smart phones at The Memorial pushed Lefty for a loop while irritating him when he was irritable already, considering how poorly he played.

On the other hand, Woods went on and won his 73rd tournament and while a bunch of people think he'll win this week, guys typically don't win, take a week off, then win the U.S. Open.

Before you scream "foul" we'll just keep in mind that on this beastly Olympic track, anything's possible if one can manage to escape the carnage that lies in wait on the left side of the par three 13th. Mickelson quipped something about going there and never getting out. Note to field: avoid the left side of 13.

Back to Bubba.

The Baron of Baghdad, who now resides within the protected walls of Islesworth, will have "Big Pink" in the bag again and that would be the pink G20 driver. Ping brought out a limited edition after the Masters and sold all 5,000 with some of the proceeds going to Bubba's charity efforts that seek to raise $1,000,000 this season.

If you've taken time to study the bad things that can happen to a player at Olympic, it might be safe to say that crazy things can and will happen over 72 holes. When was the last time you started on a 520-yard par four?

Now for some reason, it doesn't seem like a reach that crazy and Bubba go together, and that 520 yards to Bubba means he'll actually have to hit a second shot with something besides a wedge. 

Maybe after Rory McIlroy's scoring fest last year at Congressional, the USGA got the hint and perhaps will take the Open back to the way it used to be when par actually meant something.

Maybe it's time for the golf course to win again at the Open, the way it used to.

Problem is, nothing is the way it used to be in professional golf.

But the Open is still the Open and that makes it big. Tiger wants to be Tiger again, Phil wants a U.S. Open and Bubba?

You never know what Bubba has on his mind, but after two days with Tiger and Lefty, he's going to let someone know.


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