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January 2, 2007
TODD BUDNICK: We thank Jim Furyk for stopping in at the 2007 Mercedes-Benz Championship. Pretty much the resident host here, Jim, and a very good record with seven Top-10s in your nine appearances here. Let's talk about the conditions of the course, first, since you see it so often.
JIM FURYK: Actually, I haven't seen it since I played this tournament last year. The golf course is in really good shape. I think since they made the change on the greens to the champions Bermuda, they are night and day, how much better they are. They are smoother, there's less grain, they are quicker. Everything about them is nicer. The golf course is in good shape. The fairways are like carpets out there. The golf course is in good shape. Right now it's a matter of how much it rains and how much it keeps wetting down the golf course to how firm and how fast it can play. Of course, we'll play a little longer, softer, but it allows to you get a little more aggressive with your iron shots. Guys will score better.
Hopefully, obviously, it's going to keep blowing, because it usually does, but hopefully I think we're all -- drier conditions make this place more fun but also bring the scores up.
TODD BUDNICK: You won here in 2001, and obviously you have a great record here. What is it that you like about the Plantation Course?
JIM FURYK: I don't know. You have to invent a lot of golf shots out here. It is an interesting piece of property. They built the golf course on the side of a mountain, basically. I think they did a good job with making a fun golf course of it. So other than tee shots, you rarely have a flat lie, and you rarely are making -- hitting a shot that you would hit on the driving range. It's inventing little cut shots and punches and just working the ball and using the wind to try to help you instead of letting it eat you up.
And experience is usually a key factor around here. There's holes that play 30 yards shorter and 30 yards longer than what the yardage is, so it's just kind of getting used to the shots that you have to hit. That being said, I won my first event here and that probably has a lot to do with liking it and looking forward to coming back.
TODD BUDNICK: As the first event of the season, we like to hear about what you've done in the off-season. Of course you defended your title in South Africa, and what kind of goals do you have for the upcoming season?
JIM FURYK: I played hard in November. I played three events after THE TOUR Championship. I went to China and played the HSBC and the Grand Slam out here in Hawaii and straight from there to South Africa. I always enjoy that event. I was missing the target, but I didn't have much of an off-season. I wanted to give myself four solid weeks in December.
You know, it was nice. The weather at home in Florida was perfect for most of the break. I spent a lot of time with my kids and just trying to get reorganized. I was away from home so much in the fall last year, just trying to get reorganized. I got away from golf pretty good for two solid weeks where I didn't touch a club. Still kind of in and out for the last two.
Feel pretty refreshed and looking forward to it.
TODD BUDNICK: And you won twice last year for just the second time in your 13 years. What are you looking forward to in 2007?
JIM FURYK: Obviously we have a new format, and I think getting used to that will be interesting. I'm still, after being out here for, what is it, my 14th season, I think being out here for that many years and kind of picking the same events and everything was in pretty much the same order, the events, I knew exactly what to expect. This year is going to be a little bit different with the change. A lot of the tournaments are in a different part of the season and so working the schedule is a little bit new.
It's a little bit refreshing, and it's going back to earlier in your career and trying to figure out how you want to organize your schedule and getting ready for this year.
Q. I had a quick one before the real one. Just curious, how do you get from Hawaii to South Africa?
JIM FURYK: It's not easy. The best way, actually, would be -- we didn't do it, but the best way would be to go Honolulu to Newark direct and take a shuttle to JFK and go to Johannesburg direct.
Q. What did you do?
JIM FURYK: Well, we had our kids and our in-laws, so we went from Honolulu to Dallas, Dallas to Jacksonville, and dropped off my in-laws and my kids.
Q. Did you stay at the airport or go home?
JIM FURYK: No, stayed at the airport and went to JFK to Joburg, dropped the luggage there, went to Cape Town for vacation for three days. It was six flights, and all our luggage was good.
Q. The real question I forgot now, that's so fascinating. When you talk about the schedule, in a sense, is it all like being a rookie again?
JIM FURYK: What's that? In what sense?
