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GOLF
Tim Rosaforte
December 04, 1995
A Ryder Cup Surprise
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December 04, 1995

Golf

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That being the case, Kerr seems to be a lock for the team. Among her 11 victories in 1995, three came against more experienced players, including the Women's Western. Kerr, who just last week was named Rolex Junior Player of the Year, also won a pro event on the Future's tour.

Why not go to college? The money and the competition. Michael Kerr, Cristie's father, teaches fourth grade at Devonaire Elementary School in Miami and sells insurance on the side to support his daughter's golf. And Linda Kerr, Cristie's mother, works as a legal secretary for a Miami law firm.

Kerr would hardly be the first woman to cut short her amateur career to go pro. Michelle McGann, Brandie Burton, Vicki Goetze, Annika Sorenstam and Emilee Klein are only the latest young players to choose the LPGA tour over completing college, not that everyone thinks it's a wise choice.

Lela Cannon, the women's golf coach at the University of Miami, who was among those recruiting Kerr, says the players don't know what they're getting into.

"They see the dollar signs and say, 'Let's play the LPGA tour. Who knows what a few years down the line will bring. Let's make the money while we can get it,' " Cannon says. "If you asked Vicki Goetze if she was upset that she decided to leave school so early, she'd say yes. They don't realize how tough it is, not only golfwise but maturitywise. These kids should all go to college. What's the rush?"

Double Down Under

John Daly finished 16 shots behind Greg Norman, the winner of last week's Australian Open, but left Melbourne with about $100,000 more in winnings.

How? Playing blackjack. Daly won $10,000 on both Wednesday and Thursday nights at Crown Casino, and then on Friday night he pocketed a cool $187,500. "He was splittin' and doublin' and doing all these things," said Bud Martin, Daly's manager, "and he just kept winning." Good thing, because Daly blew himself out of contention the next day with a miserable 80 that included a 9 on a par-4 hole.

This week Daly is playing in the Greg Norman Classic in Sydney, and he has to be excited about his prospects, if not on the course, then certainly at the tables. Crown recently opened its newest casino in that city.

The Short Game

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