Love: FedEx playoff format is lacking

This week marks the start of the PGA Tour’s four-week FedEx Cup playoff series. Now in its seventh year, the event has matured as the tour’s season-ending event – with mixed results.

On one hand, the series does bring together nearly all the world’s top players, making for some compelling competition. However, one negative is that the four-week point system is difficult to follow for the average golf fan.

Plus, the eventual winner doesn’t always reflect the year’s best golfer. Just look at the last two winners. Brandt Snedeker and Bill Haas were both well outside the yearly top-10 points leaders when the series started, but they each got hot and captured this title.

Both men won an incredible $10 million prize for their efforts, which seems a bit disproportionate for their accomplishments over the four-week sprint.

I’d much rather see the tour reward players for their performance over the entire year.

Smith contending for title again

More than 30 years ago, I was a young, struggling golfer just trying to make the Hollidaysburg Area High School golf team. After finally securing a spot, my teammates and I spent plenty of fun days playing golf and practicing at Scotch Valley Country Club.

There was one golfer on our team, though, that was clearly better than the rest of us and someone everyone looked up to – Brian Smith.

Over the past three decades, Smith has won numerous championships at both Park Hills and Scotch Valley. He’s also captured two Greater Altoona individual titles.

It’s great to see him playing great again this year. He recently won Scotch Valley’s match-play championship and senior club championship.

He’ll be one of the contenders for this week’s club championship title at Scotch Valley, along with Mike Macionsky and defending champ David DeGol Jr.

Not-so-friendly skies

This year’s top senior golfer Kenny Perry, who has won two senior majors in 2013, was disappointed earlier this week when he opened his golf bag after a flight to Seattle, site of this week’s Champions Tour event.

“I pulled my clubs out and Delta broke my driver, the one I won all of my tournaments this year,” Perry said. “It broke the head right off the shaft. I’m very upset at this point.”

Perry had the club re-shafted right away, but his comments reflect the angst that many golfers go through when replacing a favorite club.

“Shafts don’t replicate,” he said. “As much as they say they’re the same – they are not the same.”

Ken Love covers local golf for the Mirror. His column runs on Friday.