Q. In a sense.
JIM FURYK: Well, maybe not quite like a rookie, because I know the tournaments that I like. You know, it's just the way they have reordered. It's just a little different, and out of the seven events that are after the FedEx series, I predominately only play in one of those events, which is Las Vegas, if that makes sense. So it's the same number of events total, but now you're kind of condensing the schedule, and you're squishing everything together.
So there's probably some events that I've played in the past that I might not be able to this year. Last year I played 24 events plus the Ryder Cup, so 25 events, ten months and a week, plus The Match Play, actually.
Well, I can't play that same number of events in eight and a half months. It's kind of getting squished. It's going to be hard at times picking and choosing which events you're going to play and not play, and if I went down the list and said, all right, these are events I would normally play in. There are not a whole lot of holes in my schedule where I have a chance to relax and get away from golf and get refreshed.
The hard part is trying to organize the schedule to try to maximize your year.
Q. You don't play Boston, do you?
JIM FURYK: On and off. I always play Westchester and Chicago. I've played Boston two or three times -- two times I think. What's it been, five years there, four? I've played two of the four. I played all right.
Q. When are you going to take your break; spotting? There's not going to be a chunk, is there?
JIM FURYK: In a perfect world, you would play -- I would play three or four weeks and take two off, play three or for weeks and take two off. It's never perfect the way the events fall, and the ones I love to play in are not like that.
I usually play a good chunk and a week off and a good chunk and a week off, and then I need like two weeks off and then go out there.
Yeah, I've kind of got a schedule down where I've got a few question marks in my schedule. Just maybe two or three spots with tournaments that I may or a not play. Other than that, I'll figure it out.
Q. As best I can tell, if you do it all and do well and everything, eight of nine through THE TOUR Championship, nine of 11 through the Presidents Cup.
JIM FURYK: That's a lot. Actually if you check my schedule, last year -- I think I did that last year. I'm trying to think of where -- I think I did that once already last year.
I can do four in a row, take one off, do four in a row, but that's stout. And winning the Canadian definitely made that -- it's going to happen. But it's a good problem to have.
Yeah, it will be interesting. I think next year is even more interesting throwing the Ryder Cup the week after THE TOUR Championship. It will be very difficult on the 12 guys that make that team to have to -- because that week is more grueling than -- as grueling or more grueling than any other because of the amount of golf you play in three days and the intensity and pressure.
Q. Maybe 24, close to 20. Guys on the other team, as well.
JIM FURYK: Yeah, but I don't care that much about them. (Laughter).
Q. So you could have two teams of zombies at Valhalla for that.
JIM FURYK: 20. I don't think we'll get eight of their members playing. We'll see. Were eight of their members this year full-time on our TOUR? Plus you're not going to get 24 out of 30 guys being in the TOUR championship, either, it's not a likely scenario, and you're not going to have all 12 of our guys in the TOUR championship. I think the system will be more volatile than that.
Q. Did it feel different being here this year? The atmosphere, anything different?
JIM FURYK: There's less of you all out there.
Q. The room is smaller.
JIM FURYK: It should look more crowded if it's smaller.
Q. I was hoping you wouldn't pick up on that.
JIM FURYK: Somewhat. I think as a player, I bet you almost every player says this, as a player, I think you have to approach this season as if it was any other. Because ultimately, whether you're looking at the Money List or the points list, what it really boils down to is you need to play well, and you need to focus on what's going to get you there and the process, rather than the end result.
And so sitting there worrying about points or worrying about where you stand can probably only be negative. So just going out there and playing hard and playing well.
But as far as a perspective of obviously our advertisement, obviously what you all want to talk about, want to write about. It has a different and more fresh feel because it's just different. I think all of us are excited, all of us are apprehensive, all of us are scratching our heads in a few spots trying to figure out how it's all going to work. It's definitely new and, yeah, I'm looking forward to it.
Q. Do you anticipate playing six of seven, Firestone, PGA, off, and then the four Playoffs?
JIM FURYK: The schedule if I remember it, it goes British Open, Canadian, Firestone, PGA. And then Greensboro is going to be -- that would be an obvious off for me, and then playing the three events and hopefully get in the TOUR Championship.
