Jackie Steinmann, the UCLA coach, is especially impressed with the focus and drive of her Korean-American players. "When they decide to do something, they go after it," she says. "Their culture is like that. I think it comes from the parents, who expect so much more of their kids than American parents do. I should know, I've got three kids."
Last week at the Ping/ASU Invitational in Tempe, Ariz., San Jose State and UCLA finished third and fourth, respectively, behind winner Arizona State, the nation's third-ranked team, which has in its lineup a Mexican, a Sri Lankan and a Swede. The Mexican, Vinny Riviello, tied for the individual title with Mhairi McKay, a Scot from Stanford.
The new gizmo of choice on the PGA Tour is a yardage rangefinder that provides highly accurate measurements through the use of laser optics. Although not allowed in competition, the rangefinders can be used in practice rounds to figure distances over water and to double-check yardage books.
Tour players, course architects, instructors, college coaches and caddies have been lining up to buy either the DME ($250), the Bushnell ($300) or the Swarovski ($3,000) models. All of them provide in one second the precise distance of any object up to 1,000 yards away. Fuzzy Zoeller's caddie, Cayce Kerr, represents Swarovski on Tour and has sold 79 of the devices to such people as Ben Crenshaw, John Daly, Ernie Els, Peter Jacobsen, David Leadbetter, Davis Love III, Sandy Lyle, Jim McLean, Johnny Miller, Larry Nelson, Arnold Palmer, Vijay Singh, Rick Smith and Kerr's boss, Zoeller.
"I just tell them to leave the check in Fuzzy's locker," says Kerr, who has a pager and a cell phone to keep up with business calls. "The product really sells itself. These guys want to get their hands on any little edge they can."
The Short Game
Two-time Masters champion Bernhard Langer injured his shoulder playing volleyball with friends and had to withdraw from the Players Championship. Langer suffered a deep bruise while diving for a ball and was in so much pain that he was rushed to a hospital by ambulance for X-rays. He had to withdraw from this week's BellSouth Classic in Atlanta but still hopes to play in next week's Masters....
Starting in November the LPGA, like the Senior and PGA tours, will hold a season-ending tournament for the top 30 players on the money list. The $700,000 event will be played at the Sheraton Desert Inn in Las Vegas....
Talk about tough pin placements. One contender five-putted and three others four-putted the 18th green during the final round of the European tour's Madeira Island Open. Jarmo Sandelin of Sweden escaped with a two-putt and a one-stroke win over Paul Affleck of Wales. "I barely touched my ball and said 'please' to it all the way to the hole," Sandelin said....