Fluff Cowan served as Woods' caddie from the start of his professional career until Woods dismissed him in March 1999.[179] He was replaced by Steve Williams, who became a close friend of Woods and is often credited with helping him with key shots and putts.[180] In June 2011, Woods dismissed Williams after he caddied for Adam Scott in the U.S. Open[181] and replaced him with friend Bryon Bell on an interim basis. Joe LaCava, a former caddie of both Fred Couples and Dustin Johnson, was hired by Woods shortly after[182] and has remained Woods' caddie since then.
World Golf Championships-Dell Technologies Match Play: In his first start at the World Golf Championships-Dell Technologies Match Play since 2013, and first start in the state of Texas since 2005, advanced to the Quarterfinals to finish T5 in the event. Playing at Austin Country Club for the first time in his career, earned two points to advance out of his group after defeating Aaron Wise and Patrick Cantlay. Suffered a 2-and-1 loss to Brandt Snedeker. Went head-to-head with Rory McIlroy for the first time with their match up in the Round of 16. Defeated McIlroy, 2 and 1, before falling to Denmark's Lucas Bjerregaard, 1-up.
On December 2, following Us Weekly's previous day reporting of a purported mistress and subsequent release of a voicemail message allegedly left by Woods for the woman,[216] Woods released a further statement. He admitted transgressions and apologized to "all of those who have supported [him] over the years", while reiterating his and his family's right to privacy.[211][217] Over the next few days, more than a dozen women claimed in various media outlets to have had affairs with Woods.[6] On December 11, he released a third statement admitting to infidelity and he apologized again. He also announced that he would be taking "an indefinite break from professional golf."[6]
The Barclays: Finished T38 in his seventh start at The Barclays, with a 76 in the final round of The Barclays tying his second-highest score when entering the final round T10 or better (he was T10 after 54 holes this week). In 2007 at the Arnold Palmer Invitational, was T10 after 54 holes and shot 76 to finish T22. At the 1998 Arnold Palmer Invitational, was T2 after 54 holes and shot 77 to finish T13.
Earned his 80th PGA TOUR victory and first since 2013, winning the TOUR Championship for the third time in his career to move within two of Sam Snead's TOUR-best 82 victories. Finished the season No. 2 in the FedExCup, with runner-up finishes at the Valspar Championship and PGA Championship among his seven top-10s. Led the TOUR in Strokes Gained: Approach the Green (0.938) for the sixth consecutive season in which he played the minimum number of rounds. After originally being selected as a Captain's Assistant for the United States Ryder Cup team, was later selected as a captain's pick and played in the event for the eighth time.

In October 2007, Gatorade announced that Woods would have his own brand of sports drink starting in March 2008. "Gatorade Tiger" was his first U.S. deal with a beverage company and his first licensing agreement. Although no figures were officially disclosed, Golfweek magazine reported that it was for five years and could pay him as much as $100 million.[144] The company decided in early fall 2009 to discontinue the drink due to weak sales.[145]
In October 2007, Gatorade announced that Woods would have his own brand of sports drink starting in March 2008. "Gatorade Tiger" was his first U.S. deal with a beverage company and his first licensing agreement. Although no figures were officially disclosed, Golfweek magazine reported that it was for five years and could pay him as much as $100 million.[144] The company decided in early fall 2009 to discontinue the drink due to weak sales.[145]

In the days and months following Woods' admission of multiple infidelities, several companies re-evaluated their relationships with him. Accenture, AT&T, Gatorade and General Motors completely ended their sponsorship deals, while Gillette suspended advertising featuring Woods.[84][218] TAG Heuer dropped Woods from advertising in December 2009 and officially ended their deal when his contract expired in August 2011.[84] Golf Digest suspended Woods's monthly column beginning with the February 2010 issue.[219] In contrast, Nike continued to support Woods, as did Electronic Arts, which was working with Woods on the game Tiger Woods PGA Tour Online.[220] A December 2009 study estimated the shareholder loss caused by Woods's affairs to be between $5 billion and $12 billion.[221]

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World Golf Championships-CA Championship: Logged 56th career TOUR victory and 13th official World Golf Championships title in 24th start at the CA Championship at Doral Golf Resort & Spa. Held the 36- and 54-hole leads before closing out a two-stroke win over Brett Wetterich, marking the 39th time winning (in 42 events) when holding at least a share of the third-round lead.

Woods was heavily recruited by college golf powers. He chose Stanford University, the 1994 NCAA champions. He enrolled at Stanford in the fall of 1994 under a golf scholarship and won his first collegiate event, the 40th Annual William H. Tucker Invitational, that September.[50] He selected a major in economics and was nicknamed "Urkel" by college teammate Notah Begay III.[51] In 1995, he successfully defended his U.S. Amateur title at the Newport Country Club in Rhode Island[44] and was voted Pac-10 Player of the Year, NCAA First Team All-American, and Stanford's Male Freshman of the Year (an award that encompasses all sports).[52][53]


In August 2016, Woods announced that he would be seeking a new golf equipment partner[149] after the news of Nike's exit from the equipment industry.[150] It was announced on January 25, 2017, that he would be signing a new club deal with TaylorMade.[151] He added the 2016 M2 driver along with the 2017 M1 fairway woods, with irons to be custom made at a later date. He also added his Scotty Cameron Newport 2 GSS, a club he used to win 13 of his 15 majors.[152] Also, in late 2016, he would add Monster Energy as his primary bag sponsor, replacing MusclePharm.[153]
In 2000, Woods won six consecutive events on the PGA Tour, which was the longest winning streak since Ben Hogan did it in 1948. One of these was the U.S. Open, where he broke or tied nine tournament records in what Sports Illustrated called "the greatest performance in golf history", in which Woods won the tournament by a record 15-stroke margin and earned a check for $800,000.[68] At age 24, he became the youngest golfer to achieve the Career Grand Slam.[69] At the end of 2000, Woods had won nine of the twenty PGA Tour events he entered and had broken the record for lowest scoring average in tour history. He was named the Sports Illustrated Sportsman of the Year, the only athlete to be honored twice, and was ranked by Golf Digest magazine as the twelfth-best golfer of all time.[70]

Farmers Insurance Open: At the beginning of the year, committed to the Farmers Insurance Open, The Honda Classic and the Omega Dubai Desert Classic on the European Tour. Making his first start in an official PGA TOUR event for the first time since the 2015 Wyndham Championship (T10), opened the Farmers Insurance Open with a 4-over 76 on the South course, his highest score ever to start a year as a professional. Missed the 36-hole cut after a second-round 72 for a 4-over total.


Bay Hill Invitational presented by Cooper Tires: Earned his third consecutive victory at the Bay Hill Invitational, the first player to win three different TOUR events (the Memorial Tournament from 1999 to 2001) and the World Golf Championships-NEC Invitational (also 1999 to 2001) three consecutive times. Entered the final round with a one-shot lead over Len Mattiace and carded a 3-under 69 to win by four over runner-up Michael Campbell. With his 30th career PGA TOUR victory, he surpassed Nicklaus for most wins before age 30.
Early in Woods' career, a small number of golf industry analysts expressed concern about his impact on the competitiveness of the game and the public appeal of professional golf. Sportswriter Bill Lyon of Knight Ridder asked in a column, "Isn't Tiger Woods actually bad for golf?" (though Lyon ultimately concluded that he was not).[162] At first, some pundits feared that Woods would drive the spirit of competition out of the game of golf by making existing courses obsolete and relegating opponents to simply competing for second place each week.
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