So I tend to play seven out of eight for sure and hopefully eight out of nine. I can't skip the British, Akron or PGA, and I'm defending at the Canadian. So I'm walking for those four. It will be tough coming off the British, because I really like taking that week off after the British and just kind of get back in.
Q. Your perspective on Tiger not being here this week, is it kind of tied in to some of the scheduling you were talking about with such a crush at the end of the year?
JIM FURYK: Well, our season anymore is just so long. I'm not complaining, but if I wanted to, I could probably play 50 weeks out of the year out of 52 if I wanted to find something to play in.
You know, a guy like Tiger gets tugged at from more angles than any of the rest of us, and I always feel a little -- in the off-season, I want to play in the off-season, but I want to take some time off, and it's tough to figure out where I want to do that. I regret missing his event, the Target, because I like the event and he's a friend. But you have to do it sometime.
And he's getting pulled -- wherever I am at in the world of golf, he's getting pulled ten times more than everyone else, and he's got to do it somewhere. It's his choice, and obviously it's tough for any event that doesn't have him in the field, and it will hurt. But you know, he's got to make sure he takes care of himself first. And if that's the plan and that's the way to do it, then he needs to decide that and that's fine.
Q. From your perspective and your career, you had the multiple-win season and the great summer, how do you reset for this year in terms of now you've taken that next step you have that you've always talked about, you've taken it a step further; do you prepare any differently?
JIM FURYK: I expected someone to ask me the question, "How are you going to follow it up?" because that's always what everyone asked me in 2003. And it got easy, because I got hurt and played two events and sat on my hands for six months and came back in June and just tried to get healthy for the rest of the year.
So I think the good thing about the off-season is, you know, you can reflect on what happened, you can think about -- I can think about how well I played. I can also think about opportunities missed and things that could have gone a lot better. You know, you kind of soak it all in, you sit down, and then you can kind of throw it away and push it aside and focus on 2007, what do I need to do to prepare.
I rarely -- and I think a lot of us, rarely ever win an event or have a good stretch and you kind of think about it and say, you know, wow, it's really cool at the time. You always want more, and you're always trying to accomplish more and do more and you rarely sit around and smell the roses and think about it or let it soak in, and you have a little time to do that in the off-season. Then I think you kind of push that aside and get focused. That's great to do when I don't have a club in my hand for two weeks in the off-season and I'm doing other things, and I can think about how the year went and how much fun it was.
Then when I start preparing, and I take two weeks off and my swing feels horrible; forget about that, it's time to focus on what I need to do and what I want to accomplish in 2007 and how you're going to do that, and how you're going to improve, and how you're going to get better. That might not always reflect on money won or World Ranking or whatever that may be. For me, I've never really been that narrow-minded goal-wise. My goal has always been to improve and get better and to become a better player.
Everyone wants to do that. The difficult part is to figure out how to do that, how to go about the process to get there. That's what's always been fun to me is the preparation and the process of how you're going to accomplish those goals. I think you just stay focused on that, and if you can accomplish your goals, get a little bit better, then this year will take care of itself.
Q. How often do you get to your house out here?
JIM FURYK: Very rarely anymore. I have not been here since the tournament last year. That's obviously the worst-case scenario, and I think this might be the only year where that's happens. But as my kids are getting older, four and a half and three, and as we talked about my schedule earlier, I try to take two-week lumps, and rarely do I ever take three in the middle of the season.
So two weeks, if you're going to come out here, you want two weeks minimum, and at that point I have my kids on the road, because they are not in school yet, they are traveling out here full-time. It's pretty hard to fly them on a plane for ten hours, have vacation out here and go right back on the road and start playing again. We end up going to Florida and letting them be with their friends, and they are in preschool and things like that. It just made it harder for us to travel.
Q. Does that mean a similar scenario for the next couple of years, at least?
JIM FURYK: Yeah, not saying I won't get here at all, but the time to do it is in the off-season, and I played all through November this year. I think maybe with our schedule ending a little bit earlier in mid-September, end of September and having three months off at the end of the year, I think I'll probably take two of those three off very solid and maybe try to find a month in there where, you know, perfect world, October, don't touch a club, December don't touch a club very much, maybe play some in November world-wide or play in a couple of the events in the end, in perfect world. But that would afford us more time to get out here.
Q. When you came out here more often, would you play the course when you came here?
JIM FURYK: You know, I've never made it here probably more than -- I hate to downplay that, but my parents probably made it somewhere between five and seven months a year out here. Five- to six is probably an average. I made it out here -- most I've ever spent in Hawaii in one year is maybe a tournament here, two weeks vacation is probably the most I've ever spent here. I've done that a couple of times.
So three weeks in the year, 21 to 24 days is probably the most I've ever made it out here in a year. I've done that once or twice. And, yes, if I'm going to play, I don't always play the Plantation, but I have played a little bit.
Q. What happens when Tiger has kids?
JIM FURYK: The last thing I really want to do -- the time I'm spending out here, I want to have fun. I built the house not because I wanted to play golf; I enjoy the island and thought it was --
Q. Golf's fun.
JIM FURYK: Golf's fun, but I doubt you're writing for a hobby on your time off. Writing used to be fun at one time, and it still is, but you're not doing it as a hobby. That's how golf is for me.
Q. Didn't you get my postcards?
JIM FURYK: (Laughter). What was the question?
Q. Talking about your family, what happens when Tiger has kids?
JIM FURYK: Everyone handles that differently. What do you mean by "What happens?"
Q. In terms of, everyone is different when they have kids; does the schedule become rearranged? He's playing in the U.S. Open, and does the pager go off?
JIM FURYK: He probably plays, what, 18 to 21 now? I think what happens probably more in a person's life -- I haven't talked to him personally, and I don't read the Internet or the news all that often. I think what happens most is -- I doubt very much it will affect his professional life all that much, as far as he's very driven and very motivated. I feel like he'll make the time to be the same person professionally. But it really affects your personal life a lot, as far as you reorganize. You put so much more weight on other things. My wife and I spend less time together than we used to, because together we're doing more stuff with the kids, just putting more value on what they are doing and growing up and wanting to spend time with them and be there and help guide them.
So I guess -- probably would assume jumping out of airplanes would get toned down a little bit, and all of the interesting stuff that he likes to do off the course probably will take a little bit of a back seat, I would guess, because he'll want to spend a lot more time with his children.
Q. Did playing the Tour become easier or harder for you after you had kids?
JIM FURYK: I don't think it ever becomes easier. And I wouldn't say it became harder.
I have a very understanding wife and someone that's really helped me excel at what I do. We all make sacrifices, and she's been able to help me grow as a player and also to help our family grow together with my job, which is hard to do.
But it hasn't become hard; it's just different.
Q. It has not really affected your performance, in other words?
JIM FURYK: No. My daughter was born in June of 2002, and I won the U.S. Open in 2003. My son was born at the end of 2003; I was hurt in 2004. But obviously 2005, 2006 are as good as I've ever played, also.
My three best years were 2003, 2005 and 2006 when I had children than before. I think more than anything, it was -- when I was a rookie on Tour, it was amazing how much free time I had. As I became a better player and business ventures started to grow, you had a lot less free time. And then when I had children, I started giggling at how much free time -- I used to think how busy I was, and once I had children, I said, God, you just reorganize things, and a lot of things get cut out of your life because you want to make time for the most important thing, and that's your family.
At first it's a little bit -- not a shock, but it's a little bit of a slap in the face, because you have to figure out how to get everything done that you want to. So family first and your business and playing golf, and then your free time comes at the end. So I end up doing a lot less.
But you still have to find time, whether it's spending time with my wife, just us once in awhile. We usually have a date night once a week, just go to dinner, just the two of us. It seems so -- seems kind of stupid, but we rarely ever just spend time, just me and her together again, so it's nice. We make sure that we take a trip with friends once a year just to get away, and we're fortunate that her parents and my parents will watch the kids or help out.
Just organizing, I think it was just interesting for that first little bit to organize and figure out how to get things done, so I'm very fortunate.
Q. Did you wait to have children? Did you think maybe it might change the dynamic and you waited?
JIM FURYK: I never really did it -- I never thought of it in a professional standpoint rather than just what was right for my wife and I at the time. We met when we were 25, we got married when we were 30. We started having children when we were 32, and we're both 36 now. So just, I don't know, it just seemed to be, it was the right time.
I think we both felt -- I don't know, it's just what worked out best for us. I never really waited to accomplish so much or did it around my golf schedule or anything like that. It was just what was right for the family. I'm not sure if that's what you were asking.
Q. Yes, and you mentioned sometimes as you go along you have to cut certain things out. What did you have to cut out?
JIM FURYK: I just think more, just the fun stuff I did outside of golf. The free time you have, all of the different hobbies and stuff you've done, or I used to do. I've rarely fished since my kids were born; I've rarely fished. Actually my wife used to fish; she likes to fish. I used to go to more football games, I used to take more trips out of town, a couple more vacations with my wife, spending more time with our friends at home, whatever it may be, but your free time is cut down.
I wouldn't give it up for anything, obviously, but just have to -- and I think I've reorganized my schedule and my practice time. I probably spend -- when I got injured back at the end of 2000 in 2001, I learned that I was a little bit of a range rat and a guy that would spend all day at the course, and my mind would wander a lot. I was not getting a lot out of the time I was there, so I was there almost too long in a sense, and I could not focus.
When I was hurt and I couldn't practice, when my wrist was hurt, I condensed the time and learned to get a lot done out of that time. I think you do that more when you have kids, too. You don't have as much -- as much free time, definitely not personally, and you have to make time professionally. But I learned how to get what I want done probably in not a shorter period of time, but you're only afforded so much time a day.
My thing is I love when I'm home. I love to make breakfast for the family and my kids. If I get up, my wife, she knows I like to do it, so when I'm home, I get up and make breakfast for the kids and everyone. That gets me to a certain time of the day, and then I'll probably go to the golf course and then I'll want to come back and do something fun with them, take them to dinner. Then I help put one kid to bed at night and just kind of being part of it.
So when I'm home, I have only so many afternoon hours to kind of prepare and get ready. I think it's an organization of your time is what happens with kids. You all have kids so you know exactly what I'm talking about, so I'm just rambling.
Q. Did you ever have a situation on Tour where a crying baby or a changing of the diaper in the middle of the night kept you up and affected a Tour round?
JIM FURYK: Not too much. I've changed a diaper and had a crying baby. Even if they were sleeping in the room next door, a crying baby isn't that quiet; you hear them and you're up, but I don't know if it's affected it. We've had pretty good sleepers. They take after their dad on that one.
I've been awake or awakened at night and changed a diaper or whatever it may be, or had someone sick or whatever it may be, but I don't think it's affected my round. I plan pretty good -- I don't sleep a lot anyways. If I get seven hours instead of eight, I'll live. Sleep has never been an issue for me.
Q. You're up to No. 2 in the world, so now do you feel like a stage now where last year you maxed out in terms of how well you can play and you can sustain that, or do you feel like you can be better now and in what ways?
JIM FURYK: That was actually the question I was waiting for, those kind -- although it was asked better than I was expected -- not from you. (Laughter). I mean in a nicer way.
I think that even if -- well, no, I feel like I can become a better player. I'm not saying that's going to be reflected in the World Ranking or whatever that may be, or if I drop to third in the world next week, that's inconsequential to me. That to me doesn't rank, doesn't show how good of a player I'll become or if I'm getting any better or not.
I always feel like if you're trying to stay still or stagnant or, all right, here, I've reached this point, if I can just stay there, it's like, get to 4-under and just trying to shoot 68, you're going backwards. Even the best player in the world, Tiger Woods, he's always trying to get better. He's always trying to get better. He's always trying to improve. Nicklaus was always trying to get better, always trying to improve. That's what's nice about this game. What I was trying to say earlier was I had the best year of my career, but I feel like I left -- you're always going to feel like you left something out there in golf. I'm happy with the way things went, but I know I can get better and I can improve.
The trick is, figuring out those areas, which is sometimes pretty easy, but figuring out how to improve those areas is the tough part. And that's the chase that I've always liked. The preparation in this game, the preparation for tournaments is what -- just going out and slapping around with my buddies on the weekend isn't fun, but preparing and getting ready and using the tournament as the test, that chase has always been what's fun to me.
I feel like I can get better, and I can improve, and I'm going to try to do that.
Q. One final one. If you've got buddies at home that don't follow golf, real, real close and they ask you what the FedExCup is, what do you tell them? Has that happened?
JIM FURYK: Most of my close friends haven't asked. I've had people with Exelon or some business partners talk to me about it. Most of my friends at home are athletes, so they might not follow extremely close, but they have a good idea what's going on in the sports world. They kind of understand but don't know the particulars, if that makes sense.
Q. If someone asks you about the FedExCup, what would you tell them?
JIM FURYK: Well, how much time would I want to spend with this person? (Laughter).
Q. Two minutes.
JIM FURYK: If it was 15 seconds then it would be tough. But two minutes, I would say that, you know, it's a reorganization of our schedule to where the big thing everyone sees is the schedule has been shortened, but really what is it, is it's a way to reorganize the schedule, and now instead of seeing the Money List and the paper on Monday morning, you're going to see the big points list at each event or -- almost every event has the same amount of points. At the end of the year, we're going to have a playoff format. It will be three events and then a final event that will be like the Super Bowl. Most of the people then say, is it something similar to NASCAR?
It's got some similarities, but I don't follow NASCAR enough to answer that question in any intelligent way. I would say that it's a way that we've reorganized our schedule, and it's a way for us to market ourselves in a different light. And hopefully, the ultimate goal is to provide more excitement at the end of the year to where THE TOUR Championship this year was obviously a little bit -- it was exciting for Adam. But it was a little unexciting for the finish of the year because Tiger had already won away with it and he was Player of the Year and that was it.
So this will be a way that you'll have three playoff tournaments and then a Super Bowl or a World Series, if you will, hopefully provide a lot of entertainment for our fans.
Q. And the 15 seconds that you came short, where would you rank it on the pecking order of things you want to accomplish this year amongst majors, total number of wins, money title, Vardon.
JIM FURYK: I thought I was getting out of here before you guys asked me that question.
Q. Did I ask it poorly or average?
JIM FURYK: It was all right. (Laughter).
When I played well in 2003, I kind of felt like I had a dart board on my chest. Well, I won a major and played pretty much as good as I could last year, well, now what are you going to do. It was like I was just going to fade away.
Q. I never said that.
JIM FURYK: That's what I'm saying, the question was asked very nicely. I was giving you a compliment, put it that way.
I want to win the major championships ahead of everything else, so that's the most important. And I have a hard time believing the Top-10 players in the world are not going to sit up here and say the same thing.
But, I think everything takes time. And in time, this will become --
Q. Fifth major?
JIM FURYK: I'm not putting labels. I already thought THE PLAYERS Championship had that label, actually.
But I think everything takes time and it will take time to shake things out. Obviously we are going to have to make some tweaks to the system because it's a mathematical system. So some guy from MIT will probably already figure out a better way to do it.
Q. Somebody already figured out the majors are not worth very much.
JIM FURYK: Our Tour, Tiger Woods, Phil Mickelson, we've always prepared for major championships and that's what's going to be first and foremost.
But the season is pretty much, after the PGA, has kind of been just a gentle downward slide, and I don't think that's going to be the case anymore. The PGA is going to end and the nice thing about this system is it's not like two months later and you try to get everyone revved up again. Everyone is still revved up from the PGA. There's a week off, it not a week off, it's still a nice event in Greensboro, which I heard switched courses.
Q. So you're going to play Greensboro?
JIM FURYK: I heard it's a new course. And then we have this playoff system. I have to take Greensboro off otherwise I would be playing nine in a row.
But you've got -- yeah, I think it will be exciting. But where it sits, I would still rather win the U.S. Open.
Q. Could you see a situation where if you clinch the Super Bowl that you referred to, the FedExCup, in Chicago after the third event, say you were first or second going into the playoff --
JIM FURYK: Would I skip an event?
Q. No, if you clinched, if you were first or second and then you won, say, Boston and Chicago, and you clinched, would you go to Atlanta or would you say, hey, I just played seven or eight or whatever it is, I don't even need to go to Atlanta.
JIM FURYK: You're saying if you were way out ahead --
Q. If you clinched in Chicago?
JIM FURYK: No, I'd go. I think I'd take a little victory lap. (Laughter).
Hey, deferred or not, it's a lot of money. No, I would say I would go play. I think the way the system works, they are hoping the first couple of years especially, that wouldn't happen.
Q. What about Phil or Tiger?
JIM FURYK: I don't know, I can't answer that. Hopefully they would play but, you know -- still, only September for goodness sakes.
Yeah, I don't know. I know I would play. It would be like maybe this year, if I -- let's say I was having a great year and I really wanted to get ready. It would be like I won the Canadian Open this year, and I would say, you know, it would be better if I took the Canadian off; to me, I feel like it's right to go play the Canadian Open and I just won the tournament last year and everyone was really nice to me and it was nice winning and it's nice to go back and defend and be part of that and do the right thing. Who knows, maybe I'll need that event towards the end of the year to slip up there and gain more points or whatever it may be.
In any scenario, after I won the event, first question out of the press room, will you comeback next year. I asked where it was in the schedule; owe, well, they started laughing, but I'll be here.
Q. What do you see your responsibility from the marketing standpoint in the FedExCup as a player?
JIM FURYK: Well, I think that I've kind of always felt like my job is to hope promote what we're doing as a whole, as a body and as a TOUR to be positive about the direction that we're going. It doesn't mean that I have to be fake in the way we're going.
There's going to be things that I don't agree with in the system or things that I don't think are perfect, but if you look at the whole picture, it's positive and I like where we're going and I think it's my job to be positive and help the PGA TOUR and help promote it because I am part of that body, I am part of the PGA TOUR.
But if I did it in a way that wasn't in my own words, honest, then it can almost be a negative if that makes sense. If I get up there and just promote and promote and promote and look fake, it doesn't help either. Honestly, I think it's a positive step for the PGA TOUR and I like the direction we are going. I think it's my job to, when you ask me the question, to reflect in a positive way and help the PGA TOUR as a whole in that sense.
Q. So in Ana Leaird contacts you and said: Hey, Jim, can you do a spot on Leno when you're in L.A., and can you do a spot when you're in the New York area on, you know, Letterman --
JIM FURYK: You're not working for Leno, are you?
Q. No, no. I'm just saying, when those come up, to promote the FedExCup, you're comfortable with that?
JIM FURYK: Within the realm of -- yes, but I'm much more comfortable doing it right here with you all. Within the realm of, if it's -- if it works in my schedule and it's fine and it's not hurting my preparation for that event, sure.
But if I've got to go out of my way to drive through L.A. traffic, leave the course at noon, get to a taping, drive back through traffic, get home and I'm tired and I'm grouchy because I didn't practice, then absolutely not.
But if I can do it in a way that's -- I've said no to the PGA TOUR, put it that way, but I've also done some stuff.
Q. What if they ask you to fly to Pittsburgh?
JIM FURYK: Well, see, I was going to Pittsburgh.
Q. What was the gist of the spot with Jerome Bettis?
JIM FURYK: Well, the Playoffs. I was asking for pointers in the Playoffs. One was, he was taking all the food off my plate in the diner and that wasn't good for me and told him I was hungry and he said, "You're supposed to be hungry, it's the Playoffs: That's the one I liked. Because he's a huge person. Not much you can do when he's taking the food off your plate. And the other one, I forget, we were chatting, but I was asking for pointers in the Playoffs.
He was good, actually. He does all of the speaking. I just sit there. Whoever wrote it I thought I was a complete idiot or what, I just sit there and look confused when he's talking. (Laughter).
TODD BUDNICK: Thanks for spending time with us.
End of FastScripts